Bukhara - The Capital of Islamic Culture
Sacred Bukhara is one of the tourist gems of Uzbekistan. The historic city centre is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. The age of the city exceeds 2500 years.
Let us say one thing. You will lose lots, if you not visit Bukhara.
The climate here can be described as hot and arid in the summer, so if you want to travel to Bukhara at this time of the year, be sure to bring an umbrella and sunscreen with you. Winters in Bukhara are rather mild, but warm things should not be neglected.
Gifts and souvenirs
On Bukhara streets, you can find many different souvenir shops and workshops. Sometimes it seems that all souvenirs are the same, but this is not true! Each seller have something to surprise you! Bukhara is the weaving capital of Uzbekistan! If you want to purchase stylish and modern wardrobe elements with the national elements, you should visit Bukhara! Most of the shops are located along Lyabi-Hauz Square and in the shopping domes, which are located next to the famous Poi-Kalyan Ensemble. In addition to the clothes, you can buy ikat fabric. Armani trading house have used such this fabric in its collection. It is, of course, not cheap, but its price is fully justified. Bukhara is also famous for its carpets. The quality of the carpets is not inferior to the Indian, Pakistani and Iranian, and sometimes even surpass! For exotic lovers, Bukhara can offer musical instruments that are made on its territory with special skill or handmade knives.
The main dish of all cities of Uzbekistan is pilaf. Traveling across the regions of the country, you will be surprised how many different types of this dish is being prepared. In every city, people are convinced that pilaf of their region is the best in the country! Only having tasted it in all regions, you are able to understand which one is the best for you. Osh-Sophie is considered dietary because of the cooking method. It is being prepared in a peculiar way; it is not mixed, unlike in Andijan or Tashkent. Another feature is that it is cooked only in a copper cauldron. Bukhara dishes also include khalis or kaish. You can read more about the national cuisine of Uzbekistan at this link.
Top Attractions in Bukhara
7 saints of Bukhara
Bukhara is the birthplace of the seven great Sufis of the Nakshbandi order. The great representatives of Sufism lived here, led religious and social life, which contributed to the formation and prosperity of the fertile Bukhara, to the education of spirituality, raising the emotional spirit. The Muslim sanctuaries, the burial places of Sufi saints can be found here.
Most of the pilgrims of Bukhara begin their journey with a blessed visit to the mausoleum of Khoja Abdalkhalik al Gijduvani, a spiritual mentor who paved the path of Nakshbandi teachings. Abdulkhalik al Gijduvani is connected with the spiritual parts of the tenth generation of the prophet. The terrace of the mausoleum with ten columns and props is a symbol of the mentioned dynasty.
In the time of Khoja Abdalkhalik al Gijduvani, the mausoleum was a “chillahona”, where people came to pray during forty-day of sweltering heat. The Holy place of prayer then became a cherished place of worship.
The majestic Lyabi-Hauz ensemble (transl.from uzb. "By the pond") - one of the central monuments of ancient Bukhara. Kukeldash madrassah, Divan Begi madrassah, and the Khanaka (Sufi abode) of the same name make up the Central historic square.
Lyabi-Hauz was once a trading post on the Silk road, which contributed to the location of a shopping street next to it.
Now there is a cafe that saves you from the heat of a hot summer day with cool water.
First there was the Nadir Divan Begi madrassah, which includes a Khanaka, a swimming pool and a Caravanserai, which was later converted into another madrassah.
Tourists are interested in this place because it hosts concerts, fashion shows of Uzbek dresses and many other bright events. Near the madrassah stands a bronze monument of the humour and national hero Khoja Nasriddin, installed in the late 20th century.
The second building – Kukeldash madrassah, built in the 16th century, is one of the largest Bukhara madrassahs. It includes 160 hujras (rooms for prayings). Its facades are decorated with majolica, the main one contains a lobby, a mosque and a darshana.
Poi-Kalyan architectural ensemble
The Poi-Kalyan architectural ensemble was built in the XII-XVI centuries and located at the foot of the magnificent Kalyan minaret on the Registan square in Bukhara. The complex consists of two madrassas – Miri-Arab and Amir-Alimkhan, the Kalyan minaret and the mosque of the same name.
An interesting fact is that this place has already had a cathedral mosque with a minaret since the Arab conquest in the VIII century.
In the XII century the city was rebuilt and a new mosque and minaret appeared there. According to the Central Asian historian Narshakhi, the minaret was beautiful, but not insecure. His words turned out to be prophetic, as after the construction was completed, the minaret fell and destroyed most part of the mosque and the Kalyan minaret, which has survived to the present day, were built.
The current state of the complex takes place in the XVI century, when a new mosque and Miri-Arab madrasah was built.