How Uzbekistan transformed the way I travel | Travel Musings

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.” 
― Mark Twain, The Innocents Abroad/Roughing It

As a kid, I was a fan of author Mark Twain and also geography subject. I would read both with equal enthusiasm; while Mark Twain’s accounts of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn in the far back region of Mississippi would evoke a sense of adventure & also empathy for my fellow kids in less fortunate circumstances, reading about all the fascinating regions & countries in my geography textbooks would fire my imagination as well as wanderlust. I so longed to visit the majestic ruins of Petra in Jordan, the brilliant cities of Samarkand & Bukhara on the great silk road, the seemingly unreal cold Gobi Desert in Mongolia and ofcourse the  charming Gol Gumbaz in Bijapur in south India, among many destinations.

My quest for travel was much increased due to the fact that my father did not believe in travel at all. His idea of vacations was to send us off to his ancestral village for a month every summer. In fact, after interacting with couple of fellow travel addicts, I have a theory that we became addicted to travel because we didn’t get to travel as kids (now there are travel lovers who did travel as kids too but my research says the other kind are more….anyways I’m digressing from topic here). It was not surprising therefore, that I started travelling on my own as soon as I started college. It helped that my Masters degree course required me to travel length and breadth of my country.

As I travelled more and more due to work and leisure, I began to discover new destinations, fad destinations being promoted every season and somewhere down the line, I chose destinations which sometimes were more on the ‘buzz’ than what I wanted. Even though I enjoyed travelling anyways, my list of ‘childhood travel wish list’ destinations remained a list.

Then in 2016, one acquaintance who had started a curated travel business for women  (one life to travel) asked me if I wanted to take the Uzbekistan trip. The charge she quoted seemed fine but more than that, I was dilly dallying on the timing of the trip and also, I was not too keen to join an all women group tour. It was thanks to her logical and paitent answers to all my queries that I decided to take up on that Uzbekistan tour.

Uzbekistan is one of the key regions of the Great Silk Road legacy, the greatest of all caravan trading routes on land which began from China and went all the way till Italy, covering many countries & regions on the way. In Uzbekistan, the cities of Khiva, Bukhara and Samarkand were the most famed cities which thrived and flourished on the Great Silk Road; I had wanted to visit the cities of Bukhara and Samarkand for the longest time, since I read about them in my geography classes in school.

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What do you do when you fall in love hopelessly with a place? Well I took many many photographs of myself and #Khiva where I have left a piece of my heart 💞💞 Reminiscing one of my most surreal travel experiences ever at Khiva on (link in profile) . . . . In case you are interested, I'm wearing @houseofmasaba Ikat Palazzos, sweaters by Joss, bag by @michaelkors , hat & shades by @accessorize @accessorizeindiaofficial , scarf by @fabindianews | As you can make out, I'm so much in love with this image that it's my Instagram DP —————————————————- #instafashion #traveltheworld #travelstyle #travelfashion #worldtraveler #centralasia #silkroad #uzbekistan #kaltaminor #travelgram #stylegram #stylishtraveler #wanderlust #journeys #idresslikeme #winterstyle #instajourney #travelflashback #travelmemories #travel #travelnostalgia #lovetotravel #travelbug #mobilephotography #travelphotography #journeys #igers #uzbekistan_inst #livetotravel #travellife

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Uzbekistan turned out to be fabulous experience. The city of Khiva dazzled me, even though before travelling here I didn’t know much about it. I fell in love with Khiva and it remains of my favourite cities till date. In fact, its one of the few places I would like to visit again.

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We spent a whole day walking around Khiva, taking 'chai' breaks in the tea houses and then again some sight-seeing; the views and ambiance was something I could not get enough of! As the sun light changed during the day, the shades of both the mud bricks & turquoise work changed hues and it was fascinating to come back to the same structure/minaret and see a different hue to it. | Read full story of my visit to #Khiva in Uzbekistan on (link in profile) —————————————————- #Uzbekistan #uzbekistan_inst #journeys #traveldiaries #travelphotography #seetheworld #lpmi #wanderlust #travelgram #traveller #travelbug #heritage #unescoworldheritage #instatravel #instajourney #globetrotter #CentralAsia #silkroad #xorazm #khanate #worldtravel #passionpassport #lovetotravel #livetotravel #solowomantraveler #citiesoftheworld #heritagetravel #igers #imstagrammers

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The cities of Samarkand and Bukhara turned out to be as magical as I had imagined them to be when I read about them.

Recommended Read : On the Silk Road | My Uzbekistan Trip

After coming back from my Uzbekistan trip, I felt a sense of accomplishment as well as calmness, a feeling one feels when a life long quest is fulfilled. I decided then and there, that from now on, I should first visit my childhood travel wishlist places first before any ‘fad’ destination.

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Uzbeki food has so much variety for both vegetarians & non-vegetarians and I had the most enjoyable gastronomic experience on my travels through the cities of Khiva, Bukhara, Samarkand & Tashkent. In the pictures – Pumpkin soup & Khiva bread, Uzbeki Chai or Chõi (swipe for all pictures) . . Read my #travelogues on #uzbekistan at —————————————————- #instatravel #foodietravel #eatingout #travelfoodfinds #uzbekifood #UNESCOworldheritagesite #foodandtravel #traveleats #culture #foodheritage #welivetoexplore #discoverfood #bread #explorer #travelersnotebook #centralasia #Khiva #foodjournal #travellingthroughtheworld #journey #livetoexplore #travelphotography #eatandtravel #pumpkinsoup #loveuzbekistan #uzbekistanfood

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For the lust of knowing what should not be known, we take the Golden Road to Samarkand ~ James Elroy Flecker . . Samarkand, in Uzbekistan is the jewel of the Great Silk Road legacy and its most famous city. Believe to be one of the oldest inhabited cities in Central Asia (and probably the world) and a UNESCO world heritage site, On my trip to Uzbekistan visit to Samarkand was kept in the last part of the itinerary, with the promise that the best has been kept for last. So when I landed in Samarkand, my expectations were sky high. Samarkand dazzled me with all its finery and glamour. It is indeed the most mesmerizing city of the Great Silk Road. Read here full story on (link in profile) —————————————————- #UNESCOworldheritagesite #Samarkand #uzbekistan #uzbekistantravel #centralasia #silkroute #greatsilkroad #silkroad #thegreatsilkroad #travel #travellingthroughtheworld #wanderlust #journey #uzbekistan_inst #instatravel #instajourney #womenwhotravel #travelguide #seetheworld #travelgram #globetrotter #globetravel #registan #vacation #explorer #exploretheworld #travelphotography #travelersnotebook #makeheritagefun

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I just returned from my trip to Jordan, which is most known for Petra – A Unesco World Heritage Site and one of my childhood travel wishlists. I feel the same sense of accomplishment and calmness after the trip as I felt after Uzbekistan. And I’m already planning for my next ‘childhood travel wishlist’ destination!

So, Thank you Uzbekistan for showing me the way as a traveller…the true journey I should be taking. And stay tuned for my Jordan travel diaries.

My Travel Experiences in Uzbekistan are penned down here:

Travel to Khiva

Travel to Samarkand

Travel to Bukhara

Travel to Tashkent

Day Trip to Silk Paper Factory in Konigil, Uzbekistan

Vegetarian Travellers’ Guide to Uzbekistan

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