The Cutest Nameless + Abandoned Observatory in Samarkand

One completely spontaneous find in Samarkand was this adorably small abandoned observatory in Central Park (Uzbek: Markaziy Bog’—Russian: Центральный парк). We walked past it one evening (19th of July) on the outside and I snapped some photos. Since the best restaurant for vegetarians – Old City Restaurant – in Samarkand is located a stone’s throw away from Central Park, I knew we’d be back. Here’s a Google Satellite view of the observatory where you can clearly see the observatory’s round metal roof: From the ground behind the fence, it looked much like an abandoned observatory, but I couldn’t be sure.Continue reading

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How to Climb the Minaret of the Ulugh Beg Madrasah (Registan)

Climbing the minaret of the Ulugh Beg Madrasah of the Samarkand Registan is not something that’s officially offered. I think this is one of these things you can still do now, but in a few years they will probably put this under lock and key and you can’t do it anymore. I am aware that by writing about this online, I might contribute to the early demise of this option. But it was the best thing we did at the Registan and I consider my blog our little secret and not a mega-influential thing. Here’s how to climb the minaret.Continue reading

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Xoja Ahror Complex + Nadir Divan-Begi Madrasah in Samarkand

Besides the Nadir Divan-Begi Madrasah in Samarkand, there’s one that’s much more famous in Bukhara. I wrote this post to help people find this beautiful and underrated madrasah in Samarkand. Continue reading to find out how to go there and what the entry prices are or scroll down to “in short”. Why is the Nadir Divan-Begi Madrasah in Samarkand So Hard to Find? The short answer? SEO If you Google for the Nadir Divan-Begi Madrasah in English, you will only find the madrasah of the same name in Bukhara. It’s much more famous than the one in Samarkand, which isContinue reading

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Samarkand Museums and Cultural Heritage Sites: 2021 Entry Fees for Foreigners

Though generally an inexpensive country in 2021, I’d like to know the entry price before going to a museum. This is no different for Samarkand, with its many museums, mausoleums, mosques, and other cultural heritage sites. At the Ulugh Beg observatory, I stumbled upon a price list in Uzbek written in Cyrillic. I decided to translate the info for other foreigners coming to Samarkand. Below you’ll find a map of all the museums. Before You Visit a Samarkand Museum or Cultural Heritage Site The prices are in UZS. At the time of writing, UZS 25.000 was €1.99 or US$2.35. TheContinue reading

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Ulugh Beg Observatory, Samarkand: Astronomy of the Olden Days

There are two reasons why the number one sight for me personally in Samarkand was visiting the Ulugh Beg observatory. The first is that I like visiting observatories and planetaria and other space shit. The second reason is that I love visiting the real-life versions of the wonders of Age of Empires II (AoE2). Brief History of Ulugh Beg Astronomy geek Mirza Muhammad Tāraghay (aka Mirzo Ulugh Beg, 1394–1449) was the grandson of Amir Temur (aka Tamerlane, aka Timur, 1336–1405), a conqueror and the founder of the Timurid Empire, dynasty, renaissance, etcetera. Ulugh Beg’s daddy moved the capital from SamarkandContinue reading

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(Craft) Beer in Uzbekistan Guide—Tashkent, Mostly

Nobody travels to Uzbekistan for the beer. But perhaps after this post, you at least know what to do when you find yourself in Tashkent or beyond craving that divine tingly liquid. My focus lied on craft beer from the liquor stores of Tashkent and Samarkand, the live beer places, but I’m also covering the industrial national lagers. Microbrewery Craft Beer in Uzbekistan, Ranked #1 Briz, Wheat Beer (4.5% alc. – 0.5L – UZS: 11.000) Craft Brewing Company We are 100% biased for wheat beer, and Uzbekistan is no exception. Briz is a deliciously refreshing and cloudy beer that’s perfectContinue reading

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How (Not) to Get a SIM Card in Uzbekistan (Tashkent + Samarkand)

When traveling to Uzbekistan, it’s a great idea to get a SIM card for independent travel. Though we arrived at Islam Karimov Tashkent International Airport, we didn’t buy one there because the price was double from the city. Mobile data is quite affordable in Uzbekistan. Here are our learnings from getting a SIM card in Uzbekistan on our first day in Tashkent, so you can avoid the mistakes we made. FYI, the country code for Uzbekistan is +998 Which Uzbek Telecom Company Should I Choose? Analysis of the Uzbek prepaid data wiki showed us that the info is probably ratherContinue reading

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Hey There, Tashkent?! Kyrgyzstan to Uzbekistan (Semi-Live Blog)

These events happened on Saturday, the 26th of June, 2021. We hoped to fly from Manas International Airport (FRU) in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, to Islam Karimov Tashkent International Airport (TAS), Uzbekistan. I’m trying to update this blog as a sort of semi-live blog while on the move.  Saturday, 26th of June: 60 Days Up, Go to Tashkent, Uzbekistan?! Goodbye, Bishkek Time to go! Jonas woke me up at 7:00 to shower and finish packing. He pointed out that today was another one of those beautiful Bishkek days that’s clear and shows the mountains. Yesterday evening they were veiled in cloudsContinue reading

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Yinj Tan — Hitchhiker Spotlight 🔦

On Fridays, we put a hitchhiker in the *spotlight. This week it’s Yinj Tan! Scroll down to read hitchhiking stories from her journeys. This spotlight first appeared on the 2nd of October 2020 in the NOMADS – Hitchhiking Club About Yinj First hitch: I guess it was 2014, back when I was still working in Singapore. I went to a walk with a friend and a couchsurfer, we got really tired to walk to the bus stop and the couchsurfer saw some other people hitchhiking, so he also tried and a lady driving a Mercedes sports car stopped and gaveContinue reading

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