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Uzbekistan Founder's Tour

23 April - 4 May, 2024

Discover the lands of the Silk Road

Khiva, Bukhara & Samarkand are captivating Khanates of the past, evoking the magic of the Silk Road, this is a land where several cultures meet – Chinese, Arab, Indian, Persian & Mongol.

Travel to Uzbekistan with Exeter Founder, Greg Tepper, to one of the world’s most exotic and evocative destinations. Experience for yourself the hospitality of the people, and the mystical aura of this lesser-visited part of the world. Greg has been traveling to Uzbekistan for almost 30 years and has great insight into this fascinating part of the world and its history.

Highlights include:

• A private viewing of the oldest Koran in the world in Tashkent
• A private tour with the top expert of the avant-garde Savitsky Museum in Nukus
• An exclusive folk show in the Hareem at the Tash Hauli Palace
• Dinner under the stars in Ichan Kala, Khiva
• Meet local craftsmen reviving ancient crafts in each city

of Silk Road caravans, coveted and conquered by Persians, Byzantines, Ottomans, Russians, and Soviets.

Ask us about extending your journey either pre or post in Istanbul, which offers the best flight connections to and from Uzbekistan.


Cost per person in double accommodation: $12,000

Single Supplement: $2,000

Tashkent ceramics

Wednesday, April 24

Arrive today in Tashkent. Transfer to your hotel and enjoy some time at leisure.

Exeter Extraordinary Experience

We’ll meet this evening for a private Welcome Dinner in the garden of a famous Uzbek ceramists’ workshop and enjoy some classic Uzbek music.

Meals: Dinner 

Hotel: Hyatt Regency Tashkent

Thursday, April 25

Today, we will begin a tour of Tashkent’s Old City main sights. We will enjoy a visit Khastimom complex, which is a collection of historical structures dating back to the late Middle Ages.

Next, we will visit the Chorsu Bazaar for the true feeling of Tashkent!  Bazaars in Uzbekistan are a unique sites in each city.  You will capture some of your best local photos at these markets, where you will find everything from bins of spices, nuts, fruit, and cheese to clothing, toys, tools, and everyday goods.

After lunch, we’ll visit the Applied Arts Museum. It displays various types of national handicrafts, including carpets, jewelry, woodcarving, and gold embroidery from the 19th and 20th centuries.

Meals: Breakfast & Lunch

Hotel: Hyatt Regency Tashkent

Chorsu Market - active ladies Tashkent
Savitsky Museum

Friday, April 26

Today, you will visit the small city of Nukus in western Uzbekistan, which is the capital of the autonomous region of Karakalpakstan, home to the Karakalpaks, a Turkic people more closely related to Kazakhs than to Uzbeks. Explore the wonderful Savitsky Art Museum. This remote desert museum houses the incredible life’s work of founder, Igor Savitsky. The collection is the second-largest gathering of Russian avant-garde art after the Russian Museum in St. Petersburg. 

Exeter Extraordinary Experience

An exclusive private tour led by one of the top curators includes an opportunity to go inside the archives to view paintings not on public display and learn about the restoration efforts of this unique collection. Included in the museum are exhibits showing the culture of the Karakalpaks, expressed in clothing, jewelry, and decorative arts.

Meals: Breakfast & Lunch 

Hotel: Farovon Khiva

Saturday, April 27

Khiva’s origin dates to the 6th century and during medieval times it became a city of great importance. It also has a long history of barbaric rulers and your guide will give you a glimpse into their colorful stories.

We will also visit the Djuma Mosque. Its unique design features a roof supported by 218 wooden columns, possibly an early Arabic influence. We will also visit the Tozabog Palace. Built in 1897, this was the summer residence of the Emirs of Khiva.

In the afternoon, we will visit a Silk Carpet and Suzanne (embroidery) workshop sponsored by UNESCO, where you can see artisans practicing their craft.

Exeter Extraordinary Experience

This evening we’ll enjoy dinner within the Harem, including a private folk show.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Hotel: Farovon Khiva


Sunday, April 28

Bukhara is an oasis in the Kyzyl Kum desert, which is located on the banks of the Zeravshan River and has been inhabited since approximately 3,000 BC. Located on the historic Silk Road, the city has long been a center of trade, scholarship, culture, and religion. The old city part of the town has a small and friendly feel and much of today’s sights are accessible on foot. On our way from the airport, we’ll visit Sitorai Mokhi Khosa, the summer residence of the last Emir of Bukhara.

Our afternoon tour will include touring highlights Poi Kalyan Mosque, Amiri Arab Madrassah, Trade Domes, an ancient Silk Market, and the Labi Hauz complex.

Meals: Breakfast & Lunch 

Hotel: Minorai Kalon

Monday, April 29

Today we’ll continue our exploration of Bukhara, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, starting with the Ark Fortress – the very core of the ancient city and the oldest building in Bukhara. Just opposite the Ark, we will see the Bolo-Khauz Mosque. The earliest part of this religious complex is the pond called Bolo-Khauz – one of the few remaining ponds in the city of Bukhara.

Next, we will visit the Ismail Samani mausoleum, which was built in the 9th century as the final resting place of Ismail Samani – the founder of the Samanid dynasty, the last Persian dynasty to rule in Central Asia. Near the Samani mausoleum, we will also see the Chashmai Ayub (Job’s Well). The water of this well is considered healing

Exeter Extraordinary Experience

This evening’s dinner will be a night to experience Uzbek customs. We’ll cook plov (the national dish of Uzbekistan) together and learn about Suzanne embroidery art. 

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner 

Hotel: Minorai Kalon

Plov Making
Ceramics Guijduvan, Uzbekistan

Tuesday, April 30

This morning we’ll drive to Guijduvan.  Here we’ll be invited into a ceramic school, where the sixth generation of potters from the Narzullayerv family can be found practicing their craft.

After lunch at the ceramists’ house, we’ll continue to Naqushbandi Complex in the Bukharan countryside. It is a revered Muslim shrine. Naqshbandi, a theologian, and Sufi Order founder is buried there. The complex includes a mosque, minaret, madrassah, and a necropolis. It is considered the Central Asian Mecca, attracting believers from different Muslim countries. The complex also houses a museum showcasing Sufi artifacts and information.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Hotel: Minorai Kalon

Wednesday, May 1

Today, we will visit the Fayzulla Khodjaev House Museum. Built in the 19th century, it is a spectacular example of a wealthy family home with a stunning interior.

Next, our guide will take us to the Jewish Quarter where we will the Synagogue. Bukhara once had a large Jewish community. Most of the Jews in Central Asia in the 16th century used to live in Bukhara and played a major role in the city’s development. The Bukharan Jews, many of whom migrated to the United States and Israel after the collapse of the Soviet Union, still speak a distinctive language, which is a dialect of ancient Persian.

After lunch, we will transfer to the train station and depart for Samarkand.

Meals: Breakfast & Lunch 

Hotel: Regency Samarkand

Train station, Bukhara
Registan Square, Samarkand

Thursday, May 2

Today we will begin your exploration of this historic city. One of the highlights of today’s tour will certainly be Registan Square, the most famous landmark, and the heart of the ancient city.  Registan (Sandy Place) probably got its name from the sand, which was strewn on the ground to soak up the blood from the public executions, which were held there until the early 20th century. We will also visit the Gur Emir (Tomb of the King) Mausoleum – the actual place where Timur was buried.

This afternoon, we will see the Shakhi Zinda Necropolis. This cluster of 11 mausoleums was built during the 14th through the 15th centuries and is one of the most beautiful sights in the city. Our guide will show you the Bibi Khanym Mosque, the largest of its kind in Central Asia

Meals: Breakfast & Lunch

Hotel: Regency Samarkand

Friday, May 3

This morning we will continue touring in Samarkand including Ulugbek Observatory, Saint Daniel Mausoleum, and the Koni Ghil Silk Paper Center. 

Exeter Extraordinary Experience

Afterward, our guide will take you to the small village of Konigil, a few miles from the center of Samarkand. With the help of UNESCO funding, the ancient art of silk papermaking has been revived. We will have the opportunity to learn about this ancient process, brought to Samarkand from China in the 7th century, and have a go at making our own silk paper to take home.

This evening we’ll enjoy a farewell dinner.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Hotel: Regency Samarkand

Ulugbek Observatory
Uzbekistan Samarkand

Saturday, May 4

Today we say goodbye to Uzbekistan. Individual departure transfers to the airport.

Meals: Breakfast

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