Winter Small Group Tour: New Year 2022-2023 in Samarkand

Tashkent, Bukhara, Samarkand

Samarkand, once the capital of Tamerlane’s expansive empire and a major destination on the Silk Road, is a city that has weathered the passing of time for more than 2700 years. Bukhara and Tashkent hold equally fascinating histories within their ancient walls, parks and bazaars. A New Year spent in such a historical setting, once at the crossroads of the world’s cultures, will not be soon forgotten.
In one of our most unique Central Asia Small Group Tours, Winter Tour: New Year in Samarkand, you will have an unforgettable celebration as you spend time in Uzbekistan’s three main cities – Tashkent, Bukhara and Samarkand. This tour option, affordable and ideal for a short trip over winter break, includes adequate time to explore Uzbekistan independently, a personal tour of Samarkand, an Uzbek cooking class and, of course, a New Year celebration in the very heart of Central Asia.

Arrive in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan. A driver will meet you at Tashkent International Airport to take you to your hotel, where check-in begins at noon. Free time for the remainder of the day to rest after your long flight and see Tashkent.
Overnight at the hotel.
Optional Activities: Overnight in your Tashkent hotel.
Breakfast at the hotel and transfer late morning to the Tashkent domestic airport for a flight to Bukhara.
Arrive in Bukhara in the afternoon, where your driver will be waiting for you to take you to the hotel.
Enjoy free time exploring the old streets of Bukhara, whose alleyways resemble a living depiction of “A Thousand and One Nights”, or have a rest by the waters of Lyabi-Hauz, where you can enjoy refreshments and mingle with the tourists and locals who congregate under its mulberry trees.
Overnight at the hotel.
You’ll have the morning to explore Bukhara on your own before a driver chauffeurs you to the train station in the afternoon for your trip to Samarkand.
Take the train from Bukhara to Samarkand (330 km). You’ll be met at the Samarkand train station by your driver.
After taking you by the hotel, you’ll be driven to Siab Bazaar, the oldest and largest marketplace in Samarkand. There you will meet with a chef who will lead a masterclass in cooking Samarkand plov, the tasty Uzbek national dish of rice, carrots, raisins and beef. The chef will teach you how to differentiate between the quality of various ingredients, and together you’ll buy all that you’ll need to make Samarkand plov.
Once you’ve purchased all the necessary ingredients, the driver will take you to the cultural center where the masterclass will be conducted.
Overnight at the hotel.
The New Year Uzbekistan tour plan continues with a private city tour of Samarkand, led by an experienced, local guide, to the following sights:
  • Gur Emir, the imposing burial sight of Tamerlane and Mirzo Ulugbek.
  • Registan Square, the social and commercial center of Samarkand for centuries and Samarkand’s most celebrated site today. The square includes three madrasahs: Ulugbek Madrasah (15th century), Sher-Dor Madrasah (17th century) and Tilla-Kori Madrasah (17th century).
  • A boulevard lined with workshops, souvenir stores and ice cream stands Siab Bazaar, the sprawling multi-level bazaar where you can shop for souvenirs and sample sweets, fruits and Samarkand’s famous bread.
  • Bibi Khanum Mosque, built by Tamerlane for his favorite wife.
  • Shakhi-Zinda, a burial complex built between the 9th-14th centuries. Climb the blue-domed path and explore more than 20 small mausoleums that line the broad alleyway.
  • Ulugbek Observatory, the remains of a 14th-15th century sextant and its accompanying museum dedicated to this amazing astronomer’s life.
After the guided tour has ended, you’ll have opportunity to join in the New Year festivities with a visit to the large New Year’s Tree, a central part of Central Asian New Year celebrations and popular gathering sight for young and old alike. (The tree is located near the Hamid Olimjon Theater and within walking distance of Gur Emir). Registan Square will be lighted up especially for the holiday and open to the public until 23:00.
After breakfast, you’ll have free time to enjoy Samarkand until the afternoon. Check out from the hotel is at noon.
Transfer in the afternoon to the Samarkand railway station. Upon arrival in Tashkent you’ll be met by a driver who will take you to your hotel.
Overnight at the hotel.
Check-out from the hotel at noon. Transfer to Tashkent International Airport. End of the Winter Small Group Tour: New Year in Samarkand.

Dates & prices

Departure End Deadline Status Price
Departure End Deadline Status Price
  • Accommodation based on double/twin room with breakfast (B&B, 5 nights);
  • Transportation in Samarkand on day 4 and all transportation to and from airports and railway stations (1-2 ppl in sedan, 3-8 ppl in minivan);
  • Private, local English-speaking guide and entrance fees to the sights as per itinerary on day 4;
  • Economy-class tickets for Bukhara to Samarkand and Samarkand to Tashkent trains (on rare occasions when the high-speed train is unavailable, we will replace it with comfortable seating on the regular train);
  • Economy class Tashkent to Bukhara flight ticket (flight time may change based upon availability);
  • Masterclass cooking class, including ingredients and dinner on day 3;
  • 1L bottle of water per person per day.
  • Tour leader to accompany the travellers for the whole duration of the tour;
  • Full board (lunches and dinners);
  • Costs for the ‘optional activities’ listed on day 1;
  • Hotel charges for additional services;
  • Consular fees for Uzbekistan tourist visa;
  • Travel insurance;
  • All services not mentioned in the tour price above.


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