What to see in Samarkand, itinerary of the main monuments and places of interest in one of the oldest cities in the world, compared to a crossroads of cultures traveling along the silk road.
An important city in Uzbekistan, Samarkand is located at 710 meters above sea level along the banks of the Zeravšan river and 280 km south-west of Tashkent.
It is located along the so-called Silk Road, which winds along a path that, starting from China, arrives in Europe.
The city is one of the oldest in the world, a crossroads and melting pot of cultures, a definition assigned to it by UNESCO when it was included in the World Heritage List.
Founded around 700 BC, Samarkand is one of the oldest cities in the world, where there are splendid examples of buildings dating back to Islamic architecture.
The fact of being along the route of the Silk Road has always allowed this city a considerable economic wealth.
Submitted first to the Persian Empire, it was later conquered by Alexander the Great, who according to legend married Roxana here.
With Tamerlane the city took on its maximum splendor, still testified by some typical constructions, including the complex of buildings called Registan, which includes some mosques, with wonderful mosaic decorations, the necropolis of Shaki-Zinda, where the tombs of the major kings with their inlaid roofs, the Gur Emir, which is the eternal home of Tamerlane, with its grandiose high blue dome raised to honor its recognized grandeur.
Samarkand had its most significant development between the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, thanks to Timur Barlas, founder of the Timurid dynasty, who made it the capital of his great empire.
During this period, the city embellished and grew considerably, and Ulugh Begh, grandson of Timur, contributed to this, who founded an astronomical observatory and made it a famous artistic and cultural center.
Today we can admire the blue domes of the Gur Emir Mausoleum, where Timur and his nephew Ulugh Begh are buried, visit the majestic Bibi-Khanum Mosque and the grandiose Registan, a complex of three madrassahs, or the Koranic schools called Ulughbek, Sherdor and Tillya Kori.Recommended readings
- Samarkand (Uzbekistan): what to see
- Uzbekistan: useful information
- Tashkent (Uzbekistan): what to see in the capital
- Bukhara (Uzbekistan): what to see
- Khiva (Uzbekistan): what to see
Also worth visiting is the Bazaar of the Silk Road and the Bibi Khanum mosque, built in honor of Tamerlane's wife.