World Journeys | Golden Eagle - Treasures of Uzbekistan

Alexander the Great, Genghis Khan, Seljuk Sultans…step back in time and trace the footsteps of history’s most infamous dynasties through the Treasures of Uzbekistan. An exquisitely mismatched country, Uzbekistan boasts a fascinatingly contradictory cultural architecture – palatial, Islamic grandeur collides with mud-walled houses and monoliths of Communist rule. Aboard this immersive, 11-day odyssey, escape into a land of contradiction and discover the awe-inspiring culture at its core. Learn the ancient art of silk-making in Margilan, experience the hauntingly beautiful melody of a Kazakh folklore performance in Tashkent, and follow the trail of the fierce Huns, Turks, and Arab warriors as you explore the Desert Castles of Ancient Khorezm.

The Train: The Golden Eagle has been carefully designed with emphasis on your comfort, relaxation and enjoyment. Aboard your luxurious private train, you can expect well-appointed en suite cabins, fine dining and elegant surroundings. All cabins feature LCD TV, DVD player, wardrobe, air-conditioning, large window and en suite bathroom. 

Silver Class Cabins: A compact cabin featuring a small double lower bed and single upper bed with private en suite wet room with a washbasin, toilet and shower. 

Gold Class Cabins: A well-proportioned cabin including a private bathroom with separate power shower and underfloor heating. Guests also benefit from complimentary drinks off the Standard Bar List in the Bar Lounge Car. 

Imperial Suite Cabins: The most spacious cabin which includes a large double bed, lounge area with dressing table and private en suite bathroom with power shower and underfloor heating. Guests can also enjoy drinks from the Standard and Premium Bar List in the Bar Lounge Car along with use of a private guide and chauffer service at many of the destinations.

Special Offer

Special valid until 09/09/2025

A World Journeys Exclusive Offer

Enjoy more time in Tashkent! Book the 2024 departure to enjoy one additional hotel night pre-tour, and one post-tour, free of charge! Accommodation will be in the hotel allocated for this tour. This offer is subject to availability at the time of booking.


Special valid until 09/09/2024

Solo Traveller Offer

The single supplement is waived on Silver Class cabins aboard the 16 Sep 2024 and the 7 Sep 2025 departures. Offer applies to new bookings only, subject to availability.



  • Summary

    Duration

    11 Days / 10 Nights from USD US$17,595*

    Countries

    Uzbekistan

    Type of Journey

    Rail

    Highlights

    Tashkent • Kokand • Fergana • Navoi • Nukus • Khiva • Samarkand

  • Departure Dates

    2024
    16 September
    2025
    17 September
  • What's Included

    Tour Includes

    • Private ensuite accommodation on the Golden Eagle train
    • Freshly prepared meals on board, using the finest local ingredients
    • Authentic dining experiences in local restaurants
    • Generous drinks allowance, including international wines with lunch and dinner
    • Expertly guided off-train excursions as detailed in the itinerary
    • 24-hour cabin attendant service
    • Experienced Tour Management team
    • Services of a UK-registered Doctor and medical facilities on board
    • Arrival and departure transfers
    • All gratuities – on and off the train
    • Luggage porterage throughout the journey

    Not Included

  • Pricing

    Description Twin
    USD
    Single
    USD
    Extra
    USD

    2024
    Silver Class
    Gold Class
    Imperial Suite


    17595
    20995
    37495


    17595
    36295
    74895

    2025
    Silver Class
    Gold Class
    Imperial Suite


    18295
    22595
    43095


    18295
    37295
    86095

    Please note: while prices are accurate at time of loading they are subject to change due to currency fluctuations and currency surcharges may apply. Please check price at time of booking
  • Itinerary

    Day 1: Tashkent
    Upon arrival at Tashkent Airport, you will be met and transferred to your centrally located hotel for a one-night stay. This evening we will enjoy a welcome reception and dinner, giving you the opportunity to meet your fellow travellers.

    Day 2: Tashkent
    After a leisurely morning and refreshing lunch, begin your touring of the Uzbekistan capital. The 2,200 year old city of Tashkent is a magnificent modern metropolis which beautifully blends decadent medieval structures and minimalistic modern edifices. Your sightseeing tour will include the awe-inspiring Khasti-Imam Complex, the culturally momentous Independence Square, and the Applied Arts Museum (situated in the extravagant former home of Imperial Russian diplomat, Alexander Polovtsev).

    Early evening, enjoy a champagne reception and Karnay-Surnay performance (a musical ensemble of the national wind instrument) on the platform as we are welcomed aboard the Golden Eagle. Toast to the Voyage of a Lifetime with a sumptuous Welcome Dinner in the ornate Restaurant Car as you depart towards the Fergana Valley.

    Day 3: Fergana Valley
    In the morning, arrive in Kokand, situated within the Fergana Valley region. The city is one of the most ancient cities of Uzbekistan and served as a critical trade center on the Silk Road.

    After breakfast onboard, begin with a tour of the majestic Palace of Khudayar Khan – aptly known as the Pearl of Kokand. One of the most visited moments in the Fergana Valley, the palace was constructed in 1870s, and covers an impressive four hectares. The entire façade is opulently tiled with multi-coloured geometric patterns, arabesques, and floral motifs – creating a truly spectacular sight. Additionally, you will visit the Jami Mosque – Kokand’s most impressive Mosque. Erected in 1812, the colourful construct features a 100m long portico, supported by 98 Indian red-wood columns and beautifully adorned in traditional Fergana carvings. Your visit will include the opportunity to sample the local delicacy  – Halva – a unique confectionary said to have numerous health benefits.

    You will then make the short drive to Rishtan, home to the world-famous ceramics centre and discover the secrets of the state-of-the-art techniques of the ancient craft from the prominent local artisan Rustam Usmanov.

    After a traditional lunch your next stop today is Fergana City. With Tsarist-era buildings and expansive boulevards – the city has a distinctly different feel from the wider region. Here you will visit the home of the famous Russian General – Mikhail Skobelev – and the Russian Army Assembly Hall. Revered by the Russian people, the formidable General was ominously known as ‘Bloody Eyes’ by his opponents.

    Touring concludes with a visit to Margilan. Once a vital, ancient caravan route for Chinese and Western trade, the city is renowned for its beautiful, handmade silk products. Learn the art of silk weaving with a visit to a craftsman’s workshop and studio. In the early evening return to board the Golden Eagle private train now waiting for you in Margilan, from where you continue your rail adventure.

    Days 4 & 5: Bukhara
    According to legend, the city of Bukhara was founded by the Persian Prince, Siyavush, in the 5th century B.C. The city is a treasure trove of historical buildings and architectural monuments, many of which are excellently preserved. Your tour of the area will begin with a visit to the Sitorai Mokhi-Khosa Palace (translating to ‘a palace-like stars and moon’). The grand palace offers an insight into local life with displays featuring regional clothing, traditional embroidery, and ceramic creations.

    From the palace, visit Chor Minor Madrasa. Translating to ‘Four Towers’, the Chor Minor continues to create architectural interest with its creative and unique design. Interestingly, each of the 17-metre towers feature a different design said to represent the four different religions.

    Your morning of architectural exploration concludes with the other-worldly Ismail Samani mausoleum and the Bayland Mosque. The Ismail Samani is the oldest building in Bukhara. Believed to have served as the family tomb for the Samanid dynasty (819-1005), the mausoleum features an intricate baked brick, wickerwork pattern. Whilst the Bayland Mosque represents a distinctly different style – modest white exteriors and interiors adorned with floral patterns and gilded tiles.

    After a delicious lunch at a local restaurant, visit Shukhov Tower, a water tower erected in 1929. Ascend by lift to reach the top of the observation tower and enjoy the best view of the Old Town of Bukhara. The afternoon concludes with a trip the breath-taking Ark Fortress. This “Noble Abode” perfectly captures the oriental exoticism of Uzbekistan.

    In the evening, sample the finest Bukharian cuisine dining in the rooftop restaurant of the Minorai Kalon Hotel. From this magnificent spot, enjoy the finest views of the Kalyan Square at sunset.

    Day 6: Nukus
    the city of Nukus boasts a captivating setting, surrounded by three magnificent deserts: the Kara Kum, Kyzyl Kum, and Ustyurt. Here, a pristine and untouched landscape unfolds before your eyes, adorned with endless stretches of sandy vistas, enchanting dunes, and towering peaks that beckon adventure.

    Day 7: Khiva
    Our day begins in the ancient city of Khiva. Traced back to the 10th century, Khiva is a “city-museum”, magnificently adorned in majestic buildings, spiraling columns and beautifully carved doors.

    Rooted in its ties with the Silk Road, Khiva has an eclectic culinary identity – heavily influenced by Chinese, Turkish and Persian traditions. After a walking tour of the city, enjoy lunch at a local restaurant and taste the Khorezmian cuisine. We recommend the famous green pasta ‘shivit oshi’, tuhum-barak (a fluffy dough-filled dish) and fresh fish sourced from the Amu Darya river with freshly baked bread.

    After lunch, we will continue explore Khiva – including a visit to the Palace of Nurrullah Bai. Built in 1912, the Palace is extravagantly bedecked with bronze chandeliers, crystal pendants, and Venetian mirrors. Before returning to the train, visit the Photography Museum. Along with other artists, the museum features the work of Khudaibergen Devanov – the pioneering photographer and cinematographer of Uzbekistan.

    Day 8: Shakhrizabz
    The city of Shakhrizabz is believed to be the birthplace of Amir Timur, the military prodigy who modelled himself on Genghis Khan and used similar violent methods to conquer and control his Empire, we visit the UNESCO-honoured statue of Amir Timur and his Ak-Saray Palace. This majestic palace in Shakhrizabz took over a quarter of a century to build, and was originally decorated with colourful, highly detailed mosaic but also included delicate calligraphic inscriptions from the Qur’an.

    Later, prepare to savour an open-air barbecue feast that will tantalize your taste buds. You will also be treated to a time-honoured folklore performance. This enchanting cultural display is a poetic expression of Central Asia’s vibrant heritage, with its hauntingly ritualistic melodies, a captivating window into the soul of this land.

    Days 9 & 10: Samarkand
    Samarkand, the ‘Crossroad of Culture’, has an awe-inspiring history of over two and a half millennia. Fascinatingly, the town is a living museum to the famous dynasties who have passed through including Genghis Khan, Temurids, and Russians. As such, mudbrick houses shoulder structured neighbourhoods of painted and decorated homes, whilst opulently bedecked Mosques loom on the horizon.

    Fascinatingly, such influences span beyond architecture to astronomical discovery. Ulugh Beg, the Ruler of Transoxiana (1409-49) had been interested in astronomy from childhood, continuing to build the largest Observatory in the pre-modern era, to support his studies. The incredible feat of engineering centres of a huge sextant (40m radius), embedded in a 2m trench. The magnificence of this construct is not limited to its interiors spanning three stories, the exterior is exquisitely decorated with glittering, glazed tiles, mosaics and majolica.

    From a study of the stars, then move to the Shakhi Zinda Necropolis – a building framed by a constellation of glimmering turquoise domes. The necropolis consists of 11 mausoleums, individually decorated with majolica tiles, carved mosaics, and porticos. As we wander through the gilded avenues, it is clear to see why the site has served as an important pilgrimage centre.

    Before lunch gain further insight into the intertwining identity of the ‘Crossroad of Culture’, Samarkand. Until the Middle Ages, Samarkand served as the main supplier of paper to the Arab world and Europe. With a visit to the Meros Paper Mill, learn about this ancient art with an up-close lesson of the laborious process, ancient machines, and centuries old methods.

    Cuisine is at the very core of a culture. Continue your immersion into Uzbek identity with an interactive cooking class and Plov lunch. Considered Uzbekistan’s national dish, Plov is intrinsic to the national identity and a staple dish at social gatherings. Representative of Uzbekistan’s rich history, Plov is shaped by the Mediterranean, Chinese and Russian cultures who have settled in the region. After lunch there will be the opportunity to explore Samarkand at your leisure before returning to the train to make preparations for the spectacular evening that lies ahead.

    Evening celebrations begin with cocktails and dinner at the Oriental Sweets Caravan Sarai. The 300-year-old restaurant boasts a beautiful open air dining space, shaded by lush mulberry trees, and framed by ornate arches. After dinner cross over to the famous, now illuminated, Registan Square to enjoy a fabulous gala dance performance and fashion show. Soak up the magical atmosphere as the setting sun seeps down the world’s most recognised Mosque.

    Day 11: Tashkent
    After your arrival in Tashkent, your private transfer will be waiting to transfer you to Tashkent Airport for your return flight home.

  • Booking Conditions

    Please enquire for other Golden Eagle itineraries.

 

HLO Ref# 20008
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