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Uzbekistan – the legendary land

Map of Uzbekistan

To the outside world this may seem to be a small land-locked country in Central Asia with restricted lifestyle… A country that was confined in the shadow of the mighty USSR till two decades ago… But Uzbekistan is much more than that…

Uzbekistan culture

It is a country with deeply rooted cultural heritage and history dating back to pre-historic times… A country that was the link point of eastern and western civilizations… Home of countless historic / archeological sites… Versatile landscape that offers plenty of mountaineering and desert wildlife viewing activities, in addition to the abundance of heritage tourist spots… In proportionate to its not-so-large-size and location, Uzbekistan’s verity eye feasts are mind boggling.

Ceramics from Uzbekistan

No wonder, millions of ancient artifacts can be seen across Uzbekistan’s museums besides hundreds of scared Islamic relics – underlying the country’s colorful legacy.

Some of Uzbekistan’s notable tourist centers…

1. Tashkent

Capital of Uzbekistan

Capital of Uzbekistan plus its true cosmopolitan city… Tashkent, with its numerous historic sites and Islamic relics is dubbed as ‘the cultural capital of Islamic world’.

2. Samarkand

Mosque in Samarkand

A heritage city whose 2750th anniversary was celebrated in 26th Aug 2007, Samarkand consists of many precious monuments reflecting the unmatched skills of ancient architects. A place where different cultures meet!

3. Bukhara

Uzbekistan's 5th largest city

Another ancient city which was a hub of trade, culture and religion for long… Bukhara’s city center is preserved as UNESCO World Heritage Site.

4. Khiva

The walled inner city of Ichan Kala

One more antique city with assets of great historical, cultural and religious values… most noteworthy of them is the inner city of Ichan Kala.

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Uzbekistan mountains

In addition to the priceless historic sites, archeological sites, architectural wonders, religious sites (predominantly Islam that attracts Sufism followers), mountain ranges (that offer plenty of scope of rock climbing, mountain skiing, hiking, hand gliding, etc), desert wildlife regions together with nice climate and natural conditions; a comparatively new privilege to Uzbekistan tourist is ‘Dental Tourism’. Uzbekistan’s dental clinics provide high quality services at a cost much cheaper than those in the Western and Central Asian countries. To sum up, travel to Uzbekistan means ‘entertainments aplenty in a legendary, versatile, but not-so-large land’!

Flag of Uzbekistan

Switzerland in India?

Dalhousie

Kerala tours

One country nestled within another country? That too, countries in Europe and Asia bearing sharp contrasts? It may seem just impossible… for Switzerland is known worldwide for its snow-capped mountains, panoramic valleys and refreshening old world charm, whereas India is generally considered as a big and hot country with varied landscapes. But after seeing a hill station called ‘Dalhousie’, in the North Indian state Himachal Pradesh, one will actually believe the so called phenomenon of one country in another; that is Switzerland is right here in India itself!

Dalhousie

Dalhousie

Established in the mid-19th century as a summer treat by the erstwhile British Government and named after the then-viceroy of India Lord Dalhousie, this is a quiet secluded hill station compared to its famous counterparts in Himachal like Shimla and Kullu-Manali.

Dalhousie

Dalhousie

Located on five hills, at an altitude of 6000 to 9000 feet above sea level, on the western edge of Himalayan mountain range Dhauladhar, Dalhousie hill station is blessed with panoramic views of snow coated mountain peaks, beautiful valleys & meadows, natural trekking trails, colonial architectural buildings exhibiting old-world charm, … amply justifying its remarkable resemblance to the famous European destination!

Dalhousie

Of the many beauty spots in Dalhousie, few outstanding ones are ‘Upper Bakrota’ – highest spot in Dalhousie beautified with estates, trekking routes and old styled houses, ‘Khajjiar’ – a breathtakingly beautiful greenish valley with a spring in between (making the visitors feel that they are really in Switzerland), ‘Ganji Pahadi Walk’ – a thrilling walkway leading to the summit of a bare hill known as Ganji Pahadi (which is local for Bald Hill), and ‘Kala Tope’ – an ideal location for picnickers and trekkers; especially the long forested walkway from Lakkadmandi to Kala Tope is a well worth try.

Dalhousie

Other notable attraction near Dalhousie is ‘Chamba’ – a timeworn hilly town which was the seat of an ancient Hindu kingdom and a cradle of Hindu culture, temples, arts & handicrafts. With its origins tracing back to 6th century AD, the 1500+ year old royal heritage still thrives!

Chamba Town near Dalhousie

Dalhousie doesn’t disappoint wildlife enthusiasts too. ‘Kalatop Sanctuary’, a major wildlife reserve located close to Dalhousie, is rich in typical Himalayan forests as well as consist some finest trekking routes to explore the wilderness in full.

Kalatop Sancturay, Dalhousie

Kalatop Wildlife Reserve near Dalhousie

Located well away from the city chaos, hectic modern life and the buzzing urbanization, Dalhousie is for those who long to unwind themselves in the unexplored charm of Mother Nature. Not for the fast paced party-addicts but for those who love solitude / sceneries / sky-views, honeymooners seeking the sublime nature, people who prefers picnicking in nature’s lap, adventurers who seek exciting trekking/walking terrains … India’s Switzerland has it all!

Sunset @ Dalhousie

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