Today due to various tour emergencies, we had no city tour. That comes tomorrow, but I still went out and visited a few of the major sites from the outside. The first stop is the Registan, a complex of 3 medressas facing each other. A medressa is an Islamic school, where many things like mathematics and science was taught. The tiling on these medressas is still in tact the oldest dating back to 1420.
I wandered onto visit the Gur-e Amir mausoleum, again in great condition ratings back to the early 1400’s. The central Asian conqueror Tamerlane and also his sons and grandsons were buried here. Timur the lame (Tamerlane) is the central Asian version of Ghengis khan, who also marauded through this region.
Finally I went to visit the Statue of Tamerlane himself seated on the throne. Getting a photo was all the more challenging as a group of what appeared to be Uzbek tourists, decided to pose for numerous different photos in front of the statue. By pose I mean really pose, as if they were modeling in a photoshoot. All came down to face and stance. 15 minutes later I got a photo of the statue.
Samarkand is full of leafy boulevards and parks, a big diffence to Khiva and Bukhara. As you get closer to the capital Tashkent, the more westernised and modern it feels. By now temperatures were at stupid degrees and I headed back to the hotel for some respite from the heat. Bring on the mountains next week, I can’t wait.