Splendours of the Silk Road
GP course in Uzbekistan

11th – 21st October 2022

  • Travel along the fabled Silk Road and observe the magnificence of its ancient trading posts
  • Marvel at the massive decorative edifices in Samarkand’s Registan Square
  • Experience exquisite Islamic architecture in Bukhara’s atmospheric old town
  • Watch the sun set over the ancient walled city of Khiva
  • See the first Quran ever written in the Moyie Mubarak Library, Tashkent
  • Browse the bazaars in each city, full of local fabrics, carpets, miniatures and ceramics

Khiva, Samarkand, Bukhara the cities of the Silk Road may invoke the most romantic images but nothing can prepare you for their unexpected splendour. Founded thousands of years ago on the historic central Asian trade routes the cities of the Silk Road grew on the wealth of trade and the influence of Persian Mongol and Arab invasions to places of iconic Islamic architecture, shimmering under crystal clear, blue, desert skies.

Unless you see their magnificent opulent architecture, your imagination will sell you short. Whilst St Mark’s Square, the Taj Mahal or the Sagrada Familia sink under the weight of modern tourism, sights as equally splendid and memorable still wait to be discovered for those who explore the ancient Silk Road Cities of Uzbekistan.

The Itchin Quara, a walled old city of Khiva stuffed with exquisitely decorated Palaces, Mosques and Madrassas, where a walk through the narrow streets and high Adobe walls is so redolent of the ancient trades that passed through this city and the succession of Khans that ruled this area.

Bukhara, on the ancient cross roads of trade and seat of Islamic learning, birthplace of Avicenna is full of ancient buildings and the magnificent Kaylon Minaret and Mosque are even more breath-taking lit up against the starry night sky.

Samarkand was the centre of the 15th century empire of Amir Timor (Tamerlane) and everything about the sights here are on a monumental scale. The interior of Timor’s Mausoleum is a feast of decorative gilt art, whilst the highlights of the city is Registan Square where the massive decorated edifices of the Madrassas’ tower into the sky.

Suppressed and subsumed into the USSR for 70 years Uzbekistan and the neighbouring Central Asian Republics are now developing their tourism appeal and in the case of Uzbekistan that appeal is immense. Modern Uzbekistan, independent from the USSR since 1991, is a revelation. Modern infrastructure, polite, tranquil and spotlessly clean, the teeming bazaars can set an example to any British street market. Street crime is virtually unheard of and though few Uzbeks speak English their welcome is clearly communicated.

For full details on Uzbekistan please see our factsheet.

As ever we will be offering you a combination of an exciting, relatively undiscovered, destination with superb, relevant, high quality general practice education provided by our academic faculty.

Our full itinerary is available here but our course comprises of:

  • Direct flights from London to Tashkent on Uzbekistan Airways
  • One night in Khiva
  • Four nights in Bukhara
  • Two nights in Samarkand
  • Two nights in Tashkent
  • Internal flights, rail travel and transfers

We anticipate that this magical destination coupled with the experience and reliability of Conference Plus will make this a very popular course.

Speakers to include:

  • Mr Aresh Hashemi-Najed

    Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon, Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital Stanmore

    Lower limb conditions and paediatric orthopaedics - normal and abnormal

  • Dr Julia Schofield

    Consultant Dermatologist, Lincoln County Hospital

    Current developments in dermatology

  • Prof Tom McNicholas FRCS, FEBU

    Consultant Urological Surgeon at Pinehill Hospital, Hitchin and Spire Hospital, Harpenden; Founder, Lister Hospital Urology Service; Past President, Royal Society of Medicine, Section of Urology

    Doctor I am always peeing; Scrotum and penis; UTI and recurrent UTI; Update in malignant diode; Kidney miscellany

Guidebook

There are guide books and there are guide books and this travel guide by Sophie Ibbotson (who we met on our flight home) is an excellent introduction to this amazing country.

Bradt guide to Uzbekistan (published Dec 2019)
RRP £17:99
Our price £14:99 inc postage

Flights

Direct flights from Heathrow Terminal 4 on Uzbekistan Airways

Outbound

Date From Depart Arrive To Airline
11/10/22 London Heathrow 1800 0550 (12/10/22) Tashkent Uzbekistan Airways

Return

Date From Depart Arrive To Airline
21/10/22 Tashkent 1345 1625 London Heathrow Uzbekistan Airways

All flight times subject to confirmation.

Price (fixed still at 2020 prices)

£2799 includes:

  • International flights from Heathrow
  • Internal flights, road and rail and transportation
  • All Hotel accommodation
  • Full tour programme
  • Virtually all meals (see Itinerary for specific details)
  • The professional experience and reputation of Conference Plus

Extras

  • Academic Programme Fee £499
  • Single supplement £495

Deposit (non refundable)

£1000 per person

 

Click here for Big Print Booking Conditions

Hotels

We have spent a lot of time selecting the best hotels in each town for this Conference Plus course but, aside from Tashkent, please be aware that the best in Uzbekistan is very much middle grade. All offer clean rooms and bathrooms though often the decor is a reflection of Uzbek interior design - not quite the minimalist style that is all the rage in Europe. All have Wi-Fi and staff are charming and helpful as is the way with Uzbeks.

Hyatt Regency, Tashkent

The sublime luxury of the Hyatt Regency makes a great start and finish to our trip. Frequented by international businessman, government officials and diplomats this is a sumptuous hotel right in the centre of Tashkent and a true International 5 * hotel.

www.hyatt.com/en-US/hotel/uzbekistan/hyatt-regency-tashkent/tasrt

 

Orient Star Hotel, Khiva

The Hotel Orient Star Khiva immerses you in the atmosphere of this ancient Silk Road city, located in Ichan-Kala and occupying a building of the former madrassah of Moukhammed Amin Khan. It was built in the middle of the 19th century (1851 - 1853) and is the biggest madrassah of the city where up to 250 students resided and studied till the beginning of the 20th century.

Nowadays it is those historic students rooms that are our accommodate. This is a massive contrast from the modern glitz of the Hyatt in Tashkent and represents the contrast between ancient and modern that this country represents. Even better you are located in the very heart of the city enclosed within its adobe walls - you couldn't ask for a more perfect location or atmosphere. The historic nature of this hotel makes it the most popular in Khiva and sad though we are to have to postpone the conference until 2022 it has allowed us to secure a booking here.

 

Shahriston Hotel, Bukhara

The Shahriston Hotel is a 4* newly built property in the centre if the old town. Rooms are modern and decorated in Uzbek style and it is perfectly situated for spouses to enjoy the markets and sites whilst waiting for lectures to end.

hotel-shahriston.com

 

Hotel Bibihanum, Samarkand

"Bibihanim" Hotel is a new hotel in Samarkand, that again is in the most perfect location for our tours. Situated right next to the walls of the Bibihanim mosque, you can see its blue domes from the hotel courtyard and balconies.

Registan square, Shakhi-Zinda necropolis and Siyab bazaar are a short walk from the hotel and a wonderful array of shops and restaurants are on your doorstep.

The "Bibihanim" hotel embraces the traditional crafts of Uzbekistan – wood carving, ganch (mud gypsum) carvings, rugs and other hand-made details creating a special atmosphere in every room. There is a beautifully decorated restaurant, and a cosy summer café on the roof top overlooking the Bibihanim mosque domes (we ate there and it was fabulous) - an unbelievable place for eating our breakfast. The hotel has just built a new wing and we will be based in these new rooms (pictures to follow in the Autumn).

 

Booking

To book your place on this conference please complete the form below. If you would like to pay online you will then be directed to our new online booking service.

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Guidebooks: Bradt guide to Uzbekistan (£14.99)
   
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