Again, the aircraft starts early in the morning just around 5 am. Our destination is Khiva, which does not have its own airport.
Correctly, it should read “Flight from Tashkent to Urgench, the provincial capital of Khwarezm. From there it is approximately 40 km to Khiva.
Most of the flight goes above the Kyzylkum Desert, which borders on the green settlement area around Tashkent.
Since Tashkent airport is located less than 20 km from the border of Kazakhstan, it is not surprising we fly for a short distance across the state territory of Kazakhstan. The city of Shardara, located at the reservoir of the same name and at the estuary of the Syrdaja, can be seen from the plane very well.
Generally one always imagines the desert to be empty, but in reality, it looks a little different. Again and again, mining activities in the desert are recognizable from the airplane, since the Kyzylkum is regarded as very rich in raw materials. Uzbekistan belongs to the most important gold producing countries worldwide.
In many places, the desert has a very sparse vegetation, but often enough for the breeding of goats.
For thousands of years, people have been leaving their mark on the desert, as the petroglyphs found here prove.
After we flew over the desert, the green fertile valley of the Amurdarja lies below us. Many canals cross the valley and allow the rich cultivation of cotton. Some interpretations consider the Amurdarja as one of the headstreams of the Garden of Eden (Gichon).
After landing, the father of Kadam Vaisov, the head of Registon Travel, picks us up at the airport. The father is also the founder of the travel agency.
On a long straight avenue, lined with modern buildings, we traverse Urgench, past the magnificent buildings of the provincial administration, and quickly reach the city limits. Through agricultural areas, we drive to Xiva. There we recognize the historic district by the mighty city walls.
During our journey, we have chosen reasonable-priced overnight accommodations, and stay in a bed and breakfast (B & B). As a condition, we have made, that the rooms have their own shower, which was the case for all our accommodations.
In Khiva we stay at Mirza Boshi*, which has also a restaurant. After Kadam Vaisov’s father dropped us off, we learn from him that the Chevrolet Lacetti is brand new and has traveled only 70 km.
We were the first guests picked up with this car. We have noticed that many cars of this type are on the road. The Chevrolet Lacetti comes from Uzbek production. Uzbekistan has set up its own automobile production, which manufactures GM cars under license.
After stowing our luggage in the room, we meet with Ana Pasha, who will guide us through Khiva. She is the daughter of the owner of Mirza Boshi. She gives us a little briefing before we set off.
Please read on > Guided tour through the Old Town of Khiva
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