I flew from Samara to Tashkent on Uzbekistan Airways. Sure, the lines were disorganized and the discipline lacking (little kids running around during landing, etc.) but overall it was quite good. The planes are maintained by a Lufthansa-trained team so that aspect appears good. The meal consisted of salami, cheese, cupcake with honey, roll, meatloaf, pasta, a bag of raisins and a tomato. Then they brought around some fresh apples. Then they brought around some yoghurt. Then it was tea. I rolled off the plane. Of course, you need the sustenance when it takes two hours to get through customs and get out of the airport.
The cabs in Tashkent are cheap, though not at first glance. Bargaining is the norm and the initial offer is usually three times what you should be paying. Be firm and be prepared to walk away. They'll always lower the offer. The city really isn't that big, and there's no traffic problems to speak of so the trip won't take long. It seems to cost more coming from the airport into town, but generally speaking 2000 sum is plenty for a fifteen minute ride.
The Metro may not have comprehensive coverage (they're working on that), but it is a very attractive system. First of all, it's cool down there. Second, it has all the beauty of other Soviet-built metros with three distinct differences. First, unlike Moscow it is clean. You could eat of many of the walls. Second, it's devoid of vagrants and drunks (again, unlike Moscow). Third, they are adding some Uzbek artistic flare to it.
In Tashent we took the underground to Sobir Rakhimov where we went out in the open air to look for the bus station CRoss the stree, follow the herd and you'll be there
In the busstation (Otobus Vokzal in Russian) nobody speaks English or can help me to find a ticket
After half an hour, I found a ticket office where I could book a bus to Urgench, with a stop in Turtkul.
Big buses only drive to Turtkul where you have to shift to a small bus to cross a river.
No direct buses to Khiva.
Duration: 19 hours
Most Metro Stops have some shopping around them. The ones that I used the most (Maxim Gorky) had a large open air market beacue it was the last stop and people carried on furter to the outskirts after buying provisions.
There is an overnight train from Tashkent to Bukhara (and beyond) that costs about $15 for the luxury suite (ie only two people per compartment). It's was quite comfortable and they will provide free chai. It is advisable to bring food and water with you.
The toilets were the type that you only use when you have abolutely no choice.
There are many tram systems in the former countries of the Soviet Union, because they were made there. They run on tracks but they are powered by electricity. Trams are one of the main travel systems in large cities in Uzbekistan. There are usually a lot of people on them. You buy the tickets on the tram. Each tram has it's own number and route
Yunusobod Line connecting the northern districts to the airport in the south under construction. First 7.6 km section with six underground stations opened for regular service on 24 Oct 2001 (test running began on 28 August 2001 - 10th anniversary of independence) between Ming Urik (planning name was Lokhutiy) and Habib Abdullayev (planned as Shahriston).
- Tunnels don't run very deep due to danger of earthquakes.
- Moscow type 4-car trains used, 100 m platforms
- 1524 mm gauge, 3rd rail power supply (825 V DC)
- Average station distance 1400 m, 46 km/h commercial speed
In 1999, the Tashkent Metro carried 127 million passengers, a 4.7 % increase compared to the previous year.
Construction started in 1968, opened in 1977 between Sabir Rakhimov and Oktyabr'skoy Revolyutsii (now Amir Temur Khiyoboni) including Khamza depot and one metro bridge over Oqtepa channel between Khamza and Komsomolskaya stations. It was extended to Maksim Gor'kiy (now Buyuk Ipak Yoli) in 1980 (including metro bridge over Salar river between Hamid Alimdzhan and Pushkin stations).
16.7 km, 12 stations; extension east to Traktornyi Zavod (3 stations) was under construction but has disappeared from maps.
The airport is situated a few kilometers from the centre of Tashkent. Uzbekistan airways have lots of international routes.
The metro is fast and cheap. 1 USD will buy you 20 rides on the metro. The stations are beautiful!!!
Buses are packed with people and great fun to ride. Prices are about the same as in the metro.
There are trams (tramvai) who are even more packed than the buses.
Most private cars double as taxis. You hitch a ride and pay the driver for the transport. Convenient and relatively cheap.
The minibuses (marsroutki) will stop when you signal them. Cheap and fast transport between centre and suburbs.
I highly recommend the overnight train from Bukhara to Tashkent. At Tashkent Station we saw this sign warning people not to ride on top of the trains. I would like to buy the artist a beer.