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  • Day20

    Traveling to Bukara

    July 21, 2017 in Uzbekistan ⋅ ☀️ 31 °C

    We leave in the morning for a day off travel through the desert towards Bukara. Many hours in the bus, passing through mostly scrub growth on flat lands, interrupted by goats crossing the road. We are traveling in our big bus mostly on 2 lane roads. We pass occasional towns but mostly just vast tracks of land and lots of goats. At around noon we arrive at Nurata and visit the remains of the military Fortress of Alexander the Great & Holy Chashma (Spring) of Nurata. The fortress is an outcropping on a hill that overlooks the spring. The spring has a pool with fish that are thought to be touched by the holy water. About ten years ago, there was an incident of the fish glowing and that has led to pilgrimages to the site. There are local tourists and vendors selling picture pacts where they'll take your pic with the spring. You can also buy springs of vegetation to ties into the pool for the fish. Lunch is at a local house, Ms. Sayde, lovely salads, soup and then dumplings. After lunch we are taken to a room filled with embroidery to shop. Then we drive for another few hours and stop at a desert lake. We change on the bus for a quick swim and the water is refreshing. Then we proceed to Aydar Kŭl Camp, our desert you're camp, located in the Nurata mountain range. The yurts are surrounded by scrub and sand dunes. After an hour to explore , we go for a short camel ride that gives us a sense of the landscape. Decamel in time to watch sunset over the dunes, then dinner - lots of salads, a beef stew served with potatoes, it's about 9:30 pm, the Stars are beginning to light up the sky and we sit around a campfire to hear a soulful singer playing a stringed instrument. We all eventually get up and dance, it really does feel magical. The night sky was like experiencing a planetarium show. Thanks to traveling with science teacher, we could identity all of the constellations, red stars looked red, the milky way was clearly visible. We even saw a satellite moving across the sky. Feeling very blessed to have been there. I wake up early and an doubly blessed to experience the sunrise, watching from the dunes.Read more