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Uzbekistan: Fat, happy men and pilgrims in Samarkand

Samarkand. Just the name oozes adventure and mystery. The city's magnificent buildings, ancient history and strategic location on the Silk Road have always attracted travelers from distant lands. Once it was trade travelers, today it is tourists.
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Uzbekistan: Fat, happy men and pilgrims in Samarkand are written by Søren Bonde

A magnificent city in Uzbekistan

In the 1200th century, Marco Polo described Samarkand as "a magnificent city", where the caravans were given a welcome rest before moving on to their strenuous and dangerous journey. To the east the Pamir and Tian Shan mountains reigned, and to the west the scorching Kyzylkum desert awaited.

The city became the region's most important trading post, and its prosperity was made visible in the lively bazaars and magnificent buildings. Even today, the attraction has not diminished.

Since the fall of the Soviet bloc and the independence of Uzbekistan in 1991, tourists have been arriving in increasing numbers. Samarkand is a treasure chest of architectural masterpieces from the time of the Silk Road.

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About the travel writer

Søren Bonde

Søren is an adventurer, founder of the lecture site “vagabonde.dk” and director and partner in Panorama Travel. In addition, he is a passionate photographer and author of a book (about Peru) and several articles. Søren has a master's degree. in music technology with studies in theology and medieval history and has over 10 years of experience from the travel industry. He has traveled the world since he was 21 years old and has visited many places where the fewest tourists reach out. That is why he received the De Berejstes Klub's honorary award - the Folkersen Award - in 2015.

Although it has become a comprehensive travel CV with visits to over 85 countries, Søren prefers to go in depth with the destinations. Iran and the countries along the Silk Road, with their exciting cultural history and difficult geography, have always been some of his favorite destinations. Thus, he annually visits Iran and the countries of Central Asia, but also the Horn of Africa and Central and South America are areas that Søren has great knowledge of and constantly returns to.

Søren is a country expert on Iran and the Silk Road (Central Asia and Xinjiang). He has traveled on the Silk Road since 1995 and in Iran since 2004. In total, he has spent many months at the destinations, both solo and as a tour guide and in many remote corners of the region. He has given numerous lectures across the country and also teaches cultural history about Iran and about the Silk Road at the universities (FU) in Copenhagen, Odense, Kolding and Aalborg.

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