The Noble Bukhara: A UNESCO Gem – in pictures

Walking the ancient streets of Bukhara in Uzbekistan is like being sucked into the pages of One Thousand and One Nights: mosques, madrasahs and markets follow you wherever you go, while the smells and ancient hues add to the dreaminess of the place. However, there is no Scheherazade here and you will have to weave your own stories. Years of Soviet rule appears to have left a wedge between Bukhara’s history and its people.
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The Toki Zargaron Trading Domes were a major hub of the Great Silk Road. They were described by Khafizi Tanysh, a 16th century chronicler, as the largest of all existing arcades in Bukhara. Photographer: Adrian Liberto
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The intricate walls of the Magoki Attori Mosque. Photographer: Adrian Liberto
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The amazing portal of the Nadir Divan Begi Khanaka. The building was originally built as a caravanserai, however, the imam officiating the opening ceremony unexpectedly called it a madrasah, so the portal, side towers, loggias, and students quarters had to be added on. Photographer: Adrian Liberto
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The Arc of Bukhara is a fortress that dates back to the 5th century. It fell to the Russians in 1920 and is now a history museum. Photographer: Adrian Liberto
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A religious hub, since 713, the Po-i-Kalan complex was mostly rebuilt after the siege of Bukhara (1121) by Genghis Khan, which left much of the town in ruins; the Kalan Minaret, however, was assiduously defended during the siege and survived the onslaught. Photographer: Adrian Liberto
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Evidence suggests that the Magoki Attori Mosque, Bukhara, built around the 9th century was constructed on the site of a Zoroastrian temple. It is now used as a carpet museum. Photographer: Adrian Liberto
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The Kalan Minaret, Bukhara, is also known as the Tower of Death, because for much of its history it doubled-up as a means of execution; criminals were thrown from the top. Photographer: Adrian Liberto
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The Mir-i Arab Madrasah (c. 1535), Bukhara, possibly owes its construction to Sheikh Abdullah Yamani of Yemen, one of the spiritual mentors of the Shaybanids. Photographer: Adrian Liberto
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Nadir Divan Begi Khanaka, Bukhara, built in 1622 was Sufi educational hostel or madrasah. Photographer: Adrian Liberto
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The Bolo Haouz Mosque, built in 1712, possesses both mystery and elegance and contrasts with the austere Bukhara fort it faces. Photographer: Adrian Liberto

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