willielawrence's User Profile - Atlas Obscura
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Places visited in Tajikistan
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Turkmenistan

The Gates of Hell

A fiery crater has been burning in the Karakum Desert since 1971.
Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

Independence Monument of Turkmenistan

Sumptous memorial to a controversial independence.
Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

Arch of Neutrality

A dictator's gold statue once rotated to face the sun on a 75-meter high marble tower.
Koytendag, Turkmenistan

Kyrk Gyz Cave

A cave covered with bizarre stalactites of cloth.
Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

Wedding Palace

If you want to get married in the White Marble City of Ashgabat, you should do it in this surreal disco ball building.
Beruni, Uzbekistan

Elliq-Qala

These "50 Fortresses" have been unearthed in the ancient oasis of Khwarezm.
Tashkent, Uzbekistan

Central Asian Plov Center

Giant cauldrons overflow with Uzbekistan's favorite rice dish at this cavernous dining hall.
Tashkent, Uzbekistan

Amir Timur (Tamerlane) Museum

Looking for a unifying history, Uzbekistan finds its answer in a 14th Century Turco-Mongol conqueror... despite the fact he wasn't Uzbek.
Ulugnor District, Uzbekistan

Fergana Valley

One of the most ethnically diverse spots on the planet.
Bukhara, Uzbekistan

Kalyan Minaret

This "tower of death" has acted as an observatory, a religious hub, and an executioner's lair.
Kokand, Uzbekistan

Khan's Palace

Final palace complex of the last of 29 Kokand rulers.
Xiva, Uzbekistan

Walls of Itchan Kala

Ancient barriers wrap around what was once an important stop along the Silk Road.
Samarkand, Uzbekistan

Ulugh Beg Observatory

Light still pours into the ruins of this ancient Islamic observatory.
Muynak District, Uzbekistan

Moynaq

Once a bustling fishing port, this semi-ghost town is now more than 90 miles away from the shore.
Samarkand, Uzbekistan

Shah-i-Zinda Necropolis

The Avenue of Mausolea is a series of grand palatial tombs.
Nohijai Pançakent, Tajikistan

Ancient Panjakent

The remains of an ancient city-state along the Silk Road.
Khujand, Tajikistan

Tajikistan Lenin Statue

The largest Lenin statue in Central Asia was moved to an empty field rather than being destroyed.
Panjakent, Tajikistan

Tomb of Rudaki

Where the father of Persian poetry is laid to rest.
Ishkoshim, Tajikistan

Yamchun Fort

This ancient Silk Road outpost overlooking the Wakhan Valley is miraculously still standing.
Ayni, Tajikistan

Anzob Tunnel

This dark, damp, perilous tunnel is the only passage from north to south Tajikistan.
Pingan, Tajikistan

Hulbuk Fortress

This medieval citadel once guarded the western entrance of the Pamir Highway.
Dushanbe, Tajikistan

Wall of Great Tajik Writers

A building facade covered with the statues of 11 giants of Tajik literature.
Rushon, Tajikistan

Sarez Lake

The largest dam in the world and the site of a potential disaster.
Tajikistan

Shorbulak Observatory

This remote, abandoned Soviet observatory promises spectacular views for those who can reach it.