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Karshi


Karshi, the regional centre of Kashkadarya province of Uzbekistan, was once one of the central cities of ancient Sogd. By the decision of the government of Uzbekistan together with UNESCO its 2700 year anniversary was widely celebrated. Karshi witnessed many historical events and battles, saw years of prosperity and destructions. The legions of Alexander the Great , the Arabian and Mongolian conquerors traveled and passed its territory. Several times it changed its location and its name - in ancient times it was named Nahsheb, then Nesef, and in the XIVth century Karshi, that is a palace, from the headquarters of the Mongolian khans constructed in vicinities of the city. And from 1922 till 1937 it was called Behbudi in honour of writer-educator Mahmudhodzhi Behbudi, tragically killed here in torture chambers of the Bukhara emir.
In 1863 Karshi was visited by the Hungarian traveller Herman Vamberi. Here what he writes about the city:" Karshi, ancient Nahsheb, by its position and commercial value is the second city in Bukhara khanate. It consists of a city and a fortress (Kurgancha), which is on the northwest part and is badly strengthened. In Karshi now there are ten caravan-serays and a rich enough market and if political distempers did not interfere, it would take active part in transit trade between Bukhara, Kabul and India. 25 thousand inhabitants live in the city, mostly Uzbeks. They compprise the nucleus of the army of Bukhara emir. Moreover, the population consists of Tadjiks, Indians, афганов and Jews. On the manufactory point, Karshi is distingushed by different kinds of knife products. These products not only disperse across all Central Asia, but also are delivered by pilgrims to Persia, Arabia and Turkey where they are sold at three times and even four times as much as their initial costs. One kind of it made of Damask steel with the handles which have been laid out by gold and silver, really differs the big taste and durability that can shame the most well-known products of Sheffild and Birmingham".
Along the Karshi oasis there are over 300 ruins of ancient and medieval settlements. Russian archeologists and historians made a big contribution in their studying. The first steps were made in the XIX-th century. Russian archeologist-fan B.Litvinov who visited Karshi in 1895 wrote :"Near Karshi the largest and the most valuable to archeology and history are the ruins of Shulluktepa (the Hill of bloodsucking leeches) fortresses. Nowadays inhabitants still take brick for their constructions from there, and a lot of houses and well-known baths of Karshi were constructed of this brick. And now the market of Bukhara is full of wonders and artefacts which have been dug out in Shulluktepa ".
Now Karshi and its vicinities are well-known for that the considerable part of gas and oil of Uzbekistan is extracted here. The earths of this area are also rich in other minerals.
The Kashkadarya province is also one of the main suppliers of cotton and grain of the country .