Situated at the crossing of the biggest routes between the western and eastern worlds, Samarkand is one of the main legs of the Silk Route.
This stage is defined by the passage of caravans that transported thousands of riches through the town, making it very wealthy. You can see many wonders of architecture, of which the Registan is the most famous. It is a huge esplanage surrounded by three sumptuous medersas with gigantic gates and a beautiful mosque.
It is in this exact location that we made our most amazing musical discovery. Bobir Sharipov, musician, instrument maker and specialisist of ouzbek traditionnal music. He showed us many of his works including the rubob, his instrument of predilection with which he began playing music as a child.
These last days we have spent traversing the Karakalpaksan desert of Ouzbekistan. Our visas were only valid for 15 days which meant we had to be out the country before the 14th of april.
We travelled 1000kms through nothingness with only three towns breaking the path of emptiness since Boukhara. 10 hour days of punishing riding on roads in disrepair, and that is without mentionning the numerous small breakdowns which we had to deal with by the roadside through painful sandstorms.
Presently, we are in Aktay (Kazakhstan) on the edge of the Caspian sea. This morning we recorded a traditionnal kazakh song in an orphanage and are now awaiting the ferry to reach Baku, the capital city of Azerbaidjan.
Here is an overview of the route that we did from Bishkek in Kyrghyzstan.