TOP-7 breathtaking landscapes of Uzbekistan

Rest in Uzbekistan can be filled with the most incredible adventures and impressions. We leave for the Navoi region for fresh air, communication with nature and contemplation of its picturesque beauties. We have compiled a list of locations that can give tourists the most valuable, vivid and unexpected emotions.

There are a thousand and one reasons to visit Uzbekistan. And maybe more. Therefore, tourists who come to this colorful country have not limited their routes exclusively to cities with a rich historical heritage for a long time. They also pay close attention to the amazingly beautiful nature of Uzbekistan.

The ATOR Bulletin continues a series of publications dedicated to the impressive corners of Uzbek nature. Today we are going to the Navoi region to get acquainted with ancient rock paintings, giant “living” stones of bizarre shapes, lakes, mountains, authentic mountain villages.

But first, let us once again remind readers of a new special project created for tourists who want to get acquainted with the most vivid images of Uzbekistan and choose their tour operator for a trip to this alluring Central Asian country.


Navoi region is relatively young compared to other regions of Uzbekistan. Its administrative center – the city of Navoi – was founded in 1958. And it got its name in honor of the famous Uzbek poet Alisher Navoi.

A variety of tourists love the Navoi region. History lovers are attracted here by unique historical and architectural monuments, museums, and archaeological sites. And connoisseurs of majestic panoramas are attracted by lakes, wild mountain paths, giant stones and, of course, an interesting open-air museum – a repository of petroglyphs.

Let's talk about the most beautiful places in the region.


The shores of the photogenic natural lake Tudakul, located in the middle of the Kyzylkum desert, are always crowded with locals and tourists. The reason for such popularity is easily explained.

TOP-7 landscapes of Uzbekistan, breathtaking

Lake Tudakul is located right in the middle of the Kyzylkum desert. Photo: provided by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan

Firstly, this is such a beach classic without quirks, helping guests to relax as quickly as possible.

Secondly, there is a developed tourist infrastructure. Not so long ago, was opened heremodern resort Silk Road Family Resort.

The resort has a well-equipped beach area, swimming pools, a health complex, attractions for children, restaurants, an equestrian ground, a small Disneyland. Soon there will be a water park here. And at several concert and dance venues, they plan to hold concerts and show programs.

Guests can also choose tourist camps for their vacation on the lake. A lot of them. One of the most popular is Lazurnaya recreation areawith a hotel complex, cottages, cafes.

TOP 7 landscapes of Uzbekistan that will take your breath away

Sunsets on Tudakul Lake are amazing.​ Photo: courtesy of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan. The guests of this base are accommodated in cottages and hotel rooms, visit cafes and restaurants, swim in the lake and in the pools, go dancing in the evenings. There are playgrounds for children, a library, a computer room.

Russian tourists who have already vacationed on the lake say that, despite the popularity of the location, they were able to relax and feel the nature. We also tried delicious local dishes in restaurants and watched birds. On the shores of the lake you can see black-headed gull, long-tailed eagle, swans, pelicans. Sometimes gazelles, hares, wild cats and foxes come ashore.


The ancient Sarmyshsay Gorge is the custodian of a unique collection of rock paintings (petroglyphs) dating back to the times of the primitive communal system. And in combination – an unforgettable atmospheric place that is worth seeing at least once in a lifetime. It is known not only for petroglyphs, but also for various legends about UFOs and rare species of plants and animals.

TOP-7 landscapes of Uzbekistan, which are breathtaking

Sarmyshsay gorge not only keeps unique ancient rock paintings, but is also located in a very beautiful natural landscape. Photo: provided by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan

Sarmyshsay is the largest monument of rock paintings located on the territory of Uzbekistan. Mysterious petroglyphs, some of which are more than 10 thousand years old, arouse the genuine interest of tourists.

There are really a lot of drawings painted on the rocks – more than 5 thousand images in total. The subject matter is varied. You can see carved figures of people, their tools and household products, hunting scenes, images of animals. Several dozen drawings have entire storylines.

There are several fragments of petroglyphs here, which are unique and have no analogues in the whole world. Among them there are also images showing the rituals of the ancient Scythians and Massagets – yes, they came to the Caspian and Black Sea steppes from here, from the territory of modern Uzbekistan.

TOP 7 breathtaking landscapes of Uzbekistan

An ancient artist in Sarmyshsay depicted an archer. And the bow looks like a composite Scythian. Photo: provided by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan

In addition to drawings, on the rocks of Sarmyshsay there are also various ancient inscriptions in Arabic, mainly of religious content.


For tourists who wish to spend several days in the gorge, you should pay attention to the recreation center “Grand Sarmyshsay”. It is located near the mysterious gorge.

Guests are accommodated in cozy wooden houses. Around – a special mountain silence, streams with clear water, magical air. The recreation center is fully equipped and has everything you need for a good rest of tourists. There is even a small zoo here.

If you wish, at the recreation center you can book excursions to rock paintings, as well as take master classes in cooking Uzbek dishes.

TOP 7 breathtaking landscapes of Uzbekistan

Cozy houses and nature: what could be better for an eco-vacation?​ Photo: courtesy of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan well-groomed walking paths, delicious natural food, many picturesque places for the best photo shoots, good sleep and always a good morning – that's why tourists love this base.

Recreation area Almaz soi– Another excellent option for accommodation and recreation in the Sarmyshsay gorge. The advantages of this base are its proximity to rock paintings, the opportunity to have breakfast, lunch and dinner with a view of the river and mountains, interesting hiking trails near the base.


Another one of The main pearls of the Navoi region is a stone forest in the Dzharakuduk tract, located in the Kyzylkum desert, in the protected part of the Migbulak depression, 30 km from the village of Migbulak.

The strength of the tourist attraction of this place is the fantasy fragments of vertically standing petrified tree trunks 4 meters high. According to one alternative version, these “pipes” are not petrified ancient trees at all, but sand that once became a stone monolith under the influence of very high temperatures.

TOP 7 breathtaking landscapes of Uzbekistan

Stone forest in Jarakuduk. Photo: provided by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan

Be that as it may, the rarest finds, whose age scientists estimate at 96 million years, have already become valuable exhibits of major museums in Uzbekistan and attract the attention of tourists from all over the world. After all, analogues of such paleontological formations have been preserved only in a few countries of the world.

Here, in the Dzharakuduk tract, numerous fossilized imprints of leaves, presumably plane trees, fossils of marine animals and fragments of skeletons of ancient vertebrates were found. Giant bony fish scales, various parts of dinosaur skeletons, remains of mammals and amphibians, and more have been found here. etc.


Important points for travelers who come to a particular country to admire not only natural beauties, but also to immerse themselves in the real life of the country as much as possible, will always be all kinds of authentic locations. The Navoi region, of course, has something to offer tourists with requests for such experiences.

Between the Nurata mountains and the Kyzylkum desert, a small village of Sentob awaits tourists. Due to the remoteness from the cities, the villagers have preserved centuries-old customs, way of life, culture, language and moral values. The image of the village is also authentic – it is a real traditional Central Asian village.

TOP-7 landscapes of Uzbekistan, breathtaking

The village of Sentob is located in a picturesque mountainous area. Photo: courtesy of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan

Old adobe dwellings here with narrow doors and low ceilings, donkeys and horses ride along the roads, weave, sew, cook food in hearths and tandoor ovens. Everything has retained its originality and harmony.

Sentob is literally immersed in greenery, and mountains and rivers behind the trees. You instantly tune in to the right contemplative mood here. The positive attitude and good-natured atmosphere of warmth and hospitality of the locals are maintained.

TOP 7 breathtaking landscapes of Uzbekistan

The area around the village of Sentob provides tourists with many opportunities for walking and beautiful photos. Photo: provided by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan


What to do here? Live! Tourist cottages are prepared for guests. There are guest houses in the national style, and recreation areas. The place is popular, so there are accommodation options for every taste. All accommodation facilities offer tourists a good level of service.

TOP-7 landscapes of Uzbekistan, breathtaking

Accommodation in Sentob is both authentic and comfortable. Photo: provided by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan

All activities for tourists living here are intense: hiking in the mountains, horseback riding, walking around the area, visiting mysterious caves and a waterfall, a trip to Lake Aydarkul, to the Sarmyshsay gorge with ancient petroglyphs. And observing the life of the locals, of course.

And in the mornings, you can greet the mountains, standing on the observation deck, or sit on the trestle bed and drink delicious tea, watching the life of nature.


In the village tourists will see 15 centuries-old mulberry trees and will probably think about how much and all they have seen. A beautiful place that you should definitely include in your natural journey through the Navoi region.

If we talk about ancient trees and about Uzbekistan in general, then in this Central Asian country there are more than 4600 trees aged 100 years and older. Most of them are concentrated in the mountainous regions of the Tashkent region and are represented by juniper.

TOP-7 breathtaking landscapes of Uzbekistan

Lake Aydarkul is another tourist pearl of the Navoi region.​ Photo: provided by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan ​

Lake Aydarkulalso, without exaggeration, fantastic. Its beauty lies, of course, in itself and in the nature surrounding it – many kilometers of beaches with surprisingly soft and clean sand, coastal thickets.

Tourists who come here will be able to stay in yurt camps on the banks of Aydarkul. We wrote more about this lake here.

TOP 7 breathtaking landscapes of Uzbekistan

Yurt camps on the bank of Aydarkul.​ Photo: courtesy of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan ​


Tourists bring a lot of impressions from a trip to Khatirchi district of Navoi region. Sangizhumon village is located there. The name was given to it by a boulder located at an altitude of about 900 meters above sea level. This is what tourists are interested in.

It is called Sangijumon “Swinging Stone”. A boulder of a bizarre shape weighs several tons. But in order for it to start swinging, it will take very little effort. Even a child can use the giant stone.

TOP-7 breathtaking landscapes of Uzbekistan

The very place where all wishes come true in Sangizhumon. Photo: provided by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan

Next to the swinging stone there is a huge block of granite, resembling a bird from a distance. It has a hole in it. A person of average height can pass. They say that if this is done, then all wishes made at the time of passing the rock will come true.

There are other bizarre stone formations around these rocks, the shape of which does not limit the imagination of those looking at them. There are stones resembling a mammoth, the head of a lion, an eagle and even a tandyr, on which lies dough for flat cakes.

TOP-7 landscapes of Uzbekistan, breathtaking

Sangijumon Swinging stone. Photo: provided by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Uzbekistan


By the way, there are a lot of delicious flatbreads in Navoi region. And, of course, a lot of plov. You should definitely try plov here. In Navoi, it is cooked with a special red-brown rice called devzira. This rice is considered the most delicious and expensive in Uzbekistan.

After pilaf – manti, shurpa, barbecue and smoke. The last dish is prepared from meat, which is poured with fat tail fat. Stewed vegetables are laid out in layers – cabbage, potatoes, onions, peppers, eggplants and carrots. Everything is cut into large pieces, sprinkled with aromatic spices and languishing in a cauldron over low heat.

Bon appetit! And see you again in the most beautiful and colorful natural places of Uzbekistan.

Alexandra Polyanskaya

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