Now that we’ve explored Dushanbe’s cultural attractions, we’ll head to the central market. Shah Mansur Bazaar, also called the Green Bazaar, is easy to find: it’s a bona fide landmark, alongside club Port Saïd and the beer factory. “The heartbeat of Dushanbe trade,” says Lonely Planet. In a city literally named after a market, expectations are high. […]
Dushanbe, population 778,500, capital city of Tajikistan. Our final stop on a journey that didn’t quite go as planned, before we cross the border back to Uzbekistan. “Dushanbe” means Monday in Tajik, allegedly because it started as a small village hosting a popular market on Mondays. When the Tajik Soviet Socialist Republic was created in 1929, the metonymy was replaced […]
At the close of my survival guide for Tajikistan, I promised you the world’s worst hotel. A place that puts to shame all of the first-world problems you might have encountered in the West, such as inadequate climate control, capricious hot water in the bathroom, or unresponsive TV — it offers none of those three luxuries. This place has […]
In my previous Tajik Adventures post, we looked at the more pedestrian attractions of Khujand, Tajikistan’s second largest city: decrepit hotel Leninabad, the ill-fated Lenin statue, and Café Rashvan. So far, none of these features really justify a journey to that remote part of an already remote country. Enter Panjshanbe Bazaar, regularly mentioned on lists […]
Once upon a time, there was a country named Soviet Union. It was known, among other things, for its adoration of the great Vladimir Ilyich Lenin; its peculiar conception of art, known as socialist realism, and its insistence on making such art omnipresent in the lives of its citizens; its obsession with WW2 and its slightly distorted historical […]
Get ready for a series of travel stories from all over Central Asia, starting with Tajikistan! One could argue that this is really “Part 2”, as I’ve already recounted my lunch in a colorful Dushanbe restaurant here. Back then, the title of the article (“I Ate Dinner in a Tajik Hellhole”, which by the way was not chosen by […]
Earlier this week, I published a story on Vice’s food blog, MUNCHIES. The article (its title was picked by the editor) retraces my search for Tajikistan’s national dish, qurutob, both in Dushanbe and in my own kitchen, with a little background on Tajik cuisine. Check it out!