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Tajikistan has a population of 9.3 million people, and collectively they draw upon thousands of years of history, preserving many of their traditions to the present day. Situated at the heart of the ancient Silk Road, travellers from Tajikistan went to China, South Asia, Iran, and beyond, bringing home ideas as well as goods. The country had always been a melting pot of people, languages, and cultures.

Perhaps the oldest surviving culture in Tajikistan is that of the Yagnobis, descendants of the ancient Sogdians, who still live in the Yagnob Valley in Sugd Region. Their language would have been commonplace in this part of Central Asia at the time of Alexander the Great, and the ruins of their capital city are at Penjikent.

The Pamiri people have a distinct ethnic and cultural identity, too. Today, they are Ismaili Muslims, but you can still see small shrines - vestiges of pre-Islamic traditions - in rural areas. A Pamiri house is distinctive in its architecture, and if you opt for a homestays in the Pamirs, you may well have the chance to stay in one.

Across Tajikistan you will find all manner of highly skilled craftsmen, many of whom are hereditary artisans. Chakan embroidery has UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage status, and the atlas and adras textiles are equally beautiful. Many buildings have intricately carved wooden columns and doors, there are long tradition of jewellery and hat making, and Tajikistan has some fine mosaicists, too.

The best time of year to see music, dance, and national costumes is Nowruz (New Year) on 21 March. The festivities also include feasting and games of buzkashi, an energetic horse sport akin to polo. Music lovers should also attend the Roof of the World Festival, which takes place in late July in the city of Khorog.



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Committee of Tourism Development under the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan

Committee of Tourism Development under the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan



Tajikistan: Feel the Friendship

The Republic of Tajikistan is nature's adventure playground.

Ancient Silk Road travellers including Marco Polo crossed the mountain passes and river valleys on their journeys across Central Asia. Rulers built mighty fortresses to keep their lucrative trading routes open, Buddhists and Zoroastrians erected temples and monasteries, and unknown artists left their mark on cliffs and rocks in the form of petroglyphs.

Tajikistan’s dramatic mountainous landscapes still beckon international travellers with a taste for adventure. The high altitude Tajik National Park (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) includes unclimbed peaks and pristine lakes, opportunities to stay with nomads in their yurts, and rare snow leopards and Marco Polo sheep. You can traverse the Murghab Plateau along the Pamir Highway; it's renowned as one of the world’s greatest road trips.

The Committee of Tourism Development under the Government of Tajikistan is exhibiting at ITB Berlin alongside 16 tour operators and hotels from Tajikistan. The stand is supported by USAID and The World Bank Group.

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