Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Chimgan and Lake Charvak, Uzbekistan

There's really only one feasible day trip that's doable from Tashkent and that's to the Chimgan Mountains and Lake Charvak.  They just aren't easy to get to via public transportation.  

My hostel arranged for a private taxi for the four hour, 200 km (124 mile) trip for 609.000 Som (€50, $59).  The driver didn't speak English but we managed with my Czech and forgotten Russian.

We started off with a two-hour, 80 km (50 mile), drive to Chimgan in the Western Tien Shan Mountains.  

At Beldersay, about 5 km (3 miles) from Chimgan is a ski resort.  There is an old Soviet-built cableway that takes you up 3 km.  I still hate heights but it had to be done. 

Lake Charvak is an artificial lake.  The Soviets built the Charvak Hydro power station to provide cheap energy to Tashkent.  Construction on the dam began in 1964 and it was completed in 1970.  

I understand that something like 150 archaeological sites were submerged under water when the reservoir was filled up.

There are numerous resorts and children's summer camps near the lake that are popular with the locals and Russians.

The Chimgan mountains and the lake belong to the Ugam Chatkal National Park which is one of the country's largest park.

On the way back to Tashkent we stopped off at a local place for lunch.  It was delicious and, besides, meat is always way more fun on a skewer.

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