Trans Eurasia travel

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Victory Park (Pobedy Park)

A refreshing place to visit, particularly in the summer heat, is Victory Park, one kilometre from the city centre. Giving views over the city and the mountains beyond, the hill covered with pine trees is capped by a memorial to the dead of The Great Patriotic War (Second World War). There is a cable car from the street below. There are two good restaurants near the top, with terraces from which you can enjoy your meal or a drink and take in the magnificent vistas.


Continuing from the Shaikh Mansur Bazaar on Aini Road, east towards the Town of Vahdat (Kafirnihan), is the Russian Orthodox Church of St Nicholas, at 58 Drujba Narodov, renovated with the help of Russian troops. The main building is a good example of a traditional Russian Orthodox Church, set in pleasant gardens.

Nine kilometres further along Aini Road, continuing east is a turning to the right to the Guliston Jamoat (suburb) with the splendid Hazrati Mavlom Yaqubi Charki Mosque. It is a mosque, madrassa and mausoleum set in attractive gardens with mature trees, some six hundred years old. Most of the buildings are modern, but part of the mosque dates from the sixteenth century. The mausoleum is dedicated to the founder, a Sufi theologian, who translated the Qur'an into Persian. He came from Charkh near Ghazni in Afghanistan and died in Dushanbe in 1447. It was closed in Soviet times, but is now a centre for people who can profess their faith openly. Large numbers of people attend Friday prayers. It is a delightful place to visit and wander around the courtyards, the mosque and the gardens. The mullahs are welcoming.


Twelve kilometres along the main road south to Qurghan Tappa is the Seventh Day Adventist Church (formerly the Lutheran Church) at 117 Borbad Street. It is a typical German church with clean lines, an elegant spire and a sense of spaciousness inside. It was the centre of worship for the German community, who contributed so much to the building of Dushanbe and life in the country generally. Nearly all the Germans have left now and the church is now run by the Seventh Day Adventists, who are very welcoming to visitors.