Shopping in Tashkent
Handicrafts & Art
Ask around about private sellers who peddle high- quality Turkmen carpets and suzani from their apartments at reasonable prices. It’s recommended that you certify antique purchases with the vendor or with the Culture Ministry Antiques Certification Office (Telephone +99871 237 07 38; Lashkarbegi 19), which is roughly opposite the Latvian embassy.
- Abulkasim Medressa (Navoi Park; working hours 9am-6pm). Close to the Oliy Majlis in Navoi Park, this medressa has been turned into an artisans’ school and workshop where local wood carvers, lacquerware makers, metal workers and miniature painters ply and teach their craft. It’s a great place to buy the fruits of their labour, plus souvenirs such as suzani, rospic (lacquer boxes) and ceramics. Andijon native Madraimov Abdumalik Abduraimovich fashions fine traditional Uzbek musical instruments and can wax eloquent in English about the nuances of the dutar, tambur (long-necked lutes) and rabab (six-stringed mandolin).
- Chorsu Antiques (Sakichmon; working hours 10am-5pm). It’s not one but rather several antique shops nestled amid a row of hardware and trinket shops behind Chorsu Bazaar. There are some suzani of exceptional quality here, but you’ll want to haggle hard.
- Human House (Telephone +99871 255 44 11; www.humanhuman.net; Usmon Nosir 30/9; working hours 10am-7pm Mon-Sat). This shop not only has carpets, skull caps, suzani and textiles from various Uzbek provinces, but it also doubles as one of Tashkent’s most fashionable boutiques, featuring modern clothing infused with Uzbek styles and designs. Human House’s Unesco-supported latest project, dubbed Human Made, is a small factory on the outskirts of town that specialises in traditional folk-printing on scarves and
other items of clothing. Tours of the factory are available by appointment.
- National Art Centre (Telephone +99871 150 40 12; Zarkaynar 1; working hours 9am-7pm) Several stores, specialising in anything from paintings to national costumes to carpets, occupy the top floor of this newly opened exhibition centre, which also stages periodic fashion shows.
- Rakhimov Ceramics Studio (+99871 249 04 35; www.ceramic.uz; Kukcha Darbaza 15; working hours by appointment). As much a museum as a ceramics shop.
- The sister restaurants of Caravan and Caravan One double as art galleries and have on-site handicraft shops. The prices are competitive with shops across the country, making them reasonable places to stock up on items you might have missed while travelling. The ceramics of Rustam Usmanov and other Rishton masters are sold here.
Most museums and top-end hotels have overpriced souvenir shops, including the Museum of Applied Arts and the Fine Arts Museum of Uzbekistan.
The local, vast ‘flea market’ of Tezykovka Bazaar (Tolarik 1; open only on Sunday) is also known as Yangiobod Market. This sombre sea of junk – ‘everything from hedgehogs to jackets’ as one resident put it – is located in the Khamza District, and reached by bus 30 from the Mustaqillik Maydoni metro. Keep a close watch on your purse or wallet in this or any bazaar.
Tashkent has at least 16 open-air farmers markets or bazaars (Uzbek: dekhon bozori, Russian: kolkhozny rynok or bazar). The following are the most interesting to visit:
- Chorsu Bazaar.
- Mirobod Bazaar (Gospitalny Bazaar; Mirabod kochasi). A fiesta of fruit bathing in the teal-green glow of its giant, octagonal flying saucer of a roof.
- Oloy Bazaar (Alaysky Bazaar; Amir Timur kochasi). Lacks the character of Chorsu, but locals say it has the best, if priciest, produce.
Tashkent has plenty of supermarkets and upmarket minimarkets that stock Western food
and pharmaceutical products, including the following:
- Ardus (Amir Timur 3; working hours 8am-10pm). This minimarket is the best choice along busy Amir Timur.
- Dunyo supermarket (Shakhrisabz C1; working hours 9am-9pm).
- Food & Market supermarket (Mannon Uygur street, in the old town).
- Korzinka.uz supermarket (Yusuf Khos Khodjib 1A; working hours 8am-11pm).
- Mega Planet hypermarket (Yunus Abad)
- Ozbegim (Afrosiab 41; working hours 9am-10pm). Well-stocked minimarket near Oybek metro.
- Tashkent Hypermart (formerly Turkuaz; prospekt Navoi; working hours 9am-9pm). Across the street from the mothballed Hotel Chorsu, this is Tashkent’s one of the biggest and best supermarket. The department store upstairs is your best bet for Western brand-name clothing and travel accessories such as money belts and rucksacks.
Other souvenir shops
Trade Center Tashkent Plaza
107, Amir Temur Str.
ориентир: International Business Center
tel.: (+998 71) 238 94 08
Souvenir shop "Orient House"
C-5, Amir Temur Str., 51
tel.: (+998 71) 235 58 33, 235 61 64
mob.: (+998 97) 340 48 15
Art Caravan - hand-made
73, Buyuk Turon Str.
tel.: (+998 71) 235 58 33, 235 61 64
tel.: (+998 97) 400 09 95
Hamar centre - Art gallery
40, Sharaf Rashidov Str.
tel.: (+998 712) 256 52 26, (+998 71) 252 35 30
Hamza Art Gallery, Caravan Cafe and Restaurant
22, A. Kakhar Str.
tel.: (+998 712) 255 62 96
Hunarmand Crafts Association at Abdulqosim Shoshiy Medrese
Bunyodkor Str., next to Oliy Majlis
tel.: (+998 71) 239 19 98, 239 45 02
Souvenir Shop of the Applied Arts Museum
15, Rakatboshi Str.
tel.: (+998 71) 256 39 43, 256 40 42
Souvenir Shop of Grand Mir Hotel
2, Kunaev Str.
tel.: (+998 71) 140 20 00
Souvenir Shop of InterContinental Hotel
107A, Amir Temur Str.
tel.: (+998 71) 120 70 00
Souvenir Shop "Oriental Joy" in Dedeman Silk Road Tashkent Hotel
7/8-C4, Amir Temur Str.
tel.: (+998 71) 120 37 00
Souvenir Shop of Tashkent Palace Hotel
56, Buyuk Turon Str.
tel.: (+998 71) 232 37 91, 120 58 00
Souvenir Shop of Uzbekistan Hotel
2, Uzbekistan Ovozi Str.
tel.: (+998 71) 120 77 77
Tashkent Department Store (Former TSUM)
17, Uzbekistan Ave.
tel.: (+998 712) 256 30 01, (+998 71) 233 62 88
It doesn’t have the atmosphere of the bazaars, but for the best prices and a surprisingly good selection of silk by the metre, try the old Soviet-style department store (univermag) TsUM (cnr Uzbekistan & Rashidov).