The oldest bazaar in Tashkent is, perhaps, the Alai Bazaar. On the site of the trade route from East Turkestan through the Fergana Valley, on Oloy Hill, a retail area arose which later became a well-known bazaar. At first, cattle were sold here, including the famous horses of the Argamaki. The Alai bazaar still exists, however, it has undergone changes: additional modern tents have been built. Trade in this historic place continues. Trading vegetable rows are affected by a variety of fruits, vegetables and spices. Pass and not be tempted impossible.
The mountains of the grapes are black, pink, and green. Large berries of isabella, as black and beautiful as the eyes of oriental young maidens, that buy grapes. Do not you like black grapes? Then graceful lady's fingers there for you. Nowadays, the Alai bazaar attracts the attention of tourists and a new complex, where they sell silver and gold products of oriental masters.
The national color of the bazaar is not only goods. It is communication, smiles, greetings. As Uzbeks themselves joke about their trade: "The market is like a song: if you won’t buy, then listen". The Oriental bazaar always begins with a greeting: "Asalam aleikum!" (Hello!) "Yakhshi-mi-suz?" (How are you?) Or "Tuzuk-mi-siz?" (How is your health?). It is for us, that we go to the market for shopping, and in the East, where life for many is limited by religious rules; the bazaar is the same place as Paris or London for a European. The world to see, and to show oneself. In the old days, going to the market, an Uzbek used to put on the best clothes, took the best horse and the best weapon - even if he went for a pair of needles. The Eastern Bazaar is already a well-known phrase, the visiting card of the East. Same as the Eiffel Tower, Viennese balls, Brazilian carnival and the Great Wall of China.
For those, who were in Tashkent, knows Chorsu bazaar, in translation "4 roads". It is located just at the intersection of four shopping streets in the Old Town. This market has its own special aura. The walls of the old bazaar still remember those times when traders from faraway northern countries, and merchants from the Mediterranean, were here. The bazaar is located in the heart of the historical complex "Kukeldash Madrasah" and "Jami Mosque". Even after the modernization, he retained the style of the oriental bazaar, which presupposes a clear division of trade rows. Here you will not find meat near the fruit, as we sometimes encounter it.
The architecture of the market is in the oriental style: decorated with blue domes. Aromas of oriental spices, fruits and flowers. And the smell of patyr, an Uzbek flat cake - an eastern fairy tale before you. There, where nuts, dried fruits and delicacies - like a diamond navat sparkles. Do you know what navat is? A delicacy prepared from sugar syrup can be taken for a scattering of diamond stones shimmering under the sun's rays. Nuts in dried apricots, almonds and salted apricot ossicles are a splendor, which in such quantity and combination can be found only in the eastern bazaars. Here you can relax, drink green tea with fragrant samsa or eat real Uzbek pilaf. The catering service has not bypassed the eastern bazaars. After the rest, you can visit the clothing rows; admire the colors of fabrics and types of clothing. Well, of course, buy a skullcap for memory. Coming to Uzbekistan and not buy a skullcap for the memory of the eastern bazaar? No way!
Tashkent Chorsu Bazaar is one of the largest in Central Asia. Under the seven huge domes lined with colored glazed ceramic tiles, pavilions are housed in which the peasants trade with the fruits of their labors. Eyes scatter from the abundance and variety of goods within the fruit and vegetable rows at any time of the year. There are mountains of ruddy apples and honey pears, clusters of black, pink and amber sweet grapes, peaches covered with soft fuzz, prunes and huge quince fruits on the shelves. Yellow figs, carefully covered with green leaves. Grenades with ruby grains and an orange-red persimmon are placed in baskets. Huge watermelons and melon emanating pineapple flavor are stacked like mountain tops.
There is a cloud of spicy aromas in one of the pavilions that wraps buyers. There is so many things out there! Saffron and cinnamon, red and black pepper, cloves, nutmeg and cardamom, cumin and zira grains, without which it is impossible to cook real Uzbek pilaf. Under the other dome, fresh lamb and selected beef are set. The bags of rice are piling up, the crystals of sugar-navat are sparkling. Vendors in vain offer kish-mish and dried apricots, almonds and pistachios, walnuts and peanuts.
Eastern bazaars and caravanserais, as a rule, were located at the crossroads of the main trade routes, caravan routes, on city streets and squares. In the natural and climatic conditions of Central Asia, where high temperatures and high solar radiation prevail over a long summer, there was an acute need for organizing the shadow space by erecting appropriate structures with a specific architectural appearance typical of the eastern bazaars. The tendency to build such bazaars with a complex of indoor facilities began already from the IX century and lasted until the XIII century: Chorsu and Timi - covered bazaars and shopping facilities, "Toki" - covered passages, "rasta" - covered shopping arcades and etc.
Tashkent "Chorsu" bazaar - "Eski-juva" ("old bazaar"), whose age is probably more than one hundred years old, was placed at the crossroads of no less ancient four shopping streets belonging to one of the branches of the Great Silk Road. Many eastern rulers, on horseback or on foot, passed through the centuries-old land of the bazaar. In the twentieth century, the bazaar inherited the land and buildings of past centuries, which eventually collapsed and fell into disrepair.
And only in the 70's the plan for the reconstruction of the market was approved, taking into account the architectural features and traditions of town planning of past eras.Today it is a unique complex of interconnected blue domes floating in the air, crowning concentric structures, successfully inscribed in the architectural ensemble of the capital. In the central part of the bazaar, the main, ornamental, monumental dome structure with a diameter of about 300-350 meters rises - a winter three-tier building of the bazaar with an elevator system.
The lower tier is the basement corridors with numerous auxiliary rooms. Medium - a numerous concentric in shape system of counters, where various cereals, feed, seeds, spices, dairy products, eggs are sold. Among rice "abundance" there are some rare "islets" of old reddish rice "dev-zra", grown, apparently, on the lateritic soil of the eastern part of the Fergana Valley. In ancient times, the main components of Uzbek pilaf were the above-mentioned expensive rice, lamb, with a selective, exotic now dark brown sesame oil, plenty of onions and yellow carrots and, of course, spices - zra-cumin, kashnich coriander, red hot pepper and others.
Korean hot snacks from cabbage, carrots, sprouted mache - an integral part of the bazaar. In a fairly large dairy sector, bags with white pellets are striking the eye: it is kurt, dried brackish fermented milk product, which is in great demand among the population. But the crystalline amber-yellow color "durnavvat" - processed sugar, the consumption of which, they say, lowers the pressure. The upper tier of the winter room is folded with the bags, basins, buckets with various dried fruits (kish-mish, dried apricots, walnuts and groundnuts, almonds), densely packed on counters throughout the building. Their use is an indisputable benefit for many organs of our body - apricot and its younger brother are useful for the heart, maize and nuts increase the level of hemoglobin, the dried, large-sized jeet reduces blood pressure.
In the spring and summer period, the arrival of fruit and vegetable products to the market is dramatically increasing, which are realized in covered rows concentrically around the above-described main circus structure. Huge indoor rows with meat and meat products stands a few aside. The main meat product is kazy, sausage from horse meat and fat (high-calorie, resistant to spoilage product). Somewhat in the lowland there is an indoor row, where the processed whitish-yellow carcasses of sheep hang on the rank. Meat mainly comes from the southern regions of the republic.
Among the described series of "islets", where they sell cakes, teahouses, where you can enjoy the gifts of national cuisine and drink hot black or green tea. There are also hairdressers, billiards, ubiquitous Coca-Cola, ice cream.
Go to the teahouse, and you will see a group of aksakals with quivering quails in their hands. They are fans who enjoy the live contact with the birds and their singing. There are also fans of quailfights "for interest". It is possible to observe here also the suspended cells with quails, which are especially voiced in the morning.
In a winter room with a tall dome and in the nearby indoor rows you do not feel the heat and the burning sun. Several aside, a number of artisans, the overwhelming majority of whose products are purchased by rural residents: wooden aivans, chests with intricate ornament of soft tin, cots painted with bright colors, low tables, carved figures of wood and metal: ketmens, choppers, sickles, rakes, various pipes, tin coatings for ovens-countermark. A wide range of these products reflects the world of dehkans, the culture of the countryside.
The bazaar has eight colorfully designed entrances and exits, convenient access roads, wide staircases, several car parks for 1.5-2 thousand cars, right in its center - the entrance to the metro. Every day several thousand sellers sell at this bazaar; from dawn to dusk it buzzes, many-voiced, and only after darkness, when the first jets of cool air appears, there comes a temporary silence - Tashkent's "womb" is resting.
The bazaar is located in the lowland, as if in a pit, formed as if from a centuries-old trampling of the masses of the people. On its periphery the domes of the ancient mosque Kukeldash, three columns of the high-rise building of the "Chorsu" hotel, the blue dome of the circus rise. There was always a meeting place for farmers from remote villages, exchange of news, various deals were concluded. Here, as on a holiday, whole families came. Apparently, it was no coincidence that in the territory of the bazaar in 1882, on the initiative of Russian women doctors, the first free clinic for women and children of indigenous nationality was opened in Central Asia.
Here, at the insistence of the well-known physician A. Schwartz, a light-therapy was opened to combat skin diseases. The authorities of those years attached great importance to the old market. The first highway, civilized at the time, was built from the new part of Tashkent to this bazaar. The venerable aksakals recall that earlier such phenomena as underweight, consumer cheating, and the sale of obviously inferior products were less common. In those days, honor, the brand of "firm" was highly valued. In one teahouse of the bazaar, a high-calorie, delicious pilaf was cooked, after serving which you could "pour" green tea all day. The second portion was impossible to overcome.
The old bazaar grew younger. He flourishes, reckoning, like in those distant ages.
No less famous is the Kuyluk Bazaar, located at the intersection of the "Fargona Yuli" street and the large ring road. The relative proximity of the bazaar to the outskirts of the city makes its prices even more attractive. A huge range of fruits, vegetables, spices, cereals and national sweets is not inferior to the bazaar of the Old city. After crossing the road, you will find yourself in a newly built clothing complex, which includes more than two hundred of small shops.
If you're a fan of Korean cuisine, it is in this area a lot of small cafes where you can dine and relax.
On the opposite side of town at the intersection of two major thoroughfares - Lutfiy and Farkhad streets is another major market, which is called Farkhad.
In addition to the usual assortment, here you can buy the best pork, bacon and other delicacies prepared from the meat of this animal.
As in other markets, here you can buy kazi (horse sausage), which is not only tasty but also very useful for health.
Today, it is best to go to the market, which is called "Ippodrom" (“Hippodrome”) for clothes buying. Indeed there is a mounted platform near, but for the local people word "Hippodrome" is associated with huge buildings and long counters, not with the runs and races. The cheapest fabric, tulle, curtains and bedspreads are on this market. Few people leave it without beautiful purchases. For example, one meter of a very beautiful tulle will cost you 13-15 thousand soms ($ 4.8-5.5).
Bazaar is a 10-minute drive from Sobir Rakhimov metro station, and on the market itself a small motorbus terminal with shuttle buses that will take you anywhere in the city is operating there.
“URIKZOR” CLOTHING MARKET
Urikzor Bazaar Also is also considered as a large clothing market. It’s located on an array of the same name "Urikzor".
Bazaar is divided into several individual sectors: food, construction, clothing, carpet and electronics sector.
Besides the different clothes, beautiful jewelry, including natural materials, bags, shoes and perfumes can be bought here.
There are two more large clothing markets. Kadishev bazaar is located on a Lisunovo array and Yunusabod bazaar, which is located on the 19th quarter of Yunusabod array.