Cities Journal
Globe Trotter

Tashkent: The Thailand Of The Middle East

In our new Globe Trotter series, Viral Travel reviews all the best places to see, eat and stay at in every country of the world!

This week we visit: Uzbekistan


When you visit predominantly Muslim countries, there is usually not that much to do when it comes to nightlife in the western sense of the word. However, in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, which is a Muslim country, things are somewhat racier and more interesting. In fact, it is said that Tashkent is the best nightlife city in the Muslim world. The Thailand of the Middle East.

There is always fun to have in the streets, especially if you happen to visit Tashkent during the warmer months when everyone is outside, selling food, beverages, pirated DVDs, drawing portraits and so on. The music is also quite loud so be prepared for that. The most popular pedestrian street of this kind is Istiklol Street.

The city also features a number of bars and restaurants of all sizes and guest-profiles, from those that are mostly visited by the locals to ex-pat bars and restaurants where you will mostly see foreigners and tourists but which are also much more expensive.

Belly dancing is also huge in Tashkent and you will have no trouble finding plenty of places where you can enjoy a belly dancing show. Just do not expect anything too classy. In Tashkent, belly dancing is quite sleazy and that’s probably because of tourists and their preferences.

You should also be quite wary of massage parlors and saunas which mostly serve as fronts for less-than-legal services. No one tries to hide the true nature of these places but be warned, this is a very gray area legally and you would probably do best to avoid getting too involved.

There are also quite a few nightclubs in Tashkent such as Papilon, Diplomat 5, Juliano and Imperial. Once again, you should be on alert for the ladies of the night which can easily get you in trouble with local gangs and even police.

For those who are not afraid of an adventure, Tashkent can be quite a lively place during the night.

RELATED: Traditional Uzbek Dishes That Will Make Your Palate Sing


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