The first stop in Uzbekistan was Bukhara, which used to be one of the main cities on the Silk Road. Still in the desert I did the sightseeing in the morning and evening and escaped the midday heat (45+ degrees) to relax a bit in my excellent guesthouse to recover from the past tiring days.
The left building is a medrassa (Islamic university), the right is a mosque with in the centre the Kalyan minaret (47m high, exceptional that it's still standing after more than 900 years in this earthquake prone territory).
Another medrassa (lost track of the names, there are so many).
Bukhara has received quite a 'facelift' over the years, with the result that the centre with all the historic buildings looks quite new with very few local people around. It looks very nice but the emptiness makes it also look a bit artificial unfortunately.
Another medressa, facing the main square (or more, 'pool', since the middle is a rectangular puddle of water).
The largest banknote in Uzbekistan is the one for 1000 som. With the black-market exchange rate at almost 2500 som against $1 the above pile (thicker than my Lonely Planet) is the result of changing $100,-. Endless counting fun! Given that the official government rate is a lousy 1700 som to $1 you want to change money on the black market here, which means finding a guy lurking on the edge of the bazaar holding a bulking plastic bag with som.