NUR-SULTAN – Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan are launching a tourist corridor that will connect the main pilgrimage sites of two countries as part of their cooperation in the tourism sector, reports 24.kz news agency.
“It is very exciting to create this travel corridor. The travel route starts with Arystanbab, a mausoleum in the Turkestan Region followed by the mausoleum of Khoja Ahmet Yassawi. The next in the chain is the Hakim-Ata (Suleiman Bakyrgani) mausoleum and the route is finished at the Zangi-Ata mausoleum in Tashkent. As you know, they were all students of Yassawi,” said Aziz Abdukhakimov, Deputy Prime Minister of Uzbekistan.
Authorities in the two countries plan to simplify the rules for crossing the border to attract tourist flow. A special program with a unified visa regime allows citizens to freely enter their neighbors’ territory.
“We have agreed that convenient conditions will be created on the border between Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan to reduce and simplify border crossing procedures. A lot of work has been done on the Uzbek side. Currently, Kazakhstan is working on the reconstruction of the Zhibek Zholy post (customs post on the Kazakh-Uzbek border). I think that this work should continue at other posts, so that tourist buses can cross the border with a minimum amount of time,” added Abdukhakimov.
Another way to increase tourism potential is to open new cross-border train services. The Kazakh government representatives have already agreed with the Uzbek side on the construction of a new railway line. It will be possible to get directly from Turkestan to Tashkent by train.
Uzbekistan has more than 7,000 cultural and historical sites, approximately 200 of which are in four ancient cities included on the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) World Heritage sites list and protected by UNESCO. Kazakhstan has three cultural sites on the list and shares the Silk Road site with other countries.