That Summer: Cycling through Uzbekistan’s Silk Road cities in 2015

Rory Sullivan recalls a scorching adventure through central Asia after a chance encounter with a persuasive salesperson in Germany

Wednesday 27 May 2020 14:39 BST
Sunset as seen from the walls of Khiva, Uzbekistan
Sunset as seen from the walls of Khiva, Uzbekistan (Photography by Rory Sullivan )

Uzbekistan had not been on my travel horizons until I got talking to an Uzbek salesperson who happened to be sitting opposite me on a train in Germany in the summer of 2010.

He was clearly good at his job, for I quickly became gripped by his descriptions of his homeland and by the photos of turquoise-domed mosques he insisted on showing me on his phone. It all seemed so far removed from the pine forest zipping past the window during our conversation.

His niche of selling bike tours was also appealing to someone active and outdoor-minded like me.

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