Areas of Nuratau mountains since ancient times inhabited by nomads, namely Uzbek, Tajik and Kazakh tribes. Wandering through the endless Sands of the Kyzylkum desert, they found a living area in the dry steppe. According to sources, the Uzbek tribes began to populate the area of Nurata since the 13th century, and only after them Tajiks came here. Kazakhs are the least of all, but despite this they are well oriented in this territory. They moved here during the prosperity of the Empire of Alexander the great, some of them still live in ancient yurts.
People say that the Nurata mountains were a safe passage on the great Silk Road. This has led to the development of small villages on the mountain plains, which you can visit at any time of the year. Despite the steep slopes of the mountains, the locals calmly climb to the top for the collection of herbs, as well as enjoy the beautiful view of the prosperous valley.
In the foothills of Nurata there are several villages favorable for tourism: Sentob, Uhum, Hayat, Eski-Forish. Mostly Tajiks, Uzbeks and Kazakhs live here.
"Uhum" is considered the most developed and largest settlement in the Nuratau valley, reaches a length of about 15 km.in the shops you will find: basic food, drinks, alcohol, household goods and much more. On Sunday, tourists together with indigenous people can visit the village Bazaar, where farmers sell their crops. In the village of Ukhum there are 7 cemeteries and one hospital with a doctor and medical staff. Near the end of the village you can see electric and water mills working around the clock.
The old tribes of Sogd called this place "Akhm", which means "Brave fighter". Exploring the Uhum you can see the ancient broken historical monument-the wall of "Shahi Ali". It served as a fence against the invasion of these lands of nomadic tribes from the Kyzylkum desert. For a strange reason, the exact date of construction of the wall can not be determined. And consider the ruins of the fortress mound can climb the high ledge of the valley.
Previously, the village of Uhum did not have such global food resources. That was the reason for the subordination of neighboring villages, increasing the number of cattle and expanding the land. This green valley loved to visit Bukhara Khan. After the capture of Bukhara by Russian authorities, Uhum was captured by Russian soldiers in 1867.
In the small village of Hayat there are about 600-700 inhabitants. Since the 2000s, this village began to develop slowly: new houses, schools, technical schools, as well as objects necessary for social life were built. Tired of city life people come here to calm the soul and find harmony. Being so far from major cities, in the stalls you can find everything you need for you goods during the tourist season. It is necessary to mention the most delicious bread, it is impregnated with mountain freshness and aroma of just blossomed wheat.
The ancient village of Hayat boasts ancient legends, which are composed of her artisans. As described in the sources, during the drought water was nowhere to be water, it could only be found in this village. People who ran here, called this place "Hayot", which translated from the Uzbek language means "Life".
The main attraction of this place – the ancient building "Shakhi-Kurgan" ("Shaxi Korgon"). It is noteworthy that the fortress was built several hundred years ago and has survived to this day. Also here you can find abandoned houses that were left by cotton growers 60 years ago by order of the Soviet authorities.
In the world of innovative technologies, when you are completely dependent on society, there is a need for a quiet rest, where you will not be disturbed by annoying mobile phone calls or an order of the authorities to go to work early. Sentob is a unique place that combines clean mountain air, artesian drinking springs, pristine face of nature. Flora and fauna, untouched by people, most clearly revealed in the spring months - April, may. Not hot there in the summer, as the fresh mountain air blows cool.
In Sentyab you will find everything you need for the tourist season: educational centers, local hospitals, as well as several mini-markets where you can buy essential food.
The nearest hair salon is located near the bus stop. Next to it, 4 mills work day and night: 3 water and 1 electric, thanks to which the most delicious milk cakes are baked here. Although the village of Sentyab is far from the cities, each house has gas, electricity, and hot water. The village "Sentob" as well as other Nurata settlements has its own traditions and history of origin. According to one legend, told by elder, they called it "Symtab", which means "shining silver". From ancient times to the present day, from the rocks is in full swing mirror-clear mineral water. According to other sources, it is said that the village is called "Sen top", translated from the Uzbek "Guess yourself".
Village Eski Forish
"Eski Forish" is the largest village in the valley of Nuratau mountains. In the village there is a primary and secondary school, a medical center, small shops of private entrepreneurs. Each living area is equipped and provided with everything necessary for long-term living in cozy houses decorated with national ornaments and mosaics. Try all the flavor of Uzbek cuisine.
Since ancient times this place was called "Porasht", which translated from the Tajik language means "surrounded by a fortress." The village of Porasht was built in the early 16th century, but after the order of the authorities part of the village, located on the top of the hill was abandoned. Climbing there, you can see the old abandoned buildings: houses, workshops, mill, madrasah. Visit two surviving towers Abdullakhan and Sultantepa we can consider the entire area.
The legend says the following: earlier, when the village was not built up, but covered with reeds, it was often passed by Bukhara Emir - one of the sheibanikhan dynasty. In another trip, he decided to stop and relax with his subjects, and the village was built Eski Forish in 1558. Uzbeks from local villages moved here, as well as nomadic tribes of Tajiks and Kazakhs stayed and lived their.
The village of Asraf, located near the village of Eski Forish,has the lowest population. There are live about 18 families, there is a primary school, after which the residents move to the village of Uhum and continue to study at the local center.
For a couple of kilometers you can see a huge Nurata reserve, the entrance to which is prohibited. Residents of Asraf and tourists can walk along the trails on the side of the reserve, considering all living things. Nearby are 2 rivers: Arsuf and Khushrud, fueled from mountain springs – "Azizabad and Abdulloi Nyman" Chashmai. Asraf village also has its ancient history, starting even from the 4th century BC there lived the Sogdians, who moved from the Zarafshan - this proves the image of rock paintings detailing the everyday life of the residents. They fled here to escape the troops of the great Alexander the great.
Traditions and customs of the population of Asraf, different from other villages in Nuratau mountain range, but similar and associated with the traditions of the inhabitants of Zarafshan, Samarkand and Bukhara. For example, one of the ancient customs – to arrange wedding events ("Kupkari"), which lasted about 7-10 days.