The Complete Guide to the best and most beautiful Tashkent Metro Stations in the capital of Uzbekistan.
Discover one of the world’s most stunning subways by following the tips in this guide, including a Tashkent metro map, how much the metro costs, where to find the best metro Tashkent stations and some background history of the beautiful underground tunnels.
I usually don’t really like taking the metro when I’m visiting a city. I prefer to drive through the streets and do a bit of sightseeing than travel underground through dark tunnels.
It’s also not a very relaxing experience to take the metro in big cities like Paris, London, etc. People are always in a rush to get to their jobs on time, you have to fight for some personal space in the wagon and getting a friendly smile is rare.
By the expressions on the commuter’s faces, I also think they’d rather be somewhere else…
Taking the metro in Tashkent was a very different experience! It can still be busy during rush hour but it wasn’t so crowded that I ended up getting squeezed in an awkward hug with some strangers.
And while I was traveling through the underground in Uzbekistan’s capital, I saw its beautiful metro stations. They were one of the highlights of my visit to Tashkent and a true sight to behold!
Almost every subway station in Tashkent is fascinating. They all have their own unique architectural features and artistic elements.
Some look like ballrooms with huge chandeliers hanging from the ceiling while others look like a film set from a science fiction movie.
Walking through the subways in Tashkent is like walking through the city’s history.
Every station shows a part of Uzbekistan’s history. They all tell a story through portraits, plaques or architectural features.
They depict the influence of the ancient Silk Road, the Arab and Russian empires who ruled over the country as well as important historical figures.
I visited every single metro station in Tashkent. It took me a total of around 5 hours to see which were the best and most remarkable ones to visit. So here’s a complete guide to the incredible Tashkent Metro in photos!
1. The First Metro of Central Asia
Tashkent’s metro was the first underground in Central Asia. During the Soviet era, a city could only have a public rail system if it had a population of 1 million.
In the 1960s Tashkent experienced a surge in population growth and the first metro line was completed and opened in 1977. A second line was added in 1991 and the third one in 2001. The third line is not fully completed yet and a fourth one is in the making.
The metro is currently 36,2 kilometers long with 29 stations spread throughout the 3 metro lines. Most of the metro’s trains are still the same ones used during Soviet times.
The metro also functioned as a bomb shelter for the citizens of Tashkent in the event of a nuclear attack.
That’s why for a long time it was forbidden to take photos or make videos in the metro stations. It’s only since the 1st of June 2018 that this ban has been lifted.
During my first solo trip to Uzbekistan in 2017, I wasn’t allowed to take any photos inside the metro. My bags and camera got checked thoroughly every time I entered or left the stations and guards inside the stations were watching my movements while I was waiting for the metro.
It felt so liberating that nowadays I can just walk through the stations with my camera in plain sight and take as many photos as I want. Some guards gave me funny looks like it was still their instinct to tell me off for doing so.
The guard on the left in the picture is watching me…
2. Riding the Tashkent Metro – Practical Information
2.1 Opening hours of the metro
The Tashkent Metro is open every day from 5 am until midnight. Peak hours are from 7.30 am until 9 am and from 5 pm until 7 pm.
The best time to visit the metro in Tashkent is during the early afternoon, between 1 and 4 pm. This is ideal during the summer when it’s too hot to spend the afternoon outside.
2.2 Tashkent Metro Map
The metro in Tashkent has 29 stations connected by 3 metro lines and each line has a different color on the map. The metro stations located in the city center are Paxtakor/ Alisher Navoir, Mustakilik Maidoni, and Amir Temur Hiyoboni/ Yunus Rajabiy.
The red line is called the Chilonzor Line and it was the very first line of the Tashkent Metro. It has 12 stations and connects the south of Tashkent to the center and the western area of the city.
Ozbekiston Line is the blue line on the map and was the metro’s second line to be opened. It has 11 stations and connects the northeastern and eastern areas of Tashkent to the city center.
The smallest line of the metro is the green line, called the Yunusobod Line. It was inaugurated in 2001 and has currently 6 stations connecting the north of Tashkent to the city center.
Every station has a hall consisting out of one central platform and one metro line runs on both sides of this platform in opposite directions. The next stations along the line are indicated on the walls and panels next to the railroad.
There are 3 interchange stations – Paxtakor/ Alisher Navoir, Amir Temur Hiyoboni/ Yunus Rajabiy, and Ming Urik/Oybek – where you can easily walk from one hall to another to take a different line.
On weekdays, the average time between two trains is about 5 minutes until 9 pm. After 9 pm and on weekends and holidays, you can catch a train every 10 minutes.
2.3 How much does the metro in Tashkent cost?
There’s a ticket office at the entrance of every metro station which is indicated on a yellow panel saying “Kassa”.
You pay for the metro in the form of a token. The price of one token is 1.400 Uzbeki Som, which is €0.13 or $0.15.
As long as you don’t exit the station, you can keep riding the metro with only one token. This means that you can visit all the metro stations in Tashkent for only €0.13/ $0.15.
Visiting the metro stations isn’t only one of the cheapest (and fun!) things to do in Tashkent, thanks to its great air-conditioning system it’s also a very enjoyable activity to stay cool during the scorching hot summer days!
2.4 Is it safe to take the Tashkent metro?
There are tight safety measures in all the metro stations in Tashkent so it’s very safe to take the metro.
There’s a security guard at the entrance of every station who scans the luggage of the people entering the metro.
There are at least 2 security guards in every station who are keeping a close eye on what’s happening on the platforms. Security cameras are installed in every nook and cranny. So even if someone would have bad intentions, they wouldn’t get away with it so easily…
You can easily recognize the guards by their green uniform
You really don’t have to worry about getting robbed or assaulted in the metro. While the chances of getting pickpocketed are very low, it’s a good general habit to hide your money in a money belt and your valuables in an anti-theft backpack.
In case you’re a bit worried about tunnels falling apart and getting stuck, know that the underground is used as a shelter for the citizens of Tashkent in case of an earthquake. I’d say you’re pretty safe down there…
3. The 13 Most Beautiful and Interesting Metro Stations in Tashkent
I’ve spent around 5 hours in total visiting and photographing the 29 metro stations of Tashkent.
Some are spectacular and stunning, others are not particularly beautiful but worth a visit because they’re so peculiar. And then there are metro stations that, in my opinion, aren’t really worth your time.
I made an overview of the 13 best and most remarkable Tashkent metro stations that you should definitely see!
You can visit the 13 stations listed below within a time span of 2 hours.
OZBEKISTON LINE (BLUE LINE):
The majority of the most beautiful and interesting metro stations are part of the Ozbekiston Line, the second metro line that was opened in Tashkent.
Beruniy station was opened on the 30th of April 1991. The station is named after a small city in the Karakalpakstan in Uzbekistan.
What makes this station special is the marble-patterned dome over the platform hall and crystal chandeliers hanging from the ceiling.
This metro station somehow makes me think of a soundproof room. A busker or two playing songs on their guitar would have fitted well in this picture.
Opened on April 30th, 1991, Tinchlik Station was designed by Mukhamadjon R. and A. Kayumov. and is highly decorated with stained glass walls, marble columns with illuminating lamps and crystal chandeliers hanging from the ceiling.
While the ceiling is showing some cracks and leaks and could use some reconstruction, this is a very beautiful station. I especially liked the colorfully decorated walls.
3. Gafur Gulom
The Gafur Gulom metro station was opened on the 6th of November 1989. It is named after G’afur G’ulom, a famous Uzbek poet, writer and translator. He is considered to be one of the most influential Uzbek writers of the 20th century.
During the Soviet-German war against Nazi Germany, Gʻafur Gʻulom devoted his time and efforts to write about the war and his poems became very popular among the Uzbek people.
The turquoise granite columns really stand out in this station, as well as the artistic colorful ceramics on the walls. While I couldn’t find any information about what they represent, I assume they are related to the work of G’afur G’ulom.
The Gafur Gulom metro station was decorated by artist S. Sultonmuradov.
The Alisher Navoi metro station was opened on December 8th, 1994 but was only completed in 1997 and is one of the most beautiful metro stations of Tashkent!
Alisher Navoi is the interchange station between the Ozbekiston (Blue) Line and Chilonzor (Red) Line and is named after a 15th-century Uzbek poet and important writer during the Silk Road.
The beautiful blue domes with its intricate golden patterns resemble the mosques and madrassas of Uzbekistan built during the Silk Road period.
The turquoise ceramic murals in the halls portray scenes from Alisher Navoi’s poem collections.
The Kosmonavtlar metro station is one of my favorite stations in Tashkent! Walking through this peculiar station is like walking through some space shuttle.
Kosmonavtlar was opened on the 31st of December 1984 in honor of the cosmonauts of the Soviet Union.
The blue ceramic medallions on the walls feature some of the greatest pioneers of the Soviet space program, including Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman in space, and the world’s first cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin.
One of the murals in Kosmonavtlar featuring Valentina Tereshkova
The ceramic bright-colored walls fade from blue to black to imitate the Earth’s atmosphere, the ceiling represents the Milky Way and the shiny green columns give this whole
space metro station a funky atmosphere.
If you ask me, this would be an awesome spot for a space-themed rave party!
While Toshkent station isn’t particularly beautiful, it’s dedicated to the founding of the city over 2200 years ago so it reflects the most important part of the city’s history.
The station was opened on December 8th, 1984 and is filled with ceramic blue and white murals showing scenes of daily life to celebrate Uzbekistan’s heritage.
Each entrance to the platform hall has an emblem. One is dedicated to the 2200th anniversary of the city, the other one (see photo below) represents Tashkent’s symbol for being ‘a city of peace and friendship’.
CHILONZOR LINE (RED LINE):
The Chilonzor Line was Tashkent’s first metro line opened in 1977. Here are the 4 most interesting metro stations worth visiting on this line.
Chilonzor metro station was opened on the 6th of November 1977 and is named after the first district in Tashkent that was connected to the city center by underground transport.
Brightly colored ceramic murals decorate the walls and big golden chandeliers illuminate this metro station.
I’ve tried to find information about what this station represents, except for being one of the first metro stations of Tashkent, but I couldn’t find anything.
Still, while it’s not the most beautiful station in the Tashkent metro, it’s very photogenic and worth paying a visit.
Bunyodkor metro was opened on the 6th of November 1977.
Up until 2008, it was called Xalqlar Do’stligi station, which translates to “Friendship of People” in Uzbek. Now it is named after FC Bunyodkor, a famous football club based in Tashkent.
The stoical design of the station is beautiful yet it feels impersonal and cold to me. It’s a representation of strength and power, two qualities that seemed to be reflected in most of the Soviet-era architecture.
The busy Paxtakor metro station was opened on November 6, 1977. It was part of the first section on the Chilonzor line and it connects the Ozbekiston line at Alisher Navoi.
Paxtakor translates to ‘cotton picker’ and the walls of this station are covered in traditional-looking green and blue mosaics of flowering cotton plants.
Uzbekistan is one of the world’s leading producers in cotton and the industry plays an important role in the history of the Uzbek economy.
The cotton industry has long been decried as a source of human rights violations as it uses forced labor and it’s also part of the reason why the Aral Sea disappeared.
In 2018 a decree was ordered to end the practice of forced labor and Uzbekistan now wants to focus on the tourism industry. They aim for tourism to become the biggest source of income and economic growth.
10. Mustaqillik Maydoni
Mustaqillik Maydoni was one of Tashkent’s first metro stations and opened on the 6th of November 1977. It is named after the central square of Tashkent just above the metro station.
Both the station and the square used to carry the name of Lenin but after the fall of the USSR and the proclamation of Uzbekistan’s independence in September 1991, both were renamed Mustaqillik Maydoni, which translates to “Independence Square” in English.
Mustaqillik Maydoni is one of the most lavish-looking stations of Tashkent’s metro. It is built almost entirely with marble coming from the Kizil Kum desert in Western Uzbekistan.
The columned hall with its intricately decorated ceiling and glass chandeliers give me the feeling like I’m waiting in some ballroom for my turquoise train to arrive.
The star patterns on the floor symbolize the success of Soviet cosmonauts.
YUNUSOBOD LINE (GREEN LINE):
The Yunusobod Line is Tashkent’s latest metro line. It was opened in 2001 and while it has currently only 6 stations, half of them are a pleasure to the eye!
11. Yunus Rajabiy
Yunus Rajabiy station was opened on October 26, 2001 and is another grand platform hall in Tashkent’s subway system.
The station is named after Yunus Rajabiy, a famous Uzbek musician. It’s also the interchange station between the Cholinzor (red) and Yunusobod (green) line and connected to the Amir Temur station.
Large marble pillars support the hall and a magnificent staircase dominates the center of the platform. It’s the type of stairs that would be ideal for a wedding shoot.
12. Abdulla Qodiri
The Abdulla Qodiri station, opened on the 6th of October 2001, is named after an Uzbek and Soviet poet. He was one of the most influential writers of the 20th century.
While this station isn’t particularly beautiful or special in comparison with the other metro stations, I liked the perfect symmetric design of the hall and the blue-and-red-colored glass patterns in the marble columns.
I especially liked the delicate golden chandeliers illuminating the station.
Saving one of my favorite stations for last – Bodomzor!
The Bodomzor metro was opened on the 26th of October 2001. It’s the newest station in Tashkent’s underground system.
Small waiting stools that make me think of dices are circled around futuristic-looking lamps.
The white ceiling is adorned by bright-blue geometric patterns and small ceramic ornaments. An interesting combination that somehow works, especially with the light cast from the orange lamps.
This colorful station makes me think of a science fiction movie set and I love it!
As you could see, I had a lot of fun visiting and photographing all these stunning and remarkable metro stations!
If you’re ever in Uzbekistan’s capital city, I highly recommend you set a couple of hours aside to explore the beautiful underground of Tashkent!
Which of these stations stand out for you? Have you ever visited other beautiful metro stations in the world? Let me know in the comments below!
KNOW BEFORE YOU GO – UZBEKISTAN TRAVEL TIPS:
- Everything you need to know about traveling independently to Uzbekistan:
- Safety in Uzbekistan:
Disclaimer: This publication is made possible by the support of the American People through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Competitiveness, Trade, and Jobs Activity in Central Asia. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of Cynthia of Journal of Nomads and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.