After two nights in Samarkand, we returned again to Tashkent. We stayed one night in Tashkent and took the train the next day to Kokand.
This post is the first part of our train journey to Kokand; from Samarkand to Tashkent.
Train from Samarkand to Tashkent
We bought Uzbekistan Railways tickets online. Once you have installed the app, you can buy tickets by paying by credit card. Trains between Samarkand and Tashkent are popular and often sell out before the day of travel, so it is recommended to buy online as early as possible.
We used the 013 service, which departs Samarkand at 6:51pm and arrives at Shimoly railway station in Tashkent at 10:24pm. The journey will take approximately 3.5 hours.
To Samarkand railway station
Samarkand Railway Station is approximately 8 km from the Old City. We took a Yandex taxi. We decided to buy food in advance, as it was late at night when we would arrive in Tashkent.
We arrived at the station at around 6:15pm. We scanned our luggage at the entrance and showed our e-tickets to enter. There is an electronic board on the premises, but our train was not shown. Unsure, we asked at the information desk and were instructed to go to platform 3. We walked down the central stairs to platform 3.
We showed our tickets to the station staff on platform 3 and reconfirmed. He told us that the train would be here in 15 minutes.
Boarding the train to Tashkent
A short time later, the train entered the platform. Although our e-ticket showed that our train carriage was No. 23, the arriving train had carriages with single-digit numbers, such as No. 5 and No. 6. When we showed our tickets to the conductor, he pointed to the other side of the last car and said something to us in Uzbek. It seems that a new carriage was to be coupled to the last car.
After a short wait at the end of the platform, a few carriages approached and were coupled to the carriages at the platform.
We sat according to the seat number on our ticket. The seating was deluxe with one and two seats each side of the aisle. The seats are spacious, with tables and footrests and plenty of legroom. There is a luggage shelf overhead.
The carriages are supposed to be air-conditioned, but before the train departed it was very hot as there was no power. We expected that it would be comfortable once it departed, but the aircon was not working very well at all during the whole journey. It was very hot on the train and we had no choice but being patient, despite the sweat dripping off.
Departure from Samarkand
Departure from Samarkand was almost on time, at 6:48pm. As soon as it departed, the conductor came round to close the windows, which were slightly open due to the heat. However, as I wrote previously, it was quite hot on the train.
There were hot dogs and hamburgers for sale on board, but we had brought our own food and wine, so we enjoyed own stuff.
Arrival in Tashkent
We arrived in Tashkent at 10:24pm as scheduled. We walked over the rails to the exit.
As we left the station building, we were approached by lots of taxi drivers as usual. The hotel we had booked was about 3 km from the station, so we hailed a taxi from Yandex to take us there. The taxi fare was 19,000 som.