When the Great Silk Road flourished, many of Uzbek cities were globally recognized. Bukhara,Samarkand, Khiva, and Shash or Tashkent had thousands of camel caravans passing through them. Those camel caravans carried silk,overseas spices, jewelry, gems, and handicrafts. Alongside with goods, traders brought cultural enrichment. This cultural enrichment created a unique atmosphere of many Uzbek cities. This aura is preserved in famous eastern bazaars.
Some of the most ancient and largest bazaars in Uzbekistan are the exemplary markets of ancient Central Asia. Alay Bazaar is one of the oldest bazaars in Tashkent. Historians don't have common ground regarding origins of Alay Bazaar. Some historians say that it was called after the Mount Alay. Back then, in 12th century, Alay Bazaar was a trading post for local Kazakhs, Tajiks,and Kyrgyz to sell cattle and livestock. However, no evidence of this version were found.
The most plausible history of Alay Bazaar was proposed by architect Ziyaev. According to Ziyaev, Alay Bazaar was found in the second half of 19th century, when new Tashkent started developing. Northern part of the city was populated by families of former soldiers. They started building houses, which eventually led to formation of independent settlement. This part of the city was called “soldier’s”.
Tashkent kept growing and by the end of 19th century soldiers’ settlement became a part of it. There were 9 districts, in 1905. In one of these districts Alay Bazaar was established. It was called Soldeirs’ or Alay Bazaar, because in some Turkic dialects word “alay” was used for military servants. Unlike now, it wasn't among one of the most popular Tashkent bazaars. It went through serious reconstructions in 1990-s.
Today Alayz Bazaar is easy to get to from any part of the city. It's modern and well-equipped Tashkent sightseeing place. Wide aisles offer a huge variety of fruits, sweets, nuts, and flowers.