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Tajikistan is a small Central Asian country bordering Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, China and Afghanistan.
The Tajiks are not a Turkic people (like most peoples in the region), but are closely related to the Iranians. The Tajik language is closely related to Farsi, and some of the best and most famous 'Iranian' poets are actually Tajiks.
The capital city of Tajikistan is Dushanbe. The city of Penjikent is close to the border with Uzbekistan and can be reached from Samarkand. Penjikent has some impressive remains of the ancient Sodgian civilization.
Tajikistan is very mountainous. On the one hand this means that the scenery is great, with excellent hiking opportunities, but on the other hand it means that travel can be time consuming and rough.