Khujand is the second largest city in Tajikistan (163000 inhabitants). It is located in Ferghana Valley on both banks of Syrdarya river. During Soviet times it was named Leninabad.
There is an international airport in Gafurov, 10 km from Khujand. Often Gafurov is referred to by its Soviet name - Chkalovsk. Khujand airport has many flights to Russia Somon Air and Tajik Air also cover the Khujand-Dushanbe connection.
From Dushanbe, the terminal is at the end of Rudaki Street towards Varzob Valley. Take a 3 taxi and ask the driver to drop you to the 'Vaghzale Khujand' close to Vodonasos or Cemzavod. It is the end of the Trolleybus line. The price (summer 2015) should be 100 TJS per person. The trip takes about 5 hours from Dushanbe. Be careful, as during winter the road is dangerous. Try to get a local to ask about the road condition. When it is dry it is relatively safe, but as the road goes through high passes, the weather can be significantly different than in the valleys.
From Panjakent, you can find a shared taxi from Panjakent to Khujand. Be wary of the weather, especially in winter, as there is a high altitude mountain pass and the road is in bad condition, althouggh it has been improving in recent years.
From Kyrgyzstan, There is a border crossing between Batken and Isfara. The border opens at 8:30 AM on both side, but since there is a 1h time difference, take that into account if you do not wish to stay stuck between the borders for an extra hour. There are shared taxis that you can take to Isfara (about 10-20 minutes), prices vary but it should be around 10 to 30 somoni (December 2018). From Isfara, there are shared taxis and marshrutka departing from the bus station next to the bazaar. A shared taxi is 50 somoni per person or 150 if you take it alone. It takes about 1.5 to 2h. The road is safe and splendid. The road goes through kyrgyz enclaves, but no transit visa is required. The shared taxi usually drop passengers at the south station (vaghzal), you can cross the street and take marshrutka or busses from there to the city center.
From Uzbekistan, take a taxi from the border to Khujand, or use the daily bus service at 18.00 from the new bus station at Olmezor in Tashkent. Tickets for the bus should be bought at least some hours in advance.
Taxi should cost not more than 10 somoni for any destination in town. Taxi to the airport costs about 30 somoni. There are plenty of marshrutkas as well. Don't expect anyone speak English. Khujand has now two system of public transport, the marshrutkas and the public bus.
Handicraft You can find good handicrafts near Panjshanbe Bozor. It is not in the main building, but a newer building near the main street, the shops are on the second floor. They have carpets, suzani (wall tapestry), pillow cases, pottery, wood carved souvenirs and so on. There is also a shopping center called 'Avesto' (Авесто) situated on Ismoil Somoni Prospekt near Univermag. You can find it on google maps. There are one or two boutiques there selling traditional clothes, hats and handicrafts. If you are interested in pottery, a new shop has opened in the shopping center situated under the "Stella Khujand", the newly-erected white tower near the mountains.
Panjshanbe This is the main bazaar in the city. It sells food on the first floor. On the second floor you can find clothes, bags, perfumes, electronic devices, sport accessories and so on. In the surrounding buildings you can find a wider choice, so don't hesitate the explore the whole area and not only the old Bazaar. The Bazaar itself is splendid and is worth visiting.
Univermag is an important bus station in Khujand. You can also find clothes, perfumes and other things there. You can find it on google maps. It is situated in the underground passage. Flower shops and street food stands are situated nearby.
Books If you are looking for books, you can find many small book shops under the library building. The building is situated on Ismoil Somoni Prospect, on the south side of the river. You can find it on google maps if you search for the "American Corner in Khujand". Very few books are availiable in English, but you can find a souvenir book with pictures from Khujand and some poetry in translation.
Oshkhona Lazzat Located in the main square in front of Panjshanbe bozor, next to the unfinished mosque. They are a Tajik cafe that serves traditional food, but their giant meat sambusas (dumplings) are their specialty. Not vegetarian friendly, but they have some non-meat options available.
There is a Kairakum reservoir on Syrdarya river. To get there you should takt marshrutka #16 near Panchshanbe bazaar (2,5 somoni, 30 minutes). There is a small beach with infrastructure and eateries near dam, and a lot of sandy beaches further. Water is good and warm, though beaches themselves could be dirty.
Shared taxis and marshrutkas to Dushanbe, Penjikent, Istaravshan and other southern Tajikistan destinations depart from western bus station.
Marshrutkas and taxis to Uzbekistan border depart from nothern bus station. Taxi to Oybek post should cost about 50-80 somoni
Marshrutkas to Isfara, with connection to Batken and Osh, leave from a small terminal 2km south of city. From centre, take frequent marshrutkas towards Gafurov and ask driver to let you off at "stancia Isfara" as it is very easy to miss