The view from the top was amazing. We could see the foothills of the Pamir mountains in the distance, and all of the ancient buildings of Samarkand as well. We took pictures for a while, but I definitely put down my camera for a while to take in the view. It was the highlight of the trip.
The relative shine and newness of the Kalon Minaret area was not present only a few blocks away at the Ulugbek Medressa and the painted Adbul Aziz Khan Medressa. These two massive schools have remained mostly untouched for the last 500+ years, giving a much clearer picture of what it might have been like to study the Koran there in 1417.