Nukus, Muynak, Ustyurt Plateau, Aral Sea, Kurgancha, Sudochie lake, Kungrad, Mizdakhan, Gyaur-Kala
April - October
The Aral Sea was previously one of the biggest seas in the world. But it started to dry out when humanity closed Amu-Darya and Syr-Darya rivers ways which were filling it. So the sea moved away from the old waterline more than 200kms away. The seaport Muynaq was closed, the fishermen boats were left in unnecessary, and the nearby villages start to die because all the salt from the old bottom of the sea went up and poisoned their lungs. Nowadays a whole Aral Sea area is admitted as being in plight. Tourists still come and sightsee the leftovers of rusty ships standing still on a dirt and sand.
In 2019 there is still no hope that one day Aral Sea will move its waves forward...
9:00 Meet with our driver and transfer to the airport. Taking a flight to Nukus via local airlines. The road will take ~3 hours because we're flying to the other side of the country.
12:00 Arrival in Nukus. Check-in the hotel.
13:00 Excursion to the Savitsky Karakalpakstan Art Museum. It owns one of the biggest collections of Karakalpak art & handicraft and also Russian avant-garde arts exposition.
16:00 After visiting the museum, take a quick tour around Nukus. There are some sights you may be interested in - the statue of Berdakh - a famous poet born in Karakalpakstan; Nukus City Hall and the Drama Theatre.
08:00 Breakfast in the hotel. Getting ready for the tough drive to the Aral Sea area. Start driving to Muynaq.
09:00 Arriving in Muynaq. Excursion to the Ships' Cemetary, a place at which abandoned ships have found their last haven. Now all of them look like skeletons of previously fine and useful vessels. Nowadays they are crying whenever the random wind touches their bones, it lets them tell a story of their lives.
13:00 Quick lunch in Muynaq. After - visit the Local History Museum.
15:00 Continue driving until you reach Ustyurt Plateau. Some part of it was previously covered with the Aral Sea but the water is gone so the earth relief looks unusual but fantastic.
16:00 Reaching the waterline of the current Aral Sea area. The water is still running away...
Quick stop-by to take photos and enjoy the saddening view of the dying nature.
19:00 Arrival in a yurt camp. Dinner. Leisure. Overnight.
08:00 Breakfast in the yurt camp. Short walking towards the beach of the Aral Sea.
10:00 Small driving excursions to nearby memorials and ancient sights: Kurgancha-Kala, built in 13-th century; Kungrad town which its a whole memorial itself laying nearby old Silk Road Way; the leftovers of old Urga.
13:00 Arriving at lake Sudochie. Photo-taking time. At Spring you will be able to sightsee pink flamingos populate on the shores of lake.
14:00 Picnic on the lakeshore. Birdwatching session.
15:00 Head back to Nukus.
16:00 Quick stop by Mizdakhan Memorial Complex - one of the oldest pilgrimage places in Karakalpakstan. The old legend says that Adam was buried in Mizdakhan so this place became a religious one and many people come here to pray.
A short excursion to Guyar-Kala - The Fortress of Infidels. Nowadays not so much reminds us about what did happen back in the 4rth century when Guyar-Kala was a big noble fortress.
21:00 Arrive in Nukus. Taking an evening flight back to Tashkent.