A trip to ancient cities of Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan is the best tour for those who are interested in the culture and history of Central Asia. Enjoy your visit to such famous cities as Samarkand, Bukhara, Ashgabat and Kunya Urgench.
Arrival. Meet with a guide and driver, start your sightseeing program from the old part of Samarkand:
– Gur Emir Mausoleum – a burial vault of Timur the Great and his descendants decorated with gold ornaments and considered as one of the most significant places in the world;
– Continue to the famous Registan Square – the heart of Samarkand and a real masterpiece of Central Asian medieval architecture consists of three grandiose buildings: Ulughbek Madrassa, Madrassa Sherdor, and Madrassa Tilla Kori.
– Bibi Khanim Mosque – the biggest medieval building in the city which was one of the most magnificent mosques in the Islamic world in 15 Century;
– Shahi Zinda Necropolis – unique complex of Mausoleums formed by standing on both sides of the cenotaph (an imaginary grave) belonging to the Muslim person named Saint Abbas ibn-Kussam;
– Ulugbek’s Observatory – the finest astronomical centers in the medieval world was built by order of Ulugbek, an outstanding scholar and astronomer;
09:00 Meet your guide at the hotel's lobby and start WALKING excursion around Bukhara:
– Ensemble Lyabi Hauz (Nadir Divanbegi Madrassa, Khanaka, Kukeldash Madrassa and the monument of Khodja Nasreddin);
– Magoki Attari Mosque is one of the oldest mosques survived in Bukhara from the time before the Mongolian invasion;
– Abdullakhan’s Tim with numerous handicraft stores offering you souvenirs, ceramics, national clothes, and carpets;
– Caravanserai Saifuddin (the Center of Handicraft Development of Bukhara);
– There are three trading places or so-called covered bazaars: Toki Sarrofon, Toki Telpak Furushon, and Toki Zargaron preserved from the XVI century. These bazaars were the centers for trade of silk, jewelry and even for money exchange. Today as well, one can enjoy and purchase different souvenirs of a wide range, from small souvenir magnets to the famous Bukhara carpets;
– Visit Ulughbek and Abdulazizkhan Madrassas or so-called Kosh (pare) madrassas standing in front of each other with a distinctive style of facade ornamental decoration;
– Poi Kalon Square with Kalon Minaret and Mosque, Mir Arab Madrassa – the heart of Bukhara, a monumental complex impressing the imagination of every visitor;
– Ark Fortress – the oldest citadel dating back to I century BC where one can feel the history of the great fortress covered in beautiful legends and myths.
Optionally can be added by request: a quick visit to Samanids mausoleum (IX century), a monument of early medieval architecture with a local guide.
Transfer to the airport for a domestic flight to Ashgabat. (~40 mins)
Meet with a guide & driver in the hotel's lobby and start city tour with visits to Ertogrul Gazy Mosque, Independence Park with Monument of Independence (it's a 118m column that consider the highest building in the country), Neutrality Arch - an unique composition that rotates slowly after the sun. Visiting National Museum, where you can see more than 166 unique exposition from Ancient Merv and Nissa.
Meet with a guide & driver and continue your tour, visiting ancient Nissa (18km from Ashgabad) that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visit the ruins of the ancient city (the date of foundation of the I millennium BC - I millennium BC). Return back to Ashgabad. Visit en-route Turkmenbashi Mosque-Mausoleum. It's considered the biggest in Central Asia (10 thousands of people). There're beautiful garden and fountains near the mosque.
After that transfer by car to gas crater Darwaza (260 km North from Ashgabad).
In 1971 geologists accidentally found an underground cavern filled with natural gas. The ground beneath the drilling rig collapsed, leaving a large hole with a diameter of about 50-100 meters. To avoid poisonous gas discharge, it was decided to burn the gas. Locals have named the cavern The Gate to Hell, and the sight of the crater at night indeed gives a somewhat spooky feel.
The views are most impressive in the dark, and an overnight stay in tents near the crater is a unique experience, especially when accompanied by a barbeque dinner.
Breakfast at the camp. Leave the camp and start driving to Kunya Urgench.
Arrival. Meet with a guide, and take a sightseeing tour with visiting: the founder mausoleum of Sufi sects "Kubra" Nadzhimetdin Kubra (XII-XIII centuries); the mausoleum of Mongolian princess Torebeg-Hanym (XII-XIV centuries); minaret Mamun (X-XI centuries); minaret Kutlug-Timur (XII-XIV c, the highest minaret in Central Asia - 67m height); mausoleum Kyrkmolla (II in BC - III A.D.); mausoleum Arslan II (the oldest building in the city - date of its bookmark is roughly estimated by XI century).
Finish your excursion.
Meet with a driver and transfer to Turkmen – Uzbek Border. Pass the border. (check-point Shavat)
The whole road might take up to 4 hours. Please, be aware of slow visa checking-out process on the Turkmen side.
Pass the border, meet with an Uzbek driver. Transfer to Nukus. (~2 hours)
09:00 Meet with a guide in the hotel's lobb and start walking excursion (5-6 hours) in the historical part of Khiva – Ichan-Kala (translated as “Inner town”). Ichan-Kala - the largest Museum in the open air in Central Asia consisting of the next monuments:
09:00 Meet with a guide & driver in the hotel's lobby and start the excursion in Tashkent (5-6 hours) – Earthquake Memorial, the composition is devoted to the tragic date of earthquake in Tashkent on April 26, 1966, and is erected in the approximate place of the earthquake epicenter. Residents still come to the monument to honor those people who took a part in the reconstruction of Tashkent - the main square of Uzbekistan reflects the past, present, and future of the country;
– Khast Imam Square – a religious center of the city consisting of the Barakkhan madrasah;
– Visiting the Chorsu market and drive back to the new city by metro.
Continue excursion with visiting Independence Square. There are fountains standing for life energy of Uzbek people, the “Eternal flame" in honor of soldiers who died during the World War II, the arch " Good and noble aspiration" crowned with birds of happiness and prosperity, a road "Ok Yul" (“Good way”) leading to Independence Monument and monument to Happy Mother that symbolize the hope for a great future.
One can often see the newly-weds who start a family and independent life walking through the arch of “Good and noble aspirations,” laying flowers at the monument of Happy Mother and Eternal flame.
- Train tickets Bukhara – Samarkand, Samarkand –Tashkent by tourist train “Afrosiab” or “Sharq” (economy class).
- Turkmenistan visa support (Letter of Invitation, State Registration, Travel Pass);
- Accommodation in a standard twin shared rooms;
- Accommodation in shared trekking tent/yurt (incl. sleeping mat, sleeping bag, and pillow),
- Tourist tax per person;
- Meals: breakfast at hotels; camp-style breakfast and BBQ dinner in Darwaza camp ;
- All transfers as per program by comfortable tourist class transport /SUV as per terrain requires, including transfers to-from airports, train stations, and border posts;
- English speaking professional licensed local guides in Uzbekistan( 3 standard excursions) and escort guide in Turkmenistan as per program;
- Single entry tickets to the sites, museums, mausoleums as per program;
- International flights to/from Tashkent ;
- E-visa to Uzbekistan (if required),
- Turkmenistan tourist visa cost (subject to change; nationality dependent), Turkmenistan migration tax per person cost (subject to change);
- Meals (lunches and dinners, except those specified in the program);
- Photo/video fees (professional camera);
- Transport and guide service for free time and after the standard city tours (can be added by request);
- Personal /travel insurance; charges in hotels for additional services; tips and gratuities, portage; other services not specified under “Tour price includes”.
Check-in 14.00, checkout time 11.00. No early check in, late check out are included, unless indicated.
• Please note that the drivers do not speak English or can speak only basic English.
• All the changes in the basic itinerary, timing for transfers depending the international flights departure/arrival time are to be discussed and pre-agreed with Tour Operator
• Train tickets are booked/bought as per the actual schedule and train tickets availability. Please note that the train trip/s MIGHT be replaced for transfer/s by car depending on train tickets availability and trains schedule.