From  £3150
per person
Tour Highlights
  • Marvel at Tamerlane's architectural legacy
  • See five ancient cities in one at Merv
  • Explore the avant garde Russian art in Nukus
  • Head in to the desert to see Turkmenistan's remote bronze age sites
  • Camp in the desert by the burning crater of Darvaza
  • Learn about the Parthians at Old Nissa
  • Stroll the ship graveyards in Moynaq
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Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan: Into the Silk Road Empires

15 Day Tour, from £3150 per person
Itinerary Dates
2020
10 Apr  -  24 Apr

Explore the ancient cities and remote desert towns of two of the most prominent countries along the Silk Road, following in the footsteps of the empires that built – and destroyed – the civilisations of the region. From the madrassahs of old town Tashkent and the minarets of Bukhara to the flaming Darvaza Crater and the marble town of Ashgabat, this tour unearths Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan.

 

Tour Itinerary

DAY 1
FRIDAY 07 SEPTEMBER 2018 – FLY TO TASHKENT
FRIDAY 07 SEPTEMBER 2018 – FLY TO TASHKENT

Depart London Heathrow on your direct flight to Tashkent.

 

 

DAY 2
SATURDAY 08 SEPTEMBER 2018 - TASHKENT
SATURDAY 08 SEPTEMBER 2018 - TASHKENT

Arrive in Tashkent this morning and transfer to your city centre hotel. Have a rest this morning and in the afternoon join your guide for a tour of Tashkent visiting the old town with its collection of mosques and madrassahs, one of which houses a library of ancient Korans. Also visit the museum of Applied Arts to see some of the country’s finest crafts and art work. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 3
SUNDAY 09 SEPTEMBER 2018 – TASHKENT TO SAMARKAND
SUNDAY 09 SEPTEMBER 2018 – TASHKENT TO SAMARKAND

Take an early train to Samarkand this morning. On arrival head out to the town of Urgut near the Tajik border which hosts a lively Sunday market, after browsing the stalls and watching the tin workers and blacksmiths at work return to Samarkand. In the afternoon visit Tamerlane’s jade tomb lying beneath the fluted turquoise dome of his mausoleum. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 4
MONDAY 10 SEPTEMBER 2018 - SAMARKAND
MONDAY 10 SEPTEMBER 2018 - SAMARKAND

Embark on a sightseeing tour of Samarkand, Tamerlane’s capital and showpiece today. Visit Samarkand’s Registan Square – surrounded by 3 imposing madrassahs, some of the world’s oldest preserved madrasahs with their fine blue tile work and dating from the 15th century before heading to the Shah I Zinda necropolis where his family and friends were buried, walk the narrow lane lined with tombs of various sizes. Nearby is the Bibi Khanum Mosque built for his favourite wife and showing the effects of the seismic activity the area is known for. The remaining structure has a desolate beauty to it compared to all the repaired monuments. Visit the bazaar close by where the locals come for the various produce. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 5
TUESDAY 11 SEPTEMBER 2018 – SAMARKAND TO BUKHARA
TUESDAY 11 SEPTEMBER 2018 – SAMARKAND TO BUKHARA

Head to the station this morning to take the train to Bukhara, Central Asia’s holiest city, this afternoon visit the old city; a showcase of Islamic architecture. Your walking tour will take you to the Lyabi Hauz ensemble – the modern centre of traditional Uzbekistan with its three madrassahs and mosque. Also visit the Poi Kalon Minaret and mosque as well as stopping at workshops producing traditional crafts. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 6
WEDNESDAY 12 SEPTEMBER 2018 – BUKHARA
WEDNESDAY 12 SEPTEMBER 2018 – BUKHARA

This morning visit the famous fortress where prisoners of the Great Game were kept as well as the Mausoleum of Ishmail Samanid and the Balakhauz Mosque before heading out of the city to the emir’s summer palace, a unique blend of traditional Russian and oriental architecture with its hall not unlike those found in St Petersburg. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 7
THURSDAY 13 SEPTEMBER – BUKHARA TO MARY VIA MERV
THURSDAY 13 SEPTEMBER – BUKHARA TO MARY VIA MERV

This morning transfer to the Farab border and cross in to Turkmenistan, from here head to the ancient city of Merv. Sprawling across the desert landscape Merv has seen empires come and go over the centuries  from Alexander, the Persians and the Seljuk Turks all building cities here. Explore the ruins of the mausoleums where still standing and admire the size of the ancient city walls stretching out in front of you. After your visit transfer on to the city of Mary. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 8
FRIDAY 14 SEPTEMBER 2018 – GONOR DEPE
FRIDAY 14 SEPTEMBER 2018 – GONOR DEPE

A trip in to the desert in a 4WD takes you today to the little visited remote site of Gonor Depe, the region has been inhabited as far back as 7000BC but the city was deserted in the Bronze Age. The remains show mud brick walls as well as graves and a vast amount of ancient pottery. On returning to Mary visit the museum which houses many artefacts from Gonor Depe and Merv as well as a room  dedicated to the president. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 9
SATURDAY 15 SEPTEMBER 2018 – MARY TO ASHGABAT
SATURDAY 15 SEPTEMBER 2018 – MARY TO ASHGABAT

Board an early flight this morning to the nation’s capital, a bizarre city sculpted from white marble. Tour the city seeing some of the highlights including the Independence Park with its statue of the Rahnama Book, the National Museum introducing you to the country’s history, the Arch of Neutrality atop which a gold statue of the president stands and the Golustan Bazaar where it is possible to buy almost anything you can think of. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 10
SUNDAY 16 SEPTEMBER 2018 – ASHGABAT TO DARVAZA
SUNDAY 16 SEPTEMBER 2018 – ASHGABAT TO DARVAZA

Head out of the city this morning to Old Nissa, originally a Parthian city taken over by each empire as they swept through the region until the Mongols razed it to the ground. The plateau still shows evidence of this once grand city. After lunch you will head north in to the desert to the engineering hick-up that is the Darvaza Crater. In the 50s the drilling platform collapsed releasing gas in to the air, the engineers set fire to it to burn it off and the crater is still burning. Best seen at night you will camp nearby. (Facilities are very basic with dome tents and just a toilet). (BLD)

 

 

DAY 11
MONDAY 17 SEPTEMBER 2018 – DARVAZA TO NUKUS VIA KONYE URGENCH
MONDAY 17 SEPTEMBER 2018 – DARVAZA TO NUKUS VIA KONYE URGENCH

Waking up in the desert this morning you will head to Konye Urgench, once an important city in the Silk Road and the ancient state of Khorezm. The mausoleums still standing take visitors on a journey through its history and the Gutlug Timur Minaret is one of Central Asia’s tallest despite not being complete. After your visit cross the border back in to Uzbekistan and transfer on to the city of Nukus. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 12
TUESDAY 18 SEPTEMBER 2018 - THE ARAL SEA
TUESDAY 18 SEPTEMBER 2018 - THE ARAL SEA

This morning we drive to the former fishing town of Moynaq which used to be situated on the shores of the Aral Sea, stop along the way to visit the Islamic Mizdakhan Complex. On arrival in Moynaq there is time to take stock of the abandoned ships lying in the desert and contemplate the scale of the environmental disaster of the Aral Sea. There is a small museum which gives you an idea of the busy bustling port the town once was. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 13
WEDNESDAY 19 SEPTEMBER 2018 – NUKUS TO KHIVA
WEDNESDAY 19 SEPTEMBER 2018 – NUKUS TO KHIVA

A small town in northern Uzbekistan is the last place we would normally expect to find a vast collection of Avant Garde Russian Art but the Savitsky Museum has one of the finest collections outside Russia. There is plenty of time this morning to explore the museum before we drive south to Khiva, stopping en route to visit the desert castles of Toprak Kala and Ayaz Kala which date from the 1st century AD. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 14
THURSDAY 20 SEPTEMBER 2018 – KHIVA
THURSDAY 20 SEPTEMBER 2018 – KHIVA

Dating back more than 2000 years, Khiva is layer after layer of history and a beautiful city for a walking tour. Ringed by thick mud brick walls the old city has beautiful madrassahs, mosques, palaces and minarets connected by cobbled paths and all a beautiful example of the fine turquoise tile work of the region. After a relaxing day taking in the sights transfer to the airport for your evening flight back to Tashkent. (BLD)

 

 

DAY 15
FRIDAY 21 SEPTEMBER 2018 – DEPARTURE

This morning is at leisure until you transfer to the airport for your return flight to London. (BLD)

 

 

Pricing Information

15 day tour, from £3150 per person
(Single person supplement + £370)

Price Includes

  • Return flights in economy class with Uzbekistan Airlines from London Heathrow
  • Internal flight in economy class with Uzbekistan Airlines
  • All airport taxes & security charges
  • Accommodation in a range of hotels with breakfast 
  • Meals as specified (B= Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner) 
  • All transfers and transportation
  • Sightseeing with English-speaking guide/driver
  • Entrance fees on sightseeing tours

Price Excludes

  • Travel Insurance
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Turkmenistan visa

Price Includes

Price Excludes

Itinerary Dates From Price Single Room Supp.  
10 Apr 2020
-
24 Apr 2020
£3150 £370

Tour Route Map


  1. Uzbekistan, Tashkent
  2. Uzbekistan, Samarkand
  3. Uzbekistan, Bukhara
  4. Turkmenistan, Mary
  5. Turkmenistan, Ashgabat
  6. Turkmenistan, Darvaza
  7. Turkmenistan, Konye Urgench
  8. Uzbekistan, Nukus
  9. Uzbekistan, Khiva
  10. Uzbekistan, Tashkent

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