Best of Central Asia Tour – Summer 2025

Central Asia Travel in Summer

Discover the cultural and natural highlights of Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan & Tajikistan.

Days

25

Price from:

$6870

Briefing

Comfort level:

Physical rating:

Group size: Max 12

Countries: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan

Route:

  • Ashgabat
  • Khiva
  • Tashkent
  • Samarkand
  • Dushanbe
  • Almaty
  • Issyk Kul
  • Bishkek

Themes: Cultural Tours

Kalpak Travel’s Best of Central Asia Tour brings together the most fascinating aspects of culture and nature from five countries in one amazing journey. You will visit modern and historic capitals, and see firsthand the cultural treasures and traditions of the nomadic people who migrated across this region, and also those who settled in its cities. Enjoy the captivating mix of contemporary architecture and Soviet-era style in the modern metropolises of AlmatyAshgabat, Bishkek, Tashkent, and Dushanbe. You’ll be captivated by magnificent Silk Road cities of Samarkand, Bukhara, and Khiva, where the Golden Age of Islam flourished and the medieval Timurid Empire left a lasting legacy. Immerse yourself in the diversity of Central Asia’s cultures and breathtaking landscapes on an unforgettable journey along the Silk Road and beyond.

highlights

  • Combine the cultural highlights and natural beauty of Central Asia in a single tour.
  • Explore futuristic Ashgabat with its iconic white marble buildings.
  • Gaze upon the alpine lakes of Kyrgyzstan (Issyk Kul and Song Kul) and Tajikistan.
  • Sleep in traditional yurts and experience Kyrgyz nomadic culture first-hand.
  • Marvel at Registan Square and other architectural wonders of ancient Samarkand
  • Wander the bustling streets of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Khiva and Bukhara
  • Feast on a barbecue next to Turkmenistan’s burning gas crater known as “The Gate of Hell”.
  • Shop in authentic oriental bazaars for everything from hand-woven silks to spices

 

 

ITINERARY & MAP

Welcome to Central Asia! Upon arrival, you will check-in and take some well-deserved rest after your long flight.

In the afternoon, we will drive to the Darvaza Gas Crater, located in the middle of the Karakum Desert (270km, 4-5h). Together, we will enjoy a delicious fire-cooked meal for dinner, then sleep overnight at the yurt camp.

Please note that it’s a long and shaky ride to the gas crater and we will drive the same way back to Ashgabat the following day. If you are not particularly eager to visit this place, you can arrive a day later in Ashgabat and save 280 USD.

Accommodation: Early check-in during the morning. Accommodation: Hotel Diwan 5* or similar. Overnight in Yurt Camp (2 people per yurt, shared bathroom facilities).

After camp-style breakfast, we will return to Ashgabat on the same road (c. 4-5h). Today it’s Sunday, and we will have a chance to visit the Sunday bazaar called Tolkuchka, including the livestock section with camels. In the afternoon, you will enjoy a short sightseeing tour (3-4 h) in Ashgabat. The tour includes a visit to the National Museum of History, the Arch of Neutrality, and Independence Park. Following this, there is a Turkmen welcome dinner with a folklore show.

Accommodation: Hotel Diwan 5* or similar

Old Nisa Ruins in Turkmenistan

After breakfast, we will drive to Old Nisa fortress (UNESCO World Heritage site),  the earliest of the Parthian Empire capitals. Located in an atmospheric area on an irregular pentagon hill at the foot of the Kopet-Dag Mountains, Old Nisa is a beautiful landmark. At 14 hectares in size, the fort accommodates two semi-excavated complexes of the Parthian period (3rd century BC – 3rd century AD) structures, designated as a royal residence and temple complex. Then we will drive back to Ashgabat, stopping enroute at the National Memorial Complex “Halk Hakydasy” with its WWII and earthquake memorials. Lunch is at a local restaurant. After lunch, we will continue to the Spiritual Mosque, one of the biggest mosques in Central Asia, and the nearby Turkmenbashi Mausoleum. We will also visit the hippodrome, where you will see the famous Turkmen horses known as Akhal Teke.

Accommodation: Hotel Diwan 5*

In the morning, we will take a flight to Dashoguz. Turkmen farewell lunch in a local restaurant. In the afternoon, we transfer to the nearby border with Uzbekistan. After crossing the border on foot, you will meet your Uzbek local guide and driver and drive for another hour to Khiva. Please note that the border crossing may take around 2-3 hours. Dinner and overnight in Khiva.

Accommodation: Hotel Asia 3*

Our walking tour of Khiva will begin after breakfast. Khiva is bursting with historical sites and today you will get a chance to see them all. We will visit the walled inner-city section of Khiva called the Ichan-Kala. This old section of the city contains more than 50 historic monuments and hundreds of centuries-old houses. The entire citadel is protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. As you walk through the enormous city gates, you will be confronted by a glistening beacon of Islamic design, the Kalta Minor. Our tour delves deep into all of Khiva’s sites.

Accommodation: Hotel Asia 3* or similar

You will have free time in the morning for optional activities. After lunch, you will transfer to Urgench airport (c. 40 min) for a domestic flight to Tashkent (3:20 pm – 4:40 pm). Check-in at the hotel and dinner in a local restaurant.

Accommodation: Hotel Lotte 4* or similar

With a population of over 3 million people, Tashkent is the largest city in Central Asia. Its history dates back to the first century BC, when an urban settlement grew up around a major caravan crossroad on the Silk Road. Much of what you see today, however, dates from the late 20th or 21st centuries, as a devastating earthquake in 1966 destroyed much of the older city. Rebuilding Tashkent was a major Soviet infrastructure project, with laborers coming to work here from across the Soviet Union. We will start the day’s sightseeing at the Monument of Courage, which remembers the victims of the earthquake. We will then walk to Independence Square, a symbol of freedom for Uzbekistan’s citizens, who declared their independence when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. At Amir Timur Square you will see the statue of the great conqueror. Next, we will drive to Chorsu Bazaar, Tashkent’s blue-domed market, with its acres of spices, fresh produce, and traditional crafts. We will also visit the Old City to find the Khast Imom complex, which houses the historic holy Quran of Caliph Osman. Today’s city tour will end with the Museum of Applied Arts, an ornate, rainbow-colored building that was previously the official residence of the Russian Ambassador.

Accommodation: Hotel Lotte 4* or similar

You will transfer to the train station to catch the modern high-speed train to Bukhara (08.30 – 12:30). On arrival, you will transfer to the hotel in the old town of Bukhara and have lunch. In the afternoon, we will have a walking tour of Bukhara, one of the most important trading hubs on the Great Silk Road, as well as a respected center of religious learning. The Old City has been well preserved and is crammed full of minarets, mosques, and madrassas. Your guide will show you Bukhara’s unmissable sights, and you can soak up the atmosphere by wandering through the labyrinthine alleyways. Highlights of today’s walking tour in Bukhara include the Poi Kalon complex, Lyabi Hauz area, and the bazaars inside Bukhara’s unique trading domes. In the evening, you will enjoy dinner in the old town.

Accommodation: Hotel Alexia Suite or similar

Today morning we continue exploring the enchanting old town of Bukhara. Places to visit include the Ark Fortress, the 10th-century Samanid Mausoleum, and Bolo Hauz Mosque. We may also visit craftsmen in their workshops. Free time in the afternoon. Dinner in the old town.

Accommodation: Hotel Alexia Suite or similar

Uzbekistan tour in Bukhara

Today morning we will visit a couple more sights near Bukhara. First, we visit the Mausoleum of Naqshbandi, 15 km outside the city center. There are many orders in Sufism, all of which have been represented at different times in what is now Uzbekistan. The Naqshbandiyya order has a great and long-lasting influence, and the memorial place is still a popular place of pilgrimage for Sufis. From here, we will visit the summer residence of the last Emir of Bukhara. In Persian, it is called Sitorai Mokhi Hossa, “the place where the moon meets the stars”. Return to Bukhara for lunch.

In the afternoon, we will take the high-speed train Afrosiob from Bukhara to Samarkand (3:45 pm – 5:25 pm). Upon arrival in Samarkand, you will transfer to the hotel for check-in and dinner in the city. On your return to the hotel after dinner, you will walk by Registan Square for an evening view of the magnificent madrasahs.

Accommodation: Hotel Kosh Hovuz 3* or similar

Sublime Samarkand, once the capital of the Timurid Empire, was ruled by Timur (also known as Tamerlane), one of history’s greatest conquerors, until his death in 1405. His vast empire rivalled any and stretched across the Eurasian steppe. Timur governed his kingdom with an iron fist, yet he also patronised the arts and literature. Much of the architectural heritage from this period has been preserved. We will start the city tour with a visit to Bibi-Khanum Mosque, a structure that legend says was gifted to Timur by one of his wives. We will also have some time to explore Siyob Bazaar.

After lunch, we will visit Registan Square, the most famous landmark in all of Uzbekistan. This square was the focal point of mediaeval Samarkand and is framed by three beautiful madrassas (religious schools), Ulugbek, Sherdor, and Tillya Kori. We will complete today’s city tour with a visit to Gur-e-Amir, the gilded mausoleum where Timur is buried.

Accommodation: Hotel Kosh Hovuz 3* or similar

Shahizinda

After breakfast, our exploration of Samarkand will continue. Our first stop will be the magnificent Shah-i Zinda, a tiled necropolis steeped in history. Following this, we will venture to Ulugbek’s Observatory to learn more about his remarkable story within this esteemed setting. In the afternoon, you have the option to delve into the rich history of the ancient city of Samarkand at the Afrasiyab Museum. Here, you will uncover the story of Afrasiyab, the city tragically destroyed by the Mongols in the early 13th century. Alternatively, you can choose to spend leisure time between lunch and dinner.

Hotel Accommodation: Hotel Kosh Hovuz 3* or similar

Today, you will embark on a memorable adventure as we cross the border from Uzbekistan to Tajikistan. Our day trip will start with a bumpy ride into the mountains to explore the area of the Seven Lakes. This mountain valley is not far from Penjikent, but due to the challenging road conditions, this trip takes a full day. We will drive up until the sixth lake. It is then a short and easy hike of about two hours (both ways) to the seventh and highest lake, Hazorchashma. There will be time to enjoy the scenery and wander along the lake shore before hiking back down to the sixth lake and going slowly by road to Penjikent, with a few stops in some of the mountain villages. The hike is optional, and you can instead opt to rest at a guesthouse near the fourth lake.

Accommodation: Hotel Penjikent Plaza 3* or similar

Today we will drive to Iskander Kul, a mountain lake named after Alexander the Great. Triangular in shape, it is nestled in the Fann Mountains at an altitude of 2,200m. The route is a delightful one through rugged mountain scenery. We will have lunch on the shore of the lake. There will be free time in the afternoon for different optional activities such as a short hike to a nearby waterfall, and a visit to a nearby mountain village. Dinner and overnight at the lake.

Accommodation: Cottage on the lake shore

Today, our journey takes us from the stunning shores of Iskander Kul to the vibrant city of Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan. After an ascent to the Anzob Tunnel, our route is along the Vazob River down to the Varzob Gorge, a popular weekend getaway for locals from Dushanbe. We will reach Dushanbe in time for lunch. Originally, Dushanbe was a small village centered on a market that took place every Monday. The Persian word Dushanbe means “Monday”, so this is how the city got its name. It was during the Soviet Union that Dushanbe became the industrial center of Tajikistan and the capital city it is today. We will visit the Museum of Antiquities with its 13-metre-long sleeping Buddha, then tour the marvelous modern Navruz Palace. We will then enjoy a striking city view from the top of the newly built Independence Monument. Next, we will visit the Ismail Somoni statue. This large gold and marble monument commemorates the 1,100th anniversary of the Samanid State, a golden age of the Tajik nation when science and the arts flourished. From there, we will walk across to Rudaki Park, dedicated to the great Persian poet Rudaki, who lived under the Samanids during the 10th century. You will have dinner in a delightful Tajik restaurant.

Accommodation: Hotel Rumi 4* or similar

Zenkov cathedral

In the morning, we will visit the local bazaar, or you can enjoy your free time until the transfer to the airport at 11:00 am. Our flight is scheduled for 1:30 pm – 3:15 pm to take us to Almaty, Kazakhstan.

We will meet our local Kazakh guide at the airport and transfer to the city for our Kazakh welcome dinner in a local restaurant.

Accommodation: Hotel Kazzhol Park 4* or similar

Almaty is the largest city in Central Asia’s richest country, Kazakhstan. For 70 years up until 1997, Almaty was the country’s capital, and it remains today the country’s business and educational center.

We will visit Panfilov Park to see the impressive memorial dedicated to the Soviet soldiers who fought in WWII and take a look at the most famous Orthodox cathedral of Almaty. In the afternoon, you have some free time to explore the city on your own or relax at the hotel. Your guide will be available and happy to suggest places to go and things to see or do.

In the evening, we will meet up again in the hotel lobby and take the cable car to Kok Tobe Hill, from where you will have an excellent view of the city. Then we will have dinner and return to the hotel.

Accommodation: Hotel Kazzhol Park 4* or similar

Charyn canyon in Kazakhstan

Today we will have a very long ride, partly on challenging roads. About halfway between Tepke and Almaty, we will stop for a picnic lunch at one of the most famous natural sights in Kazakhstan, Charyn Canyon. As a landscape spectacle, the canyon is often compared to the Grand Canyon, although it is much smaller in size with a total length of 80-90 km. The part of the canyon you will visit is known as the Valley of Castles for its unusual rock formations. It is 3km long and 100m deep. Optionally, we will walk these 3km down to the river and back up again. Following this, we will continue our drive to Kazakh – Kyrgyz border at Kegen. You will meet your Kyrgyz guide and driver and transfer through the Kyrgyz mountains to the village of Tepke, where we will spend the night in the welcoming guesthouse-farm of a family who breed horses.

Accommodation: Reina Kench Farm/Guesthouse

Djeti Oguz or seven bull rock cliffs

Today we will drive to Karakol and have a short sightseeing tour of the town’s most interesting sights. These include the Dungan Mosque, built in 1904; and the wooden Russian Orthodox Church, which has been standing since 1869. We will have lunch with a local Dungan family in Yrdyk village and continue our drive along the southern shore of Issyk Kul Lake. En route, we will take a diversion into the side valley of Jety Oguz, famous for its two red rock formations called the Seven Bulls and the Broken Heart. You will see these rocks, and our guide will tell you of the legends behind their interesting names. Our destination for today is a yurt camp near the shore of Issyk Kul. In the evening we will learn how to cook traditional dumplings, known as manty.

Accommodation: Yurt Camp (shared bathroom facilities)

Gagarin statue in Kyrgyzstan

After breakfast, we will visit Barskoon Gorge. There are interesting monuments along the road, including a bust of Yuri Gagarin, who holidayed on the south shore of Issyk Kul after his historic first manned space flight. From Barskoon, we will drive further up towards Kumtor Gold Mine, to the beautiful Arabel plateau at almost 4000m altitude. After, we will drive back down to the main road and back to our yurt camp. Those who wish to can go swimming at the beach nearby. During dinner, we will watch a folklore concert by a local family of musicians.

Accommodation: Yurt Camp (shared bathroom facilities)

After breakfast, we will drive to Kochkor along the southern shore of Lake Issyk Kul. Our first stop is at Skazka Canyons. Skazka means “fairytale”; a reference to the bizarre rocky landscape that has been shaped by wind and rain into fabulous sculptures and formations. We will go for a short hike here. We will also meet an eagle hunter who will show us his eagle and tell us about his passion. Next, we will stop at the village of Kyzyl-Tuu, where you will meet a yurt maker who will tell you more about the traditional nomadic dwelling before we set up a yurt together. You will have lunch with the family in Kyzyl-Tuu before continuing to Kochkor. Upon arrival in Kochkor, we will see a demonstration of how shyrdak, traditional felt carpets, are meticulously crafted. We have the opportunity to observe skilled artisans as they create intricate patterns using vibrant colours and centuries-old techniques. It’s an enriching experience to witness the preservation of this traditional art form. Dinner and overnight in a small hotel.

Accommodation: Nomad Lodge Hotel

After breakfast, we will start our ascent towards the mountain lake, Song Kul. The lake is not very far from Kochkor, but road conditions mean that it is quite a long and bumpy ride (c. 3h). Lake Song Kul is a mountainous lake at an altitude of 3016m above sea level where nomads pass their summer on the “jailoo” (summer pasture) with their animals. We will arrive in time for lunch, which will be served in the yurt camp. You will have free time in the afternoon to go on a walk to the shore or horse ride and observe nomadic life. The yurt camp is located about 3 kilometers from the shore of the lake. We will also watch a match of Kok Boru, a thrilling traditional spectacle of horsemanship.

Accommodation: Yurt Camp (shared bathroom facilities)

Today we will depart for Bishkek. Our first stop is Burana Tower near the town of Tokmok. Burana’s 11th-century minaret is the only remaining building from the ancient city of Balasagun, once the capital of the mighty Karakhanid empire. You can walk up the winding staircase and enjoy a wide view of the scenic Chuy Valley. There is also a small open-air museum of balbals, carved stone figures often found around ancient burial mounds.

From Burana, we will drive further to Bishkek.

Accommodation: B Hotel 3* or similar

After breakfast, we will drive to Ala Archa National Park, 30km outside Bishkek (c. 1h). We will walk in the park, appreciate the mountain views, and inhale the wonderfully fresh, clean air. After this interlude, we will drive back to Bishkek.

In the afternoon, we will have a short city tour of Bishkek, with a walk in the park followed by a visit to the National Museum. There will also be a last opportunity to buy some souvenirs before our farewell dinner.

Accommodation: B Hotel 3* or similar

departure passport with stamps

You will meet your driver in the hotel lobby for your transfer to the airport.

Please note that if you would like to explore more places in Central Asia, we can arrange a private extension trip. For example, you could visit Astana, the modern Kazakh capital, or spend more time in the Kyrgyz mountains.

Inclusions

Transport
Minibus, Train, Airplane, Foot, Minivan, Jeep
Meals
Accommodation
Included Activities
  • Ashgabat – city tour
  • Tashkent – city tour
  • Khiva – city tour
  • Bukhara – city tour
  • Samarkand – city tour
  • Dushanbe – city tour
  • Almaty – city tour
  • Bishkek – city tour
Download PDF

dates & price

You can choose to join a small group on a guaranteed departure or book a private tour on the date of your choice
*
*
*
Total trip price
from

$6870

USD

25

Days

Single supplement available for $1000

Deposit: $500

Departing
Finishing
Status
Price
Booking
7 Jun 2025
1 Jul 2025
+ Available
$6870
12 Jul 2025
5 Aug 2025
+ Available
$6870
Price includes
  • All transfers, including airport pick-up and drop-off
  • Accommodation, based on two people sharing a double/twin room; breakfasts included
  • Full board (all lunches and dinners)
  • English-speaking local tour leader in each country / for groups of more than 6 people tour leader accompanying the group during the whole trip
  • All entry fees, as per the itinerary
  • Train tickets
  • Economy class flight tickets
  • Visa support letters for the Turkmenistan tourist visa
Price does not include
  • International airfares to and from Central Asia
  • Hotel charges for additional services
  • Consular fees for tourist visas
  • Travel insurance (required)
  • Personal expenses (e.g. souvenirs)
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Tips for guides and drivers

Important notes

  • This is the Summer version of our bestselling tour of the “Five Stans”. We also have a Spring version, and a Fall version (starting in Bishkek, and ending in Ashgabat).
  • All listed departures are guaranteed
  • The maximum group size is 12 people
  • You can also opt to book the whole itinerary as a private tour. We can arrange extra nights before or after the trip, and suggest private tour extensions.
  • We can advise and take care of all visas for you. Citizens of most countries are eligible for an e-visa for Tajikistan, and a visa on arrival for Turkmenistan, with a letter of invitation pre-arranged by us. Other countries are visa-free for most nationalities.
  • A USD 500 per person deposit is required at the time of booking, and the balance is due 15 days prior to departure. Terms & Conditions: https://kalpak-travel.com/terms-and-conditions/
  • Travel insurance is required
  • We are happy to suggest flights to get to Central Asia and back home: please contact us
  • See our book recommendations on Central Asia & the Silk Road
  • Read more about food in Central Asia

TURKMENISTAN TRAVEL INFORMATION

MONEY & COSTS:

The Turkmen currency is called the Manat. In Ashgabat, you may find ATMs that accept international payment cards. VneshEkonomBank for example accepts Visa credit cards. However, most ATMs accept only local cards issued by Turkmen banks. Credit cards may be accepted in a few high-end hotels, but most stores and restaurants do not accept any cards. We recommend bringing all money in cash, in new USD banknotes of denominations of at least 20 USD. They will be easy to exchange. An emergency fund of around 500 USD in cash is always good to have during guided trips to Central Asia.

SAFETY:

Turkmenistan is a safe country and most trips are trouble-free. There is a visible police presence and most citizens are law-abiding. That said, you are advised to wear a money belt, watch your belongings, steer clear of dark streets at night and avoid taking rides in unofficial taxis alone. Your safety is our first priority at Kalpak Travel; we know and regularly assess all our Turkmen partners and we closely monitor political events.

ENTRY & EXIT:

Citizens of every country in the world need a visa to enter Turkmenistan. As soon as you book a tour, we will ask you to provide some additional information to apply on your behalf for a letter of invitation. If the Ministry of Foreign Affairs approves your application, we will send you a letter of invitation. With this letter, you will be able to purchase the visa on arrival at Ashgabat Airport or at the land border.
As soon as we receive the deposit payment for your tour, we will confirm your booking and send you an email with important pre-departure information. Please read it carefully as it contains important information on customs regulations for Turkmenistan.

BEST TIME TO GO:

The climate of Turkmenistan is continental and dry and the best seasons to visit are Spring and Autumn, from mid-April until early June and then again from September until early November. Autumn is drier than Spring, but even in Spring chances are high you can enjoy the bluest sky you have ever seen. Autumn is also the time when the country goes to harvest, meaning markets are full of fresh fruit and vegetables. If you don’t mind the dry heat of 40° Celsius, sometimes more, summer is the best time to go. There are few tourists and the sun is shining every single day. If you are considering visiting Turkmenistan in winter you will practically have the country all to yourself. We recommend you go in November or December when daytime temperatures are still around 10° Celsius and the often chilly winds of January & February have not yet begun to make their presence felt.

HEALTH:

Do not drink water, unless it is bottled, filtered, or boiled. Do not use tap water for brushing your teeth or making ice either. Do not eat ice cream. Only eat well-cooked meat and fish, preferably served hot. Vegetables should be cooked and fruit peeled. If you follow these basic rules, you are likely to avoid any health issues like traveler’s diarrhea. Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, and Tetanus are recommended vaccinations for Turkmenistan. Ensure you are fully insured for medical emergencies including repatriation. Medical services in Turkmenistan are basic at best.

UZBEKISTAN TRAVEL INFORMATION

MONEY & COSTS:

The Uzbek currency is called the Som (UZS). There are many ATMs in the cities of Uzbekistan. Most stores and restaurants accept credit cards, but not all. We recommend you bring at least some money in cash, preferably carrying new USD bank notes of different denominations. They will be easy to exchange and you will be able to pay directly with USD for some souvenirs. An emergency fund of around 500 USD in cash is always good to have during trips to Central Asia.

SAFETY:

Uzbekistan is a safe country and most trips are trouble-free. There is a visible police presence and most citizens are law-abiding. In Tashkent, Khiva, Bukhara, and Samarkand there is also a "tourist police" with English-speaking officers. That said, you are advised to wear a money belt, watch your belongings, steer clear of dark streets at night and avoid taking rides in unofficial taxis alone. Your safety is our first priority at Kalpak Travel; we know and regularly assess all our Uzbek partners and we closely monitor political events.

ENTRY & EXIT:

Citizens of most countries do not need a visa to visit Uzbekistan for a period of up to 30 days. A notable exception is the United States - US citizens below the age of 55 need to apply for an electronic visa to visit Uzbekistan. You can get the visa yourself through the official government website for 20 USD per person: https://e-visa.gov.uz/. If you book a trip to Uzbekistan with us we will get the visa for you.

BEST TIME TO GO:

The climate of Uzbekistan is continental and dry. The best season to visit is during spring and autumn, from mid-March until early June and then again from September until early November. Autumn is drier than spring, but even in spring chances are high you can enjoy the bluest sky you have ever seen. Autumn is also the time when the country goes to harvest, meaning markets are full of fresh fruit and vegetables. If you don’t mind the dry heat of 40°+ Celsius, summer is the best time to go. There are few tourists and the sky is blue every single day. If you consider visiting Uzbekistan in winter, having the country all to yourself, we recommend going in December, when the day temperature is still around 10° Celsius and the chill wind that characterizes January & February has not yet reared its ugly head.

HEALTH:

Do not drink water, unless it is bottled, filtered, or boiled. Do not use it for brushing your teeth or making ice either. Do not eat ice cream. Only eat well-cooked meat and fish, preferably served hot. Vegetables should be cooked and fruit peeled. If you follow these basic rules, you are likely to avoid any health issues like traveler’s diarrhea. Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, and Tetanus are recommended vaccinations for travelers to Uzbekistan. Ensure you are fully insured for medical emergencies including repatriation. Medical services in Uzbekistan are basic at best.
As soon as we receive your deposit, we will confirm your booking and send you additional pre-departure information.

TAJIKISTAN TRAVEL INFORMATION

MONEY & COSTS:

The Tajik currency is called the Somoni (TJS). In the capital Dushanbe there are a few ATMs that you’ll find in shopping malls, supermarkets, or on the main streets, but most of them accept only Visa cards. Outside of Dushanbe, we don’t recommend relying on ATMs as there are only a few of them and they may run out of money or have very small withdrawal limits.
We recommend bringing cash in new USD banknotes of denominations of at least 20 USD. There are many exchange offices, some working 24/7. Small and old-looking bank notes are harder to exchange. Paying directly with a credit card is still not possible in most places, except for a few high-end restaurants and hotels. An emergency fund of around 500 USD in cash is always good to have during guided trips to Central Asia.

SAFETY:

The political situation in the country has been calm in recent years and there are no indications of upcoming tensions, except for the border conflict with Kyrgyzstan in the Fergana valley - we do not visit this area on our tours. The border with Kyrgyzstan is closed due to political tensions and it is not clear when it will open again. The border with Afghanistan is closed as well. Guests and locals are treated with respect and Tajikistan can be regarded as a safe destination for travelers. That being said, you are advised to wear a money belt, watch your belongings, avoid dark streets at night and only take official taxi rides. Your safety is our first priority at Kalpak Travel; we know and regularly assess all our Tajik partners and we closely monitor political events.

ENTRY & EXIT:

Citizens of most countries do not need a visa to visit Tajikistan for a period of up to 30 days. A notable exception is the United Kingdom - UK citizens need to apply for an electronic visa to visit Tajikistan. You can get the visa yourself through the official government website for 30 USD per person: https://www.evisa.tj/. If you book a trip to Tajikistan with us we will get the visa for you.
Please note, if you are planning to visit the Pamir region, you need a GBAO permit, which you can purchase online, together with the eVisa, for an additional fee of USD 20. If you book a tour with us, we can get the GBAO permit for you.
As soon as we receive the deposit payment for your tour, we will confirm your booking and send you an email with important pre-departure information. Please read it carefully as it contains important information on customs regulations for Tajikistan.

BEST TIME TO GO:

The climate of Tajikistan is continental and dry across most of the country, including the largest cities. In regions situated at relatively low altitudes, such as the capital Dushanbe, the south of Tajikistan around Kulob, and the Khujand region, summers are very hot with day temperatures between 30° and 40° Celsius. However, most of the country is situated at high altitudes, where temperatures are in the mid-20s or less during the summer. If you visit the Fann or Pamir Mountains, make sure to bring some warm clothes, as it can get very cold at night at elevations of more than 3000 meters. The best season to visit Tajikistan is during summer when it's possible to go to the mountains.

HEALTH:

Do not drink water, unless it is bottled, filtered, or boiled. Do not use tap water for brushing your teeth or making ice either. Do not eat ice cream. Only eat well-cooked meat and fish, preferably served hot. Vegetables should be cooked and fruit peeled. If you follow these basic rules, you are likely to avoid any health issues like traveler’s diarrhea. Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, and Tetanus are recommended vaccinations for Tajikistan. Ensure you are fully insured for medical emergencies including repatriation. Medical services in Tajikistan are basic at best. Please note: there is a small risk of malaria in the south of Tajikistan by the borders with Uzbekistan and Afghanistan. None of our tours visit this region.

KYRGYZSTAN TRAVEL INFORMATION

MONEY & COSTS:

The Kyrgyz currency is called the Som (KGS). In the capital Bishkek and larger towns, there are many ATMs that you can find in shopping centers, supermarkets, or on the main streets. All of them accept Visa cards and some, like Kyrgyz Kommerts Bank, Demir Bank and Uni Credit accept other cards such as MasterCard. In the mountains and small villages, you better don't rely on ATMs. We also recommend that you bring some cash in new USD banknotes of denominations of at least 20 USD. There are many exchange offices, some working 24/7. Small and old-looking bank notes are harder to exchange. Paying directly with a credit card is still not possible everywhere. An emergency fund of around 500 USD in cash is always good to have during guided trips to Central Asia.

SAFETY:

Kyrgyzstan is the most liberal and democratic country in the Central Asian region. The political situation in the country is calm and there is nothing to suggest that this situation might change. Guests and locals are treated with respect and the whole country can be regarded as a very safe destination for travelers. That said, you are advised to wear a money belt, watch your belongings, avoid dark streets at night, and only use official taxis. Your safety is our first priority at Kalpak Travel; we know and regularly assess all our Kyrgyz partners and we closely monitor political events.

ENTRY & EXIT:

Citizens of all Western countries do not need a visa for a stay of up to 60 days in Kyrgyzstan. To be sure whether you need a visa or not you can contact us. Any special permits that you might need for access to places that will be visited during your tour, we will provide to you free of charge.
As soon as we receive your deposit payment, we will confirm your booking and send you an email with important pre-departure information. Please read it carefully as it contains important information on customs regulations for Kyrgyzstan.

BEST TIME TO GO:

The climate of Kyrgyzstan is continental and dry in the majority of the country, including the largest cities. In the Ferghana Valley in the south and in the capital Bishkek, summers are very hot with day temperatures between 30° and 40° Celsius. However, most of the country is situated more than 1500 meters above sea level, where temperatures are in the mid-20s during summer. At high altitudes of 3000 meters or more it may even snow overnight during the summer, so make sure you bring some warm clothes. The best season to visit for activity or jeep tours would be in summer and winter for skiing tours. Please note, the weather in some mountain areas may change quickly.

HEALTH:

Do not drink water, unless it is bottled, filtered, or boiled. Do not use tap water for brushing your teeth or making ice either. Do not eat ice cream. Only eat well-cooked meat and fish, preferably served hot. Vegetables should be cooked and fruit peeled. If you follow these basic rules, you are likely to avoid any health issues like traveler’s diarrhea. Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, and Tetanus are recommended vaccinations for Kyrgyzstan. Ensure you are fully insured for medical emergencies including repatriation. Medical services in Kyrgyzstan are basic at best.

KAZAKHSTAN TRAVEL INFORMATION

MONEY & COSTS:

The Kazakh currency is called the Tenge (KZT). The banking system in Kazakhstan is the most developed in Central Asia and in big cities there are many places to exchange money and to withdraw cash from ATMs using a variety of cards. We recommend bringing some cash in new USD bank notes of denominations of at least 20 USD. Small and old-looking bank notes are harder to exchange. Paying directly with a credit card is possible in most places. An emergency fund of around 500 USD in cash is always good to have during guided trips to Central Asia.

SAFETY:

Kazakhstan is a multi-ethnic country with a long history of tolerance. Guests and locals are treated with respect and the whole country can be regarded as a very safe destination for travelers. That said, you are advised to wear a money belt, watch your belongings, avoid dark streets at night and take only official taxis. Your safety is our first priority at Kalpak Travel; we know and regularly assess all our Kazakh partners and we closely monitor political events.

ENTRY & EXIT:

Citizens of most Western countries do not need a visa for a stay of up to 30 days in Kazakhstan. To be sure whether you need a visa or not you can contact us. Any permits you might need for access to places that will be visited during your tour, we will provide them for you free of charge.
As soon as we receive the deposit payment for your tour, we will confirm your booking and send you an email with important pre-departure information. Please read it carefully as it contains important information on customs regulations for Kazakhstan.

BEST TIME TO GO:

The climate of Kazakhstan is continental and dry in the majority of the country, including the largest cities. Summers are very hot with day temperatures between 30° and 40° Celsius and winters are extremely cold with strong winds. In the mountains, however, the weather is quite changeable. If you are planning to visit the mountains the best season is summer. Be aware, however, at high altitudes of 3000 meters or more it may even snow overnight during the summer. For cultural sightseeing tours, spring and autumn are the best seasons. Autumn is also the time when the country goes to harvest, meaning markets are full of fresh fruit and vegetables.

HEALTH:

Do not drink water, unless it is bottled, filtered, or boiled. Do not use tap water for brushing your teeth or making ice either. Do not eat ice cream. Only eat well-cooked meat and fish, preferably served hot. Vegetables should be cooked and fruit peeled. If you follow these basic rules, you are likely to avoid any health issues like traveler’s diarrhea. Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, and Tetanus are recommended vaccinations for Kazakhstan. Ensure you are fully insured for medical emergencies including repatriation. Medical services in Kazakhstan are basic at best.

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