Undiscovered Turkmenistan

Example Itinerary

Overview

Home to ancient ruins, marble-clad cities and a rich mix of traditional and modern cultures, this undiscovered gem is also blessed with a wealth of natural attractions including the colourful Yangikala Canyons, the Kopetag Mountains and the Dinosaur Plateau.

 Staying in a mixture of hotels, pilgrim rest houses, camping spots and an overnight train, this remarkable journey really gets beneath the surface of one of the world’s most enigmatic destinations. ...

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Meet the Expert

Speak to Natalie to start planning your trip to Turkmenistan

TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

How Tailor-Made Works

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Discuss your initial ideas with one of our experts, the types of things you want to see and do.

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Your expert will start designing your perfect trip. Within a day or two we'll send a suggested itinerary.

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At this stage you can still tweak anything from accommodation to experiences and dates, using our expert advice.

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Time to prepare for your trip, safe in the knowledge you'll be in the expert hands of local guides and drivers throughout.

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Relax and enjoy...through our partners you'll have support on the ground as well as 24-hour emergency assistance in the UK.

Example Itinerary

This is an example itinerary. Our experts have all travelled widely in the region and will be happy to tailor any of our itineraries to suit your tastes and budget, or build a trip from scratch.

Day 1 Arrive Ashgabat: City Tour

Upon your arrival in Ashgabat in the very early hours of the morning, your local guide and driver will be waiting to receive you at the airport and take to you directly to your hotel, where you’ll be able to head straight to your room to catch up on some sleep. After a leisurely breakfast and morning, your guide will return to collect you in the afternoon for an introductory tour of the city. Discover the Turkmen capital’s curious sites including the vibrant Tolkucha Bazaar for a glimpse into local life, and perhaps a spot of shopping, and the various overly grand constructions such as the Mosque of Spirituality, the Orthodox Church of Alexander and the statue of Lenin.

Divan Hotel Breakfast

Day 2 Ashgabat - Lake Kow Ata - Nohur - Karakala Nature Reserve: Underground Lake & Tribal Village Lunch

Leaving Ashgabat, you’ll first stop at the Kow Ata underground lake, where you can swim (if you wish) in the warm waters that maintain a temperature between 33°C and 37°C and are known locally for their healing properties. You’ll then continue on to the Kopetdag Mountains and the tribal village of Nohur for lunch before arriving to the Karakala Nature Reserve. This afternoon, you can enjoy some short walks, before spending the night camping in your tent pitched near the Koshdemir waterfall.

Yangykala Wild Camping Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3 Karakala Nature Reserve - Dehistan – Balkanabat: Valleys & Ancient Silk Road City

The mountains and valleys of Karakala and their rocky appearance make for a beautiful drive as you head to Dehistan to visit the ancient silk road city. Once connecting Khorezm with Iran, the city was as important as Merv and Konye Urgench, the remains of mosques and minarets from the 9th to 13th centuries along with its mausoleums give useful insight into the scale of the ancient city and its past importance. Then, continue on to Balkanabat for the night.

Nebitchi Hotel Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4 Balkanabat - Yangikala Canyon - Gozli Ata: Colourful Canyons

This morning drive north to the canyons of Yangikala and Yangisuw. The ravine dissecting Yangikala Canyon was once an ancient seabed and you can now see the layers of sandstone with their pink, green and white hues. There will be time for a walking in the canyon and to visit the white canyon of Yangisuw before travelling on to the pilgrim rest house at Gozli Ata for your overnight stay.

Pilgrim Resthouse Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5 Gozli Ata - Turkmenbashi - Ashgabat: Sufi Shrine & Caspian Sea

The shrine of Gozli-Ata lies in a natural bowl surrounded by layers of pink and white rock. This morning, visit the mausoleum of the renowned 14th century sufi Gozli-Ata before driving through this spectacular landscape to the city of Turkmenbashi on the Caspian Sea to catch your flight back to the capital.

Divan Hotel Breakfast

Day 6 Ashgabat - Merv – Mary: UNESCO World Heritage & Overnight Train

Returning to the airport in time for your short flight to Mary this morning, you will be met on arrival and taken east to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ancient Merv. It was one of the main cities along the ancient Silk Road and believed at one time to be the largest city in the world. After exploring the site, which encompasses the ruins of five ancient cities, you will head back to Mary for a look around the Regional Museum which showcases an array of archaeological finds dating as far back as the 3rd millennium BC through to the late 14th century. For the rest of the evening, you have ‘day use’ of the Mary hotel until you are transferred to the train station at around midnight to board your overnight train.

Day 7 Amudarya - Koytendag: Medieval Mausoleums & Rural Village

You will pull into the train station at around 11:30am this morning where your guide will be waiting to meet you and begin the drive towards Kugitang village (also known as Koyten). En route, you can visit the medieval architectural monuments of the Alamberdar Mausoleum (X-XI cc.) and the Astanababa complex (XI-XVII cc.), both highly revered pilgrimage sites for local Turkmens. After settling into your Koytendag guesthouse there is the option to go for a walk through Koyten village, and around the Unabi tree (Chinese fig-tree) grove and local lake - during warmer weather, a dip in the water is also possible. Head back in time for dinner at your guesthouse.

Koyten Guesthouse Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8 Koytendag: Dinosaur Plateau

After an early breakfast, jump into your 4x4 and head up to the Kugitang valley to visit the Dinosaur Plateau and other interesting natural sites around the area. To reach the dinosaur plateau, which is home to over 400 clear dinosaur footprints that became extinct about 145 million years ago, there is a hike up the hill of approximately 1km (around 1-2 hours) from the scenic Hojapil village. Then, drive to a ravine which, after a 15-minute walk, will bring you to the Kyrk Gyz (forty maidens) cave, a holy shrine in a grotto with a freshwater spring. In the afternoon you’ll return to your guesthouse in Kugitang village.

Koyten Guesthouse Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9 Koytendag - Turkmenabat - Ashgabat

After an early start and breakfast, you will begin the long day’s journey towards Turkmenabat, a drive of around seven to eight hours with a quick lunch stop en route. Once in the city, board your evening flight back to Ashgabat and head straight to your hotel for a much-needed rest.

Divan Hotel Breakfast, Lunch

Day 10 Depart Ashgabat

Depending on your departure flight time, you may have a morning at leisure for some last-minute shopping or relaxation before being taken to the international airport for your onward flight, where your tour in Turkmenistan ends.

EXAMPLE ACCOMMODATION

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Accommodation listed here is intended as a guide only, to give you a taste of what we can do. Our experts can tailor any aspect of this itinerary and accommodation to suit your budget and tastes.

WHAT'S INCLUDED

10 days from £3,265

MEALS

As specified in the itinerary, sampling some of the country's finest cuisine.

TRANSPORT

Private air-conditioned vehicles with experienced, dedicated drivers.

ENTRANCE FEES

Tours and admission fees, including tickets specified in the itinerary.

EXPERT TEAM

Licensed English-speaking guides and a support team available 24/7.

ACCOMMODATION

As specified in the itinerary, using some of our favourite local properties.

WILD MILES

This tour will earn you 5882 Wild Miles

ACCOMMODATION

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Wild Miles Club

When you book a trip with Wild Frontiers you are awarded points, which are based on the return distance from London to the arrival city of your trip. Points are awarded for all our holidays, including both our escorted group tours and tailor-made trips. When you accrue points, you will qualify for the following discounts on all future bookings:

Blue More than 10,000 points 2.5% discount
Bronze More than 30,000 points 5% discount
Silver More than 45,000 points 7.5% discount
Gold More than 60,000 points 10% discount

This itinerary is aimed to give you an idea of what we can offer. The price shown above is per person, based on two people travelling outside of peak periods. As this itinerary is only a suggestion and can be tailor-made to suit your interests and budget, your final price may differ.

Positive Impact of this Trip

Tree
Ten trees are planted per passenger on this trip
Community
Supports Wild Frontiers Foundation community projects
Wind Turbine
A contribution to renewable energy projects

WHEN TO GO

START PLANNING YOUR TRIP

Our team of experts have a wealth of knowledge and experience to help you plan your adventure of a lifetime.

WHY WILD FRONTIERS?

Meet the expert, Natalie

Natalie is our Central Asia expert, who has travelled extensively in the region.

Speak to Natalie by calling
+44 (0)20 3944 6258

Wild camping under the stars and alongside the spectacular Darvaza Gas Crater, aka the ‘Gate to Hell’, is a truly surreal but must do experience when visiting Turkmenistan.

OTHER ITINERARIES IN TURKMENISTAN

Check out our group tours in Turkmenistan

As well as private tailor-made trips, we also offer small group tours (max size 12) to Turkmenistan. Led by an experienced tour leader, travel with a group of like-minded people on one of our award-winning group tours.

View Group Tours in Turkmenistan