Open desert. Camel trails. A burning crater. Turkmenistan travel offers its own kind of adventure. Those who take on its harsh landscape follow in the tracks of ancient wanderers from Europe, the Far East and beyond.
With its source in the heart of the Pamir mountains, the Amu Darya river – the Oxus of ancient times – flows across the edge of Turkmenistan. Silk Road merchants travelling from the east would cross it on the way to Merv and Mary, two market cities that now lie in the south of the country.
They would also have to cross the vast sprawl of the Karakum – meaning ‘black sands’ – desert. Nowadays, the secrets of its dunes are uncovered on our Turkmenistan tours.
Things to do in Turkmenistan
Find the Gates of Hell. The Darvaza gas crater offers a glimpse into the fiery bowels of the earth. This open wound of the Karakum desert has been burning for over forty years and must count as an alternative wonder of the world. Come and see it for yourself.
Trek through mountains. The Kopet-Dag Range forms Turkmenistan’s border with Iran and its highest peak, Mount Rizeh, towers above the city of Ashgabat. This little-known range even boasts its own ski resort.
Step into an episode of Planet Earth. Zemxem monitor lizards, jerboa, foxes, jackals, snakes, raptors, kulan ibex, Urial mountain goats, wild horses and prowling leopards all call Turkmenistan home. That’s more than enough for a prime-time Attenborough documentary.
Embark on a Silk Road Tour
One of the least visited countries on earth, Turkmenistan is a siren for Silk Road tours. Our expertise can help you unlock the secrets that this mysterious country largely keeps to itself.
If you want to visit Turkmenistan on a tailor-made tour, we’d love to chat. Whether that means a telephone call or sitting down with a cup of tea and a map, we’d love to share our Turkmenistan travel advice and expertise with you. Please do get in touch.
Photos courtesy of Elena Trofimova.
- 26 days
Follow in the footsteps of Marco Polo, Alexander the Great, Amir Timur and more as you track the course of the mighty Amu Darya river from the Aral Sea to the High Pamirs.