Astana to Tashkent

Astana to Tashkent

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26 Days
From

$7255

$5997

Astana to Tashkent

26 Days Starting in Astana and ending in Tashkent

Visiting: Astana, Turkistan, Turkistan/ Overnight Train, Almaty, Kolsay Lakes National Park, Almaty/Bishkek, Bishkek, Issyk-Kul Lake, Song-Kol Lake (3016 metres), Kyzyl-Oi, Suusamyr Valley/Chychkan River/Karakul, Osh, Border Crossing/Andijan/Tashkent, Tashkent, Bukhara, Samarkand

Tour operator:

Intrepid Travel

Tour code:

KFSKC

Guide Type:

Fully Guided

Group size:

1 - 12

Physical rating:

Medium, Medium

Age range:

16-99 years

Special diets catered:

Vegetarians

Tour operated in:
English
Trip Styles:

Active, Adventure Tours

Interests:

History, Wildlife Tours

From:
$7255
$5997 (USD) Operator discount: -$1088 The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$170 -17%
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Tour Overview

Beginning in the futuristic cityscapes of Astana, join us on this exploration from mighty Kazakhstan to mountainous Kyrgyzstan and history packed Uzbekistan. From the ancient city of Turkistan and the Silk Road ruins of Sayram and Otrar, the sights along the way are unlike anywhere else on earth. Take in the tranquil landscape of Son-Kol Lake, see Solomon's Throne in historic Osh, and get your fill of mosques and museums in Samarkand and Bukhara. Abounding with ancient culture, divine natural beauty and intriguing relics this is a journey that will leave you eager to discover more of Central Asia.

Highlights

  • Central Asia is a fascinating and unique mix of ancient Silk Road culture, Soviet influence and striving to redefine nations post independence. Geographically and for a time historically, it is the real centre of Asia

  • The much-photographed Registan in Samarkand is one of the true pinnacles of Islamic architecture. You'll be wowed by the scale, grandeur and beauty of the monuments to iconic figures such as Tamerlane and the Persian influenced madressas, mosques and mausoleums.

  • Kyrgyzstan's mountains are its monuments and its majesty. The landscapes here will stay with you long after the journey is over.

  • Unveil the mysteries of space explorations in Baikonur, where the Russian Cosmodrome is located and launches to the International Space Station take off.

  • Surround yourself with the surreal landscapes of the Altyn-Emel National Park, including the mysterious singing sand dunes, then visit Grand Canyon's "little brother", Charyn Canyon.

  • Marvel at the beautiful Song Kol Lake, where in mid-summer you may see flocks of sheep, goats and herds of horses watched over by nomadic herdsmen and their families. Stay overnight in a yurt lakeside and live like the locals have for centuries in these portable, felt lined traditional tents.

  • Experience for yourself the legend that is Central Asian hospitality – there's really nothing like being welcomed into a local home or yurt for a meal, chatting with stall holders at bazaars or simply marvelling at the sights alongside locals

  • Marvel at the beautiful Song Kol Lake & Issyk-kul Lake, where in mid-summer you may see flocks of sheep, goats and herds of horses watched over by nomadic herdsmen and their families. Stay in a yurt camp at the shore and live like the locals have for centuries in these portable, felt lined traditional tents.

Itinerary

Expand All
Day 1: Astana
Location: Astana
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: dinner

Salemetsiz be! Welcome to Astana, Kazakhstan. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm in the hotel lobby. Astana was purpose-built to become the capital city of Kazakhstan in 1997 and is home to meticulously planned city streets and architecture. The modern metropolis was designed by leading Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa, who won first prize in a competition against other world-renowned architects. Now, it is one of the youngest cities in Central Asia. If you arrive early, take the time to explore – take a stroll along the Astana waterfront, or go shopping in the world’s largest tent at the Khan Shatyr Entertainment Centre. Tonight, join your leader and group for an included welcome dinner in town for your first authentic Kazakh food experience.

Day 2: Astana
Location: Astana
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

This morning, join your leader for a city tour and see some of the most impressive designs of this ambitious new city. First up is Bayterek tower and then take a stroll down Nur Boulevard that stretches from Ak Orda - president’s office down to Khan Shatyr, another city landmark in the shape of a giant transparent tent. Visit Nur-Astana Mosque – with its capacity of 5000 worshippers inside and an additional 2000 outside, it’s one of the largest mosques in Central Asia. Then, you'll stop at the Palace of Peace & Reconciliation – a pyramid-shaped conference hall considered to be Astana's symbolic centre. , then why not find some tandyr nan (a type of Central Asian bread, often decorated) or plov (a popular rice dish with chunks of lamb, onions and carrots) for lunch? The afternoon and evening are yours to explore the city.

Included Activities:
-Astana - City tour

Day 3: Turkistan
Location: Turkistan
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

Enjoy a free morning in Astana and then in the afternoon, take a flight to historic centre of Kazakhstan, Turkistan. It is home to more relics and cultural sites than any other place in the country. With a late afternoon arrival, make sure you see the Yasawi Mausoleum illuminated in the night to catch its vividly coloured and patterned exterior in a different shade. You’ll also visit the new Caravan Serai – a complex recently built to model ancient Silk Road trade centres, giving visitors a taste of what life was once like here.

Included Activities:
-Turkistan – Caravan Serai complex

Day 4: Turkistan/ Overnight Train
Location: Turkistan/ Overnight Train
Accommodation: Overnight Train
Meals Included: breaksfast

Head out on a city tour this morning, returning for a daytime visit to Khoja Ahmed Yasawi Mausoleum, Kazakhstan’s most iconic building. The blue and white-tiled mausoleum is the final resting place of a great Turkic holy man and Sufi. Built by Tamerlane, it is said that three visits here are equal to one visit to Mecca. As it is a religious site, it’s recommended that women wear a headscarf when entering. On the grounds, you'll find a rose garden, monuments, an archaeological museum and a mosque, which are all included in the entry ticket. Leaving the mausoleum, jump in your private transport and continue the journey to Shymkent, stopping at the ancient settlement of Otrar on the way. First excavated in 1969, it has a history dating back to the first century AD, with remnants of palaces, mosques and bathhouses that can still be seen today. It is also where Genghis Khan's army is said to have fought when the Mongols first invaded Central Asia. There'll be some time to spend exploring Shymkent before boarding the overnight train to Almaty.

Included Activities:
-Otrar - Ancient settlement
-Turkistan - Yasui Mausoleum

Day 5: Almaty
Location: Almaty
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast, lunch

Pulling into Alamaty this morning, hop off the train and head out to find some breakfast. Today, you’ll be going on a day trip to Lake Issyk and Turgen Gorge. Stop at the Issyk Museum – a museum and archaeological reserve dedicated to Kazakh history and Scythian culture (an ancient nomadic people who were particularly skilled in horseback warfare). Continue to Ile-Alatau National Park, where peaceful Lake Issyk is nestled in the foothills of the surrounding mountains. Relax and refresh on the lakeshore of this stunning spot before carrying on to Turgen Gorge, where a short hike will bring you to a 20m waterfall. On the way back to Almaty stop by a local winery – a local craft winemaker where you can sample some raw wine and craft cheese and enjoy a hearty lunch.

Included Activities:
-Almaty – Winery visit and wine tasting
-Almaty – Turgen Gorge
-Almaty – Lake Issyk

Day 6: Almaty
Location: Almaty
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

Today you’ll embark on a full day guided city tour of Almaty. This former capital of Kazakhstan and the most populus city, Almaty now has a complete different vibrancy to Astana with its wide tree-lined streets, numerous parks and the view of the snow-capped mountains. Visit Central Square and the colourful Zenkoff Cathedral (also the 2nd tallest wooden building in the world) in historic Panfilov Park, dedicated to the 28 guardsmen who died defending Moscow against German tanks in WWII. Check out the fascinating Museum of Kazakh Musical Instruments, which features a great collection of ancient relics. Finally, summit Kok Tobe Hill for great views over the city before returning to the hotel for some much-deserved rest and relaxation.

Included Activities:
-Almaty - Zenkov Cathedral
-Almaty - Panfilov Park
-Almaty - Kok Tobe Hill
-Almaty - Museum of Kazakh Musical Instruments

Day 7: Kolsay Lakes National Park
Location: Kolsay Lakes National Park
Accommodation: Homestay
Meals Included: breaksfast, dinner

This morning, drive to Saty Village with a stop along the way at the spectacular Charyn Canyon. The richly coloured canyon carves a stunning path through the surrounding landscape, with vivid tones of oranges and browns shifting and changing as the sun travels across the sky. Enjoy some time here to marvel at this natural wonder and grab some photos before continuing to Saty Village, where you’ll check into your homestay and experience a taste of local life in the Tien Shan Mountain Range.

Included Activities:
-Charyn Canyon - National Park

Day 8: Kolsay Lakes National Park
Location: Kolsay Lakes National Park
Accommodation: Homestay
Meals Included: breaksfast, lunch, dinner

Explore the surrounding area of Saty Village today with a hike to Kolsai Lakes – also known as ‘the blue necklace’ for the clear blue waters framed by lush, green mountains. If there’s time, visit the lesser-known Kaindy Lake – a stunning turquoise lake with a striking ‘submerged forest’ protruding from the water. Amazingly, the lake was created by an earthquake in 1911 which caused a limestone landslide, creating a natural dam in the forest. As time went on, the dam filled with water and the trees were covered, leaving just their trunks standing dramatically in the centre. Enjoy a picnic lunch during your hike and then return to your homestay for a hearty meal after a big day on your feet. After dinner, the evening is all yours to rest, relax or explore as you wish.

Included Activities:
-Kolsay Lakes National Park - Hiking

Day 9: Almaty
Location: Almaty
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

After breakfast, return to Almaty. Why not visit Medeu after lunch – the highest altitude ice skating rink in the world and a popular weekend destination for many locals. Then you can take the cable road to Shymbulak – a local ski resort, where you can take in the immense mountain scenery. Or you can use your free time to explore the many museums in the area or ask your leader for the best spots to share a beer or two and round out your last day by grabbing dinner with your travel mates and toasting to celebrate your journey through Kazakhstan.

Included Activities:
-Almaty - Medeu

Day 10: Almaty/Bishkek
Location: Almaty/Bishkek
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast, dinner

Today, your driver will pick you up and travel across border from Kazakhstan to Kyrgystan. Enjoy some free time until a welcome meeting at 6 pm tonight. Tomorrow you’ll take a tour of the city, so don’t stress too much if you don’t have time to see much today. Bishkek is tree-lined town of parks and gardens, handsome houses and wide streets perfect for strolling. If you arrive with time to spare, maybe head out in search of some samsa (pastry pockets filled with meat and vegetables).

Day 11: Bishkek
Location: Bishkek
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

Embark on city tour that showcases the various stages of Bishkek’s history. Visit the severe Ala-Too Square, once known as Lenin Square, and learn about the towering statue depicting folkloric hero Manas. Continue to Dubovy Park, and wander among the open-air cafes before strolling between the century-old oaks along Freedom Avenue. In the afternoon, you'll have some free time to further explore Bishkek. Quite the contrast to the relaxed quiet streets, square and parks in the city centre, Osh Market is noisy, crowded, and a perfect peek into local life. You'll find all kinds of things on sale here, from spices and fruits to clothes and carpets.

Included Activities:
-Bishkek - City Tour

Optional Activities:
-Bishkek - State Historical Museum

Day 12: Issyk-Kul Lake
Location: Issyk-Kul Lake
Accommodation: Tourist yurt camp
Meals Included: breaksfast, lunch, dinner

This morning, up and on the road through the beautiful landscaps of Kyrgyzstan. You'll be travelling with our vehicle for the next few days so get ready for a road trip through some pretty stunning mountains and lakes. Firstly stop at Burana Tower, a minaret that is the most visible
remnant of the ancient city Balasagun. Then continue to Tokmak and meet a local Dungan family and enjoy a home-cooked lunch. Then onto the destination of today - Issyk-Kul Lake, the second-largest alpine lake in the world. At 170 - kilometres-long and 70-kilometres-wide, her beauty is a real sight to behold. Your yurt camp for tonight is set up along the south shore of the lake where you'll get a fantastic view of the snow-capped mountains setting behind the lake. Made of felt and tarpaulins on a round frame, yurts are the traditional dwellings of the Kyrgyz people and this will be your 'settlement' for today and tomorrow.

Included Activities:
-Shamsy Valley - Burana tower
-Tokmak - Kyrgyz family visit and home-cooked lunch

Day 13: Issyk-Kul Lake
Location: Issyk-Kul Lake
Accommodation: Tourist yurt camp
Meals Included: breaksfast, lunch, dinner

With relaxed plans for today, we’ll wander the beautiful alpine area and head out to meet a local eagle trainer (or Berkutchi) and discover the ancient principles of training these beautiful creatures to follow commands, catch prey and return back to their masters and then visit a few local families who’ll teach you more about their traditional yurts. With a special workshop, you’ll learn the basics of how these nomadic dwellings have been manufactured and how they play an important role in the community here. Enjoy a free afternoon and evening, relax in your authentic yurt camp, jump into the lake, ride a bike or sit back with a cold homemade vodka – created by your yurt camp owners, just for you.

Included Activities:
-Issyk-Kul Lake - Yurt workshop
-Issyk-Kul Lake - Eagle Hunter Visit

Day 14: Song-Kol Lake (3016 Metres)
Location: Song-Kol Lake (3016 metres)
Accommodation: Tourist yurt camp
Meals Included: breaksfast, lunch, dinner

Back on the road and travel to Song-Kol Lake, another alpine stunner that is considered a sacred place to many Kyrgyz people, as well as one of the best summer pastures for nomadic herders. The landscape will change depending on the season but is sure to be beautiful no matter when you travel. In the summer you might see nomadic herdsmen and their families watching over goats, sheep, and horses. Enjoy exploring your surroundings for the rest of the day, maybe hiking one of the many trails. Tonight, fall asleep in yurts set up along the shore. Tomorrow, those daring enough for an invigorating morning splash can use the lake to wash off the sleep.

Day 15: Kyzyl-Oi
Location: Kyzyl-Oi
Accommodation: Guesthouse/Homestay
Meals Included: breaksfast, lunch, dinner

Travel along gravel roads to the tiny village of Kyzyl-Oi, which is squeezed between mountains. On the way, pass large coal deposits and travel along the Kokomeren River, which feeds into the Syr Darya. Enjoy a picnic lunch on the banks of the river in the shade of the trees and use your free time to explore the village on arrival.

Day 16: Suusamyr Valley/Chychkan River/Karakul
Location: Suusamyr Valley/Chychkan River/Karakul
Accommodation: Guesthouse/Homestay
Meals Included: breaksfast, lunch, dinner

Get ready for a full-day of driving though big, beautiful landscapes. As the roads in Kyrgyzstan see little regular maintenance, even short distances on a map can take hours. The road crosses the Suusamyr Valley – a high steppe plateau situated at around 2200 metres above sea level. The mountainous surroundings are often dotted with yurts. Continue along the Chychkan River that cuts through the Tien Shan mountain range. Stop here for a while and soak up the amazing scenery. Arrive at tonight's accommodation in Karakul sometime in the early evening.

Day 17: Osh
Location: Osh
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

After breakfast, get ready for another all-day journey to Osh, the second-largest city in Kyrgystan. Stop en route at Uzgen, an ancient trading town and handicrafts centre along the Silk Road. Although much of the ancient city has been destroyed, a minaret and three mosques that have survived remain important examples of medieval Central Asian architecture. Continue to Osh. Located in the Fergana Valley in the south of the country, Osh is often referred to as the 'Capital of the South' and is the oldest city in the country.

Included Activities:
-Uzgen - Uzgen Minaret & Complex

Day 18: Osh
Location: Osh
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

Rise and shine for a visit to the only World Heritage site in Kyrgystan, the Sulaiman-Too Sacred Mountain, also known as Solomon's Throne. For centuries Silk Road travellers have sought out the mountain's caves and their petroglyphs in the belief that they would be blessed with longevity or healthy children. Visit the National Historical and Archaeological Museum Complex. In the afternoon, enjoy some free time in Osh. Perhaps visit the Jayma Bazaar, where you might pick up an interesting souvenir or two. Or maybe take a self-guided tour of the remnants of Osh's soviet past with a walk to the giant Lenin statue in the city square.

Included Activities:
-Osh - Sulaiman-Too Mountain
-Osh - National Historical and Archaeological Museum Complex

Optional Activities:
-Osh - Bazaar - Free

Day 19: Border Crossing/Andijan/Tashkent
Location: Border Crossing/Andijan/Tashkent
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

This morning, drive to Kyrgyz-Uzbek border, which is just outside of the city. Transfer to Andijan and board a local train to Tashkent (approximately 5.5 hours). The train is a great place to meet locals, so don’t be surprised if people want to chat to the chet ellik (foreigner). Arrive in the evening and check into the hotel.

Day 20: Tashkent
Location: Tashkent
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

Begin your introduction to Uzbekistan by exploring the capital today. Follow your leader on a city walking tour - explore Amir Timur square at the city center, then hop on the metro and lose yourself in the exciting Chorsu Bazaar, browsing traditional wooden cradles, handmade musical instruments, and the extensive vegetable and spice markets. Enjoy a free afternoon and maybe go and visit the Khast Imom complex, a restored series of religious buildings (including a mosque) and a library containing an ancient Qur’an, parts of which have been dated to the ninth century, or simply relax and enjoy some well deserved downtime after a busy journey in Kyrgyzstan.

Included Activities:
-Tashkent - Chorsu Bazaar
-Tashkent - Amir Timur Square

Day 21: Bukhara
Location: Bukhara
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

Travel to Bukhara by train this morning. Located on the ancient Silk Road, Bukhara was an important regional and world hub for many, many years and has a long, fascinating history featuring invasions by both Genghis Khan and the Soviet Red Army. Explore this fascinating city with your tour leader on an orientation walk after arrival and head to the Lyabi-Haus area, a busy 17th-century plaza with hundreds-years-old trees and there is time to wander the small craft studios tucked into the nearby madrasas and trading domes.

Day 22: Bukhara
Location: Bukhara
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

Enjoy a day of sightseeing in beautiful Bukhara. First visit the Sitorai Mohi Khosa, once the summer residence of the last Emir. Designed by Russian architects, it has interiors decorated with traditional filigree plaster, mirrored surfaces and delicate floral wall paintings by local artisans. Continue to the 16th-century Chor-Bakr necropolis, where not many tourists venture. Walk through the madrasa and mosque complex. In the afternoon, visit the Ark Fortress and Kalon Mosque, the symbol of Bukhara. Continue to one of Central Asia's oldest and most exquisite structures, the tenth-century Ismail Samani Mausoleum, the superb decorative brickwork of which has survived 1000 years of rugged history.

Included Activities:
-Bukhara - Sitorai Mohi Hosa Palace
-Bukhara - Ismail Samani Mausoleum
-Bukhara - Kalon Mosque
-Bukhara - Ark Fortress

Day 23: Samarkand
Location: Samarkand
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast, dinner

Transfer to the station for the high-speed train to fabled Samarkand (approximately 2 hours). This city is located at the very centre of the ancient Silk Road. Arrival around midday and follow your leader on a short city orientation walk. Then enjoy some free time in the city, saving some of the key sights for the tour tomorrow. Maybe inspect the remains of the remarkable medieval observatory developed by Ulug Beg, an astronomer and grandson of nomadic conqueror and Timurid emperor Tamerlane (Amir Timur). Today, only half of the below-ground semicircle track can be seen, but there is a small museum close by that gives some context. Or perhaps visit the Afrosiab Museum of Samarkand, the main attraction of which is a tenth-century mural. After the day at your leisure, you’ll visit a local family to learn the secrets of plov cuisine during a cooking demonstration in the evening.

Included Activities:
-Samarkand - Leader-led orientation walk

Day 24: Samarkand
Location: Samarkand
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

Enjoy a tour of Samarkand. First up is the central square called the Registan, which features mosques and mausoleums that are true pinnacles of Islamic architecture. Continue to Guri-Amir, where Tamerlane is buried, and then the enormous Bibi-Khanum Mosque. Visit Shak-i-Zinda, a necropolis that features a series of gleaming blue-tiled mausoleums. This sacred site has monuments from the 14th–19th century, reflecting the development of the monumental art and architecture of the Timurid dynasty onwards. It is photo worthy at every turn, just remember to be respectful as pilgrims visit the complex.

Included Activities:
-Samarkand - Bibi-Khanym Mosque
-Samarkand - Registan
-Samarkand - Shakh-I-Zinda
-Samarkand - Gur-e-Amir Mausoleum
-Samarkand - Plov cooking demonstration & family visit

Optional Activities:
-Samarkand - Afrosiab Museum
-Samarkand - Ulugbek's Observatory

Day 25: Tashkent
Location: Tashkent
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: breaksfast

This morning, take the train back to Tashkent. Enjoy a free afternoon and why not celebrate this great adventure with an optional farewell dinner tonight?

Day 26: Tashkent
Location: Tashkent
Meals Included: breaksfast

There are no activities planned today and you are able to depart the accommodation at any time after check out.

What's Included

  • Gijduvan - Ceramics workshop

  • Baikonur - Yuri Gagarin Museum & House

  • Nur-Sultan - City tour

  • Baikonur - Cosmodrome

  • Baikonur - Space Museum

  • Otrar - Ancient settlement

  • Turkistan - Yasui Mausoleum

  • Almaty - Central State Museum

  • Almaty - Museum of Kazakh Musical Instruments

  • Almaty - Panfilov Park

show more

What's Not Included

  • Tipping and Gratuities

  • International Travel

Transport

  • Private vehicle , Plane , Train , High Speed Train , Local Train , Metro , Overnight Sleeper Train , 4X4 Jeep

Included Activities

  • Nur-Sultan - City tour
  • Baikonur - Yuri Gagarin Museum & House
  • Baikonur - Cosmodrome
  • Baikonur - Space Museum
  • Otrar - Ancient settlement
  • Turkistan - Yasui Mausoleum
  • Almaty - Central State Museum
  • Almaty - Museum of Kazakh Musical Instruments
  • Almaty - Kok Tobe Hill
  • Almaty - Panfilov Park
  • Almaty - Medeu
  • Almaty - Zenkov Cathedral
  • Charyn Canyon - National Park
  • Karakol - Dungan Mosque
  • Karakol - Holy Trinity Orthodox Cathedral
  • Karakol - Przhevalskiy Museum
  • Karakol - Jeti Orghuz Canyon Hike
  • Cholpan Ata - Petroglyphs
  • Bishkek - City Tour
  • Bishkek - City Tour
  • Shamsy Valley - Burana tower
  • Don Aryk - Local home visit & horsemanship demonstration
  • Kochkor - Market
  • Kochkor - Women's Felt Co-op
  • Uzgen - Uzgen Minaret & Complex
  • Osh - Sulaiman-Too Mountain
  • Osh - National Historical and Archaeological Museum Complex
  • Tashkent - Chorsu Bazaar
  • Tashkent - Khast Imom Complex & Moyie Mubarek Library Museum
  • Tashkent - History Museum of the People of Uzbekistan
  • Samarkand - Bibi-Khanym Mosque
  • Samarkand - Gur-e-Amir Mausoleum
  • Samarkand - Shakh-I-Zinda
  • Samarkand - Registan
  • Samarkand - Paper making workshop & home cooked lunch
  • Shakhrisabz - Ak Saray Palace
  • Shakhrisabz - Kok-Gumbaz Mosque
  • Shakhrisabz - Dor-ut Tilovat Memorial Complex
  • Shakhrisabz - Dorus Saodat Complex
  • Bukhara - Ismail Samani Mausoleum
  • Bukhara - Sitorai Mohi Hosa Palace
  • Bukhara - Chor-Bakr Necropolis
  • Bukhara - Ark Fortress
  • Bukhara - Kalon Mosque
  • Vobkent - Minaret
  • Gijduvan - Ceramics workshop

Accommodation

  • OCCASIONAL ALTERNATIVE ACCOMMODATION
  • The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline. On rare occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our usual accommodation. A similar standard of accommodation will be used in these instances.
  • TWIN SHARE / MULTI SHARE BASIS
  • Accommodation on this trip is on a twin/multishare basis. Please note there may be times where facilities will be shared rather than ensuite and rare occasions when you share a room with passengers travelling on a different Intrepid trip than your own.
  • CHECK-IN TIME
  • Throughout the trip we request that our hotels prepare rooms in time for our arrival, especially if we're arriving prior to normal check-in time. However this isn't always possible which means we won't be able to check-in immediately on arrival at some hotels. Instead, we can store our luggage and explore our new destination.
  • PRE/POST TRIP ACCOMMODATION
  • If you've purchased pre-trip or post-trip accommodation (subject to availability), you may be required to change rooms from your trip accommodation for these extra nights.
  • HOMESTAYS:
  • Please note that at our homestays you might be required to share a room with people of other genders, or with your leader. Because we stay at real people's homes, beds might be pull-out couches or mattresses on the floor, or even a yurt in their backyard. Some of the accommodation along the way is very basic, staying in local guesthouses, yurts and homestays with limited facilities. Some facilities are shared and some accommodation has cold water only or no bathroom facilities.

Important Information

  • 1. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement excludes Day 4, 7-8, and Day 12 - 16 where you will be in shared accommodation and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.
  • 2. This trip visits three Central Asian countries - Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. Please read the visa section in the Essential Trip Information to make sure you have the correct visa information for all countries.
  • 3. Please provide your full name exactly as per passport at the time of booking (including any middle names listed on your passport) for flight and train tickets booking no later than 45 days prior to departure. Fees may apply for amendments or failure to provide the required details within 45 days of departure.
  • 4. This trip is a combination trip. As such the make up of your group and your leader may change on Day 10.

Check out our Q&As

  • Are children permitted to take part in the tour?

    Yes if aged 15+ and accompanied by an adult

  • Are all the relevant entry visa’s included in the price of the tour?

    No

  • Are internal flights included in this tour?

    Yes, Nur-Sultan to Kyzyl Orda

  • Are all entrance fees included in the price?

    No

  • Are internal flights included in this tour?

    Yes,

  • Are airport transfers included in this tour?

    No

  • Are the local guides on the tour English speaking?

    Yes

  • Are internal flights included in this tour?

    Yes, Nur-Sultan to

  • Is this trip right for you

    This trip takes you way off the tourist trail to explore just some of the vastness that is Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. If you want to be far, far away from everywhere – and from anything you've experienced before – this trip is for you.

    Be prepared to experience the full legacy of the Soviet era – not just in the sights and history, but also in the standards of accommodation and service! In other words, while you’ll be comfortable, don’t expect luxury.

    In true adventure style, the trip involves some long travel days by private vehicle and trains. While tiring, this is a great opportunity to sit back, unwind and let the sweeping views roll by.

    Accommodation may on occassion be more basic than what you are used to in homestays, guesthouses and yurt stay. Shower and toilet facilities will be limited in some places and non existant in others. While the comfort level won't always be high, the rewards of living in true local style in this far-out part of the world are immeasurable.

    This is an overland journey, so there will be some very long days of travelling and driving, often over rough terrain. This can be tiring at times and will require a great deal of patience at others, especially at border crossings. The vehicle size can be rather compact when the group is almost full. This is to enable us to travel to small villages where the general road condition doesn't allow big buses. We find this is a great way for the group to bond and share an amazing journey together and there will be stops along the way to take photos and stretch your legs too.

  • What policies are in place for Covid-19?

    Please contact us for latest COVID-19 policies

  • How long has the tour company been trading?

    Intrepid Travel has been taking travellers around the world for over 30 years

  • Will the accommodation included meet local health and safety regulations?

    Yes

  • What Ethical Travel credentials does the tour company have?

    Since 2002, The Intrepid Foundation has supported over 130 organisations across the world. We’re creating positive impact through the joy of travel, community and connection.

  • Do you operate a “single share” option and how does it work?

    Over 50% of traveller travel solo with Intrepid. You can choose to share a room with another solo travelle of the same sex for no additional charge, or choose to pay a single supplement if you’d like your own room. Please request this when booking, and we will secure you a single supplement wherever possible. Please note, if you are booking a last-minute trip, it may be harder for us to secure a single room

Reviews of this Operator

Nicole  

North American Adventure

12-Oct-2021

This was my first international solo trip, but I never felt “alone” - there was always someone to go shopping, hike, or grab a quick bite with. The itinerary was a great balance between organized activities, while still allowing free time for exploring. Each location was unique and charming in its own way. Spending the night in the holy city of Moulay Idriss and wandering the winding streets of Chefchaouen were especially memorable. Thank you Mustapha and Intrepid for an incredible adventure!

Henry Guy Robinson   United Kingdom

Cambodia Discovery

22-Jan-2024

The overall experience was fantastic. V good tour leader. All places visited had something special to do or see. I would book a tour with this company again. Only one negative tour hub is not I repeat not available to contact direct by phone.

Ann  

Amazing Guatemala and beyond tour with Intrepid

13-Dec-2022

Did Guatemala and beyond trip in November 22. It was amazing, we were so well looked after by our guide Aura. She was very knowledgeable and during our bus trips she gave us the history of the 4 countries. The border crossings can be tricky but handled very well by our guide. We saw all the most interesting and beautiful places. The hotels were lovely comfortable colonial style. I will travel with intrepid again

Trustpilot
RICHARD ALAN RODDY   England

Central American Journey

08-Feb-2024

Very enjoyable, good paced Tour. Tour Leader, Choko was helpful, knowledgeable and extremely informative.

Joanne W  

Wonderful Croatian tour

02-Dec-2022

Our tour guide,Tamara, was the highlight of our Explore Croatia tour. She was knowledgeable, organized, and so kind and fun. Croatia is a beautiful country. I loved the people, the scenery, the food, the history. I hope to go back one day. Intrepid was perfect for me. There was group time and there was plenty of free time. It wasn’t a luxury tour but all of our accommodations were clean and safe. The dinner in Hvar was SO special!

Trustpilot
Miguel Angel Araujo   Usa

One Week In Costa Rica

27-Feb-2024

The trip was amazing, everything was well planned out & there wasn't any issues. The tour guide was very friendly and made the experience fun. During the trip I didn't have to worry about safety as we were never put in harms way. I would definitely recommend & do again.

Kelly  

North Morocco Adventure

25-Oct-2021

Touring the beautiful North of Morocco I learned far more than I’d anticipated in this 9 day tour. Interesting sights to see, with knowledgeable local guides, this tour provides a great balance of exposure to a different culture with ample time for relaxation. Chefchaouen is an absolute highlight, & not a place many Morocco trips of this kind go to. Loved it!

Sharik  

Essential Morocca

21-Oct-2021

Essential Morocco was an absolute dream. Every single day had such informative walking tours and tours of local facilities. Whether it was dinner with a local family or visiting a pottery factory, I learned so much about Moroccan culture. The accommodations were safe and I felt secure the entire 11 days. This trip wouldn’t have been the same without one person. That person is Youssef. If you are coming to Morocco with Intrepid and you don’t request Youssef, you’re doing it wrong. Words cannot describe how incredible of a guide he is. There were 3 of us on our trip of 18-29 year olds and he made us all feel so welcome and safe all the time. Whether that is cracking jokes on long drives or giving us the itinerary for the next day, Youssef ensured we felt respected and seen.

Barbara Ruth Roback   Canada

Cambodia Adventure

15-Jan-2024

Absolutely superb leader - knowledgeable. fun, safety conscious. Group of 15 travellers from 5 countries who bonded into a solid team. In addition to a fantastic itinerary, our leader’s love of karaoke made the trip unforgettable. It even inspired a song written as a tribute to him.

Dates & Availability

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Wednesday - Sunday

Apr 10, 2024 - May 05, 2024
$7535 $6229 (USD)

Operator discount: -$1130 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$176 (USD)

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Sunday - Thursday

May 12, 2024 - Jun 06, 2024
$7255 $5997 (USD)

Operator discount: -$1088 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$170 (USD)

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Sunday - Thursday

Jun 02, 2024 - Jun 27, 2024
$7330 $6059 (USD)

Operator discount: -$1100 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$171 (USD)

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Wednesday - Sunday

Aug 21, 2024 - Sep 15, 2024
$7325 $6055 (USD)

Operator discount: -$1099 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$171 (USD)

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Wednesday - Sunday

Sep 18, 2024 - Oct 13, 2024
$7255 $5997 (USD)

Operator discount: -$1088 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$170 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Sunday

Oct 02, 2024 - Oct 27, 2024
$7330 $6059 (USD)

Operator discount: -$1100 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$171 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Sunday

Apr 09, 2025 - May 04, 2025
$7325 $7124 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$201 (USD)

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Wednesday - Sunday

Apr 23, 2025 - May 18, 2025
$7325 $7124 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$201 (USD)

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Wednesday - Sunday

May 07, 2025 - Jun 01, 2025
$7325 $7124 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$201 (USD)

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Wednesday - Sunday

Jun 04, 2025 - Jun 29, 2025
$7325 $7124 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$201 (USD)

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Sunday - Thursday

Aug 03, 2025 - Aug 28, 2025
$7325 $7124 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$201 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Sunday

Aug 20, 2025 - Sep 14, 2025
$7325 $7124 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$201 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Sunday

Sep 03, 2025 - Sep 28, 2025
$7325 $7124 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$201 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Sunday - Thursday

Sep 21, 2025 - Oct 16, 2025
$7325 $7124 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$201 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Sunday

Oct 01, 2025 - Oct 26, 2025
$7325 $7124 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$201 (USD)

Book with Confidence

  • Free Date Changes

    Intrepid Travel allows you to make 10 free date changes, as long as the change is made at least 56 days before the start of the tour.

  • Transfer as credit to Future Tours

    Intrepid Travel allows you to transfer existing payments to a future tour to avoid cancellation fees if you can't travel and inform intrepid travel, 56 days before departure.

  • Low Deposit

    Intrepid Travel requires a minimum deposit of 400 USD per person or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 56 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of intrepid travel charges.

    Up to 56 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of deposit.

    At 55 days before tour starts: Forfeit 30% of booking price.

    At 30 days before tour starts: Forfeit 60% of booking price.

    At 14 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

  • COVID Protection

    Trips from 1 January 2023 onwards
    From 1 January 2023, Intrepid will no longer require travellers to provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19.

    However, we continue to strongly recommend that all travellers and leaders get vaccinated to protect themselves and other Specific proof of testing or vaccination may still be required by your destination or airline. Please ensure you check travel and entry requirements carefully.

    This policy excludes all Polar trips and select adventure cruises, where testing and vaccination remains a requirement. Please refer to the Essential Trip Information of your chosen tour for more details.

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