Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan - Along the Pamir Highway

From Dushanbe to Bishkek

Visiting: Dushanbe, Kalaikhum, Rŭshan, Khorog, Eshkashem, Yamchun Fort., Murghab, Sary-Tash, Osh, Chychkan, Song Kol Lake, Issyk Kul, Bishkek


Tour Operator: Undiscovered Destinations

Physical rating: Low

Special diets catered: Meat, Vegetarians, Vegans

Group size: 4 - 12

Age range: 18-70

Tour operated in: English


Prices From:

Tour Overview

This 16 day Tajikstan and Kyrgystan tour is an amzing road trip, travelling along the famous Parmir Highway, the second highest highway in the world running between Osh in Kyrgyzstan to Khorog in Tajikistan. Winding its way through the Pamir Mountains, with their 7,000m peaks, earning this road the title of ‘roof of the world’. As we travel through remote communities scattered along the Highway and beyond, we stay in welcoming homestays, immersing ourselves in a cacophony of cultures, with each village speaking in a unique dialect.

Highlights

  • iconPhenomenal high mountain scenery of the Pamir range

Itinerary

Map Image
icon Day 1 : Arrival in Dushanbe

Location: Dushanbe

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Hotel Atlas or similar

Meals: Breakfast

Arrival in Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan and transfer to your hotel, where a room will be available to check-in straight upon arrival for travellers arriving in the early hours of the day. The rest of the day is at leisure to either relax or start to explore this sublime city.

icon Day 2 : Dushanbe

Location: Dushanbe

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Hotel Atlas or similar

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Drive to the nearby town of Hissar to visit the remains of the 18th century fort as well as two nearby madrassahs. Return to Dushanbe in the afternoon and visit the bazaar and the excellent Museum of National Antiquities.

icon Day 3 : Dushanbe – Kalaikhumb

Location: Kalaikhum

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Hotel Karon Palace or similar

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

This morning we will cross the Shurabad Pass (2,200m) and visit Hulbuk ancient fortress 8th Century which has been recently restored. We continue towards the Pamirs and Kalaikhumb, driving through beautiful scenery and interesting villages en route. This area is a little more conservative, and we see many men with beards, and women wearing traditional dress.

icon Day 4 -5 : Kalaikhumb – Rushan

Location: Rŭshan

Accommodation: Hostel, Hotel

Accommodation Name: Day 4 overnight will be at a local homestay Rushan with shared facilities. Day 5 overnight at Lal Inn or similar

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Hike in the Geisev valley – Khorog (Total approx. driving time: 1.5 hours; 120km; Trekking time with breaks: 6-7 hours) - After breakfast, travel to Rushan, the administrative centre of the Bartang district. We may have some time to explore upon arrival but we will explore in more depth tomorrow. On Day 5 we drive to the Bartang valley and cross the river to embark on a trek that begins on the river Bartang, just beyond Bhagoo village and is mostly gentle uphill for about 14km to the upper of the three lakes. The first houses in Geisev are reached after about 7km. We stop in the Geisev village for lunch and then continue to explore the Geisev valley. The abundant vegetation, the gnarled trees, the lakes and the ever-changing river - sometimes frothing with energy, sometimes limpid and blue - create a very special peaceful atmosphere. Later we continue to Khorog alongside the River Panj which forms the border with Afghanistan.

icon Day 6 : Khorog

Location: Khorog

Accommodation Name: Lal Inn or similar

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today we have a full day to explore Khorog, the capital of the GBAO region, including the bazaar and the lovely Botanical Gardens which are perched high above the town, affording some great panoramic views.

icon Day 7 : Khorog – Garm Chashma – Ishkashim

Location: Eshkashem

Accommodation: Hostel

Accommodation Name: Guesthouse Hanis

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

About 50kms along the road to our next stop, Ishkashim, we will stop at Garm Chasma hot springs for an (optional) dip in the waters. From here, we enter the Tajik half of the Wakhan Valley (shared with Afghanistan) and pass regional gem mines mentioned by Marco Polo, the most famous being the Koh-i-Lal ruby mine.

icon Day 8 : Ishkashim – Khahkha Fortress – Yamchun – Langar

Location: Yamchun Fort.

Accommodation: Hostel

Accommodation Name: Homestay Davlat

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Visit to the nearby village of Namadguti to visit the Khahkha Fortress. This impressive structure rises from a naturally formed platform of rock and dates back to the Kushan era of the 3rd Century. There are a number of these ancient fortresses in the area, and we also visit Yamchun fort, perhaps the most impressive of them. We take a break at the Bibi Fatima hot springs, named for the Prophet Mohammed’s sister and where local women believe they can increase their fertility. Continuing on we then stop at the 4th Century Buddhist stupas at Vrang, reminders of the ancient pilgrim caravans that passed through the region.

icon Day 9 : Langar - Murghab

Location: Murghab

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Hotel Pamir

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Leave behind the lush valleys of the Wakhan Valley and enter a landscape that is rocky, mostly barren but nevertheless dramatic. This is the Pamir Highway we have anticipated, with the route between Khorog and Osh completed in 1931 across a Tibetan-plateau style high altitude terrain. Today we can also see some Neolithic rock art dating back some 8000 years in Shakhty cave. It is anticipated to arrive in Murghab in the early evening.

icon Day 10 : Murghab – Kara kul – Sary Tash

Location: Sary-Tash

Accommodation: Hostel

Accommodation Name: Ethnic Kyrgyz House

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After breakfast we head for Karakul (135km), one of our highlights on the way. We cross several high altitude passes, including Ak-Baital Pass (4,655 metres) which is the highest section of road in the former Soviet Union. We descend to Karakul Lake and then cross our final Pamir Highway high pass, the Kyzyl Art (4,282 metres), which essentially forms the border between Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. Karakul Lake is the highest lake in Central Asia, and at 3,915 metres, too high to support any aquatic life. Karakul means “black lake” but in spring, summer and autumn the water is almost always turquoise blue. At the northern end of the lake a track turns off west to geoglyphs and Saka graves (5000– 3000 BC), located about 500m from the turnoff. Continue to the following village of Sary Tash for the night.

icon Day 11 : Sary Tash – Osh

Location: Osh

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Hotel Sunrise or similar

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

We depart the high mountains of the Pamir Alay range, leaving behind us the crossroads of Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and China. The drive offers a contrast as we encounter lush farmlands and small villages on this side of the mountains, instead of the stark high-altitude plateau of Tajikistan. En route we cross the Taldyk Pass (3554m) and enjoy some beautiful views - if we're lucky we may even catch a glimpse of Peak Lenin, at 7134m the second highest mountain in Central Asia. We expect to arrive in Osh, Kyrgyzstan's oldest city in the afternoon, with time to explore.

icon Day 12 : Osh – Chichkan

Location: Chychkan

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Hotel Osmon or similar

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today we drive to the Suusamyr Valley along the picturesque mountain Osh highway to the Chichkan gorge. Time permitting, we take a walk in the area and meet the local shepherds who still adhere to age old traditions

icon Day 13 : Chichkan - Song Kol Lake

Location: Song Kol Lake

Accommodation: Camp

Accommodation Name: Yurt stay with 4 – 5 beds in one yurt

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today takes us to stunning Song Kol Lake. The lake itself is 3,016m above sea level and is one of the highest alpine lakes in the world.

icon Day 14 : Song Kol – Cholpon Ata - Lake Issyk Kul

Location: Issyk Kul

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Hotel Altyn Bulak or similar

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Travel to Cholpon Ata on the north side of Issyk-Kul Lake to the largest and most beautiful lake in Central Asia. There is an optional opportunity to visit the open-air museum of Stone Inscriptions in Cholpon Ata. Most of the drawings date from several thousand years B.C. up until the 12th Century A.D.

icon Day 15 : Cholpon Ata – Bishkek

Location: Bishkek

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Silk Road Lodge or similar

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Drive to Bishkek and explore the capital, visiting the enchanting Ala-Too Square and the History Museum among other sites. In the afternoon, time is at leisure for you to relax, visit further the city and do some shopping in the local workshops.

icon Day 16 : Departure from Bishkek

Location: Bishkek

Meals: Breakfast

Transfer to the airport for your onward flight.

What's Included

  • icon
    Fully Guided

  • icon
    Meals – Half Board

    As described in the itinerary

  • icon
    Entrance Fees

  • icon
    Airport Transfers at Destination

  • icon
    Accommodation

  • icon
    All Domestic Transportation (including internal flights)

What's Not Included

  • icon
    Country Entry Visas

  • icon
    International Travel

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Saturday Jul 03, 2021

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Saturday, Jul 03, 2021

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Saturday, Jul 02, 2022

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Saturday, Aug 20, 2022

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