If you decided to visit Turkmenistan you have to plan to stay at cities Ashgabad, Mary, Merv, Geok-Tepe, and Turkmenabad. If you’ve never heard of these great Turkmen cities before, book your ticket today and join the current busloads of Asian and European tourists who are pouring into this beautiful, fascinating, and historical country every year. Turkmenistan is a neutral country. In fact, its Day of Neutrality, celebrated on December 12th, is considered the second most important holiday after its Independence Day.
1. Ahal Tekken horsces. Ride on the world-famous Ahal Tekken horse, one of the fastest and strongest horse breeds in the world. The Ahal Tekken horse is Turkmenistan’s national emblem.
2. Visit a Mega-Mosque. The biggest! This mosque, built by first President Niyazov in 2006 in Geok-Tepe, can service 15,000 worshippers at any given time, and offers an underground parking lot for 400 cars and 100 buses. Every December 12th, on Turkmenistan’s Neutrality Day, President Berdymukhomedov pays a visit. You should, too.
3.Visit Old Nisa, a 2nd century BC Parthian Empire fortress. In 2007, this fortress was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Though Old Nisa is still being excavated, tour the premises and see current renovations taking place.
4. Underground Swimming. Swim in the Kow Ata Underground Lake, located in a mountain about an hour from Ashgabad. Can you think of a more fantastical, quixotic experience than descending 65 feet into a dark cave and wading in a pool of water, naturally heated at 96 degrees Fahrenheit, to the music of screeching bats? The lake contains 38 chemical elements, including sulfur, chlorine, sulfate, magnesium, potassium, and sodium, and health tourists flock to it believing that it will help cure all manner of ailments. And, as if it couldn’t get any better, after you go for a dip, there is a local shashlik joint right outside the cave with low wooden tables spread outdoors, where you can kick off your shoes, lay on a colorful carpet, and get served hot black tea and freshly grilled shashlik. I tell you, you won’t find anything more relaxing.
5. Ashgabad is a marwal city, the capital of Turkmenistan, has the world’s largest flagpole; carpet; representation of a star; and facility with the greatest number of fountains in a public space. How many cities can boast that many Guinness World Records?