DESCRIPTION OF THE ITINERARY :
Day 1: Tashkent
Day 2: Tashkent (overnight to Bukhara)
Day 3: Bukhara
Day 4: Bukhara (night to Samarkand)
Day 5: Samarkand
Border crossing: Uzbekistan to Tajikistan
Day 6: Samarkand to Panjakent
Day 7: Panjakent to Haft Kul
Day 8: Haft Kul
Day 9: Haft Kul to Artuch
Day 10: Lakes Loop
Day 11: Lakes Loop
Day 12: Lakes Loop to Dushanbe
Day 13: Dushanbe
Day 14: Dushanbe
Day 1 | Tashkent
Arrival in Taskent airport . We will meet you in difinite predicted time.
Your first taste of Tashkent: bazaars, Qurans, and a side of… beer?!
Places to visit in Tashkent:
Chorsu Bazaar: Housed in a massive white geodesic dome, the bazaar is open 24/7. Chat up vendors, try some samples—they have everything from horse sausage to dried apricots—and make sure to head upstairs for a view of the market maze.
Khast Imam Complex: The “Mr. Imam” complex is new by Uzbek standards, but beautiful nonetheless. Savor mosque ceilings, peruse the Barak Khan Madrassa-cum-souvenir shop (lots of these in Uzbekistan), and don’t miss the ticketed central liD3ay , where one of the oldest Qurans in the world is on display.
Amir Timur Square: Green central square containing Amir Timur’s statue—you know, that dude who conquered most of the Muslim world—which is striking against Hotel Uzbekistan.
Broadway Street: Locals hang out here come evening. Follow your feet along bright streets lined with sweet treats, carnival games, and art on display.
Independence Square: Fountain-filled and ringed by brutalist architecture, this impressive square is also within walking distance of several parks.
Day 2 | Tashkent
A day chock full of vats of fats and watery ways.
Places to visit:
Central Asian Plov Center: Uzbekistan’s national dish contains rice, meat, vegetables, chickpeas, raisins, and a (un)healthy dose of animal fat. This massive center is the place to go for plov in Tashkent, evidenced by locals inevitably queuing outside. Watch men prepare vats of plov over fires outside, then sit inside and order your plov of choice: with or without egg and/or horse sausage, kazy.
Canals: The arterial canals running through Tashkent are serene places to observe daily Uzbek life away from the center city hustle.
Minor Mosque: An architectural highlight. Tourists can’t enter during prayer times, but you can wander its white walls at other times of day.
Girl walking into Tashkent train station
Extra things to do in Tashkent:
Alay Bazaar (Oloy Bozori) is a marketplace for Tashkent’s middle class. This columned open-air bazaar is more manicured than Chorsu.
Navoi Opera Theater hails from the Soviet Era. How often can you see an opera in a grand theater for less than US$10?
Tashkent House of Photography features contemporary local artists.
Day 3 | Bukhara
Bukhara: In the days of yore, Bukhara was the gathering place for artists, scientists, merchants, and everyone in between. Ethnically more Tajik than Uzbek, this city was one of the major centers of Islamic theology more than 1,000 years ago
Minarets, mosques, and madrassas, oh my! Today is all about Bukhara’s historic highlights.
Places to visit in Bukhara:
Po-i-Kalyan: Bukhara’s most famous square contains multiple sights. Most obvious: Kalyan Minaret, visible throughout Bukhara. This cleverly built 12th century minaret was the first place Uzbekistan’s quintessential blue tiles were used. You can’t enter, but it’s at the entrance to the more recent Kalyan Mosque, whose sprawling courtyard and cavernous interior are open to visitors. Mir-i-Arab madrassa sits opposite the mosque, but it’s still active and not open to tourists.
Chasmai Mirob: An overpriced restaurant with slow service… but wait! The views from this restaurant over Po-i-Kalyan are worth an expensive tea (or beer if you’re cheeky and want to drink while admiring Islamic monuments).
Bolo Hauz Mosque: Opposite the fortress, solid wooden columns so high your neck will ache combined with hand painted details on faraway ceilings make this mosque unique. You can enter if it isn’t prayer time.
Chor Minor: A cute little gatehouse with four minarets—hence the name chor minor—it’s removed from the old city center, and thus quieter. Each minaret is decorated in a different style; appreciate them from the roof after paying a fee at the souvenir shop inside.
Lyabi Hauz: Hauz means pond in Persian, and that’s exactly what this place is: a collection of madrassas around a central pond. Though it’s consumed by tourism, it’s a stunning place to sit and enjoy a cup of tea or a meal by the glittering pool.
Day 4 | Bukhara
Time to venture beyond old Bukhara’s center!
Places to visit
Chor Bakr necropolis: 6 kilometers outside the city lies a 16th century necropolis. Banned as a religious site in the Soviet era, it’s since returned to its original significance. It’s a peaceful place away from the touristic bits of Bukhara. A taxi (4,000 som) or local bus is necessary to reach the necropolis.
Ismail Somoni (Samanid) mausoleum: The oldest surviving Islamic monument in Central Asia is also one of Bukhara’s oldest monuments. Completed in 905 AD, it’s said it escaped Genghis Khan’s razing because it was buried in mud before his arrival. The mausoleum is surrounded by a quiet park.
Chashma Ayub Mausoleum: Translated as “Job’s Spring”, legend has it the prophet Job (Ayub in the Quran) struck his staff upon the ground and created a spring at this spot. Located near the Samanid mausoleum, a Timurid mausoleum now stands over the well. Visitors can drink the well water, claimed to have healing properties
Extra things to do in Bukhara:
Ark of Bukhara: This massive fortress in the middle of Bukhara contains several small museums. Heavily restored—most of it was destroyed in the 1920s—its museums are not particularly well presented. It’s worth a look only if you have time.
Fayzulla Khujayev House: The house of a wealthy 19th century merchant away from the main tourist drag, it’s a centuries-old glimpse into the lives of Bukhara’s elite.
Sitora-i Mokhi Khosa: Summer palace for some of Bukhara’s last rulers to the east of the city. Opulent works of architecture line a large pool; colorful interiors illustrate the common fusion of European and Central Asian ideas at that time.
Day 5 | Samarkand
Samarkand: Uzbekistan’s crown jewel
Bukhara was the gathering place of minds, but Samarkand is where the action happened: it was the capital of Timur’s empire. Home to Uzbekistan’s most iconic sights, you’re guaranteed to be oohing and ahhing all day. Get ready to peel your jaw off the floor
It’s Timurid time! You can easily walk to all of Samarkand’s major sites in a day; make sure your camera is charged and ready
Places to visit in Samarkand:
Gur-e-Amir: Timur’s mausoleum is a gilded sight to behold. Blue mosaics paint the outside, while gold leaf and calligraphic script glow inside. All of the graves are actually in a closed vault beneath the mausoleum; the tombs inside are place markers for graves below.
Registan: Meaning “desert” in Persian, Uzbekistan’s most famous complex is home to three no longer functional madrassas: Ulugbek, Shirdor and Tilla Kari, constructed between the 15th and 17th Tilla Kari’s mosque has the most opulent ceiling in all of Uzbekistan, so don’t miss it!
Bibi Khanum Mosque: Once the largest mosque of its time, this massive building honoring Timur’s wife is crumbling—its construction was too rushed! Gradually it’s being restored, but for now you can enter the mosque through a massive crack in its walls.
Siyob Bazaar: Next to the Bibi Khanum mosque, this busy bazaar offers everything from produce to sweets to hot tea ‘round back. Try the varieties of sweet Samarkand halwa sold near the entrance.
Shah-i-Zinda: This narrow necropolis is a fast favorite of many. Turquoise tiles line its singular alley, home to dozens of tombs including that of Kusum Ibn Abbas, the prophet Muhammad’s cousin. Some tombs date all the way back to the 11th century! It’s best visited around sunset or sunrise when the tour groups are gone. Enter from the surrounding cemetery, open 24/7.
Local beer at Labi G’or: Treat yourself after a long day to a local brew at this upper level restaurant near the Registan. The food is overpriced, but this is one of the most central places to get fresh Samarkand beer.
Extra things to do in Samarkand
Khazret Khyzyr Mosque: This mosque near Shah-i-Zinda was first built in the 7th century (then razed by Genghis and restored in the 19th century). It sits on a pretty hilltop overlooking the city.
Ulugh Beg’s Observatory: Ulugh Beg, one of the most prominent astronomers/scientists/architects/minds from Uzbekistan’s history, used to conduct astronomical research here in the 15th It was one of the most impressive observatories in the Islamic world.
Imam al-Bukhari Mausoleum: An Islamic scholar’s mausoleum in a complex filled with leafy trees and intricate woodwork.
Border crossing: Uzbekistan to Tajikistan
Previously closed to foreigners, this overland border crossing between Samarkand and Panjakent is now incredibly easy to cross. The entire process took less than one hour! The ‘stans are making an effort to ease overland travel, and it shows .
Day 6 | Panjakent
Panjakent: an ancient welcome to Tajikistan
Panjakent was once the capital of the Sogdian Empire, a Zoroastrian civilization well predating Islam in the region. Though most people travel to Tajikistan for trekking, there are several ancient sites in the area worth visiting on your way to the mountains.
Part of your day is for crossing from Uzbekistan to Tajikistan, but it’s so easy you should still have time for checking out some ruins and relics.
Places to visit around Panjakent:
Sarazm: A stone’s throw away from the border crossing are the UNESCO-listed ruins of Sarazm. More than 5,000 years old, they’re remains of the first agricultural society in Central Asia. A remarkably tall human skeleton, dubbed the “Princess of Sarazm”, was found here with some of her ornaments. Archaeologists also found artifacts indicating ancient trading routes stretching as far as modern day Iran and Pakistan.
Panjakent Bazaar: This bazaar has a beautiful central building ringed by brick archways. It’s a good place to stock up on trekking snacks like nuts and dried fruits, or get your first taste of Tajik hospitality.
Old Panjakent: The 1,500+ year old ruins of ancient Panjakent are outside the city, accessible by taxi or hitchhiking. The hilltop site spans several kilometers; roam through it at your leisure. Here archaeologists found remarkably well-preserved frescoes. They’ve since been relocated to the Rudaki Museum in Panjakent, the National Museum in Dushanbe, and the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, Russia. You can see copies in the small museum at the Old Panjakent entrance
Day 7 | Haft Kul
Haft Kul: teary lakes
Seven small lakes make up the Haft Kul, “ lakes”, in northwest Tajikistan. Legend says they’re the tears of the daughters of a missing man. Science says they were created after earthquakes altered the Shing River’s course.
Whichever version you prefer, the Haft Kul road is one of Tajikistan’s most accessible treks; the perfect introduction to Tajikistan’s natural beauty.
To the lakes! Getting to the Haft Kul can be as easy or as strenuous as you like—you decide how far to trek.
Once you’ve reached your desired sleeping spot, put away your belongings and enjoy the surroundings! Aside from the azure lakes, there are plenty of villages to wander through, with many kind locals happy invite travelers for tea
Day 8 | Haft Kul
Today is for trekking to the final lake of Haft Kul: Hazor Chashma, thousand springs
The slope is gentle, the altitude low (the th lake is around 2,400 m/7870 ft), so you won’t be heaving too hard. It will take you a full day to do the entire hike with stops.
Day 9 | Lakes Loop: Haft Kul to Artuch
Lakes Loop: the finest of the Fann Mountains
The collection of lakes near Artuch are some of the most beautiful scenery the Fann Mountains have to offer. You’ll do a one-way version of the “Lakes Loop”: a popular route starting from Artuch alplager, passing Kulikalon Lake, and ending near a lake named Alauddin.
I promise you’ve never seen so many shades of blue, even if you have been to the Haft Kul. The panoramic views are guaranteed to amaze; if not, I’ll carry you down the mountain myself.
It’ll take a full day to reach Artuch Camp, locally known as alplager (Russian for mountain camp) or simply lager, from Haft Kul.
Places to visit on the way to Artuch Camp:
Tomb of Rudaki: Considered the “Adam” of Tajik/Persian poetry, Rudaki is one of the most notable literary figures in Tajikistan’s history. His mausoleum, with a bright white interior and grassy green exterior,was built in 1958.
Day 10 | Lakes Loop: Artuch Camp to Kulikalon area
Trekking distance: 8-9 km/5-6 mi, depending on campsite
Trekking time: 4-6 hours
Max elevation: ~3,200 m/10,500 ft
Into the Fann Mountains you go! Armed with a pack on your back—and possibly a donkey with gear—today your goals are to cross a mountain pass and find a campsite. Should be doable, right?
Start early from Artuch. Otherwise, you might struggle to find a suitably gorgeous place to set up your tent.
Most trekkers opt for the gradual slope from Artuch alplager to Kulikalon, but there’s a more scenic, if steeper, route. Instead of the standard path, walk away from the alplager toward Chukurak Lake.
Once you hit the emerald lake, veer left, and carry on up until you reach the 3,200 m pass overlooking the Kulikalon basin with its multitude of lakes. After that, it’s smooth sailing down: you should reach the camping area in 1 or 2
Day 11 | Lakes Loop: Kulikalon to Alauddin
Trekking distance: 7-8 km/4-5 mi, depending on campsite
Trekking time: 4-6 hours
Max elevation: ~3,750 m/12,300 ft
Today’s trek is the most strenuous. Though there are two passes you can take—Alauddin and Laudden—I recommend the higher Alauddin pass for the views. Continue following the path running beyond Bibikhonat Lake toward Dushakha Lake, then eventually veer left.
The trail up the pass is somewhat steep, and loose at the top. There’s little shade after the first half hour or so, so start early to avoid too much time in the hot sun. It’ll take two or three hours to reach the top of the pass. There’s a spotty TCELL mobile signal there if you need to make a call, but no data. Alas.
Alauddin’s ultramarine waters are visible from the top of the pass—use them as your guide on the steep one to two hour walk down the mountain. You’ll pass a small restaurant and campsite by a wooden bridge, then turn right and you’ll be at Alauddin
Day 12 | Lakes Loop: Alauddi to Vertical to Dushanbe
Trekking distance: 2-3 km/1-2 mi, depending on campsite
Trekking time: 30 min – 1 hour
Max elevation: ~2,750 m/9022 ft
No need to rush on your final mountain day! Sunrise over Alauddin is superb; wake up early to see fiery peaks reflected in the glassy lake surface. Hike around to the nearby Guitara Lake, named for its (supposed) resemblance to a guitar.
The path down to the trek’s end point, Vertical Alauddin, initially follows the stream running from Alauddin. It’s an easy downhill walk down to the alplager, past several small but stunning lakes
Day 13 | Dushanbe
Dushanbe: a perfectly pleasant finale!
Dushanbe isn’t huge—you can easily spend this first full day of park hoppin’ and museum chillin’ on foot.
Places to visit in Dushanbe:
National Museum has some interesting collections you will enjoy: some of the frescoes from Old Panjakent, and an entire top floor with unique artworks from Tajik artists.
Rudaki Park: Dushanbe’s prettiest park is next to the National Museum. Its tree-lined ways contain everything from Palace of Nations (where the president works) to eccentricities like the second tallest flagpole in the world. Visit after a trip to the museum, but know the park really comes alive at night.
Rohat Chaikhana: Massive teahouse on Rudaki Avenue. Beautifully decorated and a pleasant place to have an affordable nice lunch outside. You can sit in a columned open hall, or an elaborate wooden interior.
Museum of Antiquities: I know, I know, museums. But wait: it contains the bones of the Princess of Sarazm (creepy, but cool), plus an impressive collection of ancient artifacts.
Mehrgon Bazaar: Grand bazaar in the north of the city where you can buy everything from freshly diced carrots to stuffed dried dates.
Ayni Opera & Ballet Theatre: Here you can see operas or ballets in a grand theater for unbeatable prices. Pop in to see if any shows are on!
Sim Sim brewery: Tajikistan’s favorite beer is brewed here in Dushanbe. You can enjoy two varieties of local brew on its rooftop terrace, or in the restaurant below. Food and regional bar snacks are on offer.
Day 14 | Dushanbe
For your final day in Tajikistan, head a bit deeper into Dushanbe.
Places to visit:
Botanical Garden: A short walk from Chatr Café, stroll in this sprawling garden where couples and families enjoy days out. However, if you’re not already at the cafe I don’t think it’s worth a trip—there are other parks in Dushanbe.
Kurutobhona Olim: Kurutob is one of the few Central Asian dishes that excite me. Strips of bread, yogurt, salad, and herbs make up this curious but delicious dish (one of the few decent vegetarian options in Tajikistan!). Olim restaurant, outside the city center, is a popular local lunch spot.
Navruz Palace: Kokhi Navruz is an attractive palace on the water that’s been converted to a place for events and entertainment. Its grand halls overflow with woodwork, ceiling frescoes, and tiled mosaics. Visit its interior and/or dine at one of the teahouses by its entrance.
Chavonon Gardens: Lining a lake and beachfront behind Navruz Palace, these small gardens are a popular hangout spot in afternoons and evenings. There’s a small cafe on the water where you can sit and people watch .
SOME NOTES : The price would change a little depending on what hotels level you are going to stay in. That is why I didn't write about the accommodation and having meals(breakfast , lunch , dinner ). And you may choose wherever you want to stay and have meals, during the trip.
A RECOMMENDATION :If you add an extra day between the 8-th and 9-th days it would be very good for you .Because you will feel tiredness driving so much in mountainous roads, probably more than 8 hour(from Seven lakes to Artuch). So I recommend you to stay in Ruknobod village for a night. Ruknobod is a place which you can rest and revive dreamlike .
MINIMUM 2 PAX
THE PRICE INCLUDES:
-All transfers and transport; All accommodation. Hotel, Guest houses and Homestays.
-All meals (B.L.D.)
-1L bottled water per day for each
-Guide service; -Interpreter services
-VAT Tax and Profit of organization;
THE PRICE DOES NOT INCLUDE:
-Visa, international flight;
-Photo and video charges;
-All personal expenses (extra luggage fee, room service, medical expenses/insurance, etc.)
-Fees for extra service (folklore performance, meetings);
-Tips to the guides, drivers and donkey men;
OUR COMPANY IS A REASON FOR YOU TO ENJOY YOUR LIFE WORTHILY !!!
For a confirmed booking, a deposit of (10%) is required. Deposit is paid by credit card (secure payment via Stripe, no credit card fees). The remaining balance can be paid in cash upon start of the trip - unless Host & Traveler agree on different payment methods.
Cancellations can be made free of charge up to 30 days prior to the beginning of the booked service. The deposit (10%) is only refundable if the booking is canceled at least 30 days in advance.