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Overview: Uzbekistan & Silk Road | 15 to 17 Days
Departure: Select Saturdays
Group Size: Max 16 Participants
Prices From: $5800 per person

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Journey Overview: Join us on a small group tour along the Silk Road, visiting the countries of Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, and Kazakhstan! Explore ancient history, enjoy traditional cuisine, and immersive yourself in the local culture.

Day 1: Ashgabat, Turkmenistan
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Fly to Ashgabat, losing from 9 (East Coast) to 12 hours (West Coast). Arrive in Ashgabat and transfer to the centrally located hotel for check in and rest. (D) Hotel Oguzkent or similar

Day 2: Ashgabat, Turkmenistan
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Spend the day exploring Ashgabat. Highlights of today’s tour include the National Museum of History and Ethnography, the Arch of Neutrality and an archeologist led visit to ancient Nisa. Gather this evening with fellow travelers for a welcome dinner to celebrate the beginning of the journey. (B,L,D) Hotel Oguzkent or similar

Day 3: Ashgabat, fly to Tashauz, drive to Khiva, Uzbekistan
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This morning check out and transfer to the airport for a flight to Tashauz in the northern part of the country. On arrival, enjoy a short tour before driving across the border to the UNESCO-listed city of Khiva, Uzbekistan. Dinner is served at the hotel this evening. (B,L,D) Asia Hotel Khiva or similar

Day 4: Khiva, Uzbekistan
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Spend the day exploring Khiva on foot. Highlights include the Tash Hauli Palace, once the home of the khan and his four legal wives, and an open courtyard for enthroning the khans. Also see the 9th-century Dzhuma Mosque with an unusual wood ceiling and 115 carved wood columns, creating a forest-like effect. The khans had several residences, including the Tash Hauli Palace, but the Kunya Ark (Old Fortress) dates back to the 5th-century as the original residence. The view from the watchtower of the Kunya Ark encompasses an ensemble of architectural masterpieces. Over dinner, enjoy a colorful Khalfi performance of Khorezmian music and dance. (B,L,D) Asia Hotel Khiva or similar

Day 5: Khiva, drive to Bukhara
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This morning, depart Khiva for Bukhara. The drive lies across long stretches of the Kyzyl Kum, or Red Sands Desert. This is the same route ridden by loaded Silk Road camel caravans and once plagued by brigands on hand to plunder their riches. The landscape is made up of dunes, saxaul bushes and the distant mountains. Arrive in Bukhara in time for dinner. (B,L,D) Hotel Sasha & Son or Hotel Modarixon

Day 6: Bukhara, Uzbekistan
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Spend the day exploring Central Asia’s most ancient living city. The Old Town in Bukhara has a unified feel, drawn together by a central reflecting pool and plaza, by commonality in the structure of the domed bazaars and by the major monuments ringing the old town: the Kalon Assembly, the Zindan Prison, and the Ark Citadel. Enjoy an exclusive meeting with the Scientific Advisor of the Ark Citadel. Finish the day with a walk through Bukhara’s old Jewish Quarter, where in the mid 19th-century 2,500 families of prosperous merchants were estimated to have been living. This evening, visit a local madrassah to dine and enjoy a performance by local artists. (B,L,D) Hotel Sasha & Son or Hotel Modarixon

Day 7: Bukhara, drive to Samarkand via Gijduvan
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This morning after breakfast visit the Emir’s Summer Palace and the Bakhaudin Nakshbandi mausoleum complex before setting out for the nearby village of Gijduvan. Pay a visit to the ceramics workshop of the Narzulaev family, some of the most renowned ceramicists in Uzbekistan. Tour the kilns, studio and showroom, where glowing handmade ceramic plates and bowls are on display. After the tour, enjoy a lunch of home made specialties. Continue on to Samarkand. On arrival stroll through the Registan, Central Asia’s most noble square, which maintains the majesty that it has radiated through the ages. Three emblematic madrassahs frame the square, and loom over the empty space in the center. Check in to the hotel for dinner and overnight. (B,L,D) Emir Han or similar

Day 8: Samarkand, Uzbekistan
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Today continue exploring glorious Samarkand. Visit Bibi Khanum Mosque, built by Tamerlane to be the largest mosque in the Islamic world. Wander the row of tombs and mausoleums collectively called Shah-i-Zinda, or “place of a living king,” stretching between the present and the past. Pay a visit to Ulug Bek’s Observatory, one of the most advanced observatories of the ancient world. Other highlights include the colorful bazaar, as well as the Gur-Emir Mausoleum, the final resting place of Tamerlane. Later, visit a workshop where handcrafted paper is made according to traditions handed down from the 8th-century, when paper-making began in Samarkand. This evening enjoy a performance by a local dance troupe. (B,L,D) Emir Han or similar

Day 9: Samarkand, drive to Khujand, Tajikistan
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This morning after breakfast, get an early start and drive to the Uzbek/Tajik border and proceed with formalities to enter into the northern part of Tajikistan. After crossing the border into Tajikistan, continue kto Khujand. Situated at the entrance to the Fergana Valley on the Syr Darya River, Khujand is the second largest city in Tajikistan. A former religious center and an important Silk Road stop, Khujand is home to several medieval monuments. Upon arrival to Khujand, embark on a short introductory driving tour before transferring to the hotel for dinner and overnight. (B,L,D) Hotel Sugd or similar

Day 10: Khujand, drive to Tashkent
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After breakfast at the hotel, set out to explore the exciting Panshanbe Bazaar, Khujand’s pink-painted covered bazaar is overflowing with goods to buy. Pay a visit to the remains of the 10th-century Timurmalik Fortress, restored in 1999. Continue on to the Muslihiddin Memorial Complex, the final resting place of the twelfth century leader and poet Muslihiddin Khudjandi. Enter the Historical Museum of Sogdiana through a reconstructed medieval city gate. Displays here include ancient Sogdian artifacts and exhibits from more recent Tajik history. Enjoy lunch in Khujand before driving to the Tajik/Uzbek border. Following border formalities, continue onwards to Tashkent, Uzbekistan’s capital. Set out on an introductory city tour featuring Tashkent’s Independence Square, Shahid Memorial Complex, Courage Monument, and Alisher Navoi Park with its Artisan Center. Dinner this evening is served at a local restaurant. (B,L,D) Lotte City Hotel Tashkent Palace or similar

Day 11: Tashkent, fly to Bishkek, Kygyzstan
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Spend the morning exploring Tashkent's Old Town with its winding streets, mudbrick buildings and Middle Eastern feel. A visit to Old Tashkent begins with a stroll through Khast Imam Square, where some of Tashkent’s oldest monuments remain. The 16th-century Kaffal Shashi Mausoleum, the tomb of one of the first imams of the Muslim world, and Barak-Khan Madrassah, also 16th-century, are flanked by the 19th-century al-Bukhari Madrassah and the early 20th-century Tillya Sheikh Mosque, which houses the oldest Koran in the world. After lunch, transfer to the airport for the flight to Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Upon arrival, transfer to the city center for check in to the hotel. Bishkek is graced with large boulevards, friendly people and more trees than any other Central Asian city. On clear days, the permanently snow-capped mountains looming over the city provide spectacular views. Begin exploring Bishkek upon arrival with a visit to Bishkek's central square, Ala-Too. Also set on Bishkek's main square, the National History Museum features four floors of art and artifacts. Dinner is independent. (B,D) Hotel Plaza Bishkek or Hyatt Regency Bishkek

Day 12: Bishkek
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This morning, meet with a resident Kyrgyz individual who participated in the April 7, 2010 revolution and together visit the “Ata-Beiit” Memorial complex on the outskirts of Bishkek to pay respects to the fallen Kyrgyz heroes and leaders from ancient times to the modern times who have been laid to rest. Travel approximately 80 km outside the city to see the Burana Tower and the small nearby museum with its collection of ancient bal-bals, carved stone figures used as monuments. Lunch today is at the private home of a local family in Tokmak village. Enjoy the opportunity to meet the host and hostess and sample traditional Kyrgyz dishes. Following lunch, attend a demonstration of Kyrgyz horse games, such as Ulak Tartysh, a sort of polo played with a goat carcass, and Kurosh, which is wrestling on horseback. This evening, enjoy dinner accompanied by a Kyrgyz Manas folk performance at a local restaurant. (B,L,D) Hotel Plaza Bishkek or Hyatt Regency Bishkek

Day 13: Bishkek, drive to Almaty, Kazakhstan
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After breakfast at the hotel, continue touring Bishkek this morning. We will tour the State Museum of Fine Arts, focusing on art created during the Soviet period, the collection consists of more than 15,000 paintings, sculptures and decorative pieces. Then later this morning we will depart Bishkek, and drive overland for Almaty. Undergo border-crossing procedures and then continue onward to the former capital of Kazakhstan, Almaty. Spread out at the foothills of the Zaili Alatau Mountains in the Tien Shan range, Almaty is the largest city in Central Asia’s richest country, Kazakhstan. Present-day Almaty sits on the site of an old Silk Road oasis town called Almatu; laid waste by the Mongols in 1211, the city left no ancient remains. Almaty’s name means “the place with apples,” and the many varieties of wild apple in the vicinity give scientists reason to believe that this is where apples were first domesticated. Dinner this evening is served at a local restaurant. (B,L,D) InterContinental Almaty or similar

Day 14: Almaty
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A tour of Kazakhstan’s largest city begins at Panfilov Park with its Zenkov Cathedral, a wooden Orthodox church built at the turn of the century without the use of nails. Travel approximately 30 minutes outside the city to the Small Almaty Gorge. The Gorge is 5,577 feet above sea level and home to the famous Medeo Sports Complex with its Olympic ice rink. Enjoy lunch and a folk performance at a nearby restaurant in a yurt with the soaring Tien Shan Mountains all around. After lunch, make a visit to a traditional Kazakh falcon farm on the way back to Almaty. Visit the delightful Museum of Musical Instruments and enjoy a short performance. Tour the State Central Museum, a history museum with exhibits that detail the development of Kazakhstan and its people from the Bronze Age through the Russian Empire, the Communist Period and the present day. Visit Kok-Tobe, a 3,800-foot hill on the outskirts of Almaty with an aerial tramway leading to a recreation area at the top. Raise a toast to the end of our journey at a festive farewell dinner. (B,L,D) InterContinental Almaty or similar

Day 15: Depart Almaty
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The main tour concludes with an early morning transfer to the airport for international departures.

Expedition Route


This Acanela Expedition © is the perfect fusion between comfort & adventure. Embark on this small group exploration and have hands-on encounters with the incredible historical, cultural, and culinary highlights along the way.

Dates & Prices

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From $5800 / person | All inclusive package including boutique accommodation for all nights, all in-country transport, expert guides, 3 meals per day, and all activities as listed on the itinerary.*International Airfare and Visa Fees not included

+Single Room Supplement ($1000) and Extension add-ons become available after you select Book Now.

+ Ask About Optional Turkey and China Extensions (to the Silk Road Cities of Istanbul, Xian, and Beijing).

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