The Silk Road Experience

Max Group 12

Private Room

Lifetime Deposit

24 Days Of Silk Road Magic Via 4 Stans

Are you wildly curious about the Silk Road and its ancient trade routes? What about the living, breathing customs and cultures of the magical Silk Road lands?

Uncover incredible travel stories, not just about the exotic goods and commercial transactions done back in the day, but also appreciate how the flow of ideas and innovations travelled from empire to empire, across cultures and civilisations, to change the world forever.

You’ll travel through four of the ‘Stans’, and really go deep into the far-reaching corners of these countries to fully encounter the soul and character of their peoples, foods and traditions. Witnessing some of the surviving artisanal trades that defied modernity is truly special.

Twelve inquisitive solo travellers, including you, will experience 24 wonderous days basking in the warm hospitality that the Stans communities along the historic Silk Road routes are known for. Then, enjoy your private room, all to yourself, at the end of each day.

This is just some of what’s waiting for you. Let Fencox show you the real ‘Silk Road’!

Highlights

Get amongst the cultures and histories of 4 Silk Road Stans

See skilled artisans working to prevent their ancient crafts being lost forever

Let the precise workmanship of the Tashkent Metros blow your mind

Ponder the influences of the region on modern day life

Be stunned by mind-blowing scenery from desert to mountains

Learn how food is connected to the people & their lifestyles

Trip Details

Trip Breakdown

Price

$13,516 AUD (per person – private supplement only)

  • $2,150 AUD deposit.
  • 2 week cooling off period applies.
  • Lifetime Deposit. If you need to cancel, your deposit is transferable to other trips.
  • Tip Kitty: $200 USD

Please refer to our payment terms in the FAQs.


Dates

Starts: Bishkek, 26 September 2024

Ends: Tashkent, 19 October 2024

Booked Out


Length

24 days / 23 nights


Arrival

B Hotel, Bishkek

Kyrgyzstan


Departure

Hotel Inspira-S, Tashkent

Uzbekistan


Group Size

12


Included

  • Airport transfers
  • Transport: all trains, private vehicles
  • Almaty > Dushanbe flight
  • Tashkent > Khiva flight
  • Same English-speaking trip leader for the entire tour, with local guides who speak the language in each destination!
  • All meals
  • Bottled water for the entire duration of the tour
  • All listed activities and entrance fees, and accommodation

Not Included

  • International flights
  • Travel insurance (compulsory)
  • Any visas required
  • Late check-outs at hotels
  • Meals and drinks not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Drinks with included lunches and dinners
  • Tip kitty
  • Personal expenditure

Accommodation

Your Fencox accommodation means having a private room, all to yourself – every single time.

On the Silk Road trip, you can mostly expect simple, comfortable 3-star hotels – we know our stuff when it comes to striking the balance between comfort at a reasonable price.

For this trip we’ve organised some fun and interesting rooms where we could, and a mix of Western-style hotels for you.

You’ll get to sleep in:

  • a Kyrgyz yurt camp
  • a Tajik community guesthouse
  • a comfortable 4-star hotel in Tashkent, Uzbekistan

Day 1: BISHKEK

All amazing adventures begin somewhere – and on this trip you’ll kick off in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. No matter when you arrive, you’ll be met at the airport by a welcoming face who will drive you to your accommodation.

Meet your fellow travel mates in the hotel before heading out for lunch and then take a casual stroll around Bishkek city with your expert guide.

Get to know the Kyrgyzstan capital (originally named ‘Pishpek’) a bit more personally today. Memorials mark the turning points of its more recent, Soviet-influenced history. You’ll soon learn that it’s the traditional bazaars, friendly locals, leafy boulevards and parks, and the ‘modern’ Soviet-styled architecture that fuse together and make this eclectic city tick.

Ease your hunger at a traditional local eatery, then gently walk it off amongst Bishkek’s greenery. Uncover its history as part of the Great Silk Road and enjoy the full sensory experience of hyped-up locals in action at Osh Bazaar – the city’s central market. This ancient market is a legacy of the traders and caravans that previously travelled this road.

Tonight is the group’s welcome dinner! You’ll head out to one of our favourite local restaurants and ‘break bread’ with your fellow trip mates.

💡While at Osh Bazaar today, we highly recommend you try the ‘salted cheeseballs!’

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: B Hotel (or similar), Kyrgyzstan

DAY 2: Bishkek City Tour & Ala Archa National Park.

Bishkek’s city centre combines wide boulevards and marble-faced public buildings with numerous, Soviet-style apartment blocks surrounding interior courtyards. The streets form a grid-like pattern, flanked on both sides of the city by narrow irrigation channels, watering an army of trees that provide much-needed shade in the hot Kyrgyz summers.

Walk along Oak Park to the open-art gallery of Sculptures. Visit Manas Sculpture and the  modern History Museum – the keeper of several Bronze Age cave sculptures.

During lunch, take in a small folklore show, accompanied by traditional Kyrgyz musical instruments.

An hour’s drive this afternoon will get you to Ala Archa National Park in the mountains just south of Bishkek (40 kilometres). Enjoy a relaxed walk, inhale that fresh mountain air while not forgetting to snap a few dozen pics as you gawk at this crazy, wild scenery all around you.

You will return to Bishkek city late this afternoon and a local family will welcome you into their home for dinner this evening.

💡Feeling brave? Today at the central Ala-To Square is your chance to try the local kvass drink, made from rye.

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: B Hotel (or similar), Kyrgyzstan

DAY 3: BURANA

Today you’ll really start to ‘feel’ ancient Kyrgyzstan. Right from the get-go, you’ll be interacting with its past, as the group stops at the medieval Burana Tower – the last remnant of the lost Silk Road city of Balasagun, once considered the centre of the world.

After lunching with a local family near Burana, you and your travel mates will watch a centuries-old, traditional horse sport, in a skilful game that appears similar to polo – only it’s often called ‘Goat’ and you’re about to find out why! Get to meet the horses after the event and take the opportunity for a photo or two with them.

Then, relax and take in the mountain scenery as you make your way to the village of Kochkor, the final stop for day three.

Dinner and overnight at a family guesthouse… it’s time to enjoy a hearty dinner and listen to some local stories.

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Nomad Lodge (or similar). Kyrgyzstan

DAY 4: FELT CARPETS OF KOCHKOR

Something special in store for today as we meet the artisans behind the craft – a local women’s cooperative. Indigenous, ancient arts are flourishing in Kochkor, famous for its Kyrgyz felt carpet or ‘shyrdak’ tradition. Until recently though, it was on the verge of disappearing, until UNESCO stepped in to protect this cultural asset, strongly tied to the age-old nomadic Kyrgyzstan identity.

Next up is an interesting stop at the village of Kyzyl-Tuu, a yurt-making hub! Enjoy a tasty lunch while a local yurt-building family shares some of their ‘yurt building’ secrets with you. Who knows – you may just want to build your own yurt when you get back home!

The afternoon has a few more surprises in store as you explore the beautiful Kyrgyz countryside on the way to the lake. The group will stay in a yurt camp here – your resting place for the next two nights. This yurt camp has a few more mod-cons, with a hot shower available.

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Picnic, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Tamga Yurt Camp, Kyrgyzstan (one toilet and shower per yurt, outside)

DAY 5: KAJI-SAI

By now, it’s day five and you’ll be fully in the rhythm of rural Kyrgyzstan. The hustle and bustle of the West will feel like another universe as you contemplate the serene countryside here, miles away from any distraction.

After breakfast, a short trip to Skazka Canyons (meaning ‘fairytale’) is on the cards. This unusual rocky landscape has been shaped by nature into quirky sculptures and formations. Here, you’ll have the good fortune of meeting the ‘Eagle Hunter’ and his eagle. Enjoy a silent conversation up close with this majestic raptor – a photo opp you definitely won’t want to miss.

Try out some newly learned Kyrgyz words with your trip mates over a traditional home cooked lunch this afternoon with a local family. After lunch, prepare yourself for a bit of cultural appreciation. You’ll visit a little museum, before settling down to enjoy a very different folkloric performance. Oh, and grab your swimmers too, if you’re up for a pleasant surprise afterwards!

You may also want to warm up your vocal chords for the evening… Kyrgyz Karaoke is definitely a thing! We love it… picture yourself sitting around a fire with your travel buddies, belting out a few Kyrgyz tunes.

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Tamga Yurt Camp, Kyrgyzstan

DAY 6: KARAKOL

Make your way along the southern shore of Lake Issyk Kul to the town of Karakol. En route you’ll visit Barksoon Gorge with its mixed flora bursting with colour. This is one of our faves with views that never end – imbibe that lake… a waterfall… and the surrounding mountain peaks. Pinch yourself to make sure you’re not dreaming!

Discover the connection between Yuri Gagarin, of historic space flight fame, and Issyk Kul. There’s a good chance you’ve not heard this story before. Lunch is a BBQ picnic in the Arabel plateau forest.

A customary meal with an Uighur family awaits you tonight, you’ll have the chance to dive in and help cook it up. All in all, a very interesting day!

INCLUDED: Breakfast, BBQ Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel 78 (or similar), Kyrgyzstan

DAY 7: JETY OGUZ

There’s lots to see during your city tour of Karakol this morning, including the wooden Russian Orthodox Church, standing strong since 1885. Karakol is the fourth largest city in Kyrgyzstan and has real multicultural feels.

You’ll then visit Yrdyk village and learn about Dungan culture, an ethnic Chinese diaspora, renowned for their kindness and hospitality. Indulge in a traditional lunch with a local Dungan family in their home.

On the way back to Karakol you will take a diversion into the side valley of Jety Oguz, famous for its unspoiled rock formations, ‘Seven Bulls’ and ‘The Broken Heart’. Here you’ll learn about the myths and legends behind their interesting names.

This afternoon is all about enjoying Mother Nature’s gifts, when you meet up with a small producer of local honey, then make time for a soothing soak at a hot spring before dinner.

Back in Karakol, you’ll dine at the Dastorkon, another favourite restaurant of ours. It’s traditional and oh so unique.

Rest well tonight as this is the last full day of our time in Kyrgyzstan. Tomorrow, Kazakhstan awaits!

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel 78 (or similar), Kyrgyzstan

DAY 8: CHARYN CANYON

This morning, the group will head directly to the Kazakh border. Kazakhstan is the largest country by area of the Silk Road, and while it has a reputation for broad open spaces, you’ll start in the raw mountain wilderness of the south east.

First up, a designated stop at Charyn Canyon. Somewhat smaller than its US doppelganger (you’ll understand when you’re there), many do say it’s much more attractive in certain parts. We’ll let you decide! A walk down to the river (3 kilometres) where a picnic lunch is waiting, before hitting the road again towards Almaty.

All in all, today’s been a bit of a road trip kind of a day, so there are no plans for tonight besides dinner in the city and then a deep, comfortable sleep. Tonight’s hotel is brand new, an indication of the revival efforts towards this historic part of the Silk Road.

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Picnic Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Kazzhol Park (or similar), Kazakhstan

DAY 9: ALMATY

Almaty is the cultural and business capital of Kazakhstan. You’ll start the day with a walk of the city, visiting Panfilov Park and the unique Zenkov Cathedral.

It’s more of a chill day, so this afternoon feel free to wander around Almaty some more, relax and watch the Kazakhs go about their day. You may notice, amongst other things, local handmade craftsmen’s goods. The Kazakh artisans behind them are tasked with guarding family traditions handed down through the ages, ensuring their skills – potentially under threat – survive another generation.

Later, check out fresh fruit and veggies at the Green Bazaar. Why is it called the Green Bazaar, you ask? You’ll find out when you get there. By the way, Almaty means ‘the place with apples’ (it’s believed that apples originate from here)! An apple anyone… ?

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Kazzhol Hotel Park (or similar), Kazakhstan

A DEEP DIVE INTO CULTURE

For each Stan you’re exploring, you’ll have an expert local guide with you as well as your overall trip leader. This means that every step of the way, you’ll have someone there who can translate any of your questions, explain the customs and help you understand the local culture on a much deeper level. Take advantage of this, by all means and hit them up for local tips while you’re at it! By this stage you and your Silk Road travel buddies will surely have picked up some Kazakh words or phrases. Try and communicate with the locals if you dare – they’ll absolutely love that!

DAY 10: ALMATY

There’s a lot going on in this trip already, so today’s nice and easy pace is welcome in the lead up to your afternoon flight to Tajikistan. A country that has been described as ‘mountains, upon mountains, upon mountains’, we just know that this is how it will remain in your memory!

Feel free to sleep in this morning, or you can join the other guys on a little trip to a local mountain resort. Take in the local views and explore the marvellous mountainside of the Trans-Ili-Atau by foot.

It’s only a short flight to Dushanbe and after checking into the hotel, we have a special Tajik welcome dinner hosted by your local Tajik guide tonight. As you turn in for the night, you realise you’re almost halfway through this Silk Road adventure, but there’s still so much more to explore. As of tomorrow, you’re in a new country!

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Atlas Hotel (or similar), Tajikistan

DAY 11: DUSHANBE

Dushanbe, is an absolute treasure of a city with just 800,000 people and a relaxed vibe. A local expert will join the group for your visit to the National Museum of Antiquities, Rudaki Park and a few other sights on this city trip.

Navruz Palace was meant to be a spectacular tea house, but the owners got carried away and ended up with a monument of total excess. Described by one person as ‘opulence gone wild’, it is now the Presidential Palace of Tajikistan. Definitely worth a group pic in front of this exorbitant landmark.

Some free time from the afternoon onwards, so make the most of it. Tomorrow you’re back on the road for more exploration – this time to the wondrous Tajik mountains, with a chance to meet and mingle with some locals and bask in some Tajik hospitality. They’re looking forward to meeting you!

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Atlas (or similar), Tajikistan

DAY 12: ISKANDERKUL LAKE

It’s a big road trip today, with over seven hours on the road!

The drive itself though, turns into a major highlight as you wind your way through the rugged valleys and mountains of Tajikistan. A stop at Iskanderkul Lake (named after Alexander the Great) for lunch, before a leisurely afternoon once you’ve checked into your simple lakeside accommodation.

Soak up the mountain scenery, or stretch those legs and take a short hike to a nearby waterfall. The pristine air will wake up your appetite. Tonight’s dinner is at the cottages and if you feel like company later, you can hang out with your trip buddies… share some photos and compare stories of your adventure so far.

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Simple cottages with private bathrooms, Tajikistan (or similar)

DAY 13: ISTARAFSHAN

It’s a scenic drive through Shahriston Pass this morning. On the way you’ll make a stop in the 2,500-year-old town of Istarafshan, founded by Cyrus the Great – creator of the first Persian empire. Meet Istarafshan’s famous skilled artisans – a reputation they’ve upheld since the 14th century. Today you’ll visit the workshops of blacksmiths whose specialty are hand-crafted knives. Lunch with a local comb-maker – Mr Usto Sodiq and his family – a master in the ancient art of wooden comb making. What a privilege to meet these guys.

The 90-minute drive through the Fergana Valley to Khujand goes quickly, so there’s some time to settle into the hotel and relax a little before dinner at a local restaurant.

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Sugdiyon, Tajikistan (or similar)

DAY 14: KHUJAND

Today’s city tour takes in Panjshanbe Bazaar, Tajikistan’s biggest market and the Maslihaddin Mosque – both central to the town. By now you’ll have become accustomed to the mass of colours, textures, sights, sounds, aromas – and hopefully tastes(!) associated with the Silk Road bazaars. All with their own little quirks.

This afternoon, stop by the Arts School where the students will perform their traditional Tajik musical and dance performance. You may even be invited to dance with them if you’re keen!

When evening comes around you will visit the Guest House Anora Museum. It is one of the few remaining places in Khujand to experience an authentic, pre-soviet era, traditionally-designed Tajiki house. You’re here to share a customary Tajik meal together with the hosting family, that you too have had a hand in preparing. That’s right! You will roll up your sleeves for a fun Tajiki-style cooking masterclass. We’ll let you be the judge as to whether or not your friends back home get to taste your Tajiki culinary skills!

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Sugdiyon, Tajikistan (or similar)

DAY 15: TASHKENT

It’s just a one-hour drive to the Tajikistan-Uzbekistan border this morning and by now you know the drill – cross by foot to meet your Uzbek guide and friendly driver on the other side. You’ll reach Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, in time for an Uzbek-style lunch at a local restaurant.

Your expert guide will lead you on an afternoon tour of the city, which may happen to include some chance meetings with local artists in Tashkent’s eclectic artists’ corner – locally known as ‘Broadway’ – with its pockets of traditional Uzbek and modern street art.

Tonight, your local Uzbek guide will host a welcome dinner in one of his favourite local restaurants (we always trust the locals to know where the best food is!)

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Inspira-S, Uzbekistan (or similar)

DAY 16: TASHKENT

Tashkent has a different feel to most central Asian cities. Due to a huge earthquake in 1966, the city was rebuilt in Soviet style, designed to be the best example of Soviet town planning and architecture.

Not all buildings were ruined in the quake; some did survive and the group will visit some highlights today before taking a ride on the famous Tashkent Metro – one of the most beautiful in the world. If you imagine metro stations to be dirty and boring, well, the Uzbeks would like to have a little word with you!

Following lunch, a special treat is in store as you visit the craftsmen section of the city and meet a local artisanal family, the Rahimovs. Get caught up in their passion for ceramics and preservation of Uzbek culture as they proudly show you the inner workings of their Uzbek ceramics’ workshop.

INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Inspira-S, Uzbekistan (or similar)

DAY 17: KHIVA

Khiva, considered an open-air museum, is a UNESCO destination and a favourite of many Silk Road travellers. Smaller in scale, with just 80,000 people, it has an exceptional atmosphere that obscures its dark history. An early morning domestic flight from flight Tashkent will get you there.

You’ll love Khiva; an endless labyrinth of alleyways and blue mosaics. Despite its infinite beauty and feeling of calm, the Khiva of old was a local slave market hub. This is a reminder that the Silk Road may be magical today, but it hides many skeletons in its shadows. On a side note… the locals believe that Shem, son of Noah, founded the city.

Dine with your fellow travellers on a patio, as the sunset forms a backdrop behind the glorious city views.

💡Sample a local Khiva vodka – a tradition kept from the Russian era – whilst watching the sun drop below the horizon, if you’re up for it!

MEALS INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Asia, Uzbekistan (or similar)

DAY 18: KHIVA

Today you will spend another full day in the magnificent Silk Road oasis of Khiva. Walk the citadel city walls during the morning. Get an insider’s view of Uzbek life inside the city’s residence quarter, when you visit a home where the neighbourhood women help you prepare traditional pasta known as Shivit Ashi. A special, sensory experience indeed.

The afternoon is free for you to wander the magical streets of Khiva, or spend some time hunting for handmade souvenirs. Tonight’s highlight is dinner in a traditional madrassa with a folklore performance show.

MEALS INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Asia, Uzbekistan (or similar)

DAY 19: TRANSFER TO BUKHARA

Drive through the Kyzylkum desert dunes, with a lunch stop and leg stretch along the way.

This scenic five-hour journey is a relaxed way to amble (and just so you know, the roads can be a bit on the rough side in sections – but it’s worth it!). A venture through the Uzbek countryside before arriving in the early evening to your destination… just in time for dinner in the Old City of Bukhara – one of our favourite cities. Wait until you feast your eyes on this architecture!

Do note: the major cities of the Silk Road – Samarkand, Bukhara and to a lesser extent Khiva are very much discovered – thanks to their well-preserved and exotic beauty. The Silk Road is quite popular! We’ll do our best to time your visit to avoid the crowds, but just be aware that you’re not going to be the only show in these towns.

MEALS INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Amelia, Uzbekistan (or similar)

DAY 20: BUKHARA

Bukhara is one of the crown jewels of the Silk Road trade route. A UNESCO-listed city, it’s a zig-zag of backstreets, bustling bazaars and historical monuments. Its moniker ‘Bukhoroi Shareef’, meaning ‘Holy Bukhara’, is named so for its hundreds of mosques and many mausoleums.

Today, you’ll visit famous sights such as the Samonid Mausoleum (one of the most important monuments in Central Asia), the Chasmai Ayub Mausoleum and the Bolo Hauz Mosque. The Poikalon complex is today’s centrepiece. Despite its religious origins, the highest minaret is nicknamed the ‘Tower of Death.’ See if you can figure out why! (Hint: it’s a long way down.)

And then in the evening, you’ll be introduced to Makshuma Niyazova, an intriguing local historian and archaeologist who received her PhD in 2007. During a short walk and over dinner, she’ll explain the rituals and history of this ancient Silk Road city. Feel free to ask her any question you like – about history, definitely, but also about what life is like for a professional woman in modern Uzbekistan.

MEALS INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Amelia, Uzbekistan (or similar)

DAY 21: BUKHARA TO SAMARKAND

After breakfast today you’ll get time to visit Ark Citadel – Bukhara’s original fortress and a symbol of power – quite possibly more than 2,000 years old. Then, you’ll meet up with Rahman, a famous 6th-generation embroidery artist,

A private room awaits your group in a local restaurant where you’ll be entertained by a live performance – a special treat of song and dance.

In the afternoon you’ll hitch a ride on the comfy high-speed train to Samarkand – one of the world’s oldest cities – and arrive with plenty of time to relax before dinner. Or perhaps you might want to explore the neighbourhood around your hotel with one of your travel companions.

MEALS INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Rabat, Uzbekistan (or similar)

DAY 22: SAMARKAND

Samarkand is one of the most popular sites of the Silk Road. Conquered by both Alexander the Great and Genghis Khan, this key trading post is dripping with history.

Registan Square is the focal point of ancient Samarkand framed by three beautiful madrassas (religious schools) – Ulugbek, Sherdor and Tillya Kori. Today will be full of exploration of this and other important local sites, accompanied by your local guide.

Dinner is a highlight – you’ll join the family of Farida Apa, a local primary school teacher. Learn how to make the local dish ‘Plov’ under her expert guidance before enjoying the end product and the evening spent with her family.

Back in the city once more, Registan Square is resplendent in the evening and we’ll go to bed with heart full and belly content.

MEALS INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Rabat, Uzbekistan (or similar)

DAY 23: SAMARKAND – TASHKENT

You’ve already reached the last full day of the tour. Feels like so long ago… yet it also feels like yesterday that you kicked off on this mind-bending journey.

Well, it’s not over yet!

A village at the base of the Hissar mountains waits to be explored. If you’re in the mood, you can do a short easy hike through the village here and surrounding mountain trails, the best way to view life through the eyes of a local – and speak with the ones you meet along the way.

Use the rest of the day to absorb some of Samarkand’s ancient history as it was, before the Mongols destroyed it in the early 13th century. Get to see the spectacular tile work on the Timurid-dynasty family necropolis (make sure your camera is ready for this one), and sneak in one last bakery visit in the backstreets of the Old Town – perfectly timed if you’re feeling a bit peckish – before the group heads to Tashkent on the high speed train.

Sadly, the time has come for the group’s farewell dinner, where you’ll find yourself lingering… reminiscing with your trip mates over the vivid details of this memorable trip. Perhaps some last-minute sharing of photos… and now’s the time to grab any last group shots.

MEALS INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
ACCOMMODATION: Hotel Inspira-S, Uzbekistan (or similar)

DAY 24: FAREWELL, FRIENDS

Kyrgyz yurts. Kazakh steppes. Tajik mountains. Uzbek history. Just think that you’ve lived it for yourself and now have countless stories to tell! You will have witnessed each country’s precious culture, rich history and unique heritage. Whenever anyone mentions the Silk Road, you’ll be able to say… ‘I’ve been there!’

And, you’re all the more richer for having bonded with your newfound travel mates after starting out as a solo adventurer. As you make a final swap of contact details and vow to continue on with the group Whatsapp, who knows… you may even see another trip in your future!

Transfer to the airport.

Trip Map

Frequently Asked Questions


Prior to the payment of your full balance, the final price may change if there is a significant variation in the AUD:USD exchange rate. Our trip pricing is determined by what the exchange rates are at the time of publishing the trip.

The pricing on this trip is based on an exchange rate of 1 AUD:0.63 USD.

A deposit of $2,150 is required to hold your spot. Payment can be made by credit card (fees apply) or bank deposit.

There is a cooling-off period of 2 weeks. (Applicable to all bookings made 110 days in advance.)

We have implemented a ‘lifetime deposit’ guarantee. Deposits are not refundable, but they are transferable at any time, right up until the first day of the trip.

The final balance of the trip is required 95 days in advance of the departure date. Our suppliers require upfront payment well in advance to guarantee availability.

Please refer to the full terms and conditions for further information.

This trip visits four different countries, each with their unique histories, cultures and languages. So that you’re experiencing the essence of each country, your trip will be led by two culturally different guides (the transition occurs on Day 10), and from time-to-time, other specialty guides will join the group too.

The weather on this trip varies depending on the specific location and altitude. However, by mid-September, temperatures are gradually decreasing and you will experience cooler days and colder nights. Expect daytime temperatures ranging from 18°C to 30°C, while night time temperatures can drop significantly, reaching around 5°C to 15°C – so it’s advisable to pack warm layers!

Being tour operators (not travel agents), we are not licensed to sell flights. We recommend contacting your trusted local travel agent to book flights if you’re in need of assistance.

There are no Visas currently required for Australian and New Zealand passport holders to visit any of the Stan countries on this itinerary.

So long as you have a general level of health and fitness, you’ll be fine. There’s no specific exercise planned for this trip, but there will be days where you’ll be walking and spending a lot of time on your feet. Daily activities may include city and countryside walks on uneven and undulating ground. You’ll be getting on and off various forms of transport, climbing the occasional set of stairs and you may encounter over-the-bath hotel showers.

All activities are optional, meaning that if you don’t feel like it, you can skip it but it will be impossible to enjoy your trip if you’re not able to do a walking tour for a full afternoon. Unfortunately, this tour cannot accommodate people requiring walking aids.

There’s no need for women to wear a hijab throughout the trip, but ladies will be expected to obscure their hair when entering mosques and should pack a lightweight scarf for draping loosely over their head at those times. We also encourage both men and women to dress a bit more conservative in general. Our typical recommendation is to cover shoulders and knees. Tajikistan is more conservative than the other countries.

Feel free to bring your bathers, as there will be limited opportunities to swim.

Some days do involve long stretches of driving and you need to be the kind of person who enjoys road trips. Any such necessary long drives are offset by photo stops, picnic lunches, roadside pit stops, tea/coffee breaks, and of course seeing points of interest, with leg-stretching walks.
Our vehicles are comfortable, well-maintained and not prone to breaking down.

Fixed line Internet & Wi-Fi Internet access will be available in nearly all hotels. However, in Kyrgyzstan, it’ll be restricted to larger towns and villages where you will have the opportunity to pass through every few days. In the countryside, you’ll have little access. If you must stay in reach, speak with your guide about getting a local SIM card.

Most of our trips have a Tip Kitty because many cultures have interesting and diverse rules when it comes to tips. We’ve found it to be the easiest way to combat over-tipping, under-tipping or having the tip fall into the wrong hands.

Our goal is for guests to relax and know that the complexities of tipping are taken care of, on their behalf. On this trip you’ll visit four different countries with independent currencies, so for the sake of ease, we ask that you provide the amount in USD.

As your trip transitions on Day 10 to your second regional guide, we ask your contribution be:

  • $90 USD given to your guide in Bishkek on Day 1
  • $110 USD to your regional guide in Almaty on the evening of Day 10.

The Kitty will be managed by your regional guide and distributed along the way at restaurants for included meals, hotel staff, drivers and all guides.

Have more questions? Check out our FAQ page!