Group size: 1 - 16 persons
Please note that itinerary and price are subject to change due to airline and train schedule changes, currency fluctuations and other unforeseeable events.A shorter itinerary doesn’t mean that this tour isn’t full of the most interesting and important sights of Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan in Central Asia; Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia in South Caucasus. In just 27 days, you’ll go from medieval metropolises to vast desert, rich flavors to richer decorations. Uzbekistan is all about the great cities of the Silk Road: Tashkent, Khiva, Bukhara and Samarkand. The grandest monuments of these cities have been preserved, allowing you to walk through the same streets that traders and caravans would have crossed thousands of years ago. Turkmenistan is a land of desert, with oasis cities that flourished as refuges from the intense heat and helped those on long journeys. Kunya-Urgench and Mary, once powerful cities, have long since become ruins, while Ashgabat has risen to become the grand capital of Turkmenistan. Head to Baku next, to immerse yourself in the charm and character of the Caucasus. Enjoy the prehistoric petroglyphs and royal palaces of Azerbaijan, and the mountain churches and warm flavors of Georgia. Both countries are full of multicultural traditions and stunning landscapes, sure to leave you with vivid memories. The Essentials of the Silk Road Tour does more than just take you to these places - you’ll get to taste regional dishes, meet with locals, and share your experiences with like-minded travelers from around the world in your group.
Participants need to be in good health, be able to walk for 4-6 hours every day at moderate speed, climb stairs and hills, and be able to carry their own luggage for up to 1 km across borders.
- Azerbaijan National History Museum – the perfect place to learn about everything from the ancient history to the modern era of the country. The museum occupies the former home of an oil billionaire who lived there at the beginning of the 20th century;
- Heydar Aliyev Cultural Center – the quirky architectural design by prominent female architect Zahi Hadid makes this one of Baku’s most recognizable buildings. The Center showcases examples of a wide spectrum of Azerbaijani culture: a selection of national costumes, musical instruments, and carpets provide a good insight into local craftsmanship;
- Azerbaijan State Carpet Museum – a beautiful museum built in the shape of a rolled carpet, this is the richest collection of Azerbaijan carpets and provides fascinating insights into the world of intricate designs and natural dyes;
- Sea Boulevard – a favorite place for locals since 1909, making it one of the best people-watching spots in Baku;
- Funicular ride to the iconic trio of Flame Towers – travel tip: the towers are best seen in the evening when they are beautifully lit up;
- Ganjlik Mall – which offers the best shopping facilities in the city;
- Opera and Ballet Theater – which usually offers performances at weekends. To see what’s on and to book tickets, please visit https://iticket.az/en.
Advantour offers an optional culinary masterclass on traditional Georgian food. The masterclass includes 3-4 dishes and snacks and takes 4-5 hours. It should be booked in advance. The price is 60 USD per person.
We suggest the following activities and places to visit in Tbilisi:
- Georgian National Museum on Rustaveli Avenue – to visit the “Archaeological Treasury” exhibition;
- National Gallery on Rustaveli Avenue – to see the works of the famous Georgian artists Niko Pirosmani, David Kakabadze, and Lado Gudiashvili;
- Tbilisi flea market at Dry Bridge – where you can find antiquities (many of which are from the Soviet era), paintings by local artists, and handmade Georgian souvenirs;
- David Agmashenebeli Avenue – a recently-renovated pedestrian street full of historical buildings that have beautiful facades in the art nouveau, pseudo gothic, and classicist styles with a mix of typical Georgian ornamentation and balconies. All along the street there are plenty of cozy art cafés, galleries, shops, and wine bars;
- Dezertirebi Bazaar – which sells local, natural products including Georgian sweets (such as churchkhela); various types of dried fruits, nuts, and spices; and Georgian cheeses;
- Funicular railway to Mtatsminda Mountain – which offers a beautiful view of Tbilisi;
- Wander in Sololaki – a neighborhood full of art nouveau houses.
For those who are interested in culture, we suggest visiting the State Opera House of Georgia to enjoy a ballet or opera performance (opera.ge). You can find out what other cultural events are on in Tbilisi, and book tickets, at tkt.ge.
- All transfers;
- Accommodation based on double/twin room sharing, breakfasts included;
- Sightseeing tour program in each country with local English-speaking guides;
- Entrance tickets to sights as per itinerary;
- Economy class tickets for flights: Mary-Ashgabat, Urgench-Tashkent, Tashkent-Baku;
- Economy-class tickets for trains: Tashkent-Samarkand-Bukhara
- Visa support letter for Uzbekistan triple entry visa;
- Visa support for Turkmenistan tourist visa;
- E-visas to Tajikistan and Azerbaijan;
- National folklore show in Bukhara on Day 6;
- Meals: lunch in Penjikent on Day 4, lunch in Mary on Day 7, camp style dinner at Darvaza on Day 8, dinner in Baku on Day 12, dinner in Tbilisi on Day 18, farewell dinner in Yerevan on Day 26;
- Two wine tastings (at Khareba Winery in Georgia and Areni Winery in Armenia).
- Full board (lunches and dinners not specified above);
- Hotel charges for additional services;
- A tax of 2 USD per night in Turkmenistan, paid to the hotel upon check out;
- Personal travel insurance;
- Consular fees for tourist visas and Turkmenistan migration tax (14 USD);
- Visa support for Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan tourist visas (if necessary);
- E-visas to Georgia and Armenia (if necessary);
- Outbound and inbound flight tickets.
|Tashkent - 2 nights|
|Ichan Qala, Sharq, Bek or similar|
|Samarkand - 2 nights|
|City, Sultan, Platan or similar|
|Seven Lakes - 1 night|
|Bukhara - 2 nights|
|As-Salom, K.Komil, Volida or similar|
|Ashgabat - 1 night|
|Ak Altyn, Grand Turkmen|
|Darvaza - 1 night|
|Khiva - 1 night|
|Malika Kheivak, Orient Star or similar|
|Baku - 4 nights|
|Park Inn, Intourist|
|Sheki - 1 night|
|Sheki Saray, Sheki Palace, Marxal|
|Telavi - 1 night|
|Akhasheni Wine Resort|
|Tbilisi - 4 nights|
|River Side, Ibis, Citrus, New Tiflis|
|Gudauri - 1 night|
|Yerevan - 4 nights|
|DoubleTree by Hilton|
|Goris - 1 night|