M41 "PAMIR HIGHWAY"
Day 1. Bishkek
Arrive Bishkek. Meet agent. Transfer to hotel. After some chance for rest we visit Tajikistan embassy to apply for visas. Free time to explore the environs or optional sightseeing. PM receive passports with visas. Overnight in hotel. Meals: BLD
Day 2. Bishkek - Osh - Sary Tash (190 km)
In the morning transfer to airport for 40 min Bishkek-Osh flight. Sightseeing of Osh including oriental bazaar - one of the biggest bazaars in Central Asia, Suleiman Too - the sacred hill of local Muslims also known as Solomon throne and local history museum in cave. PM drive to Sary-Tash village (190 km). Here the mountains are Pamirs - the roof of the world. Enjoy dinner with great panorama of Lenin peak (7,134 m) which dominates over the area. Overnight in homestay. Meals: BLD
Day 3. Sary Tash - Karakul - Murghab
Drive 50 km towards Kyrgyzstan/Tajikistan border. End of Kyrgyz section at Kyzyl Art pass (4,280 m) which forms the border with Tajikistan. Border formalities might take a while before we continue another 95 km to the shore of Karakul lake which at 3,915 m is too high to support aquatic life. Karakul is the largest of a range of about 800 ancient lakes in the Pamirs which were created by earthquake, tectonic activity and glaciers. Recent scientific research proved Karakul sea bed to be a landing crater of ancient meteorite. By the lakeside, there are some mysterious stone circles. Drive to Murgab (135 km) over Ak-Baital Pass (4,655 m), the highest section of road in the former USSR. Murgab is a center of the most highest mountain region in CIS bordering China. The terrain here is becoming barren and rocky. This region is inhabited by nomadic Kirgyz herders. Murgab is located in a valley at about 3,000 m above sea level and surrounded by high peaks. Also from this point you can see Muztag Ata peak – one of the highest mountains in Pamirs of 7546m. At night the clear view of the Milky Way is unparalleled. Overnight in homestay. Meals: BLD
Day 4. Murghab - Bulunkul lake - Khorog
Long day drive to Khorog - the center of Gorny Badakhshan. AM we drive to Bulunkul lake thru picturesque Alichur valley. Bulunkul village of just a several families is a small settelment on the shore of Bulunkul and Yashilkull lakes. Fish lunch with local family following one hour hike to the shore of Yashilkul lake. Continue to Khorog. Optional stop to bath at the hot, mineral filled springs at Jelondy on the way. Here the people are Pamiri or Badakhshanis, not Kyrgyz or Tajiks, a number of separate tribal groups with their own languages. Unlike their Sunni neighbours, the Badakhshanis are Ismaili, followers of the Aga Khan. Attitudes and dress are a little more liberal in Badakhshan. Overnight in guest house. Meals: BLD
Day 5. Khorog
Full day in Khorog exploring the environs and visiting the most highest in the world botanical garden. If that day falls to Saturday morning, visit Afghan market to buy traditional Afghan hats and scarfs. Visit small History Museum. Khorog also have a few internet cafes to send a message to friends and relatives. Overnight in guest house. Meals: BLD
Day 6. Khorog - Kalaikhumb
Long day drive (240km) to Kalaikhumb – a small village on Pamir Highway. Follow the fascinating road along the Afghan border. On the Tajik side, the road is asphalted and buildings have metal and glass in their construction. On the Afghan side, about 100m away, everything is mud, wood and donkey tracks. Overnight in homestay. Meals: BLD
Day 7. Kalaikhumb - Dushanbe
Long day drive west from Kalaikhumb towards Dushanbe – the capital of Tajikistan. Today's drive is a sharp contrast to the first few days of the tour. This region is much more strongly Muslim and this can be seen in the conservative dress and beards. Over a mountain pass to Dushanbe and the scenery and people change again. Overnight in hotel (***). Meals: BLD
Day 8. Dushanbe
Full day in Dushanbe: See Rudaki square, Ismail Somoni monument, friendship palace. Anyone with an interest in archaeology will enjoy the Museum of National Antiquities. The exhibits in this museum are mostly from Tajikistan's pre-Islamic civilizations (Greek/ Bactrian, Buddhist, Hindu and Zoroastrian). The centerpiece is the 14m reclining Buddha in Nirvana. Since the tragic destruction of the Bamiyan statues in Afghanistan, this is the largest surviving Buddha statue in Central Asia. See history museum if time permits. PM visit nearby Hissor Fort, former capital of Eastern Bukhara province; the site has two fine 18th/19th century madrassas one of which is now a fine ethnographic museum. Overnight in guest house. Meals: BLD
Day 9. Dushanbe - Airport
Transfer to airport for onward travel to your home or next destination. Meals: B
M41 "Pamir Highway" options:
- Reverse tour: Travelling in opposite direction? M41 "Pamir Highway" tour can be going in reverse. Please inquire.
- Extentions: Extend your tour over to Uzbekistan or return to Kyrgyzstan. Pls inquire.