Location:This tour is held in Kugitangtau mountains, Gissarskiy range of Republic of Turkmenistan.
Durationis 13 days
Best timeto travel is April the 1st to October the 31st
Group size.This adventure travel holiday is generally limited to a maximum 6 people, not including any trek leaders or journalists. We feel that larger group sizes have an adverse for the natural environments and cultures.
SaltyCavesof Central Asia are the paradise for speleologists. You can see unique gypsum formations of Kugitang caves, salty miraculous caves of Khodja – Mumin, deepest
Caves of Asian continent - Boy – Buljuk and Kievskaja. Each of these caves, if it is a little grotto or labyrinth of many kilometers length, they are unique and each of them has its own secret. So one of them used to serve as shelter for Neanderthal men and well known from immemorial times, others have been discovered recently and still demanding serious investigations.
The history of Kugitangtau refers to conquer of Alexander the Great army in Central Asia (CIV) in days gone by. Nowadays there were more than 60 salty caves found and investigated in this area, there were biggest caves in Central Asia such as: Kop – Kashan, Khashim – Oyk, Dash – Jurak, Promejutochnaya (Intermediate), Kamenny Svetok (Stony Flower).
The unique underground palaces of Karlukskiy caves are famous thanks to their beautiful caves. This area is located in Kugitan Mountains, which are the South – Western extremity of the Gissarskiy Range on the Turkmenistan territory.
The basic property of Kugitanskiy caves is gypsum formations in different forms. Names of halls of caves say themselves: Goticheskiy hall, hall of Medusa, Fountain hall, Throne hall. There is opportunity to explore plateau with fossilized dinosaurs footprints, to visit place of pilgrimage of Muslim people – Kyrgyzota grotto besides exploration of caves, as well as to take sulphuretted hydrogen baths in Kaynarbobo springs. Best time to travel is March to May, September to November (temperature around caves is about 50 C in summer months).
Day 1.Arrival in Tashkent. Met at the airport and transfer to a hotel. Check in the hotel. A time to relax. Lunch. Excursion around the architectural monuments of Tashkent city, including visit to Kukeldash Medresseh (CXVI), Barak-Khan Medresseh (CXVI), Kaffal Al Shashe Mausoleum (CXVI), Khast-Imam complex and Orient Bazaar of Chor-Su,visiting old city, including Yunus-Khana Mausoleum, Museum of Applied Art, Square of Independence, Friendship Peoples Square, Metro, and the National Theater of Opera and Ballet for 4 hours. Dinner.Overnight at a hotel.
Day 2.Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Samarkand. (D=290km, T=4.5 hrs). Upon arrival in Samarkand check in a hotel. Lunch in a restaurant. Enjoy sightseeing in Samarkand including visiting the Guri-Emir Mausoleum (XV cc.), Registan Square (XVII cc.), Bibi-Khanum Cathedral Mosque (XV cc.), Ulugbek Observatory (XV cc.), Shakhi-Zinda Mausoleums ensemble, and Al-Bukhari complex and local bazaars. Dinner.
Day 3.Breakfast at the hotel. Go on sightseeing tour around Samarkand. In the afternoon after lunch - free time. Dinner.
Day 4.Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Shakhrizhabz (D=120km). Upon arrival in Shakhrizhabz check in a hotel. A time for refreshment. Lunch in a restaurant. Sightseeing tour around Shakhrizhabz for 3 hours, including visit to Ak-Saray palace, Complexes of Darut Tillavat and Darus Saodat. Dinner.
Day 5.Breakfast at the hotel.Transfer to the Karluk settlement (D=300-350km, T=8-9 hrs.). Lunch en route. Evening arrival at this settlement. Set of the camp. Dinner near a bonfire. Overnight.
Days 6-11.Visit caves : Promejutochnaya (Intermediate), Kop-Kosham, Khashim-Oyk, Dasg-Jurak. Every excursion is from the basic camp to the caves and back. It takes about 6-9 hrs. each day. Transfer with an excursion programme to one of the most picturesque caves of that region – Kamenniy Cvetok (Stony Flower). Transfer with an excursion programme to dinosaurs tracks on rocks, visit to the holy place of Kyrkyzota grotto. Survey of geological precipitation.
Day 12.Breakfast. Transfer to Samarkand. Upon arrival in Samarkand check in a hotel. Lunch in a restaurant. A time to refresh. Free time, visit to orient bazaar. Dinner.
Day 13.Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer to Tashkent. Lunch in the river site restaurant. Transfer to the airport. Departure from Tashkent.
Tashkent– Samarkand– Shakhrizhabz – Samarkand – Tashkent - on a comfortable bus
Shakhrizhabz – Karluk settlement – basic Camp – Samarkand - on a general-duty cross-country vehicle
Tashkent– a hotel
Samarkand– a hotel
Shakhrizhabz – a hotel
on trek – tents in the equipped basic Camp (2 for a tent)
3 meals a day in the cities
on trek – breakfast, dinner (hot course)
lunch - dry ration, hot tee, coffee.
The price quoted for this programme includes the following:
transfers to and from airports, A/C transportation and all scheduled excursions detailed on the itinerary
double/twin sharing accommodation on B&B basis with private bath or shower in each hotel of different category
All meals (FB)
SS programmes with local guides speaking your native language & entrance fees as specified in the programme
national guide (escort) speaking your native language and accompanying you for the entire itinerary
visa invitation letter (visa authorisation letter)
rent of necessary equipment (tents, dishes, etc.)
cook on trek
Fitness– This adventure travel holiday is suitable for anyone who is in good health and enjoys a fair level of fitness. A little adventures. Sports spirit. Daily walking for 6-8 hrs. Special speleology equipment is required.
The Central Asian caves are not equipped especially for wide audience and they are all in their virginal, primary kind. Movement inside sometimes embarrassed by narrow passage ways, like corridors, where you can move only creeping. Sometimes small ledges may block a way, what required simple climbing.
The price excludes the following:
Visas (for Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan)
Single supplement charge
Items of a personal nature, such as laundry, drinks, etc.