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traveling through kyrgyzstan tajikistan uzbekistan

Starting my research now to travel to kyrgyzstan tajikistan uzbekistan.
Has anyone done this trip?
Do you have recommendations?
I was going to plan it all myself, but I'm open to a travel agent that is knowledgeable in this trip -- do you have any recommendations?

Who - just me
When - Early October (coming up REALLY fast)
How long - total of 10days (short, I know - it's what I have)
What I want to see - a little taste of each place, I'll book a longer trip in the future to see the details I missed
Type of Traveler - I've slept in my car all the way up to some Fancy resorts --- So most anything goes

Some questions I have that I'm working on answering:
* Can I rent a car and drive through each country?
* If a car isn't the right choice, can I take overnight trains or busses

Posted by
8585 posts

This is not a travel guide, just a journal of her travels: Sovietistan. A Journey Through Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tadzhikistan and Uzbekistan by Erika Fatland. She's a Norwegian author who has traveled extensively in the area. Good read.

Posted by
1567 posts

Do a search on this topic. I had described my travels in the thread above which may be useful to you.

Car Rental - don't know since distances are vast crossing deserts and mountains. Roads in Tajikistan could be dirt and rough. Since you only have 10 days you will need to choose carefully what you want to visit. You may be able to get some low cost carriers on some routes. I know we flew from Osh to Bishkek since we did not want to endure another 12 hour drive after being on the Pamir Highway for 5 days. Don't know about overnight buses. Very unlikely there are trains in this part of the world outside of the small sections in Uzbekistan.

One suggestion - check out for traveling through these countries (years ago, they were the definitive source it seemed for traveling info)

Edit - here is more info on train travel along the Silk Road

Posted by
167 posts

First, do your ten days include the days you fly in, and then fly out? In that case, you will have only eight "full" days in the region. But whether eight or ten, it seems barely enough for even one of these three countries, to say nothing of three. A few other things to think about:

[1] Do you have experience driving outside of North America or Western Europe? If, lost and confused in a Central Asian city or town, you cause a bad collision, and find yourself surrounded by justifiably angry locals all yelling at you in Uzbek, would you be able to handle the situation?
[2] On a related note -- do you speak any of the local languages, or perhaps Russian (which, according to what I have read, may still be useful in the region)?
[3] As for sleeping in your car -- it's not really a question of how comfortable you will be, but how safe. I suppose the neighborhoods around "fancy resorts" are safe enough to park and sleep; you will need to find out, and fast, how safe it may be to do this in Central Asia, whether on remote roads, in small towns, or in cities. Keep in mind that if you do have trouble "camping" in your car, it may be from the police. (There are many cultures -- I don't know whether they include those in Central Asia -- where "most anything goes" is not always as popular with the local people, as it is with footloose tourists.)

I'll add that I've found the Islamic countries I've so far visited (West Africa, Turkey) to be generally safe and hospitable, but I haven't been to Central Asia and so can't personally affirm that it will be the same. Finally, if you haven't done so, you may want to do some of your research on the TripAdvisor forums, where you may get more expert advice. This one tends to attract mainly Europe-oriented tourists.

Posted by
128 posts

Thank everyone,
I've booked my flights

Itinerary so far (read this as a temporary itinerary to get me going)
* Fly to Kazakhstan (Almaty)
-- Plan to stay 2 day's
* Take bus from Almaty to Bishkek (get tickets at bus terminal)
-- Plan to stay 3 day's
* Take overnight bus to Tashkent (get tickets at bus terminal)
--Plan to stay 3 days
* Fly home

SOMETHING like that --- details are in the works

Things needed:
* Hotel in Almaty
* Things to do in each location

Posted by
1567 posts

Check out flights too - I know I flew between Bishkek and Almaty and it was fairly cheap. I think this turned out to be the shortest intl flight I've ever been on - only about 25 mins in the air.