Pamir highway (7 days)
Day 1: Dushanbe
Start city tour in the capital and the biggest city of Tajikistan. Visit Tajikistan National Museum of Antiquities, where the famous statue of Buddha in Nirvana is preserved. Continue to Botanical garden, where locals love spending leisure, and to local bazaar. Drive out of the city (30 km) to the remains of Hissar Fortress of 18 С. Visit two local madrasas and a mausoleum. Return to Dushanbe for overnight.
Day 2: Dushanbe – Kalai-Khumb
Departure to Pamir Mountains on Highway M41 via Tavildara and Khaburabad pass (or via Kulyab region). You may notice more conservative attitudes of local dressing style and beards, but the hospitality is just as welcoming. We pass over the Khaburabad mountain pass to Kalai-Khumb, which is located on the Panj River. Overnight in guesthouse.
Day 3: Kalai-Khumb – Khorog
Our road lies along the Panj River, a tributary of the mighty Amu Darya River. You will have a chance to see Afghanistan from the right side across the river. Continue driving to Khorog, a small mountain valley town, the capital of the autonomous Gorno-Badakhshan region. The city lies 2000 m above the sea level, strung out irregularly along the slopes of both sides of the dashing Gunt River. A few kilometers downstream, the Gunt merges with the Panj, the river that marks the border with Afghanistan. In Khorog, visit Botanical garden and the local museum. Overnight at hotel.
Day 4: Khorog – Ishkashim
In the morning, visit the famous mineral hot spring Garam Chashma and ruby mines of Kuhi Lal in Khorog (where Badakhshani rubies were mined as early as 14th century). Later depart to Ishkashim, a small town at the mouth of the Wakhan corridor, where the 19th century Great Game ended. Continue up the north side of the river with amazing views of the Pamirs to the left and the Hindu Kush to the right; a number of peaks in view are above 6,000 m. If you are lucky and you arrive to Ishkashim on Saturday, you can see the border Tajik-Afghan market on the Afghan side. Afghan visa is not required to cross to the market. Overnight at guesthouse.
Day 5: Ishkashim – Langar
Drive from Ishkashim to Langar. On the way, visit one of the old fortresses on the Silk Road Kah-Kaha in Namadgut. Continue to the Museum of Sufi Muborak-Kadami Vakhani, a local Sufi scholar, theologian, poet and traveller, who died in 1910. There is a stone pillar with a hole near his house, which he used to calculate a solar calendar and a building with inscriptions and decorations made by the scholar. We will also visit Buddhist Stupa in Vrang, sacred hot springs of Bibi Fatima Zahra, and ruins of Yamchun Fortress (IV-III B.C.) that guarded once Pamir branch of the Great Silk Road. Overnight at homestay.
Day 6: Langar – Murgab
Start the day with a trip to petroglyphs. There are more than 600 rock carvings made by prehistoric people lying under the open sky in that area. Continue to Khargush, source of Amu Darya River. Cross the road via pass Khargush (4344 m). Pass Nayza-Tash (4137 m). Arrive in Murgab. Overnight at hotel.
Day 7: Murgab – Karakul Lake- Kyzylart
Drive to drive to Karakul. The views of mountains and glaciers along the way are breath-taking as the road takes us to the Ak-Baital Pass (The White Horse Pass 4655 m)., real “The Roof of the World” and the hidden site in this expanse of arid landscape is the stunning Karakul Lake created millions of years ago. Drive via Kyzylart and Taldyk Passes to Osh in Kyrgyzstan. Arrive at border check point. End of services. Cross 9 km neutral zone. Arrive at the Kyrgyz border crossing point, which is at the bottom of the pass.
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