Trekking in the Pamirs and adventure with a jeep, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan
Type of tour: This tour is designed those who would like have combined tour with more treks and less jeep ride. Thus, it offers a mixed package, first admiring the landscape from a car and acclimatizing to the climate, and then after hiking in the Wakhan valley. We will hike in lowlands of the Gunt valley. After we will visit the highlands of Eastern Pamris with pastoralist communities and hike in these areas. After we will visit the Shaimak region, with different landscapes near the Chinese and Afghan borders. Then we will visit the Alai Range, Lenin peak in Kyrgyzstan. The tour starts from Dushanbe and ends in Osh, Kirgizstan.
Major Destinations: Dushanbe, Kalaikum, Khorog, Ishkashim, Langar, Bachor, Gunt Valley, Alichor, ZorKul area, Shaimak, Ak Suu region, Murgab, Kara Kul lake, Lenin Peak, and Osh city.
Estimate Duration:17 days of travel in total, 3day lowland hiking, 4 days of hiking around ZorKul area, the rest of the days include rest days and landscaping observation with a jeep.
Group size: 1-7
Notice: The best season to visit is May to October
Day 1 Dushanbe - Kalaikum
Transfer from Dushanbe to Kalaikum through Kulob/ Excellent views on the way. We will stop for photo shooting. Visit of Hulbuk, a 10the century Silk Road building. Breathtaking landscape along the Panj river (the famous Oxus river). Across the river lies Afghanistan. We will drive along the river, having a picnic in the pristine nature. Overnight in a Guesthouse (BLD).
Day 2 Kalaikum - Khorog
Drive to Khorog the administrative center of GBAO region or the Tajik Pamir Mountains. After passing through the Vanj valley, we will enter into the Pamir region, geographically and administratively. On the way, you will see many different villages in both Afghanistan and Tajikistan. Views of the valley are amazing. Lunch in a Chaikana, local teahouses. Overnight in a hotel (BLD).
Day 3 Khorog - Yamg
Continue to Ishkashim, the administrative center in the Wakhan valley. Here we enter various Wakhy settlements. Ethnologically, historically and culturally the social landscape is unique. On the way we will stop for a break at some hot springs at Garm-e-Chasma. After that, we will reach the mouth of the Wakhan River valley. This is where the 19th century Great Game ended, between the Russian and British empires. From here, the road continues up along the north side of the river. There are amazing views of the Pamirs to the left and the Hindu Kush to the right. We will stop along the way for a scenic picnic. Overnight in a homestay (BLD).
Day 4 Yamg – Langar – Bachor
Early in the morning, we will drive along the Wakhan valley from Ishkashim to Langar. We will admire the Khakha Fortress, dating from the third century BC and rising from a platform of natural rock. Just 300m further on is the interesting Ismaily mazar (tomb) of Shah-i-MardanHazrati Ali. After that, we move on to next Zoroastrian, the "Fortress of Fire Worshippers". Further up the hillside, there is are the hot springs at Bibi Fatima with minerals and very salty water, the water at Bibi Fatima is crystal clear. There are several other places of interest to stop. Above the village of Vrang, on a cliff-side pitted with caves, stands a Buddhist complex dating from the 4th-7th centuries. At Yamg, visit the reconstructed home of Sufi mystic Muabara Kadam, who died in 1910. Near his house, there is a stone pillar with a hole, in which he used to calculate a solar calendar. In the cool of the morning, we climb up above Langar village to see the petroglyphs. Drive from Langar to Bachor over the Khargush Pass (4344m), then over the Koitezek Pass (4271m). These barren landscapes are beautiful. It is like typical western desert and canyons. After the passes we will visit Jilandy hot spring, then drive to Bachor. It is a small village, far from town. Few people live in Bachor village. These communities live in an incredible location or valley. They are settled farmers with few farming activities. The local people are very friendly and the lifestyle is incredibly simple and harmonious with nature. If there is a place to escape your technologically advanced world, it will certainly be Bachor. Overnight in a homestay (BLD).
Day 5 Gunt Valley Trek 1 (from 2800m to 3400m)
Not many people visit Gunt valley because the valley was not historically used as a main path valley like Wakhan or Bartang. Nonetheless, the people and nature are unique. In the morning, we start walking from Bachor to Chabdar. The valley is beautiful. The path is not too rough, but smooth. It slowly goes up from 2000 to 3000 meters of elevation. It is better to start trekking from Bachor because the village is located at lower elevation. Thus, as we hike we will start acclimatizing. Overnight in tent, (BLD).
Day 6 Gunt Valley Trek 1(3400m to 3700m)
Morning start walking from Chabdar valley to MarjanayJailoo (summer pasture) along the Yashilkul lakes. As we trek up the landscape changes from lowlands to highlands, where the colours change from green into. Desert-like. However, it is beautiful and so silent. You will not hear any noise except natural sounds of wildlife. Overnight in tent (BLD).
Day 7 Gunt Valley Trek 1 (3700m to 3800m)
Today we walk from Yashilkul Lake to Bulunkul Lake, ride or even walk along both lakes. We will visit some prehistoric stone circles, old caravan Sarai, and an early Islamic mausoleum. After a picnic, we will cross the Alichor river, then continue to Alichor village. You might be wondering why we visit settled villages. Even though the landscape is beautiful, there is high domination of nature and wildness in the region. Therefore, despite the basic services staying close to villages makes logistical management easier. Overnight in a homestay (BLD).
Day 8 Alichor - Bashgumbez
From Alichor, a small settled village of nomadic Kyrgyz, we continue our trip by jeep on Pamir Highway to Bashgumbez village. The terrain here is desolate but grandiose. The valley is nice. There are many summer pastures where nomadic Kyrgyz graze their livestock. On the way, we will visit Akbalik holy lake or sacred lake. This is holly holy for the people living around the area. After we visit Bashgumbes village,9 km from the main road, where you will see a very old Chinese tomb. Overnight in Yurt stay (BLD).
Day 9 ZorKul – CheshDobo Area Trek 2
From Bashgumbez Village (3900m) to Akzoo lake, on the way we will cross the Kara - Seky Pass (put the name before the word Pass) (4500m), with a very beautiful view of the mountains. Yaks will carry luggage. On the way we will see marmots and have a picnic. You will witness nomadic life and enjoy the hospitality of Kyrgyz nomads, Overnight in a yurt or tent. (BLD).
Day 10 ZorKul – CheshDobo Area Trek 2
In the morning, we will start trekking to the Kengshiber (4100m), summer pasture. The valley is unique because it offers high land pasture and pastoral communities. On the way we will see yaks, sheep and typical Eastern Pamir nomadic lifestyle. View of the valley is wonderful and you will meet local people. This day we enjoy the nomadic hospitality, (4125m), Overnight in yurt or tent (BLD).
Day 11 ZorKul – CheshDobo Area Trek 2
In the morning, we start trekking to Zorkul Lake through the Belairyk valley. We will use the yaks for the luggage, on the way we will cross the Bel-Airik Pass, (5015m). We will see Marco Polo sheep along the way. This place is extremely high but it is worth it to organize a yak trek or trek to see the famous Lake ZorKul, known as the Victoria Lake. From the pass, we get a great view of the lake from above. It is spectacular and we will organize tents here, Tent (BLD).
Day 12 ZorKul – CheshDobo Area Trek 2
In the morning, we will start trekking to Kara-Jilga (4000m) summer pasture. This is where many local communities of farmers from Murgab and Kono Kurgan village come for (jailoo) summer pasture. These areas are highly protected by the ZorKul National. Today these areas are the only place where Marco Polo (OvisPoli) sheep still live in freedom. It is lovely to see them. On the way, we will see Kok-Jigit Lake. Overnight in nomad yurts (BLD).
Day 13 Kara Jylga - Jarty Gumbez
Today we will walk down to Jarty Gumbez hot spring camping site. Before visiting the spring, in the morning we start trekking to Aiding Kol lake (4200m) very amazing views. Up in front we see Afghanistan, Big Pamirs. After lunch we go to Jarty Gumbez hot springs for a swim. We overnight in Jarty Gumbez in Kuban’s guesthouse with two hot water pools. Special service in Jary Gumbez is the natural hot spring after long days of walking. We rest and overnight in Jarty Gymbez, Guesthouse (BLD).
Day 14 Jarty-Gumbez - Shaimak village
Today we drive to the Ak- Suu region, which differs with its landscapes and stunning mountains and snake-like river Murgab. If the customers like this area we could stay one night but this program offers to visit Ak Suu region and a Shaimak village. It is nearly on the Afghan and Chinese borders, the last and remotest village in Tajikistan. We will overnight in a homestay (4130m) (BLD).
Day 15 Shaimak – Murgab
Today we drive to Murgab, the administrative town of Eastern Pamirs. It is the largest district in GBAO with a huge territory and population. On the way, we will see the Chinas site big mountain Muztak-Ata 7000m and various landscape. The Chinese border will be 70 km away from Murgab, we overnight in a home stay (BLD).
Day 16 Murgab - Kara Kul
Early in the morning, we drive to Kara Kul Lake. Be prepared because incredible scenery is waiting for you, especially the lake Kara Kul. The highest point of the journey is Akbaital Pass (4655 m). The Karakul Lake is the highest salted lake in Central Asia. After lunch, we will have a walk around the lake, very quiet. Then we take it easy and enjoy the life in Kara Kul. Overnight in a homestay (BLD).
Day 17 Kara Kul - Lenin Peak - Osh
Drive from Karakul Lake to SaryMogol village near the Lenin Peak at 7000m; view of the Alay range is so beautiful. We will have lunch in SaryMogol village. Today we say ‘see you later Tajikistan’ over the Kyzyl-Art Pass (4282m) to the border between Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. Look behind you here for a stunning panorama of the Pamir Alai range. After lunch, we visit Osh. The north Alai range and its colors are just too nice. We will enjoy the night in the great Silk Road city of Osh, southern Kyrgyzstan. Overnight in a hotel (BLD).
Day 18 Good bye Pamirs, Tajikistan
We hope you had a wonderful time in the Pamirs. Today you will fly back to your country. We are always glad to have you back in the Pamirs again. Have a good flight back to your home country.
Items to bring with you
Sleeping bag & Liner sheet
Down jacket & Windbreaker
Sun cream with high protection - lipstick
Flashlight or headlamp
Water purification tablet of water filter
Personal medical kit
Camera & extra battery for the camera.
Temperatures: please note that there can be large variations in temperatures. In the daytime, it can be very hot and a thin layer of clothing will be comfortable but long sleeves will protect you from the sun’s rays. At night, it can be cold so a layered approach is best. Predicting temperatures is very hard but they could range between 5°C and + 25°C. Rainfall in the Pamirs at this time of year is not expected but dust storms are. Please take a waterproof layer just in case.
“Other custom-designed tours can be planned to meet your needs or wishes.”
Price & date on request