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The Legendary Silk Road From Almaty

Almaty ► Turkistan ► Tashkent ► Samarkand ► Shakhrisabz ► Khiva ► Bukhara ► Merv ► Ashgabat

13 nights from UK £ 3,030 per person

Price based on 2 people sharing a Habibi Class cabin. These prices are based on 2020 rates. See below for full pricing.
Please note that this is group tour with fixed date departures (see full pricing and dates further down this page). We can also book your international flights if required.

► Enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime Central Asian adventure, featuring 7 breathtaking UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
► Relax in the comfort of your own private train, in a region usually limited to long, uncomfortable bus rides.
► Get insights into local way of life: a traditional folk performance, lunch with an Uzbek family.
► Have lunch in the king’s former Summer Palace.
► Discover the winding streets and market life of Khiva and Bukhara.
► Marvel at enchanting backstreets, immense city gates, glittering domes, and ancient city walls.
► Bask in the desert sun in Registan Square, the most beautiful square in Central Asia.

Route Map

tsars legendary silk road map

Day by Day Itinerary

Day 1 - Arrival Almaty

Start Your Trip Off in Kazakhstan

Just as Silk Road merchants did centuries ago, you arrive in Almaty, Kazakhstan’s vibrant former capital city, welcomed by the cool midnight air. A bus whisks you away to your well-appointed hotel, where you spend the first night of what will be an unforgettable journey.

Dreams of your Silk Road adventure begin to fill your head as you lie down to rest. Tomorrow you will wake early to explore this legendary city.

Meals Included: Dinner.

Day 2 - Almaty

Explore the City Before Boarding the Train

Today you explore the amazing city of Almaty, Kazakhstan’s capital. You stand beneath the brilliantly coloured patterns of the Ascension Cathedral, one of the largest wooden buildings in the world. You stroll through the city’s streets, discovering its hidden gems on the way. You have the chance to sit in a typical cafe, framed by the foothills of the Tian Shan Mountains.

After an enjoyable welcome lunch in a yurt restaurant, you hop aboard your the Orient Silk Road Express, your private train on this legendary journey.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 3 - Turkistan

Train Across the Steppe & Visit Turkistan

Aboard the Orient Silk Road Express, you enjoy a tasty breakfast as the gorgeous landscapes of the Central Asian steppes pass by the dining car window.

Soon you arrive in the city of Turkistan, known for the magnificent Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi, a popular religious pilgrimage site. Its historic design, including its beautiful tiling and brickwork, is known for being the earliest example of Timurid architecture. Its impressive turquoise dome is the largest in Central Asia. The mausoleum has long been a symbol of the Kazakh nation and is now a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 4 - Tashkent

Explore the Capital of Uzbekistan

Today you wake up in the capital of Uzbekistan, Tashkent, a city filled with medieval monuments of its past, surrounded by the region’s lush, green steppes. Here you visit caravansaries, inns traditionally used as lodging by caravans along the Silk Road trade route.

You also visit beautifully restored medieval fortresses and madrasas (madrasa is the Arabic word for an educational institution), built from brick and turquoise tile.

Later that evening you board your private train and depart for the city of Shakhrisabz.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 5 - Shakhrisabz

Journey Through the History of Central Asia

Today under bright blue skies, you explore the city of Shahrisabz, including its historic center, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Formerly known as Kesh, Shahrisabz is the birthplace of fourteenth-century Mongol conqueror Timur. Many of the monuments you visit here were built as testaments to his power, including Ak-Saray, his summer palace.

Later you enjoy a traditional folklore performance in a small village, where you meet some of the locals.

This evening you enjoy a tasting of Uzbek wine on board your private train, which departs for the city of Samarkand.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 6 - Samarkand

Explore This Crossroad of Culture – a Highlight of Uzbekistan

Samarkand is one of Central Asia’s oldest settlements, and in the days of Timur, it was considered the world’s most beautiful city. That beauty seems undiminished as you stand among the carefully restored buildings of Registan Square with their gorgeous tiling, brickwork, domes, and minarets.

Equally stunning are the intricate tile designs of the Shah-i-Zinda necropolis – known as the Tomb of the Living King, named for the legend of Kusam Ibn Abbas, who brought Islam to the area now known as Uzbekistan.

Later you enjoy a visit to the Afrasiyab excavation site, the oldest part of Samarkand’s historic center and one of the largest archaeological sites in the world. In 2001 the city of Samarkand was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its many monuments and preservation of traditional crafts.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 7 - Samarkand

Visit More of the City’s Historical & Cultural Treats

Today you delve into the historical traditions of Uzbekistan and visit local craftspeople, whom you observe as they skillfully weave silk into carpets and press mulberry bark into paper. Later you enjoy visits to the magnificent Ulugh Beg Observatory, the beautifully reconstructed Bibi Khanum Mosque and the impressive Gur Emir Mausoleum.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 8 - To Khiva

Explore This Crossroad of Culture – a Highlight of Uzbekistan

This morning you enjoy a delicious breakfast and have one last walk through the enchanting streets of Samarkand. Around noon you board the Orient Silk Road Express private train, which departs for the next stop on your adventure, the historic city of Khiva.

The spectacular landscapes of the Central Asian steppes pass by your window. Green hills and grasslands stretch before you as far as the eye can see, while distant peaks of mountain ranges reach for the sky.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 9 - Khiva

Visit This Legendary Desert City

Today you wake up in the city of Khiva, whose numerous historic monuments earned it a spot on the UNESCO World Heritage List as Uzbekistan’s first World Heritage Site. Khiva is known for the well-preserved medieval city walls, gates and fortifications of its historic center, Itchan Kala.

You take a tour through the city’s charming, winding streets, where you discover the beauty of its many palaces, mosques, mausoleums and madrasas. It is filled with stunning architectural monuments like the multicolored Kalta Minor minaret, whose alternating bands of tiles leave you speechless.

Later you enjoy lunch in the summer residence of a former king.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 10 - Bukhara

The Architectural Treat of Uzbekistan

On your first day in Bukhara you visit the city’s unforgettable historic center, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which contains numerous monuments from the height of the caravan trade on the legendary Silk Road.

Visit stunning sites like the Po-i-Kalyan architectural ensemble, whose buildings are known for their intricate tiling and beautiful brickwork. This includes the impressive Kalyan Minaret, centerpiece of the ensemble, the gorgeous Kalyan Mosque and the intricate Mir-i-Arab Madrasa.

You also visit the Lyab-i Hauz ensemble, which includes the iconic Kukeldash Madrasa. As you explore these amazing locations, you learn about Uzbek history, including the philosopher and historical character Nasreddin Hodja.

Watch beautiful local dances, enjoy traditional Uzbek music and watch a dazzling folklore performance with national costumes in a madrasa courtyard.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 11 - Bukhara

Continue to Explore This Quintessential Silk Road City

On your second day in Bukhara, City of a Thousand Monuments, you return to the Mir-i-Arab Madrasa to continue your exploration. From here you set out to visit Persian king Ismail Samani’s historic burial place, also known as the Samanid Mausoleum. It is a unique example of ninth-century Central Asian architecture, influenced by both Zoroastrian fire temples and Islamic design.

Later you visit the enormous Ark of Bukhara, a citadel that was once the residence of the king and a center of power in the region. As you stand on its high walls, you look out over the city and imagine what it must have looked like centuries ago.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 12 - Merv

Visit the Ancient Ruins of Merv & a Local Family Before the Final Train Leg to Ashgabat

At daybreak, your private train draws into the ancient city of Merv. In the twelfth century, this was one of the largest cities in the world. by the Silk Road, its fame crossed continents.

Now you stand surrounded by ruins that rise up from the desert sand and crumbling arches framing bright blue sky. You walk among the relics of this UNESCO World Heritage site, including the gigantic Tomb of Ahmed Sanjar, the Virgin Fortress, and the cold room, and are invited to lunch in the courtyard of a family home.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 13 - Ashgabat

Visit the Ruins of Nisa & a City Tour

You begin the day at the site of ancient Nisa, and follow its smaller relics to their new home in Ashgabat, at the National Museum. The gleaming white marble of the city center testifies to the young city’s new wealth.

In the evening, you settle down to a farewell dinner.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

Day 14 - Depart Ashgabat

Your Journey With Us Ends or You Can Choose to Add on Trip Extensions With Us

On your last day of your legendary Silk Road adventure, you check out of your hotel and catch a transfer to the airport for your flight home. On the way, you look back on the marvellous journey that you’ve just completed. The beautiful landscapes, impressive monuments and unforgettable experiences you have enjoyed on the legendary Silk Road will be memories that last a lifetime.

Meals Included: Breakfast.

Spring 2020 Dates & Prices

Starts Almaty 28th March 2020 and Finishes Ashgabat 10th April 2020

CATEGORY KALIF

£ 8,570 per person or £ 12,730 for single occupancy of cabin & hotels

CATEGORY SULTAN

£ 8,290 per person or £ 12,330 for single occupancy of cabin & hotels

CATEGORY ALADDIN

£ 5,070 per person or £ 6,860 for single occupancy of cabin & hotels

CATEGORY ALI BABA

£ 4,490 per person or £ 5,930 for single occupancy of cabin & hotels

CATEGORY HABIBI

£ 3,030 per person based on 4 people sharing a cabin. If there are 3 people in a 4 berth cabin then the price is £ 3,770 per person. Single supplement for hotels only is £ 400 per person.

Autumn 2020 Dates & Prices

Starts Almaty 3rd October 2020 – Finishes October 16th April 2020

CATEGORY KALIF

£ 9,010 per person or £ 13,290 for single occupancy of cabin & hotels

CATEGORY SULTAN

£ 8,720 per person or £ 12,880 for single occupancy of cabin & hotels

CATEGORY ALADDIN

£ 5,410 per person or £ 7,200 for single occupancy of cabin & hotels

CATEGORY ALI BABA

£ 4,820 per person or £ 6,290 for single occupancy of cabin & hotels

CATEGORY HABIBI

£ 3,300 per person based on 4 people sharing a cabin. If there are 3 people in a 4 berth cabin then the price is £ 4,070 per person. Single supplement for hotels only is £ 420 per person.

Inclusions & Exclusions For This Trip

What is included?

7 nights on an your private train

6 nights in first-class hotels

English-speaking guide throughout journey

Doctor on board

All excursions and sights according to itinerary, including entry fees

All transport and bus tours according to itinerary

All meals according to itinerary

Porters and luggage service at all railroad stations

Financial Peace of Mind as your trip is protected.

Fun and informative talks about local lands, people and culture

A booklet on the region and the train itself for each reserved compartment

What is not included?

International flights – we can book these for you if you wish.

Visas – we provide the paperwork and can recommend visa agents to help with applications.

Travel Insurance (every passenger is obliged to have medical insurance for the whole duration of the Tour) – we recommend ABTASure (UK residents only)

Discretionary gratuities to drivers and guides

All beverages in bar car.

Vaccinations: Consult your doctor for specific health advice.

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