The five stans silk road vacation

“Three week small group tour of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Overland travel between cities, towns and remote mountain villages. Cultural and scenic contrasts await.”

Highlights

Ashgabat, Turkmenistan | UNESCO Nisa ruins | Jeep convoy across Karakum Desert | 12 century city of Abiverd | UNESCO ruins of Merv | Bukhara, Uzbekistan | Samarkand | Shakhrisabz | Termez | Dushanbe, Tajikistan | Fann Mountains | Iskanderkul Lake | Khujand | Ferghana | Arslanbob Nature Reserve, Kyrgyzstan | Sulayman Mount | Arslan Bob homestay | Tien Shan Mountains | Kyzyl Oi village homestay | Son Kul Lake | Bishkek | Almaty, Kazakhstan |

Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this vacation or need help finding one we're very happy to help. The Travel Team.

Toll free 1-866-821-6866 Calling from outside the US?

Map

Check dates, prices & availability

Date
Price
Basis
01 Jun 2019
US $5735
excluding flights
Full
 
08 Jun 2019
US $5655
excluding flights
Full
 
15 Jun 2019
US $5655
excluding flights
Full
 
22 Jun 2019
US $5655
excluding flights
Full
 
29 Jun 2019
US $5965
excluding flights
Full
 
06 Jul 2019
US $5655
excluding flights
Full
 
13 Jul 2019
US $5965
excluding flights
1 space left
Click here to enquire about or book the 13 Jul 2019 departure
20 Jul 2019
US $6125
excluding flights
Full
 
27 Jul 2019
US $6125
excluding flights
Full
 
10 Aug 2019
US $6125
excluding flights
Full
 
17 Aug 2019
US $5965
excluding flights
Full
 
24 Aug 2019
US $6045
excluding flights
Full
 
06 Jun 2020
US $6195
excluding flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 06 Jun 2020 departure
13 Jun 2020
US $6195
excluding flights
7 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 13 Jun 2020 departure
20 Jun 2020
US $6195
excluding flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 20 Jun 2020 departure
27 Jun 2020
US $6195
excluding flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 27 Jun 2020 departure
04 Jul 2020
US $6195
excluding flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 04 Jul 2020 departure
11 Jul 2020
US $6195
excluding flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 11 Jul 2020 departure
18 Jul 2020
US $6195
excluding flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 18 Jul 2020 departure
25 Jul 2020
US $6195
excluding flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 25 Jul 2020 departure
08 Aug 2020
US $6195
excluding flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 08 Aug 2020 departure
15 Aug 2020
US $6195
excluding flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 15 Aug 2020 departure
Vouchers
Accepted
Vacation type

Small group vacation

Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, traveling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week vacation, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travelers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.

We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.

What are the main benefits?
Big experiences
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.

Simplicity
Make the most of your vacation time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!

Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travelers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your vacation.

Solo travelers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those traveling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.

Less confident travelers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
Mythbuster
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travelers their own room.

“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.

“The accommodation will be basic”
Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.

“I won’t like the other travelers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.

“Will we be following an umbrella?”
No.
Valerie Parkinson
Meet a group Leader
Name: Valerie Parkinson

Story: The first British woman to climb Manaslu, Valerie climbed Everest for her 50th birthday. She’s spent fourteen Christmas Days trekking to Everest Base Camp, and is involved insetting up Responsible Tourism initiatives in the Himalayas.
Roshan Fernando
Meet a local guide
Name: Roshan Fernando

Story: Roshan has led over 130 trips – he adores showing travelers around Sri Lanka. He won the company Leader Award in 2010, but his career highlight was working on their Tsunami Project – which earned him a responsible tourism award.

Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: The five stans silk road vacation

Accommodation and Meals:
On this trip, we will spend most nights in hotels and the remaining in local homestays, yurt camps and a guest house. All accommodation employs locally which provides the local community with employment opportunities and income. Additionally, yurt camps uses very little electricity and water, so this is a reduction to our overall impact on the environment. Where meals are provided, fresh fruit, vegetables and meat are sourced at local farms and markets. Free meal times are a wonderful opportunity to support small bazaar vendors, cafes and authentic, local restaurants. A common dish within the region is a rice dish with meat, carrot and onions called ‘plov’. Also expect varied salads, fresh fruit, Middle Eastern style stews and dumplings from the Far East.

Local craft and Culture:
We explore the many museums and mosques, mausoleums and markets of Ashgabat, Bukhara and Samarkand. By visiting these cultural and historical sites, we are supporting maintenance, restoration and research. Traditional craftsmanship is evident everywhere we go- from intricate tilework, wooden carvings and patterned textiles, to locally produced delicacies. At the bazaars we visit, local embroidered products, handmade carpets, painted ceramics and jewellery are all for sale. Not only does buying from market vendors benefit local people and celebrate traditional crafts, but it is a cultural experience in itself! (Expect to haggle). Our local guides are able to advise clients on products to purchase and which to avoid especially when the import of Turkmen carpets and carpet decorated items require relevant documentation and there may be extra costs that clients should be wary of. They should purchase carpets from authorized carpet dealer in large hotels or state carpet shops that comes with a certificate to show that taxes and fees are included.

A Fair Deal:
We work closely with our local operator and ensure that all of our guides are local and that in exchange for their expertise that they are paid and treated fairly. The leaders will give a briefing on Responsible Tourism issues to help you understand how you can help reduce your impact and maximise the benefits to the local community from your visit.

Group Size:
This is a small group tour, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.

UK Office:
It all starts at home where we work towards reducing our carbon footprint in our offices through energy conservation measures, recycling policies and the promotion of cycling and walking as a means for our staff to commute. Our head office has become a plastic-free zone with the use of plastic bottles being banned in our head office and we distributed reusable water bottles and tote bags to every staff member. We also support a large number of community and environmental projects in different parts of the world and try to give something back to the places we visit.

Popular similar vacations

Central Asia overland tour, the stans

Central Asia overland tour, the stans

An epic journey through the five 'stans' of Central Asia

From £4999 26 days excluding flights

The Silk Road small group tour

The Silk Road small group tour

Discover the Silk Road in Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and China

From US $3295 - US $3485 15 days excluding flights

Small group tour of the Stans

Small group tour of the Stans

Get under the skin of all five 'Stans'

From US $7695 4 weeks excluding flights

Silk Road overland truck tour

Silk Road overland truck tour

Overland through Central Asia's highlights

From £1964 - £2390 30 days excluding flights

Convert currencies