• $6,594
  • $500
  • Odysseys Unlimited

Traveling the ancient Silk Road connecting East and West, encounter a mélange of culture and religion, art and architecture that conjures tales of trade and treasure, intrigue and empire. On this exciting 17-day journey in a small group limited to 20 travelers, relish the exotic – embracing the humanity shared with the welcoming people of Central Asia. Discover the showpiece Turkmen capital, Ashgabat, with its impressive monuments, ubiquitous white marble buildings, and carpet weaving tradition, and explore the UNESCO archaeological sites of Nisa and Kunya-Urgench, capital cities of old. A tour of Khiva’s “inner city,” another UNESCO site, reveals this Uzbek city’s storied past. In ancient Buhkara, watch silk weavers and visit a Sufi miniaturist’s home to savor a traditional plov lunch. Board a jeep for a thrilling overnight excursion through the Kyzylkum Desert, stopping to visit a ceramicist and see Bronze Age petroglyphs. After a home-hosted lunch with a local family, pass through the Nurata Mountains to Aydar Lake to ride camels and overnight at a yurt camp. In a remote village, meet another family in their home, then continue on to legendary Samarkand, one of Central Asia’s oldest cities. Highlights here include vast Registan Square, the magnificent Bibi-Khanym mosque, and a private visit to the Gur Emir Mausoleum, Tamerlane’s tomb. Next is Uzbekistan’s capital, Tashkent, with its treasured 8th-century Quran, Chorsu Bazaar, and a visit to a renowned ceramicist’s studio. Spend a day touring Russian-accented Almaty, Kazakhstan’s largest city, ascending a mountain for panoramic views and a farewell dinner.