Wow, I can’t imagine it’s over! Almost 5 months of overland journey from China, by means of Mongolia, Russia, The Stans and Iran. What a visit! Regardless that we knew this journey could be intrepid, we might have by no means imagined simply how adventurous it might be. We had some ups and a few downs alongside the best way, however our Central Asia Journey will go down as our most epic one but.
So What Did We Do?
Nicely we began in Beijing the place we took the Trans-Mongolian practice by means of the Gobi Desert, over the rolling inexperienced hills of the Steppe and into Ulan-Bator, Mongolia’s unusual capital. Now we have all the time dreamed of taking that practice and we’ve wished to go to Mongolia since our first journey led to 2009. Touring Mongolia lived as much as our expectations – and in reality, it exceeded them.
From Ulan-Bator, we employed a 4×Four and driver, and together with Four new mates, we headed out into the huge vacancy of the Mongolian Desert. We rode camels, watched the solar set over the dunes, drank fermented mare’s milk, and looked for dinosaur bones.
After 6 days within the desert we returned to Ulan Bator, solely to take off once more on probably the most adventurous journey of our lives. Armed with nothing greater than a topographical map, fishing provides, meals and backpacks, we headed to a tiny village in the midst of nowhere.
Collectively, following a route we plotted on Google Maps, we trekked alongside the river for eight days and over 200 km with no information and no assist. We met native nomadic households who had by no means seen foreigners earlier than, and so they introduced us items virtually on daily basis. Regardless of the rain, blisters, sore muscle mass and frustration, this was most likely the most effective matter we’ve ever achieved in journey and we’re very proud that we accomplished it on our personal.
On To Russia!
From Mongolia we hopped on one other world-famous practice, the Trans-Siberian railway. We made our option to Lake Baikal the place we swam, explored stunning Olkhon Island and camped on the shores of the crystal clear lake.VIDEO: Olkhon Island: A Piece Of Paradise In Russia
Subsequent Was The Dwelling Of Borat
We then acquired again on the practice and crossed Siberia earlier than slicing down into Kazakhstan, our first of many Stans. Right here we explored the nation’s present and former capitals – Astana and Almaty. The extremely fashionable buildings in Astana had been a few of the coolest we’ve seen and the outside of Almaty had been a breath of recent air. We met some nice Kazakh individuals who we nonetheless maintain involved with right now.
From Kazakhstan we took a minibus into Kyrgyzstan which was most likely our favorite Stan of all (Why? Click on Right here). In Kyrgyzstan, we employed a information and a few horses and launched into a Three day trek to Track-Kol lake. It was straightforward on a horse, however our trek to Altyn Arashan on foot was one of the crucial troublesome excessive altitude treks we’ve achieved thus far.
We slept in yurts, ate copious quantities of mutton and discovered an unbelievable quantity about Kyrgyz tradition and customs. Touring Kyrgyzstan was an journey we’ll always remember.
Then Was The Epic Street Journey In Tajikistan
We made our option to town of Osh within the south of Kyrgyzstan the place we met up with our now good mates Jason (England) and Jessica (Germany). The Four of us employed a landcruiser and driver to take us on the area’s most famed highway journey, The Pamir Freeway in Tajikistan. We spent 2 weeks with our new mates and we completed off this unforgettable journey with a helicopter trip over the mountains which took us again to the nation’s capital of Dushanbe.
On To The Unforgettable Structure Of Uzbekistan
After recharging and consuming the most effective Indian meals the world has to supply in Dushanbe, we took a shared taxi to Uzbekistan. The outdated cities and getting old structure of this Stan had been well worth the journey alone. We’ve by no means seen such historic magnificence as we did in cities like Bukhara, Khiva and Samarkhand. Wandering round outdated stone streets with monumental mosques and mausoleums towering above us, was a time-warp really feel that we’ll always remember. We completely liked Uzbekistan.
After we felt that we had been completed gawking at huge buildings, we transited by means of Turkmenistan for Four days and entered a rustic we’ve been ready to go to for a very long time… Iran.
Iran, A Spotlight In Itself
The repute that Iran has within the media was instantly confirmed false, whereas the repute it has with travellers who’ve been there proved right. Iran will go down as one of the crucial fascinating international locations we’ve ever had the chance to see. The folks had been pleasant, the streets had been unbelievably secure and the websites had been completely breath-taking.
The perfect expertise we had whereas backpacking Iran, and possibly among the finest in all of our travels, was assembly our Iranian mates Soroush & Mehsa. The generosity and kindness they confirmed us was each humbling and enduring and we hope to all the time stay involved with our two mates from Esfahan.
They confirmed us extra than simply their house and their metropolis. They confirmed us simply how hospitable the Iranian folks might be and so they gave us an actual perception into the lifetime of an Iranian household. Soroush & Mehsa if you happen to’re studying this, we thanks from the underside of our hearts.
This journey was all in regards to the nice outdoor and the folks we met alongside the best way. We’ve by no means been in a area the place we felt so welcomed. The native folks had been all the time genuinely all in favour of us and our lives, and virtually by no means anticipated cash or enterprise from us. The journey wasn’t with out its downsides although. We had some problem with climate for the primary 6 weeks when heavy rains got here virtually on daily basis. We grew to become pissed off at instances with the transportation and visa procedures and we had $1,500 USD stolen from us within the Pamir Mountains.
However after we look again on the journey, we see it as a life altering journey that basically encompassed the whole lot we love about journey. It’s these kind of challenges that maintain journey fascinating and we’re grateful to have been capable of take such a tremendous journey, and to have met such fantastic folks.
For anybody who plans to go to Mongolia, The Stans or Iran, prepare for an expedition that may check your limits of journey, whereas confirming why you do it within the first place. We all know now greater than ever, that the highway is the place we need to be. Our planet is a limitless land of surprise, simply ready to be explored. Central Asia confirmed us a world of unparalleled magnificence and re-ignited our lust for the undiscovered.
Thank-you Central Asia.
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