Model in Ashgabat
Old man in Shahrisabz
We were mesmerized with the grandeur of the monuments in Samarkand and Buchara. However, we travelers needed more than just buildings to impress us. We needed to see the people. People who wove the colors of the rainbow into silk. We needed to see the potters who blended the colors of the minerals, roots and ash into pots. We needed to see the sculptures which reflected the wisdom of Ali Shir Nevoi into a monumental statue.  We had to see the man who printed the symbols of eternity, pomegranate, love on the cotton dyed with apricot wood and glue from pine tree. We could not miss the wood carvers, the folk dancers, the knife makers. We had to see the jewelry makers. We had to understand how the artists got supported for the gigantic paintings they made during the Soviet period.

Tour Dates
March 19, 2009 Friday  Ashkabad Turkmenistan - April 03, 2009 Saturday Tashkent
Please read/print the

Meli's slide show covering Uzbekistan and Karakalpakistan is now available on a CD-Rom. You can use your PC to view the 300+ slides while listening to 90 minutes of narration by Meli. To order the CD-Rom have your credit card ready and call 1-800-325-7111.or e mail to info@travelsmallworld.comThe price is $14 including shipping to anywhere in the US. Washington state sales tax of 8.6% will be added to orders shipped to any address in Washington state.

Please Click here


Day 1 March 19, 2009 Friday  Ashkabad, Turkmenistan
Fly to Ashkabad, the capital of Turkmenistan 
(This flight is NOT included in the price of the tour) 
Upon arrival look for a MELITOUR sign. You will be given a transfer to the hotel by the MELITOUR representative in Ashkabad. Overnight in Ashkabad and transfer are included in the price of the tour. Since most of the flights will arrive midnight or after midnight dinner is not included tonight but dinner is available at the hotel until 10:00 pm

Day 2 March 20, 2009 Saturday  Ashkabad, Turkmenistan
Considering the jet lag and late arrival, we will start the tour late this morning. The group will meet for a group meeting at 11:00 am at the lobby of the hotel.
After lunch visit the carpet museum.
The most unique experience in this city is to see the ceremony of weddings.
At the near bye park witness the newly weds in their traditional costumes visiting the near bye city park.
Overnight at the same hotel in Ashkabad Breakfast lunch and dinner are included

Day 3 March 21, 2009 Sunday Ashkabad, Turkmenistan

Visit the largest market in Asia. The jewelry, carpets, fur hats sold at the market are mind boggling. The colors are difficult to describe. A very typical Silk Road image especially with the camel market next to the carpet market. 
Before lunch we will get a chance to see the fastest horses of Asia (The Ahal Teke Horses ) at the Hippodrome
Visit the Ethnographic and Applied Art Museums and the Craft Center 
Lunch at a local restaurant.
Dinner with a fashion show at a local designer's house.
Overnight at the same hotel in Ashkabad Breakfast lunch and dinner are included
Tomorrow we will leave this hotel for one night. you can leave your extra bags at the hotel since we will be returning to the same hotel for one more night

Day 4 March 22, 2009 Monday Drive to Merv
Six hour (236 mile) drive through the Black Sand Desert where nomads still wander. We will probably come across yurts and camels. Visit two ancient sites witnessing the grandeur of the glorious past of this land. End the day in the ancient city of Merv, the capitol of the Selcukian Empire. 
Overnight in Merv. Breakfast lunch and dinner are included

Day 5 March 23, 2009 Tuesday From Merv, fly to Ashkabad
Visit the monuments of Merv and the surrounding settlements. Visit the home of a local jewelry maker to see traditional jewelry. Late afternoon flight to Ashkabad.  Lunch and dinner at Merv.
Overnight at Ashgabat. Breakfast lunch and dinner are included

Day 6 March 24, 2009 Wednesday Village visit fly to East Turkmenistan
Visit a village not far from Ashkabad. In addition to seeing village life, we will see villagers doing embroidery for wedding dresses and for everyday use.  In the afternoon fly to over the Red Desert to Dashkovuz.Overnight at Hotel Dashkhovuz. Breakfast lunch and dinner are included

Day 7 March 25, 2009Thursday Nukus, Karakalpakistan , 
Visit old Urgench in Turkmenistan, drive to Uzbekistan via Karakalpakistan
Witness the environmental disaster that Karakalpakistan is experiencing. Meet with the locals at their homes  and visit a stunning museum in Nukus to learn more about the destiny of lake Aral. Overnight in Nukus, Karakalpakistan. Choice of spending the night in a yurt. Only one yurt is available we will draw names if more than one person volunteer. Breakfast lunch and dinner are included. 

Day 8 March 26, 2009 FridayUrgench Khiva 
Cross over the biggest river of Central Asia, Amuderya to enter Uzbekistan.
Visit the dream like ancient city of Khiva where the blue of the tiles compete with the blue of the heaven. 
Dinner at the palace of the former Emir of Khiva. Enjoy Attazebah folk music and folk dance by the local ladies.
Overnight in Khiva, Uzbekistan. Breakfast lunch and dinner are included. 

Day 9 March 27, 2009 Saturday Tashkent
Fly to Tashkent from Urgench Full day city tour of Tashkent . Kukeltash Madrasa stands in the middle of the modern city as a reminder of the age of the past of this capital. Corsu Market is the heart of the city. All those buying and selling meet at this market in the most colorful way. The crowds of people here move like they are being conducted by the most competent conductor. The result is a symphony of colors and sounds that you will remember all your life.
Lunch , Applied Arts Museum , Alisher Navoi Park Craft Center 
We make sure you see the country through the interpretations of the local artists.  Overnight in Tashkent 
Breakfast lunch and dinner are included.

Day 10 March 28. 2009, Sunday Fly  to Bukhara 
Fly to Bukhara. Arrive at Bukhara hotel
Our first stop will be to the city of Ibn- i Sina the father of Medicine for the Central Asian Cultures. The excellent museum is a monument for the respect people still have in Ibn- i Sina after 1100 years
Short trip to Gijduvan to see a local potter and experience a village life. 
We will have our dinner at his house with his family.
Overnight in Bukhara. Breakfast lunch and dinner are included. 

Day 11 March 29, 2009Monday Bukhara
We will start our day with a visit at Nasraddin Hodja's Park, and Lab-i Havuz Mosque. Once you get  oriented to the old city of Bukhara you will have free time for photography. 
Lunch at a neighborhood house will be very memorable. 
Visit Ark Citadel, Bla Havuz, Masouleum of Samanidz, Minare Kolon, Mir Arap Madrasa. 
Folk show in the tim (covered market). Excellent dancing, music at a silk weaving center. Overnight in Bukhara Breakfast lunch and dinner are included.

Day 12 March 30, 2009 TuesdayBukhara to Shahrisabz
Depart  Bukhara, drive through a desert which is now being hope of Uzbekistan with the petrol fields. En route we will have lunch at a Chayhane (Tea House) and visit a school. 
Arrive Shahrisabz where Emir Timur was born. 
Tour of the city (Aksaray and Tombs of Timur's sons), The Marketplace. 
Dinner and overnight at recently renevated Intourist hotel 
Over night in Shahrisabz Breakfast lunch and dinner are included.

Day 13 March 31, 2009 Wednesday Villages enroute to Samarkand
Depart for Samarkand 
Visit a family for an opportunity to interact with villagers. Picnic lunch. 
Arrive Samarkand  Visit the Mausolem of Timur 
Dinner and overnight at Samarkand 
Breakfast lunch and dinner are included. 

Day 14 April 01, 2009 Thursday Full day in Samarkand
 Our will start with a visit to the Observatory of Ulug Beg , the grand son of Timur. After we visit Afrosiab Archaeological Museum  we will have a walk through the Shahi Zinde complex of tombs . It is more like a neighborhood of the most beautiful architecture where the tile workers and masons had competed with each other to create the best and most impressive buildings.
Visit the art gallery of Aliyev Eynullah who made the statue of Alishir Nevai in Tashkent.  Lunch at the hotel. Free time for museum visit and market 
Meet at the Registan Square, visit the monument's restoration tile reproduction center.
Overnight at Samarkand . Breakfast lunch and dinner are included. 

Day 15 April 02, 2009 Friday Samarkand to Tashkent
Leave Samarkand by bus, Lunch enroute 
Arrive Tashkent, Free time
Tashkent is the home of one of three Bolshoy Opera/Ballet companies left in the world. We will enjoy the performance of the day and have dinner at the Alishir Nevai Theater. The activities this evening calls for us to be be a bit more dressed up than our daily travel outfits. 
Farewell dinner 
Overnight in Tashkent 
Breakfast lunch and dinner are included. 

Day 16 April 03, 2009 Saturday Departure
Depart for home 
(This flight from Tashkent is NOT included in the price of the tour) 

Tour Price

8 - 9 People US$ 3710.-
10 - 11 People US$ 3408.-US
12 - 14 People US$ 3317.-
15 People US$ 3258
  • The price includes the following

  • 15 nights hotel, Friday March 20 through April 03th  Friday (April 03rd Friday night is included)
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner each day (First meal is breakfast on Saturday on Day 2) (Dinner on Day 1 March 20, is not included )
  • Last breakfast on Friday on Day 15)
  • A guide throughout the tour plus local guides in each city
  • Mehlika Seval as tour assistant
  • All entrance fees
  • All transportation (bus & plane) within Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan
  • All tips at hotels and restaurants
  • Charge for bank com if paid by credit card
  • One small bottle of water to be served on the bus every day
  • Air port taxes for the flights on the tour
  • Train tickets
  • 2 Plane tickets in Turkmenistan

The Price des not include:

  • International flight to Ashkabad/from Tashkent
  • Tips for guides and drivers
  • Drinks served with meals
  • Visa charges - you should get your visas directly from the Consulates in the USA

Payment Plan

Deposit at the sign up US$  250.- non refundable
1st  Payment    Nov 21,2009 US$  1000.- If cancelled 60% of this payment is refundable
2nd Payment   Dec 20, 2009
90 Days before the tour starts
US$ 1000.-  If cancelled 50% of your total payment is refundable
3rd Payment  Jan 20, 2009
60 days before the tour starts  
The remaning of the balance  If cancelled after this payment no refund  will be given

Optional Expenses

  • Hotel in Istanbul Single US$ 75 Double US$ 100  (includes breakfast)
  • Transfer from the airport to the hotel in Istanbul via hotel van is $50 
    Up to 3 people can share a ride
  • Hotel in Ashkabad and Tashkent Bed and Breakfast US$ ...... per person per day if you arrive before the tour or should you stay after the tour dates (Hotel price will be posted as soon as  the Hotel knows their 2009 rates)
  • If you go via Istanbul there is a $20 visa charge upon entry to Turkey payable in US currency. . The visa is good for multiple entries for three months
Day Location/Hotel Phone FAX
Day 1 Friday  
Hotel Nisa,
Galkynysh str. 18/a
Ashkabad, Turkmenistan
Day 2 - Saturday, 
Hotel Nisa,
Galkynysh str. 18/a
Ashkabad, Turkmenistan

Day 3 - Sunday, 
Hotel Nisa,
Galkynysh str. 18/a
Ashkabad, Turkmenistan
Day 4 - Monday,

Bishim's Guesthouse
Tschelinnaya 27 39350

0322 33464

No fax

Day 5 - Tuesday, 

Hotel Nisa,
Galkynysh str. 18/a
Ashkabad, Turkmenistan

Day 6 - Wednesday,
Diar Bekir Hotel 
Tashauz- Turkmenistan
(0322) 59037 No fax
Day 7 - Thursday, 

Khorezm Palace



Day 8- Friday, Grand Mir



Day 9 - Saturday Grand Mir


(998)-71-152 78-47

Day 10 - Sunday New Bukhara
 Bukhara ,Uzbekistan 



Day 11 - Monday New Bukhara
 Bukhara ,Uzbekistan 



Day 12 - Tuesday Shakhrisabz-  In tourist Hotel the only available hotel
Shahrisabz ,Uzbekistan 



Day 13 - Wednesday

Samarkand, Uzbekistan 

(998)-3662-311036 (998)-3662-311044

Day 14 - Thursday

Samarkand, Uzbekistan 

(998)-3662-311036 (998)-3662-311044
Day 15 - Friday

Grand Mir



Getting to Ashkabad, Turkmenistan

There are limited airlines flying only on certain days to Turkmenistan and from Uzbekistan. Turkish air Lines flies to Ashkabad from istanbul on Fridays and Wednesdays. Both flights arriving after midnight to Ashkabat.
From Europe, Lufthansa or from Moscow  you can get to Ashkabad.

Turkmenistan Air lines fly out of the following cities in Europe

However you fly in to Ashkabad, you will be met by a MELITOUR representative and will be transferred to the hotel.
For those arriving earlier dinner will be available at the hotel in Ashkabad      ( not included in the price of the tour)
If you choose to fly Turkish Airlines please remember Turkish Air Lines (THY) and American Airlines are in alliance. You can use your frequent flyer miles for your ticket. Some times buying THY ticket from Turkey is cheaper. MELITOUR is willing to give you ticket rates while you are in search of  tickets.

If you are arriving before the tour starts or if you will be staying over after the tour, we can make reservations for you at the hotels in Ashkabad and Tashkent for before and after the tour. Extra days at the hotel is not included in the tour price (................ per person per day in Tashkent US$ ........per person per day in Ashkabad)

We will arrange transfer (included in the price) to the Hotel in Ashkabad and to the airport from the hotel in Tashkent even if you are NOT arriving or departing on the first or the last day of the tour.

Hotel in Istanbul

If you prefer coming to Istanbul before or after the tour we can make transfer and hotel reservations for you at Hotel Ayasofya in Istanbul. The price for the transfer from the Istanbul Airport to Hotel Ayasofya will be $20 and the room will be Single US$ 50 Double US$ 70

How to get visas for Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan & Turkey

NOTE: If you do not have at least three empty pages in your passport before getting visas for this tour you will need to have pages added. Each country - Turkey (if you are traveling via Turkey), Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan needs an empty page for their respective visa. In addition, your passport should not expire less than six months before the end of the tour.


1. A "Visa Reference Number" will be issued for our group by Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. When the following information is completed by all the tour members the number for each country will be forwarded to you by Melitour.

  • Name as it appears on your passport
  • Date of birth
  • Date of issue of your passport
  • Date of expiration of your passport
  • Passport number
  • Citizenship
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Email address

2. Contact the Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan Consulates for visa Request that a form be sent to your address or download a form from the websites.

We have to have the c=visa support letter. then you can apply to get visa
USA and CANADIAN Citizens can obtain the visa from Washington D.C, USA

Uzbekistan Embassy
1746 Massachusetts Avenue, NW 
Washington D.C. 20036
tel.:212 754 7404 
tel.: 202 887 5300 
fax: 202 293 6804

The visa fee for US Citizens is ????????. 
Processing time is 7 working days. 
Faster service is available for a higher fee.

After we receive the group visa support letter , we can obtain the visa at Ashkabad air port

The Embassy of Turkmenistan 
2207 Massachusetts Ave., NW 
Washington, DC 20008 

Phone: 202-588-1500 
Fax: 202-588-0697

Visa for Turkey can be paid (obtained) at the entrance to Istanbul at the air port
The visa fee is $20 for a 3 month visa.
* the visa fees can change  with no prior notice 
please check with the consulate for the visa fee