Opulent Journeys

The Silk Road by Private Train

From Kazakhstan through Uzbekistan to Turkmenistan

From (AUD)

$6,980

14 DAY

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1300 219 885 (AU)

0800 456 219 (NZ)

Overview

Experience the fascination of the diverse cultures in three of the countries along Central Asian’s Silk Road while travelling in the comfort of your private train. You start your journey in Almaty, “the father of the apple”, and travel to the Uzbek oasis of Tashkent, to Samarqand and to Khiva, where a tale from 1001 Nights – preserved in stone – awaits you, to romantic Bukhara in the middle of the Kyzylkum Desert, to the ruins of the ancient cities of Merv and Nisa, and finally to Turkmenistan’s capital of Ashgabat. You have the opportunity to experience the region’s cultures, peoples, and delicious cuisine along this otherwise quite inaccessible section of Central Asia’s Silk Road, while enjoying the amenities of private train travel: all the makings of your very own 1001 Nights tale.

 

Dates & Prices

Prices listed are per person, twin-share compartment 

 

 
Cat. Ali Baba $6,980  
Cat. Aladdin $7,870  
Cat. Sultan $13,280  
Cat. Kalif           $13,745  
  • Visas are required and they are not included in the price.
  • We are able to assist you with the visa application process, please contact us for further information on the visa requirements and guidelines.
  • For quad-share (4-berth), 3 people sharing a compartment or single train compartments and hotel rooms, please contact us for details and prices.
Tour Highlights
  • Tashkent- the cultural centre of Central Asia
  • Ashgabat- the most modern city in Central Asia
  • Valuable cultural insights- lectures, fairy tales and information about history and regional traditions
  • Everyday life in Central Asia
  • Dinner & costume show in courtyard of an old madrasah - Bukhara
  • Lunch in the summer palace of an Emir - Khiva
  • Lunch in a typical Uzbek house
  • Tolkuchka Bazaar in Ashgabat
  • The making of traditional art objects: silk and carpets
  • Almaty - “Father - apple” - a touch of Russia
  • Registan: the most beautiful square of the Orient
  • Shah-i-Zinde complex of mausoleums - Samarkand
  • Excavations of ancient Afrosiyob town - Samarkand
  • Ark Fortress in Bukhara
  • Ismael Samani and Gur Emir mausoleum - Bukhara
  • Ulug Bek observatory - Samarkand
  • Highlights UNESCO's World Heritage:
  • Turkestan: Mausoleum Kooja Ahmed Yasawi
  • Historical Centre of Shakhrisabz
  • The inner town of the old Khiva oasis
  • Historical Centre of Bukhara
  • Samarkand - Crossroads of Cultures
  • The Pearl of the East: Ruins of ancient Merv
  • The old Parthian city of Nisa

 

Dining Experience

37 superb meals including, 13 Breakfasts (B), 12 Lunches (L) and 12 Dinners (D)

 

Private Chartered Train - Orient Silk Road Express
  • Travel with the private train
  • Gourmet meals on the train
  • Tour director present throughout the train journey and additional competent travel guides
  • A physician is on board the train
  • Traditional welcome ceremonies upon arrival at Bukhara and Samarqand railway stations
  • Wine tasting

 

To enquire or book this tour, please contact

Phone: 1300 219 885            Email: enquiries@opulentjourneys.com.au

Please Click Here to download the tour details.

Itinerary

You will be transferred to our accommodation for our first night in Kazakhstan and the start of your fascinating journey across Central Asia.

After breakfast we depart for a morning city sightseeing tour of Almaty, the largest city in Kazakhstan and the country’s capital until 1997.The city still remains the major commercial and cultural centre for the country as well as its largest population centre. We will visit the19th century Russian Orthodox Zenkov Cathedral, one of the world’s tallest ‘all wooden construction’ buildings. Following a very special welcome lunch in a traditional yurt, you will be transferred to our Silk Road train where we board and settle in for the night.

(Meals: B, L, D)

We will have breakfast on board our train prior to arriving into the city of Turkestan in Kazakhstan. During our stay here we will visit the Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the best preserved of all Timurid period constructions. The structure features spatial arrangements, innovative architectural solutions for vault and dome construction with ornamented glazed tiles, and became a prototype for design across the empire and the world beyond. We reboard our train and journey overnight to Tashkent in Uzbekistan, with border formalities being handled on board.

(Meals: B, L, D)

This morning we arrive into Tashkent, the capital city of Uzbekistan, the most cosmopolitan city in Uzbekistan and known for its tree-lined streets, numerous water fountains and park areas set aside for the local population. On our sightseeing experience in Tashkent, you will visit the Madrasah Kukeldash. Also we will see the Amir Timur Museum and the Khast Imam Mosque, which contains what is believed to be one of the oldest copies of the Qur’an in the world. This evening, we will attend a performance at the Tashkent Alisher Navoi Opera and Ballet Theatre (dependent upon schedules). This building was designed by the same architect who created Lenin’s Tomb in Moscow. Following the performance we will reboard our train and continue on towards Shakhrisabz.

(Meals: B, L, D)

Shakhrisabz, formerly the ancient city of Kesh, is one of Central Asia’s oldest cities, founded more than 2,700 years ago, was the home of Timur, and once the winter home of Alexander the Great. The old part of the city has been placed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, providing the opportunity to see Timur’s Summer Palace (Aq-Saray Palace), the Tomb of Timur, and the local colourful market. During our time in Shakhrisabz, we will experience unique traditions of the region including a taste of Uzbek wine! In the evening our rail journey continues as we head towards fabled Samarkand.

(Meals: B, L, D)

We spend the next 2 nights in this fascinating city –the Crossroads of Cultures. One of the oldest cities in the world, Samarkand prospered from its central position on the Silk Road and at one time was considered the most beautiful city in the world. Our time here will be filled with exploration of this amazing ancient city, including the ‘grave city’ of Shah-e-zende along with cultural highlights – a silk carpet factory, an Uzbek craftman’s family, see paper manufactured from mulberry bark and much more. Our nights in Samarqand will be spent at a hotel, providing a break from our rail accommodation.

(Meals: B, L, D)

We will visit this wonderful building along with the Bibi-Khanym Mosque and the world famous Registan. The Registan was the ancient centre of the city. This public square is a magnificent sight and will entrance the visitor, framed by these three magnificent buildings of Islamic architecture.

(Meals: B, L, D)

This morning is free to enjoy some last minute sightseeing before we again rejoin our train for our departure to Khiva and the spectacular scenery that awaits us. We overnight on board as the journey continues.

(Meals: B, L, D)

We arrive into the oasis of Khiva and yet another fascinating ancient city. The old town contains more than 50 historic monuments and 250 old houses dating from the 18th century. Around the Kalta Minor Minaret, life still pulses much as it did in ancient times. Our time here will include visits to palaces, mosques, minarets, mausoleums, Koranic schools and wonderful examples of oriental and medieval architecture.

(Meals: B, L, D)

Today we arrive into the ancient city of Bukhara, inhabited for nearly three millennia and located on the Silk Road. The historic centre of Bukhara has been listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Situated in the middle of the Kyzyl Kum desert, Bukhara features one thousand monuments, many recalling the halcyon days of the Great Silk Road. On our tour, we will visit the Kalyan Minaret. Later you will have dinner in the courtyard of a Madrasah, along with musical accompaniment, local dancing and a parade of colourful national costumes, before transferring to a city hotel for the night’s accommodation.

(Meals: B, L, D)

Today we spend most of our last hours in Bukhara touring what has been described as a living art museum displaying its old oriental face. We will visit the magnificent Mirr-i Arab Madrasah and arguably the most beautiful building in Central Asia – the Samanid Mausoleum, the final resting place of Ismael Samani. The Mausoleum is considered of the best and most esteemed examples of Central Asian architecture. Your tour also includes time at the massive fortress known as The Ark.  The entrance is particularly impressive, framed by twin 18th century towers. Within this wonderful building is featured the mosque of Ul’dukhtaron. The tour concludes with a visit to the only women’s mosque in the world, before we rejoin our train and depart for Merv, the ancient Pearl of the East.

(Meals: B, L, D)

Our tour spends the day in this most ancient of cities and another UNESCO World Heritage Site. At one time Merv was the largest city in the world, one of the major oasis cities in central Asia. Merv was strategically positioned along the Silk Road to benefit from the trade that passed through. We will tour this ancient city and the Virgin Fortress is also on our tour along with mausoleums and other sites of interest. Lunch will be in the courtyard of a local family home, and late afternoon we will board our train for our next stop – Ashgabat.

(Meals: B, L, D)

Our final stop in Central Asia is the city of Ashgabat, the capital and largest city in Turkmenistan. The name is Persian in origin and means ‘City of Love’ – a relatively young city but Ashgabat lies only a short distance from the ancient city of Nisa, the capital of the Parthian Empire. We will tour the ruins of Nisa, a World Heritage Site. The border of Iran lies only a short distance from this old city that dates back to 250BC. You will undertake an afternoon city tour of Ashgabat before getting together for dinner this evening as our train journey draws to a close.

(Meals: B, L, D)

Transfer to the airport for your onward flight.

(Meals: B)

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