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Turkmenistan Holidays

Conquered by Alexander the Great, part of the wider Parthian Empire, then ruled by the Seljuk Turks it was not until the 11th century that the nomadic Turkmen tribes, from which Turkmenistan derives its name, first settled in the region. Fiercely independent and proud of its heritage, Turkmenistan is today an eccentric desert land of ancient ruins and lunar landscapes. Close to the southern border is capital Ashgabat, built by the Russians at the end of the 19th century and now a city of grand palaces and government buildings. For the adventurous, head north from Ashgabat into the vast dunes of the Karakum Desert to visit the extraordinary gas craters of Darvaza, visit Turkmenbashi on the shores of the Caspian Sea or travel east to Merv, a Silk Road city and, in its day, a major Islamic centre. With our knowledge and experience we can help to create a unique holiday to Turkmenistan that is tailored exactly to your requirements.

Places to visit in Turkmenistan

A desert land that has been at the crossroads of empires and civilisations for well over a thousand years, Turkmenistan shares a long land border with Uzbekistan and Iran and also faces the shores of the Caspian Sea. Ashgabat is the capital of Turkmenistan, the main gateway into the nation and by far the largest city in the country. A modern metropolis that has undergone a major renewal in recent years, visit Lenin Square and the colourful Sunday Market before heading out to the ancient remains of Nisa which was once the capital of the Parthian Empire. Aside from Ashgabat, other places of interest include the Putlog Timur Minaret in Kunya Urgench, located just across the Uzbek border, and the significant archaeological remains at Merv. Turkmenistan is easily combined with Uzbekistan and, if flying via Turkey, Istanbul.

When to Visit turkmenistan

Land-locked Turkmenistan is a largely arid desert nation with a continental climate. Summers are generally very hot and dry with occasional bursts of rain that can be short but quite heavy. Winter can be mild but, more often than not, can become very cold. Although it rains frequently over the winter months it very rarely snows. In winter you can expect temperatures between -6°C and 4°C whereas in the summer temperatures can reach over 40°C. In contrast, from April to June and August to October see more comfortable temperatures and minimal risk of rain making the spring and autumn the best times to visit the country.

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This is a general overview suggesting when to travel in the country. Please note that this may not directly apply to any specific itinerary or region.

Essential Information

Capital: Ashgabet

Main Language: Turkmen

Time Zone: GMT + 5

Currency: Manat (TMT)

Holiday Ideas for Turkmenistan

China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan Holiday Review

We have returned from our epic journey and we had an excellent time. The journey delivered far more than we had anticipated on a number of dimensions. The mountain scenery was stunning and the desert scenery was awesome and not a bit like we expected. Despite our research, the history of the “Stans” both pre and post Soviet was a revelation. Of course, linking all of this together was the Silk Road and although it wasn’t a central aspect of a lot of the tourism, it cropped up enough times for us to get a really good understanding of it and provided a link between all the countries and sites we visited, which did add something extra.

SH & DH - China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan - October 2019

Accommodation in Turkmenistan

Turkmenistan is one of the least explored and little-known countries in the world and has little in the way of a tourist infrastructure. Ashgabat is home to Turkmenistan’s only luxury hotel and away from the capital accommodation is simple and occasionally rustic. Virtually all hotels in Turkmenistan are modern and locally owned and run.

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