Just thinking about the Great Silk Road it makes everyone to imagine caravans consisting of camels loaded with silks, treasure, and eastern spices, horsemen and messengers, drivers and dervishes, as well as the thousands of horses and sheep moved by the herdsmen to sales area with clouds of dust. There arise and merge with a string of exciting images of caravansarai, and rich prosperous cities of antiquity - Otrar and Taraz, Sauran and Yasi (now Turkestan), Ispidzhab (now Sairam) and Suyab, Kulan and Balasagun, and others.
Here, along these open spaces, you can see ancient fortresses (towns), visit the bustling eastern bazaars (markets), and admire the incredible beauty of the unique pearl of Muslims - the Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi distinguished by a remarkable architectural design and the mosaic tiles design. By immersing yourself in the spirit of caravanserai, you can enjoy real aromatic oriental pilaf, and other local cuisine and other local cuisine! And vast expanses of the Great Silk Road will also open to you the beauty of the local mountains abundantly covered with emerald meadows and rushing rivers and streams flowed crystal clear spring water, the freshness of which you will enjoy in a hike. The Great Silk Road will be glad to welcome you as highly appreciated guests on its open spaces, and reward everyone with its friendly embrace. Adventures begun!
Arrival early in the morning in Shymkent. Meeting at the airport. Transfer to the hotel. Accommodation at the Hotel. Rest. Then breakfast in a restaurant of national cuisine. After breakfast, on a comfortable minibus, we leave for the city of Turkestan, where we enjoy fascinating excursions to the Azret-Sultan historical and architectural complex.
Turkestan, in ancient times called Yasi, is the first capital of the Kazakh Khanate. Yasi became the center of the district, the main trade point on the Great Silk Road, and gained special fame at the beginning of the XII century, when Khoja Ahmet Yasawi settled here. Here is an outstanding monument of medieval architecture, a masterpiece of world architecture, included in the UNESCO World Heritage List - the Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmet Yasawi, built between 1385 and 1405. This rare grandiose structure was erected on the expanses of the Silk Road in honor of the man who lived in the 12th century, the ancient Turkic thinker and poet Ahmet Yasawi known in the East.
The mausoleum still hides in itself a lot of unsolved mysteries, and one of them is the unusual golden radiance from one of its walls. The wall itself is covered with by a sea of blue mosaics, and, as modern architects and restorers have confirmed, there are no gold or gilded impregnations on it. In the center of the hall is a ritual cauldron Tai-Kazan, cast in alloy of seven rare precious metals, with a diameter of 2.2 m and weighing 2 tons. Kazan in Central Asia is a symbol of unity and traditional hospitality.
After the excursion we will have lunch in the restaurant of national cuisine, and then we will go back to Shymkent, where you will have a delicious dinner waiting for you. It will be necessary to have a good rest, because tomorrow HIKING will start!
Adventure continues! After early breakfast, and leave the hotel, we will proceed through Lenger (remember the question about a city in the Soviet Union with one traffic light from that was asked at the "Field of Miracles"?) directly to the Burgulyuk Gorge. From now on, the day promises to be wet. We will walk about 5 km along the "wet canyon" and through "oubliette", where we will certainly get wet, partially or completely. Everything depends on the weather and the amount of water in the gorge. The climate here can change several times a day!
Before we leave the gorge, we will set up camp, put up tents and start a fire, cook dinner and make tea from the herbs collected here on a fire, we will dry and communicate. We'll spend the night in tents under the light of bright southern stars!
On this day we are expected to walk about 20 km to the Susingen Lake. On the way to the lake, we will pass several ridges, passes and valleys - at altitudes over 2000 m. We will have to try very hard, and we believe in you! And if yesterday there was a lot of water, then today it will not be up to the lake, so we will carry all the water supplies with us. The Sussingen Lake is located at an altitude of 1908 m. From the Kazakh "Сусіңген" is translated as "diminishing water", and that is the reason - the lake completely disappears every year in July-August, and in its place a vast green meadow is formed, along which run three small rivers, which is full of very tasty fish - scaleless osman, and hundreds of horses are grazing in the valley of the lake.
Towards evening we will access to the lake, set up camp, put up tents again and we start a fire, fish, and prepare a delicious dinner, communicate in friendly atmosphere at the campfire, and share our impressions. We will spend the night under the light of the bright stars of the huge Milky Way! They are incredibly many here, they are very close and incredibly beautiful, and their mysterious and warm flickers pleasantly pacify, and call for sleep!
Today we spend the whole day in the heart of nature in the valley of the Susingen Lake. We will walk along the lake, fish, swim, climb for a photo shoot on the ridges, enjoy the surrounding beauty, relax from the city bustle and telephone communication (it is not here since yesterday, as soon as we get beyond the pass!).
Meals all day camp - by the fire, fish soup made of the freshly caught fish are welcomed! Overnight in tents, under the magnificent southern sky!
We will get up early, pick up the camp, have breakfast, and start moving towards the Kaskasu Gorge. For the day we have to go more than 20 km along the picturesque mountain ranges, passes and gorges. When descending from the Kyrjolsai Pass 2615 m high, we will walk along the bed of a mountain stream - very noisy, fast, strong, winding to wade it several times, and we will get wet again a little.
And in the evening we will safely reach the place of rest, we will stay in a cozy hotel, swim in the pool, steam in the bathhouse, chat with animals and birds (deer, pheasant, peacock, falcon)! For a wonderful dinner our all our friendly team will perfectly celebrate our fascinating adventure!
Today ends your journey through the expanses of the sunny and hospitable south of Kazakhstan - a country where you will always be welcome! You say goodbye to the vast expanses of the Great Silk Road, go to Shymkent airport, and return home! As they say in Kazakhstan – Қош келдіңіз! What is translated from Kazakh as Welcome! And we tell you – to our next meetings, friends!
*Planning another route of returning home from Shymkent - inform us in advance about this!
- Transport along the route (buses, minibuses, cars)
- All excursion programs, with a guide and a driver. The entrance fee for excursion objects and the territory of the National Park. In places where the photo and video are paid for, they are paid by the tourist separately
- Accommodation along the whole route
- Catering throughout the route
- Transfer from Shymkent to Turkestan and back, and to the airport
- Guide services in the hike
- Services of porters
- Accommodation not indicated in the program
- Meals not indicated in the program
- Visa support and registration on the territory of the Republic of Kazakhstan, if required
- Life insurance
- Personal expenses and other expenses not indicated in the program
- Everything that is not indicated in the "What's included" section