markets in central asia

Why We Love Markets in Central Asia

  Be prepared to bargain hard at markets in Central Asia. On the Central Asia Rally, you will travel in the footsteps on the ancient Silk Road. You’ll drive on the route’s scenic mountain passes, and stay in historic cities which grew rich from trade. The most authentic Silk Road memory, though, are the markets and bazaars, […]

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Astrakhan: Where Russia Meets the East

  Astrakhan is where Europe ends, and the Central Asia Rally begins. Astrakhan is best known as a departure point: this is the closest major city to the Volga Delta, and as such is an increasingly popular destination for nature tourism. Its position on the Caspian Sea has ensured a long history as an important […]

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largest cities of central asia

What to do in Dushanbe

  Here’s what to do in Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan. Not many people have heard of Tajikistan, and even fewer know its capital, Dushanbe. The city, located in the West of the Central Asian country, isn’t exactly crammed with must-see sights. However, surrounded by mountains, the city’s wide boulevards and relaxed atmosphere make it a […]

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Visa-Free Travel to Kazakhstan

  Visa-Free Travel to Kazakhstan has arrived for citizens of many countries. It has been announced that visa-free travel to Kazakhstan is now available for all citizens of the European Union and OECD countries. This will make travel there (whether as a tourist destination or a through-route) considerably easier, and cheaper. However, this news came […]

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Issyk-Kul: Kyrgyzstan’s Best Lake?

  We recently covered Song-Kul Lake, but is Kyrgyzstan’s best lake actually Issyk-Kul? The world’s second largest Alpine lake (after Lake Titicaca, in the Andes), Lake Issyk-Kul — while it faces competition as Kyrgyzstan’s best lake — is certainly the Central Asia country’s largest. It’s also the second largest salt-water lake in the world, and the eleventh overall, according […]

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Why You Should Visit Song-Kul Lake in Kyrgyzstan

  Song-Kul Lake in Kyrgyzstan is a must-see spot in Central Asia… if you can reach it! Against the backdrop of distant mountains, Song-Kul Lake in Kyrgyzstan, an alpine lake right in the center of the country, is gloriously tranquil. Famed for its sensational sunrises, sunsets, and the richness of star-filled night’s sky. With an area of […]

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kyzylkum

Visa-Free Travel to Uzbekistan

  Uzbekistan’s president-elect has signed an order granting visa-free travel to Uzbekistan for citizens of twenty-seven countries. Traditionally, getting a visa for Uzbekistan has been problematic, with lots of paperwork required and the annoyance of applicants having to send their passport to the relevant embassy. Not any more though, if you’re from one of twelve […]

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Bards of the Golden Road: the Music of the Stans

The Central Asian republics- Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan – cover an area ten times the size of Britain, stretching from the Caspian Sea to the Chinese border. For many years, their music filtered out as an exotic and peripheral sound from the Soviet Union, but with their independence, the Stans have begun […]

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Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan: the Voice from Heaven

  No page on all things Central Asian could ever be complete without a mention of Pakistani-born Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, a singer of mainly Qawwali music and who, amongst those in the know, simply went by the nick “The voice from heaven” – which was just my impression when I first heard him sing […]

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How to Take Great Shots of Streets in Central Asia and Beyond

  All great adventures, like the Central Asia Rally, deserve to be documented with equally magnificent photos; some of these will aim to capture city streets in all of their syncopated, iridescent glory – here are the seven golden rules of how to take great shots of urban settings. Photo by Francisco Anzola Understand where […]

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The Pamir Highway- a Link in the Ancient Silk Road

  The Pamir Highway, the world’s second highest roadway, and a part of the ancient Silk Road, is a section of the M41 going from Osh in Kyrgyzstan, to Termez in Uzbekistan via Tajikistan through the Pamir mountains. Central Asia Rally’s path joins it for some of the most breathtaking views to be had anywhere. […]

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Central Asian Foods You Too Can Make: Sauces for Anything

  Okay, almost anything. And anything in my  plus-sauce book means exactly two kinds of carb (from here on: something), so if you’re not into rice either, now might be a good time to check on your organically sourced, free range, yak blood marinated leg of rainforest tarantula and let us get on with the business […]

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