Day 1: Uzbekistan border (Shavat) – Dashoguz – Daravza crater
In the afternoon, meeting of the group at the Dashoguz border. Customs formalities. Drive to Darvaza gas crater via Kunya-Urgench (UNSCO World Heritage Site) – once a glorious capital of the medieval Khorezmshah Empire, the biggest Muslim empire of the late 12 - early 13 centuries. On arrival in Kunya-Urgench we will have a chance to take a close look at outstanding monuments of the medieval Khorezm. We will visit the 14 century mausoleum of Turabek Hanum, one of the best living examples of the architecture of its period; minaret of Kutlug Timur, a former highest minaret of Central Asia that used to form a part of the main cathedral mosque of the city; mausoleum of Sultan Tekesh, a beautiful 12 century mausoleum with one of the earliest portals of the east and a unique cone of a dome; Kyrk-Mollah mound, the fabled al-Mamun’s Academy of Sciences; and mausoleum of Il-Arslan, a tiny precursor of unique Khorezmian mausoleums with a pyramidal cone as its dome. We finish the day tasting delicious nomadic food, pondering over the meaning of life in the serene atmosphere of beautiful evening sky and flickering lights of the “eternal” fire. Overnight in tents.
After breakfast, we pack up our camp and we will drive back to Dashoguz to cross a border with Khiva.