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28

WikiTravel doesn't have an article on the Gates of Hell, but WikiVoyage does. There's at least four tour companies listed. Two international and two local. You apparently can drive there but it requires a 4x4 and you'll be driving across the sand rather than on a road. They suggest that you won't be able to get there in a rental car but don't give any ...


25

OK, I can answer a good part of this. From Europe, you can get into Russia fairly simply with a visa - tourist visa is for 1 month max, however, which is a bit limiting (maybe not for you, but it was for me). From there I went south and into Kazakhstan, across Uzbekistan, into Tajikistan. Afterwards I continued north - Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, back into ...


16

Alternate Answer provided at OP's request: If travel from Europe to India is the goal and specifically flying is the problem, you can travel by ship. One option is vacation style cruise lines such as Norwegian, Cunard, Royal Caribbean which sometimes offer repositioning sailings. However, if you just want to get there, you best bet is booking on a ...


14

Disclaimer: this is mostly personal experience, and quite outdated (2015). It depends a lot on how you define "safe" (for example, would you feel safe talking to a border guard threatening you in attempt to squeeze a bribe, but without involving physical violence?), but generally your safest route would be through Europe, Russia and China. Then you have a ...


11

The UK Government has travel advisories against all travel into the area of Iran within 100KM of Pakistan. Most of the rest of that path has ony "normal" advisories. Within Pakistan itself, the Southern route has only "normal" advisories, while the Karakoram Highway itself has advisories against all travel. The Northern route you mention (ending through ...


10

From Tbilisi to Baku you can go via train #38/37. It goes every day, so there is no problem with that. From Baku you can get to Aktau (Kazakhstan) via ferry. People who used this ferry are saying it has no stable schedule, so you can contact ferry station by phone: (99412) 493-19-63 (99412) 498-10-13 Also you can go to Türkmenbaşy (Turkmenistan), ...


10

Ah, a place I want to return to - Central Asia! What about Uzbekistan too? ;) Interest regarding scenery and culture Tajikistan is basically a country on mountains. Kyrgyzstan has the flat area around Bishkek, but quickly climbs in any direction out of there. Kyrgyzstan has the lakes (Issyk-Kul is stunning, like a Kyrgyz Cancun!), while the trekking in ...


6

I can answer only about Russian part of your trip. You can avoid "Kazakhstan > Uzbekistan >Tajikistan > Kyrgyzstan", Russia has a common border with China. It will extend you trip, but not too much. Your best option for most of the path is train (at least for solo trip). There is a train route from Moscow to Khabarovsk which is located near the Chinese ...


6

The answer to your question is rather opinion based and very much depends on your personal behaviour. Meanwhile, few people who have actually traveled to Iran will call it 'unsafe', though of course Afghanistan and Pakistan can be quite volatile. Plenty of people make this journey. Tony Wheeler and his wife, founders of Lonely Planet, are a well known ...


5

Am in Tajikistan now and can tell you that even in summer there's snow at the top of the big peaks. So I'd say it could easily surprise and come before October... Shared taxi is the safest option in a landcruiser or similar, but hitching is another fun way to try it ;)


5

According to this information, in the winter of 2010/2011 the roads were open and were cleaned sometimes, but still it was in an awful condition: Also you can easily stuck on the highway, if any avalanche happens, and wait for sometime anyone will clean it.


5

In addition to what you say, the procedures for Chinese visa are also quite volatile over time, so be sure to check the sources for updates and try your luck. The best info I found is on the excellent Caravanistan site for China-visa. There you find a section with the latest updates on getting visa on the road from not only Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan but ...


5

According to my friend from Fergana The Teas that they used to drink were primarily of 2 varieties: Green: Tea 95 Black: Indian Tea (The One at the top) The current tastes and varieties may vary and though the ceremonies remain the same. If you are ever in New York City you can visit Rego Park in Queens where there is a lot of people from former ...


5

Well, there is a phrase: "If you don't drink the tea, where your power come from?" (in Russian it's much more poetic :). The process of drinking the tea is realy a huge part of culture and traditions in Central Asia. Generally, most popular is a various sorts of green tea. It's been prepared for a 5 minutes, with additional heating. The cafes there are ...


4

We've got four cellular companies and all four offer prepaid sim cards. Here are the links to their websites, they have english versions and maps of their sales offices. http://kcell.kz, http://beeline.kz, www.tele2.kz, www.altel.kz. There are a lot of small reseller offices in the airports, train stations and shops, but they generally don't speak english (...


4

Indian or Ceylon tea is very popular in the post-USSR countries. Here's an example. The black varieties taste different from what we know in the Western world. I find it to be close to the Earl Grey tea. Generally in the USSR they didn't have varieties, they had colors of the packaging: golden Indian tea and green Indian tea (both blacks, I'm not familiar ...


3

Ahmed Tea is very popular in the Central Asian republics/Azerbaijan, it's a British tea company that should be readily available. Most of my friends (and I myself) use this tea. They also drink a lot of granulated tea in Kazakhstan, or at least the family I lived with did. Kazakhstan usually drinks tea black and with or without milk. There are also several ...



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