Sport and exercise plays a central role in the Turkmen culture. In 2017, the capital city of Ashgabat hosted the 5th Asian Games and the same year marked the first celebration of ‘Cycling Day’ on June 3rd, on which day the Turkmen people do not use their vehicles for transportation. The day has now been included in the UN holiday calendar and Above Borders are excited to embrace Turkmenistan’s focus on cycling by arranging this bike tour to one of the most isolated countries in the world. Besides biking in the middle of the desert, we look forward to showing you the many impressive monuments in Ashgabat and take you to Darvaza and stay the night at the Gate to Hell. Last, but not least, the tour includes a unique spectator experience in the World Championship in Track Racing taking place in Ashgabat during our travels in Turkmenistan.
This tour has been arranged in collaboration with our Dutch travel colleagues from ‘Tot hier en verder’. Both Denmark and the Netherlands have a strong and widespread cycling culture and we are extremely happy to bring our two nation’s enthusiasm for cycling to Turkmenistan.
On our way, we pass the Hauz Khan Reservoir where the fresh fish cafés are a popular truck stop. On the drive from Ashgabat to Mary we cross a dozen bridges. In the field along the route, we can see grape/vineyards, grain and cotton, mushrooms, apples, apricots and melons. Arriving in Mary will be a lively change in landscape after the monotonous drive.
This day rounds up approximately 50 kilometres of cycling.
In the afternoon, we drive northwards and enter the Karakum Desert for a 4-hour drive to Darvaza and the famous gas crater ‘Gate to Hell’. On some part of the drive, you will have the opportunity to cycle.
The sight of the flaming crater will most likely be one of the most spectacular sights you have ever seen. As we set up camp and the sun goes down, the light and noise of the hundreds of flames becomes even more surreal.
In the evening, we will visit the UCI Track Cycling World Championships Closing Ceremony at the Olympic Stadium of Ashgabat. Afterwards we transfer to the hotel and have our last overnight in Turkmenistan.
Due to the general tourism in Turkmenistan, the program is subject to change. Adjustments will be made before and during the trip, but we will do everything we can to update you regularly. In case something gets canceled, we will find alternative activities.
Gustav have travelled to many places of the world where Turkmenistan is among one of his favorite destinations. He is passionate about traveling and as a tour leader he is dedicated to pass on his experiences to help our travellers to get the most out of their experiences. Gustav is also part of our research team where he develop new destinations and itineraries for Above Borders. You can therefore expect that he has been involved in the process of the itinerary of this tour if you get the pleasure of having Gustav as tour leader.
Above Borders is a member of the Travel Guarantee Fund (member no: 2943), which is your guarantee that we follow Danish legislation in connection with group travel. We will always be available if you have any questions and make sure you receive material in preparation for our trip to ensure that you are best prepared.