Karakalpakstan, in western Uzbekistan, contains 70% of all the historical sites in ancient Khorezm. The region dates to Zoroastrian times and the extensive archaeological excavations also reveal how important the area was during the heyday of the Great Silk Road.
In collaboration with UNESCO, the local government has created the Golden Ring of Khorezm concept: a cultural zone encompassing the region of the lower Amu Darya from Khiva and Beruniy in the south to Moynak in the north.
This special tour is based at the Ayaz Kala yurt camp, located in a picturesque oasis in Beruniy district. Within this area there are extraordinary desert fortresses, the Sultan Uvais mountains and the 30 km long Ayaz Kala lake.
One Hour Before Flight Time
Meet in Khiva and transfer to Ayzkala. Visit local museum and explore Toprak Kala, the centre of Khorezmshahs in 305 BC and Kyzyl kala . Take camel ride near the yurt camp. Dinner and overnight in Yurt.
Ayazkala-Badaytugay-Ayazkala (160 kms round trip) In the morning, travel to Badaytugay national reserve. Badaytugay was declared a nature reserve in 1971 to protect the region’s biosphere. Located at the lower end of Amudarya river, on the right bank, it is 6497 hectares. The presence of water attracts large numbers of birds to spend the winter in the reserve. And for bird lovers, this place is astonishing.
Occasionally there are muskrat, badger, fox, jungle cat, and hedgehogs. In the waters spread marsh frogs and many species of snakes. The waters of the Amu Darya, surrounding the reserve, and in the tributaries Kokdari there are about 15 species of fish.
Lunch will be served at local house.
In the afternoon, visit Koykirilgan Kala castle, dating from the 4th century BC and UNESCO-registered. It was a burial place of Zoroastrians, a lot of ossuaries were found there, and it was an astrological centre.
Dinner at yurt camp with a local folk show. Overnight at yurt camp.
In the morning travel to Kavat Kala (double layered fortress), the botanical garden, and enjoy tea in a chaikhana. Return to the yurt for lunch. In the afternoon, take a sailing boat on Ayazkul lake. Dinner and overnight in yurt.
Travel from Ayazkala to Nukus, around 170 kms. City sightseeing, followed by lunch at a local restaurant. Spend the afternoon at the Savitsky museum, which holds the world’s 2nd largest collection of Russian modernist art as well as stunning ancient textiles. Dinner at a local restaurant and overnight in hotel.
Nukus-Moynak-Nukus (200 km one way) Trip to Moynak, the town by the Aral Sea. Visit the ship cemetery and the local museums of Moynak, Mizdakhan and Nazlimhansulu. Lunch will be a picnic and dinner served in a local restaurant. Overnight Nukus in hotel.
After breakfast, depart Nukus. We can arrange transfers to the Turkmenistan border, or to Khiva or to the local airport for a Tashkent flight.