Chitkul is the last Indian village near the Indo-China border and is only 12 kms from Rakcham. The road to Chitkul is often closed and it was closed the previous day too because of snow. Fortunately the weather was perfect today with clear skies and sunshine.
Money cannot always buy you the best view. And that statement becomes more true as you start going to less explored places. Hotel Rupin River View is probably the only hotel in Rakcham and you will be spellbound by the views from this small paradise. This is the best view I ever had in my travels so far.
Spiti is often a popular summer destination but strangely few people prefer visiting Spiti in winter. This is surprising considering the stunning snow landscapes one gets to witness during this time of the year.
Custom Formalities at Dushanbe Airport is a mystery and there is hardly any clear information available. We encountered this incident while exiting Dushanbe airport.
We had a 5am FlyDubai flight from Dushanbe airport. After checking in our luggage, came the 1st surprise. The officer at the 1st bag checking counter asked how much dollars I was carrying. Without thinking, I said 3200. With a wicked smile, he said only 3000 allowed.
Learning local language while traveling is always an asset. But sometimes it might also go horribly wrong as I encountered one of my embarrassing travel moments in Iran.
I was learning Persian before I went to Afghanistan and Iran. In Iran, I tried to show off my Persian skills by wishing good night (Shaba Kheer) to local people in Persian.
How I got my Afghanistan visa is a funny story actually. I went to the Afghan Consulate in Mumbai and it was a big deserted building…quite understandably. There was an Afghan officer sitting inside and I entered the room and told him,
“Sir, I have come to apply for the Afghanistan tourist visa.”
Tajikistan transportation options are limited through Pamir region. Flights and public services are mostly limited to Dushanbe and nearby towns.
Plane: There isn’t much option for internal flights in Tajikistan. Though Khorog in Pamir region has a runway but flight schedule is irregular. Sometimes there are helicopter rides from Khorog to Dushanbe. You will have to inquire in advance. Its a good option if you want to experience an aerial view of the Pamir mountains.
We were in Uzbekistan only for three days, out of which 1 night we stayed in Tashkent and two nights in Samarkand.
Uzbekistan Accommodation options in Tashkent and Samarkand:
In both these places, we opted for Jahangir’s B&B and it proved to be a fantastic choice. It was a king’s breakfast at both the places. The service is very good and the owners are very polite and helpful.
Our stay in Uzbekistan was very short – just 3-4 days. But it was a memorable experience mostly because of the amazing people of Uzbekistan. We visited just two places in Uzbekistan – Tashkent and Samarkand.
Our Uzbekistan itinerary consisted of 3-4 days in Tashkent, Samarkand, and Shahrisabz. The fourth day was spent in crossing the border into Tajikistan.
Day 1 :
Arrive at Tashkent.
Visit local sights in Tashkent – Chorsu Bazar, Khazrati Imam Architectural Complex, a small metro ride, The Senate of Uzbekistan, Amir Temur Square, Saligokh Street (Broadway), World War II Memorial.