Here you’ll find travel reports about Ahal. Discover travel destinations in Turkmenistan of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

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  • Day8

    A Day in Ashgabat

    May 15 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    Last night I walked around the area near the hotel and finally found a restaurant, on the way home I discovered that there are places I’m not allowed to go and key amongst these is anywhere within a city block of the Presidential Palace (which along with any government building I’m not allowed to photograph). When I got too close the police and security people were very fast to let me know I was not welcome there.
    Today I looked at Ashgabat which everyone is fast to tell me is noted in the Guinness Book of Records as having the most marble clad buildings in the world, along with several other records (they seem a little obsessed with these records).
    I wandered around the remains of Old Nisa then headed off to the Spiritual Mosque, one of the biggest mosques in Central Asia I’m told, then off to the Monument of Neutrality (they are very proud of being a neutral country). I visited another mosque and the Independent Park and spent a while looking through the National History Museum which was good.
    Unbelievably in this city in the desert it rained today quite heavily for a short time.
    Tonight I will play it safe and look for somewhere to eat in the opposite direction to the Presidential Palace
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  • Day126


    September 16, 2018 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ☀️ 31 °C

    Ashgabat: (Turkmen: Aşgabat, pronounced [ɑʃʁɑˈbɑt][2]; Russian: Ашхабад, tr. Ashkhabad, IPA: [ɐʂxɐˈbat]) — named Poltoratsk (Russian: Полтора́цк, IPA: [pəltɐˈratsk]) between 1919 and 1927, is the capital and the largest city of Turkmenistan in Central Asia, situated between the Karakum Desert and the Kopet Dag mountain range. The city was founded in 1881, and made the capital of the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic in 1924. Much of the city was destroyed by the 1948 Ashgabat earthquake but has since seen extensive renovation under President Saparmurat Niyazov's urban renewal project. The Karakum Canal runs through the city, carrying waters from the Amu Darya from east to west. Ashgabat is a relatively young city, having been founded in 1881 as a fortification and named after the nearby settlement of Askhabad (see above for the etymology). Located not far from the site of Nisa, the ancient capital of the Parthian Empire, it grew on the ruins of the Silk Road city of Konjikala, first mentioned as a wine-producing village in the 2nd century BC and leveled by an earthquake in the 1st century BC (a precursor of the 1948 Ashgabat earthquake). Konjikala was rebuilt because of its advantageous location on the Silk Road and it flourished until its destruction by Mongols in the 13th century. After that it survived as a small village until Russians took over in the 19th century.

    A part of Persia until the Battle of Geok Tepe, Askhabad was ceded to the Russian Empire under the terms of the Akhal Treaty. Russia developed the area as it was close to the border of British-influenced Persia, and the population grew from 2,500 in 1881 to 19,428 (of whom one third were Persian) in 1897. It was regarded as a pleasant town with European style buildings, shops, and hotels. In 1908, the first Bahá'í House of Worship was built in Askhabat. It was badly damaged in the 1948 earthquake and finally demolished in 1963. The community of the Bahá'í Faith in Turkmenistan was largely based in Ashgabat. Soviet rule was established in Ashgabat in December 1917. However, in July 1918, a coalition of Mensheviks, Social Revolutionaries, and Tsarist former officers of the Imperial Russian Army revolted against the Bolshevik rule emanating from Tashkent and established the Ashkhabad Executive Committee. After receiving some support (but even more promises) from General Malleson, the British withdrew in April 1919 and the Tashkent Soviet resumed control of the city.

    In 1919, the city was renamed Poltoratsk (Полторацк), after Pavel Poltoratskiy, the Chairman of the Soviet of National Economy of the Turkestan Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic. When the Turkmen SSR was established in 1924, Poltoratsk became its capital. The original name (in the form of "Ashkhabad") was restored in 1927. From this period onward, the city experienced rapid growth and industrialisation, although severely disrupted by a major earthquake on October 6, 1948. An estimated 7.3 on the Richter scale, the earthquake killed 110-176,000 (⅔ of the population of the city), although the official number announced by Soviet news was only 40,000. In July 2003, street names in Ashgabat were replaced by serial numbers except for nine major highways, some named after Saparmurat Niyazov, his father, and his mother. The Presidential Palace Square was designated 2000 to symbolize the beginning of the 21st century. The rest of the streets were assigned larger or smaller four-digit numerical names. Following Niyazov's death in 2006, Soviet-era street names were restored, though in the years since, many of them have been replaced with names honoring Turkmen scholars, poets, military heroes, and figures from art and culture. In 2013, the city was included in the Guinness Book of Records as the world's highest concentration of white marble buildings.

    Editiert am 08.04.2019
    Text von Wolfgang
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  • Day128

    Start of good news from Dragoman again

    September 18, 2018 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ☀️ 32 °C

    Hi everyone!
    Everything is going to be fine. We are looking forward to meeting you all along the way to Istanbul. We now head on much more comfortable on the last lap to Istanbul.

    E-Mail vom 24.09.2018
    Thanks George

    As Rob was keep telling us we are saisoned travellers. With Intrepid we did about more than 25 trips before they became soft. With Dragoman we did 3 trips and we still recommend you lads. Since those nasty and unpleasant kids left the DRAGOMAN group everyone left on the trip is enjoying the remaining trip to Istanbul. Therefore we have a WIN-WIN Situation. We are greatfull that you refund as the fare and the kitty from Asghabat to Istanbul as well as our deposit on the PANAMERICA. We take that money to travel privately on rather the same track than Rob und Prime and all our buddies, but a bit more in comfort. We have learned one lesson on that fantastic journey: We are to old to travel with groups let’s say more than 90 days. Therefore there is a chance that we join DRAGOMAN in the near future. Let me finish by telling you that Rob and Prim are the best tour guides we ever had and that we enjoined every bit from Ulaanbatoor to Asghabat.

    Wolfgang and Heidi Schneider

    Am 24.09.2018 um 12:36 schrieb Dragoman :
    Dear Wolfgang

    My name is George and I am the managing director of Dragoman. I am very sorry to hear about the events that occurred on your trip. We know that you have travelled with us extensively before and we do value your custom. Events such as this are extremely rare but we do have some strict rules relating to violence on trip. It was not an easy decision but in the end, our operations team decided that they had to make the decision that they made at the time. Again, I am very sorry that you were excluded from the trip but as Heather said we would welcome you back on a Dragoman trip in the future. If you have any further comments, please let me know.

    Best wishes George
    George Durie | Managing and Operations Director

    Editiert am 08.04.2019
    Text von Wolfgang
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  • Day126


    September 16, 2018 in Turkmenistan ⋅ 🌬 29 °C

    Halk Hakydasy Memorial Complex (People's memory): is a memorial complex to the honor of those killed in battle Geok Tepe, World War II, and the commemoration of the victims of the 1948 Ashgabat earthquake. It is located in the southwestern part of Ashgabat, Turkmenistan.

    Monument of Neutrality (Turkmen: Bitaraplyk arkasy): was a monument located in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. The three-legged arch, which became known locally as „The Tripod“, was 75 metres (246 ft) tall and was built in 1998 on the orders of Turkmenistan's President Saparmurat Niyazov to commemorate the country's official position of neutrality. It cost $12 million to construct. The monument was topped by a 12-metre (39 ft) tall gold-plated statue of Niyazov which rotated to always face the sun. The arch was located in central Ashgabat where it dominated the skyline, being taller than the nearby Presidential Palace. The statue was illuminated at night. The arch featured a panoramic viewing platform which was a popular attraction for visitors. On 18 January 2010 Niyazov's successor as president, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, signed a decree to begin work on dismantling and moving the arch. There were reports that the arch would be dismantled as early as 2008, but the president did not approve the move until 2010. The dismantling was officially said to be a move to improve urban design in Ashgabat but is seen as part of Berdimuhamedow's campaign to remove the excesses of the personality cult that Niyazov had created in his two decades at the head of one of the world's most totalitarian regimes. Niyazov also named cities and airports after himself, ordered the building of an ice palace and a 40-metre (130 ft) tall pyramid, but the gold-plated statue has been described as the most notorious symbol of his legacy. Berdimuhamedow has replaced the arch with a 95-metre (312 ft) tall „Monument to Neutrality“ which is located in the suburbs. The president appointed Turkish construction firm Polimeks to carry out the demolition of the arch and the construction of the new monument. The removal of Niyazov's golden statue was completed on 26 August 2010, although it then became part of the new Monument to Neutrality. The statue no longer rotates, but the viewing platform is usually open for visitors still. There are elevators inside the „legs“ of the monument.

    Editiert am 08.04.2019
    Text von Wolfgang
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  • Day128


    September 18, 2018 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ☀️ 31 °C

    Wir bewegen uns heute nicht mehr weg vom Swimming Pool. Der hat unglaubliche Dimensionen und NUR Heidi und ich nutzen den. Ashgabat ist eben eine bizarre Stadt aus Marmor geschnitzt - leider ohne Menschen. Wo in China vermutlich auf 5.000 qm bebauter Fläche gefühlte 2.000 Menschen kommen sind es hier gefühlte 0,1 Menschen.

    Unsere Enttäuschung über die „dramatischen Ereignisse“ der letzten 2 Tage weichen langsam der Vorfreude auf 4 Übernachtungen in Baku in Azerbaijan. Morgen um ca. 03:00 a.m. geht unser extrem teurer Flieger (Lufthansa). Da nur Lufthansa direkt von Ashgabat nach Baku fliegt, gibt es leider keine Alternative. Außerdem müssten wir unser e-Visa (230 USD) neu beantragen. Die geplante Überfahrt über die Kaspische See fällt leider wegen der “besonderen Situation” für Heidi und mich aus.

    Videos gibt es erst wieder aus Baku, da Turkmenistan noch konsequenter Google und Co. sperrt als es China tut. Selbst unser VPN bringt hier keine Lösung.

    Editiert am 08.04.2019
    Text von Wolfgang
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  • Day128

    Asghabat to Baku (Azerbaijan)

    September 18, 2018 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ☀️ 28 °C

    Wir haben um 13:30 im Hotel ausgeschleckt und verbringen bis 24:00 am Pool. Dann bringt uns ein Taxi zum Flughafen. Am nächsten Tag (19:09.2018) um 01:00 sind wir am Flughafen. Der hat eine hypermoderne Abflughalle mit einer Abfertigungskapazität von „gefühlt München“. Bis morgen Abend gehen hier aber nur 11 Flieger (!!!!). Da schafft Bremen sicher das Dreifache. Und überall grüßt der Präsident (Titelfoto). Der Taxifahrer hatte gar ein goldgerahmtes Portrait des Präsidenten in der Windschutzscheibe. Dieses Mal mit traditioneller weißer Fellmütze sitzend auf einem Pferd. Im Arm hatte er dann noch seinen Hund. Ich glaube es war ein weißer Pudel. Wenn der noch grüßend seine Pfote heben könnte, wäre das Bild perfekt. Bizarr!!!!!!

    Reisedaten: 19. Sep. 2018 - 19. Sep. 2018
    Bestätigung M64JM2 (Lufthansa)
    Buchungsnummer: M64JM2

    05:00 a.m.
    Wir sind im „Grand Hotel“ in Baku angekommen und haben noch 3 Stunden geschlafen. Das Hotel ist ok., liegt im Stadtzentrum und ist preiswert. Und es hat superschnelles WIFI. Meine angestauten YouTube Videos kann ich hier extrem schnell hochladen. Rob berichtet um Mitternacht aus Turkmenbashi, dass sie mit dem Truck seit 5 Stunden auf der Fähre sind und sich seitdem nichts bewegt. Wenn die Fähre irgendwann mal ablegt, braucht sie 18 Stunden bis Baku. Hier sind wir jetzt klar im Vorteil. Der truck musste gestern 2 Tagesetappen an nur einem Tag fahren, um noch eine Chance zu haben eine der extrem unzuverlässigen Fähren zu erreichen.

    Thanks Rob
    That‘s great news.
    Yes, yes ...Whisky on the rocks for everyone will be great. The chocolate was great according to Heidi. We will be flighing tonight.

    Am 18.09.2018 um 15:28 schrieb Robert Dunn :
    Yes for sure. We are crossing the Caspian tonight. Will be in Baku tomorrow eve. Shall i put the whiskey on ice? Enjoy your last evening. Did Heidi enjoy the chocolates?

    On Tue, 18 Sep 2018, 19:02 Ewald W. Schneider, wrote:
    Hi Rob
    hi Prim
    We are both looking forward to see you all along the way to Istanbul in privat

    Yes Jane
    We are happy to see all of you in Baku. We are comforting each other as much as possible. Heidi loved the chocolate and the grapes as we both have to gain wait.
    Mr. Wulf

    Am 18.09.2018 um 13:36 schrieb Primrose Miller :
    Wolf!!!! Heidi Hiii!!
    We miss you both!! We are crossing on the ferry tonight so will be in Baku tomorrow.
    Very much looking forward to seeing you too!! Rob asks if Heidi enjoyed her chocolates and grapes?
    Lots of love to you Both!!


    Fazit des Draxit:
    Nach einigen Tagen der Ungewissheit haben wir von DRAGOMAN die schriftliche Zusage erhalten, dass sie uns den gesamten Preis für die Restreise bis nach Istanbul einschließlich Kitty erstatten werden. Von diesem Geld haben wir dann die Restreise bis nach Istanbul in etwa finanzieren können. Die drei grauenhaften Engländer haben in Ashgabat fluchtartig die Gruppe verlassen. Sie hatten mit ihrer Aktion vermutlich erreichen wollen, dass ihnen DRAGOMAN den Ausstieg zumindest teilweise finanzieren würde. Das ist glücklicherweise nicht geschehen. Die Gruppe war anschließend glücklich die drei Typen endlich los zu sein; auch wenn das alles zu unseren Lasten geschehen ist. Am Ende als wir in Istanbul angekommen waren, hatten wir mehr von Georgien gesehen, als wenn wir weiter mit DRAGOMAN gefahren wären. Von der Türkei haben wir dagegen leider weniger gesehen, als wenn wir weiter mit DRAGOMAN gefahren wären.

    Editiert am 08.04.2019
    Text von Wolfgang
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  • Day141

    Ashgabat, Gedenkstätten, Einkaufstempel

    September 24, 2018 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

    Heute besichtigen wir als erstes eine Gedenkstätte die mehrere Denkmäler beinhaltet.

    1. Erster Weltkrieg
    2. Zweiter Weltkrieg
    3. Erdbeben von 1948
    4. Unabhängigkeit von den Russen.

    Ein bombastischer Platz, wobei es hier mehr Reinigungskräfte und Gärtner gibt, als Besucher.

    Weiter geht es durch Neubaugebiete, vorbei an Ministerien und großzügig angelegte Parks.

    Wir halten kurz an dem weltweit größten Indoor-Pool Riesenrad. Aber es läuft nicht und es sind auch keine Menschen hier.

    Zum Schluss gehen wir noch in eine Shopping Mall.
    Wir suchen ein traditionelles Kleid, ein einziges Geschäft hat ein paar, aber uns gefällt keins.

    Alle anderen Läden sind von Adidas bis Villeroy und Boch. Und wieder nichts los. Wo sind denn nur die 800.000 Einwohner?
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  • Day139

    Karakum -Ashgabat

    September 22, 2018 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ☀️ 29 °C

    Heute ging es den 2ten Teil durch die Karakum nach Ashgabat, der Hauptstadt von Turkmenistan.

    Die Straßen waren um einiges besser. Die Wüste ist auch hier leicht bewachen und teilweise sandig.

    Beim Wechsel der Fahrbahnen hatte sich Alex festgefahren und wir haben ihn rausgezogen.

    In Ashgabat wollten wir eigentlich noch in die Autowäsche, in der Stadt müssen alle Autos sauber sein. Wir haben aber keine Waschstraße gefunden, so haben wir am Stellplatz selber Hand angelegt.

    Der Stellplatz ist in der Nähe des Flughafens, tolles Gebäude, auf einem Hotelparkplatz.

    Als wir im Hotel Internet hatten, haben wir erfahren das unser Vater gefallen ist und sich die Hüfte gebrochen hat. Er wurde Operiert und nun hoffen wir das alles wieder gut wird.
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  • Day140

    Ashgabat, SeaBridge-Essen + Lichterfahrt

    September 23, 2018 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ⛅ 29 °C

    Abend sind wir wieder zu Essen eingeladen worden.
    Das Restaurant war eher auf Englisch/Amerikanisch gemacht. Und ein Band spielt Rock und Popmusik.

    Der Spruch des Tages zum Thema: Vegetarisches Essen: Es gibt Gemüse gebraten wie Kotlett.

    Danach ging es noch durch das beleuchtet Ashgabat. Sehr imposant und verrückt. Es waren kaum Menschen in den Prachtstraßen.

    Zum Schluss gab es noch die gut Nachricht von zu Hause: Unserm Vater geht es besser.
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  • Day125

    "Door to Hell" to Ashgabat

    September 15, 2018 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ☀️ 28 °C

    Today we will complete our drive to the interesting capital of Ashgabat, usually arriving mid-afternoon. In Ashgabat we will stay in a decent quality local hotel. Estimated Drive Time - 5-6 hours.

    Frühmorgens sind wir mit dem Jeep zum Basislager zurückgekehrt und haben dann noch einen natürlichen Krater mit „etwas Feuer“ (Titelfoto) auf unserem Weg nach Ashgabat besichtigt. In der Wüste sehen wir relativ viele Kamele und die wenigen Dörfer in der Wüste sind eher Behausungen. Erstaunlicherweise kommen wir plötzlich durch bewässerte Anbauflächen. Gegen Mittag können wir die Berge sehen, die hinter Ashgabat in südlicher Richtung nach Iran weisen. Insgesamt wird es auch grüner. Gegen 14:00 sind wir im Hotel eingecheckt. Es ist ein Hotelkasten, wie wir sie China reichlich hatten. Ashgabat ist eine ultramoderne Stadt in der extrem viel weißer Marmor verbaut wurde. Wir haben hier 3 Nächte bevor es in Richtung „Kaspischen Meer“ weitergeht. Abends sind wir in den Zirkus gegangen. Für ca. 50 Cent Eintrittsgebühr haben wir eine „nette Show“ gesehen.

    Editiert am 08.04.2019
    Text von Wolfgang
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Ahal, Ahal welaýaty, Wilayah Ahal, Ahal vilayəti, Ахал, Província dAhal, Provinco Ahal, Provincia de Ahal, Ahali vilajett, استان آخال, Ahalin maakunta, आख़ाल प्रान्त, Ահալի վելայաթ, Provinsi Ahal, Provincia di Ahal, アハル州, ახალის ველაიათი, 아할 주, Ahalo velajatas, Ахал муж, Wilajet achalski, صوبہ اخال, Provincia Ahal, Ахалский велаят, Ahal Province, Achal, Вилояти Аҳал, Ahal vilayeti, Ахалський велаят, Ahal viloyati, 阿哈爾州

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