Trekking in the Pamir Mountains
The Pamirs are a mountains area located in Gorno Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast with a reputation of the world’s most inaccessible mountains and unparalleled beauty. It is one of the world’s last great travel adventures and has been always known as the roof of the world, route of the travelers and pilgrims. The area is completely isolated from the rest of the world where each district has its own distinctive culture, dialects and languages, where once Marko Polo passed by, visiting old forts, Zoraastrian shrines assimilating with Islam and Budizm which will bring us to the days of the great Silk Roads. From Dushanbe- getting to the legendary Pamir highway – the mother of all mountain roads, and driving along Afghan border up to the remote Pamir Mountains.
Throughout this hike, you will see and experience a life of remote and resource dependent villages. Your journey will be an endless wilderness and you will get to watch wildlife in different valleys. At the end of each valley, you will closely observe glaciers and glacial lakes. The hikes are not that long and it requires quite a bit of physical activeness from you. However, if you are having a hard time or feeling the altitude, of course, we will have similar alternative activities. Or we do the same hikes and get you a donkey to carry your backpacks. We will find the ways to make these hikes most memorable to you. At the end of each hike, you will get to stay with our homestay families and experience what it is like living in remote wilderness areas.
Highlights: Trekking in remote Pamir mountains, Authentic Pamiri hospitality, High altitude mountain lakes, Wildlife watching – primarily Asiatic Ibex, Bird watching, Visiting a bottom of Peak Patkhor and a couple of glaciers, Taking a bath on one of the glacial lakes.
Day 1: Dushanbe – Kalai Khumb
Elevation range: 900-2000-1200
Driving distance: 278km, 7/8 hours drive
Welcome to Tajikistan! Upon your arrival, we will pick you up from the airport and we will take you directly to your guesthouse/hotel in Dushanbe for rest after your flight. Our guide and the driver will be there to help. After breakfast moving towards Pamir on the way there are many interesting Towns and villages, Nurek Lake, you may also see people working in the fields. Getting to Kulob city, having lunch, then driving further towards Afghan border, along the border you will see many afghan villages. Overnights in Darwaz, Kalai Khumb.
Day 2: Kalai Khumb-Rushan-Shujand village
Elevation gain: 2000m
Driving distance: 270km
From Kalai Khumb driving towards Vamar, Rushan central administrations, on the way we will have the view of Afghan’s villages and you can easily take a photo of the people and villages. We will also stop for you to have a look at the small Afghan villages across the river. Driving along Panj(Oxus) river, lunch on the way. By the late evening we will arrive at our destination village – Shujand. Overnight in a local guesthouse. B, L&D included.
Day 3: Shujand-Basid village
Elevation gain: 2350m
Driving distance: 62km
Wake up in the morning, breakfast, acclimatization and sightseeing around the village, visiting the small local museum. People in Bartang valley are hardworking, hospitable and kind-hearted by nature and respect existing customs and traditions. Around noon we will drive through beautiful Bartang valley observing the landscape with crystal clear rivers and villages of traditional mud-break Pamiri houses. The closer we will be getting to Bartang, the more remote and less developed the villages will become. In the middle of the drive we will have a short stop for the petroglyphs observation in Siponj village. Overnight in Basid.
Day 4: Basid – Dewloch
Elevation range: 2350-2600-2350
Hiking distance: 14km
Today we will go for a hike towards Dewloch. It is a beautiful place and there is much to observe and explore. As it is a small hike we will get to the spot by noon and lunch in Dewloch and then come back to the village again. The village is known for having the largest shrine in the valley, dedicated to a figure named Khwājah Nūr al-Dīn (Khoja Nuriddin). Local traditions hold that he came to Badakhshan from Iran, that he had the ability to transform into a bird and fly through the air, and that he defeated a dragon that was terrorizing the people of Basid.
Day 5: Basid – Ravmed
Elevation gain: 2350-2900m
Driving distance: 60km
Departure from Basid and driving back again on our way towards Ravmad. After arriving in Ravmed, you will spent your whole day in this village and experience what it is like living in remote wilderness areas, cooking food and baking bread without a stove. Ravmed is a very beautiful village extended on the slope of the mountain at an elevation of 2900m with extraordinary people who are one of the happiest in the world. Apart from walking and observing the village, a cultural show will be held with traditional elements of music and dance. This day also offers the visit to the most oldest Pamiri house and local traditional mill.
Day 6-8: Ravmed-Peak Patkhor and back
Elevation range: 2900-3200-2900m
Trekking distance: 64km
We will start our trek to the foot of Peak Patkhor from the village of Ravmed. We will hike 45 km in three days along the Ravmed gorge. The hike along the gorge offers spectacular mountain scenes and a true feeling of exploration. On the first day, you will arrive at a place called widarif from where high altitude summits including the Peak Patkhor will be visible. These mountains are home for the Asiatic Ibex and their extremely elusive predator the snow leopard. The sighting of the snow leopard is more frequent here than in the rest of the places in Bartang valley, so here you may try your luck. On the second day, we will hike further up to the foot of the Patkhor peak to see a pristine glacial lake and get better views of the area, than we will return to Widarif, but will descend closer to a place called Khubust, where we shall set our camp. On the third day, we will return to Ravmed and spend the evening and night in the local Pamiri house.
Day 9: Ravmed to Jizev
Elevation loss: 2900-2500
Driving distance: 38km
Hiking distance: 7km
Today we drive back on our way to Jizev. By late noon we will reach a suspension bridge which leads to the stunningly beautiful village of Jizev, accessible only on foot. We will reach the village on a very pleasant three-hour hike and spend the night in one of the local houses. It is relatively easy one day hike leading towards a mountain village and a string of freshwater lakes with views of the lush forested Jizev valley. This village is probably considered the most beautiful one in the whole Bartang valley. You will definitely enjoy your time in the peaceful atmosphere and around a mesmerizing lake just right in the heart of this small mountain village.
Day 10: Jizev to Dravaz-Kalai Khumb
Elevation loss: 1200m
Driving distance: 285km
We will say goodbye to our host in Jizev and head back to the bridge. After meeting our driver again we drive to Darvoz region. We will be mostly traveling along the Panj river again. It will be a 7-hour drive, and we will take our time. During the drive, we will stop by for lunch and coffee or tea along the Pamir highway with beautiful scenery of Afghan villages. Later in the afternoon we will arrive in Kalai Khumb.
Day 11: Darvoz to Dushanbe
Driving distance: 287km
Today we drive back to Dushanbe. Having our last breakfast at the hostel we hit the road again back to Kulob and on to Dushanbe. You will have lunch in Kulob city and then drive further to Dushanbe. Arrival by the evening and checking in to your hotel.
Gear needed: Hat, good hiking shoes, sunglasses, headlamp or flashlight, suncream, warm jacket or sweater, backpack and water bottles
- Transport from/to airport
- English speaking guide
- Accomodation (not in Dushanbe)
- Travel insurance
- Personal expenses
- Hotel in Dushanbe
- Anything not mentioned above