“Melon Day” Festival tour 4 days/ 3 nights
Overview: Join us for an exciting journey to Turkmenistan, a country known for its rich cultural heritage and vibrant traditions. Get ready to celebrate the delightful Melon Day, a unique holiday that pays tribute to the juicy and refreshing melons that thrive in this region. This is your chance to indulge in the tantalizing flavors, fascinating history, and warm hospitality of Turkmenistan.
Duration: 4 days/ 3 nights
Dates: 11-14 August 2023
Route: Route: Ashgabat – Darvaza – Ashgabat/Festival
Day 1: Ashgabat/Arrival and city tour
Arrival at Ashgabat airport with TK. Greetings and transfer to the hotel. After breakfast in the hotel, we will start by exploring the historical site of Old Nisa Fortress (UNESCO World Heritage Site), located 15 km from Ashgabat city center. The earliest of Parthian Empire capitals (III c. BC – III c. AD). Located in an atmospheric area at the foot of the Kopet-Dag Mountains. Archaeological excavations in two parts of the site have revealed richly decorated architecture, illustrative of domestic, state, and religious functions. Situated at the crossroads of important commercial and strategic axes, this powerful empire formed a barrier to Roman expansion while serving as an important communication and trading center between East and West, North and South. National Museum of History where you can take a close look at exclusive ancient artifacts and treasuries from different historical and archaeological sites of Turkmenistan.
PM we will explore the “the City of Love”. Sightseeing will include the “Bagty Koshgi” hill platform with a panoramic view of the city, the Monument of Neutrality, the Park of Independence and the Book of Ruhnama. We will also visit the Ertogrul Gazi mosque. Known as a Turkish mosque (because it looks like Blue Mosque in Istanbul) it is present from Turkey to Turkmen in honor of Ertogrul Gazi, a Turkmen leader and the father of Osman, the founder of the Ottoman Empire.
A short walk in the “Park of Inspiration” with statues of famous poets of Turkmen literature. Overnight in Ashgabat.
Day 2: Ashgabat – Darvaza – Ashgabat
After breakfast in the hotel, we will spend the morning visiting Tolkuchka bazaar (28 km from the city), a very famous Sunday market where people come from all corners of Turkmenistan come for trade. Here, locals sell goods like jewelry, Turkmen national dress, traditional accessories, carpets, handicrafts, fruits and vegetables, domestic animals, etc. Try your trading skills to negotiate for the best price on your purchases.
PM Drive to Darvaza gas crater (270 km, 4 hours), internationally known as “Gates of Hell”. On the way, stop at “bubbling water” and “bubbling mud” craters and Yerbent village for pictures. Short tour at the site upon arrival while nomad- style kebabs are being prepared. After dinner at sunset, we have another photo session by the flaming crater and then we hit the road back to Ashgabat. Arrive in Ashgabat at midnight.
Overnight in Ashgabat.
Day 3: Ashgabat (Melon Day)
Festival day. After breakfast, we travel to Anau City to participate in the festivities. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of Melon Day, a national holiday celebrated with great enthusiasm in Turkmenistan. Experience the joyous event featuring melon displays, contests, traditional music, and dance performances. Enjoy the opportunity to taste a variety of delectable melon dishes and experience the sweet essence of this fruit.
PM time for leisure.
Overnight in Ashgabat.
Day 4: Departure
Transfer to Ashgabat International Airport for departure. End of services.
Tour price information
- Comfort A/C transportation (minivan or minibus in the cities and 4WDs in the desserts and off-roads)
- Accommodation 4*5*
- Visa support (LOI)
- Water along the way
- Entrance fees to sites
- Bilingual tour guide
- Dinner in Darvaza
- Visa cost
- PCR test cost $37-$44 upon arrival
- Migration duty $14
- Additional services in the hotel
- Tips to the guide and the driver (recommended)
- Personal expenses and itinerary modifications
- Photo and video camera fees at sites/museums