Stay type: a combination (of ornithology, naturalist, and cultural tourism)
Jizzak, Navoi, Samarkand, Bukhara, and Tashkent regions are among the places to stay.
Best Time to visit: April’s end and May’s first
Duration: 12 days and 10 nights
Professional ornithologists and wildlife enthusiasts from around the world come to Uzbekistan to explore its diverse animal and plant world. Among other things, this ornithological trip to Uzbekistan allows you to see rare birds in the country’s different natural habitats. The visit combines exploring the Great Silk Road’s historic sites in Samarkand and Bukhara with learning about the local birdlife in the Zaravshan River Valley. But also a trip to the Amu-Bukhara Canal’s marshes west of Bukhara and the Tudakoul water reservoir. In the spring, all ornithological regions can witness the arrival of several migratory bird species from Siberia’s northern areas, in addition to endemic birds.
Itinerary: Tashkent – Bukhara – Gazli (Kyzylkum desert) – Tudakul lake – Econcenter Jeyran – Nurata – Aydarkul lake – Uhum (Nurata mountains) – Samarkand – Zaravshan mountains – Zaamin national park – Tashkent
- Hotel 3* + breakfast (local standards), guest room, and yurt camping;
- Air-conditioned coach or minibus transfers between the airport and hotel A/R while on the circuit;
- Economy-class train tickets;
- A guide’s services, including an English-speaking guide from the start to the end;
- Accompany English-speaking ornithology specialist guide;
- Hotel guest fees for tourists;
- A country map, one for each couple or person upon arrival;
- One craft gift per couple or person
Price does not include:
- International flight;
- 8 free meals as indicated in the program;
- Entrance fees to the sites mentioned in the program;
- Rights to use camera and video camera on excursions;
- Visits not mentioned in the program;
- Additional hotel services;
- Tips for guides and drivers;
- As soon as you confirm your reservation before departure – 50 USD non-refundable processing fee per person;
- Up to 60 days – 5% penalty on the total trip price;
- Up to 59 – 31 days – 25% penalty on the total trip price;
- Up to 30 – 15 days – 50% on the total price of the trip;
- Up to 14 – 8 days – 75% penalty on the total trip price;
- Up to 7 days and no show – 100% penalty on the total price of the trip;
FOOD: Full board. Meals taken in hotels and local restaurants or homestays, in cities and on hikes, sometimes picnic lunch. Uzbek cuisine is very varied: raw vegetables, meat skewers, rice pilaf, fish, stew, fruit…. Be careful, at the start of your trip, consume fruit and raw vegetables in moderation in order to let your body adapt.
THE ESSENTIAL EQUIPMENT
– Clothes, from head to toe:
Uzbekistan has a continental climate, it is very hot in summer but cool (even cold in the mountains and in the desert steppe) in the off-season, we advise you to adapt your equipment according to the month of departure!
- light walking shoes;
- light shoes (tennis) or sandals to put on during stages in towns, villages or in the evening at the camp;
- walking socks;
- trekking pants;
- cotton underwear;
- warm underwear for March April October and November;
- fleece jacket (more or less warm depending on the season);
- mountain jacket (in March and early April then at the end of October and November);
- rain cape;
- hat, cap;
- good sunglasses;
- a toiletry bag and bath towel;
- sun protection cream (face and lips);
- headlamp, with spare batteries and bulbs;
- gourd of 1-liter minimum, light and isothermal;
- pocket knife, preferably multi-purpose;
- toilet paper + lighter.
You are asked to bring your personal medication (in sufficient numbers): aspirin, elastoplast, iodized alcohol, intestinal antiseptic, small scissors, tricosteril, face and lip sun protection cream, mosquito repellent cream or lotions…
No compulsory vaccinations, but it is strongly advised to be up to date for DTCP, hepatitis A, and B, typhoid, as well as rabies if you wish to hike off the beaten track, and tick-borne encephalitis if you consider staying in the forest. As Uzbekistan has only sporadic cases of malaria, preventive treatment is not compulsory.
Hygiene You will find bottles of mineral water throughout the trip but you can also take water purifying tablets.
RECOMMENDATIONS/ PRACTICAL TIPS
Clothing: No strict restrictions, especially in Tashkent or other big cities where the youth have a more western look. The skin must be covered in holy places (mosque, mausoleum, cemetery) where women must wear a headscarf and dress properly – in other words, covered. For summer trips, plan light-colored cotton clothes that protect against sunburn. Don’t forget the sunscreeт.
VISA: As of February 1, 2019, French, Belgian and Swiss travelers are exempt from visas for stays of less than 30 days.