Turkmen is a brilliant country in the way of building its capital city. The Ashgabat turns out to be a special showpiece capital for this city. The design is more than spectacular. Turkmen spent billions of dollars in building the city of glories.
The capital resembles the huge victory, glory, and accomplishments of Turkmen. We will get surprised that Turkmen has that futuristic capital. Even, the city appears like no other cities on earth. Ashgabat changes the dry valley into a super luxurious area with white buildings. Thorough artificial collections of white marble city buildings create the ambiance of futuristic place in Ashgabat.
It is normal then that the city is sometimes called a bizarre capital. The sunrise and sunset in this city are strange but beautiful. The ambition of making the city look dramatically futuristic seems successful. The streets are shadeless. Thus, it will be a little uncomfortable for travelers to go from monument to monument. We will get the thrill of being in a science fiction movie while spending some times in Ashgabat.
The Urban of Ashgabat
A famous traveling site describes Ashgabat as a cross between Las Vegas and Pyongyang. So, the strange things are that it looks so much glamorous, free, and sparkling with that mysterious sides as well. When thinking about Turkmen, people will usually relate to the Darvaza Gas Crater. It is like the open entrance to hell. Yet, Ashgabat brings the strange things into a whole new level.
The appearance of that super-rich capital does not fit the silk road impression of Turkmen in some ways. Yet, we have to let this rich country to spend their huge income to build their dream capital city. Though the look of the capital does not suit any other regions of Turkmen, we can still see some pretty sides of Ashgabat.
What to Get Prepared for Ashgabat Tour
The better question for this is whether Ashgabat is worth visiting. We have to admit that Ashgabat is an exciting place to visit in our Central Asia Tour. Yet, travelers often skip this city. Both group tourists and backpackers feel that this city is not a comfortable place to visit. The clean and new look of the capital city Ashgabat is something to see. However, the appearance is something like Stalinist regime city. That is why some specialists mirror the city with North Korea. Entering the city will be like going to the future with the atmosphere of the past. Tourists have to get prepared with that specific ambiance.
Ashgabat is the center of the Turkmen government. It is a wealthy country that controls the people with a regime imposed government. Thus, the political matters can be complicated. The procedure will be hard as well. Even, the security guards are everywhere in the capital. That makes people feel awkward to do this and that.
Visiting Ashgabat can be a good experience but why most travelers skip it? The country only receives 7,000 visitors per year. It is because of the strict visa rules. Travelers can only get the visa when they join a guided tour. That will be too expensive. Besides, the tour will be tailored. Thus, backpackers will not be able to pick the spots to visit. But then, Ashgabat is still a recommended place to visit. The strange capital will an unconventional trip that tourists found nowhere else.
The Best Time to Visit Ashgabat, Turkmenistan
Weather in this place can be so troublesome. Thus, it is important to make sure that travelers avoid the summertime. We need to set our schedule and choose the colder seasons. Between July and September, the temperature will be more than 50 degrees Celsius. It will be hard for us to go to the deserts when the weather does not permit.
Meanwhile, during the winters, the temperature can drop below 0 degrees. Therefore, it is necessary for tourists to wear warm clothes during December to march trip. These months are not bad to pick.
Yet, the most pleasant months will be from March to early June. We can also choose October to December. Always note that Ashgabat is closed from 20th until the 1st November. That October 27th is the Independence Day of Turkmen. In other countries, celebrations and festivals will invite tourists. But here in Ashgabat, private ceremonies are only for the people of Turkmen.
Things to Do and Popular Destination in Ashgabat Tour
Travelers can go to Nissa to learn about its historic time. It is only 15 km to the west of Ashgabat. Tourist can enjoy their time in a settlement dating back to the 2nd century BC. After that, another heritage site is waiting. It is Geok Depe. The location is 50 km to the west of Ashgabat. This was the battle arena between the Turkmen troops and Tsarist troops. The battle took place in 1881 to 1884.
Next, tourists can have some pleasure in Bakharden. It is 100 km to the west of Ashgabat. The location is around the Kopet Dag mountains. The tourist spot is a cave with hot thermal water. Despite the sulfur smell, people of Ashgabat love to go to this place during the weekends.
Besides the natural tour spots and heritage places, travelers can do a short city trip in Ashgabat. Some tourists spend the whole week in the city and still feel uncontented. Some say that it needs a special tour more than 10 days to explore the city. To dig deep into the culture of Ashgabat is not easy as well.
Travelers can go to the nearest market or Souq just to meet the people. They can buy cheap souvenirs at the market. They will see the local carpet shops at the market. It is so beautiful to see the high art inside the carpets that the traditional market sells. Looking closely at the carpets will make the city of Ashgabat looks stranger. The capital thus successfully captivates tourists from the bizarre look of the capital. Besides, it will give travelers a superb memory in their Silk Road travel.