Northern Tajikistan Tour

Northern Tajikistan Tour


Northern Tajikistan Tour Highlights

During this tour you will explore the highlights of Northern Tajikistan venturing northwards from Dushanbe or Samarkand. In Dushanbe you will visit the National Museum of Antiquities and Navruz Palace before the drive to Iskanderkul to enjoy the stunning views and short hikes. You will also visit Gazza village for a cooking class and folklore show before heading to Voru village to meet with the locals. During the trip you will also explore Penjikent’s ancient ruins and admire the Seven Lakes area before continuing on to Khujand, an ancient city with a rich history. Along the way, you will enjoy delicious meals and comfortable accommodation. 

Highlights of the Northern Tajikistan tour include:

  • Scenic drive to Iskanderkul, one of the most exquisitely beautiful lakes in all of the former Soviet Union and in Tajikistan
  • Short hike to Iskander Waterfall and Snake Lake
  • Cooking master class with local folklore show
  • Visit to Voru village in the Zerafshan valley, where houses are built in a steep gorge and the rooftop of one house serves as the yard for the house above
  • Sightseeing of Old Penjikent ruins, an ancient city with 4000+ year history
  • Day trip to Seven Lakes, a mountain valley with stunning scenery and hiking opportunities
  • Visit to Istaravshan, a city with a history dating back to Cyrus the Great and Alexander the Great, and renowned for its handicrafts.
Northern Tajikistan tour


Dushanbe: You will be met by our representative with a name tag at the airport and transported to your 5 star hotel. Take a moment to settle in and get refreshed before stepping out to explore the vibrant city. Your hotel, the Serena, is located in the picturesque Ismoili Somoni avenue surrounded by lush green trees. Make sure to take a dip in the rooftop pool of your hotel for a truly relaxing experience.

Later in the evening, join us for a welcome dinner with a music and dance performance that will give you a taste of the local culture. Get ready to be entertained and enjoy a delicious meal with new friends.

(Please not that Dushanbe is not part of the tour if you start from Samarqand and that the duration of the tour is 5 days with a different order of the sights)

Accommodation: Serena Hotel

Meals: B, D

Our city tour will start with a visit to the National Museum of Antiquities with its famous Sleeping Buddha, excavated from the Buddhist monastery at Ajina Tepa. Our next stop is the Navruz Palace, an extraordinary modern building decorated by hundreds of artisans from all over Tajikistan. Most of the rooms are now used for official government meetings, or for international conferences, but one room is open to the public and used as a popular wedding venue. This is a unique opportunity to tour the interior of this ornate contemporary palace. Afterwards, we will visit the handicrafts centre to meet master craftsmen, including those involved in the creation of the Navruz Palace. 

After lunch, we will visit the statue of Ismail Somoni in Rudaki Park. This large monument commemorates the 1100th anniversary of the Samanid State, a Golden Age of the Tajik nation, when science and arts flourished in Central Asia. From there we will walk through pretty Rudaki Park, which is dedicated to the great Persian poet Rudaki, who also lived during the Samanid period, in the 10th century. 

(Please not that Dushanbe is not part of the tour if you start from Samarqand and that the duration of the tour is 5 days with a different order of the sights)

Accommodation: Serena Hotel

Meals: B, L

After breakfast in the hotel, we start our moderately long but beautifully scenic drive out of Dushanbe towards Iskanderkul. We will stop on the way to have lunch in Sarvoda. We will reach Iskanderkul by early afternoon (2191m). This triangular lake named after Alexander the Great (“Iskander” in Persian). It is considered one of the most exquisitely beautiful lakes in all of the former Soviet Union. In addition to admiring the views there will be time for a short hike to Iskander Waterfall and Snake Lake before dinner. We will spend the night in cottages on the lake shore, where the rooms have private bathrooms.  

Accommodation: Cottage (Room with lake view)

Meals: B, L

After breakfast we drive toward Penjikent region. We reach Gazza village we will have a lunch at the guesthouse. On arrival to the village you can rest at the guesthouse or walk and explore the village. For the dinner we will have an opportunity to have cooking master class with local folklore show either in here or in Penjikent. 

Accommodation: Guesthouse (rooms with private bathroom)

Meals: B, L, D

After the breakfast we will be transferred to the one the most iconic and authentic village in the Zerafshan valley – Voru village. Vuro is a mountain village, it is located on the left bank of the Archmaydon river. The houses in the village are built in a steep gorge which allows for the rooftop of one house to serve as the yard for the house above. We will be hosted by them and have a chance to meet some of their family members. 

By evening, we will reach Penjikent – known also as Pompeii of Central Asia. We check it at our hotel and start the sightseeing of Old Penjikent ruins. 

Accommodation: Panjikent Plaza 

Meals: B, L, D

Our day trip will start with a bumpy ride into the mountains to explore the area of the Seven Lakes. This mountain valley is not far from Penjikent, but due to the bad road conditions, the trip takes a full day. We will drive up the valley to the sixth lake. It is then a short and easy hike of about two hours (both ways) to the seventh and highest lake, Hazorchashma. There will be time to enjoy the scenery and wander along the lake shore before hiking back down to the sixth lake and returning by road to Penjikent. On the way down we will stop for a walk in a couple of villages and will have a lunch at a guesthouse in Noffin village.

Accommodation: Panjikent Plaza 

Meals: B, L, D

Its time to leave the mountains behind and return to more urban life, in Khujand which is the capital of Northern Tajikistan. Khujand is situated by the Syr Darya River in the Fergana Valley.

Khujand is an ancient city with a history dating back to Cyrus the Great and Alexander the Great. On the way we will visit Istaravshan, a city founded by Cyrus the Great in the 6th century BC which recently celebrated its 2500th anniversary.

On the way we will pass Istaravshan, where  artisans are highly regarded across Central Asia and the city is still well known in Tajikistan for its blacksmiths, who hand-craft knives of excellent quality. We will visit the blacksmiths’ workshops near the entrance to the city’s market, and also see a woodcarvers workshop and a comb maker’s house.

There will be also time to see the main historical sights – the Kok Gumbaz and the Hazrat Shoh Mosque – before continuing on our way to Khujand. We will arrive in the evening and check in at the hotel.  

Accommodation: Khujand Grand Hotel

Meals: B, L

After breakfast, we will visit Khujand’s main market, Panjshabe Bazaar, which is the largest market in Tajikistan. Our city tour will continue to the Maslihaddin Mosque, the Lenin Monument, and Arbob Cultural Palace, where we will also visit a small factory which produces traditional Tajik textiles.

We will have lunch at Anora, a house museum where you can appreciate traditional design and experience the authentic atmosphere of a Tajik house. The friendly family members are always happy to welcome guests from different cultures and to exchange thoughts with interested travelers.

After lunch we drive to our final attraction, to the women’s factory of Khujand atlas. Khujand Atlas was one of the leading textile factory that use silk for production of traditional Atlas textile. During our visit, we’ll get an inside look at the production process and learn about the history of the factory and its significance in the local economy. We’ll also have the opportunity to purchase some of the beautiful atlas products for souvenirs. Afterwards, we will departure to Tashkent which will take about 3 hours by car. 

Accommodation: Hyatt Regency or similar 

Meals: B, L

Your driver will transfer you to the international airport if you wish so or alternatively you can continue your trip in Tashkent.

Meals: B


The alternative itinerary starting from Samarkand is the following:

  • Day 1: Samarqand – 7 lakes – Penjikent
  • Day 2: Penjikent – Gazza
  • Day 3: Gazza –  Iskanderkul
  • Day 4: Iskanderkul – Khujand
  • Day 5: Khujand – Tashkent
  • Day 6: Departure


Find your country from the list and check possible visa requirements for  Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.


If you would like to customize your tour, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We are happy to organize a custom tour or to provide a modified itinerary based on one of the tours provided by our tour operators.

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