Coastline at Antalya, Turkiye.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Antalya, Turkiye.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Paris, France on May 1st.

Monday, September 11, 2023

How odd is it?

In the off the beaten path travel world, there are five Central Asian countries that are collectively known as The Five Stans.

They are Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan. 

Now that our visas have been approved for Turkmenistan, we've been doing some serious research on this part of the world.

Turkmenistan is the most difficult of the five to visit. It was difficult even before Covid, but it was totally closed off to the world during Covid, and only recently opened up this past May. And you still require a PCR test at the airport upon arrival.

And you need a letter of invitation and a pre approved visa to visit this totalitarian country. It's such an odd place, which is of course why we want to go there! 

How odd is it? They have some very strange laws. For instance, you cannot drive in the capital city of Ashgabat with a dirty car. You will get a fine. Also, there are no colored cars allowed. Cars must be either white, silver, or gold. 

The other stan countries are much easier, most with no visa necessary for stays under 30 days if you are traveling with a Canadian or US passport. 

The five "stans".

We watched some really good youtube videos last night that were about Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.

They made us even more excited about the trip because there are certainly some areas that are going to be right up our alley. Lots of beautiful hiking, inexpensive food and land transportation, and friendly people.

We're actually surprised that some of these areas aren't higher up on travelers "to do" list.

Near Naryn, Kyrgyzstan

Not sure yet what kind of route to plan. Even the capital cities of these regions aren't well served by international airlines, so our route is likely to be based on which capital city has the easiest flight to Bangkok, which is where we want to go when we leave.

Oh well, I love planning difficult logistics like this.

Charyn Canyon, Kazakhstan.

And the research continues.

Big price drop on this Coleman Folding Camp Table.

And in Canada...


  1. Wow what an adventure this will be! Are there trains that run between the countries, maybe that's a better option than trying to fly around? See you in October :)

    1. Yes, there are some trains, and even some high speed trains. Also in country flights. It's the international ones that aren't so easy. Yes, see you next month!


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