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Category: Central Asia

Driving Through the Mountains of Uzbekistan

We left mid morning for the lake, in Tashkent province, about an hour and a half north-east of the capital. The drive was peaceful and from...

Yarkand and the Southern Silk Road

Although our time was limited, I did not want to leave out our day trip from Kashgar to Yarkand. Albeit a late entry, Yarkand was a...

Best Foods of the Silk Route

Lamb kebabs – Urumqi, Xinjiang. Urumqi has an amazing night market near the park with beer, kebabs, nan, plov and other Central Asian...

Top 5 Illegal Things We’ve Seen in Central Asia

1. A marijuana plant growing on the side of the road in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. 2. Multiple people on the train shaking the border guards...

Funding the Escape

Naturally, some of you are wondering how we can afford to be unemployed and yet pay for train tickets all over the continent. Here is how I...

The Longest, Most Corrupt Train in Central Asia

After sleeping in the Almaty-1 train station we boarded our first Kazakh train at 5:12am bound for Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The train arrived...

Doing the Math

The Statistics Are In 7 Cities 4 Trains 3 Countries 2 Buses 2 broken backpacks 1 Car $ 464 USD Per person (3,175 RMB)* 11,896 miles...

The Beatles are Huge in Kazakhstan

We arrived in Almaty, the former capital of Kazakhstan, at 6:00am after 36 hours on the train. We immediately realized how screwed we were...

“Excuse me, do you have the swine flu?”

We took the 11:58pm train from Urumqi to Almaty, a 36 hour adventure across the Chinese border to Kazakhstan. Arriving early (as is my...

Tashkurgan’s Stone Village and the Epic Glacier Adventure

At the end of a tree-lined street, we stopped at an old clay fortress. We discovered that it was over 1300 years old. Middle Eastern /...

Kashgar’s Sunday Market and Bazaars

This morning, after a bout of food poisoning which rendered us useless and hostel-bound yesterday, we decided to check out the famous...

Into the Mosque

In central Old Town there rests an ancient mosque (build in 1442) that has been repaired countless times and currently remains one of the...

Kashgar to Lake Karakul

Lake Karakul, situated along the breathtaking Tian Shan Tajik-China border, is one of the most stunning and awe-inspiring spots on the...

Kashgar Old Town

We spent the day today walking around the Old Town districts of Kashgar. Around the mosque, one of the largest in China, were rows of...

Kashgar and the Silk Road

As our night train rolled in from Urumqi today (24 hour sleeper train), we came upon a very Chinese station platform. Although I had not...

Arrived Safely In Urumqi

We arrived in Urumqi, Xinjiang,at exactly 4:10pm today (right on time) after a 48 hour train ride across China. From here we have purchased...

Getting a visa for Kazakhstan from China

We applied for Kazakh transit visas and found the process amazingly easy (perhaps because we are comparing it to the process of getting an...

Shopping for Outdoor Gear in Shanghai

We ventured to every travel gear store in Shanghai. For those seeking camping, climbing, trekking or other outdoor wear and gear we fully...

Getting a Visa for Uzbekistan in Shanghai

This is apparently what a visa to Uzbekistan looks like, but I wouldn’t know.  It has officially been 3 weeks since we began our...

Cycling for Adventure Travel

As every good adventurer knows, a good companion makes all the difference. At AbandonTheCube we revere those who have gone before us and...

Top Four Places to Consider Living for the Adventurous Traveler

Top Four Places We May Consider Living As the journey to Ashgabat approaches, careful planning is necessary.  We also need to plan for...

A Visa-Related Snag

Having completed all the necessary paperwork, acquired mini photos of myself and located my passport I set off to the Uzbek consulate in...

International Visas

As the trip planning progresses I find myself at the stage of applying for international visas, a process wrought with vagueness and...

The Problem of the Borders

In planning the trip from Shanghai to Ashgabat, I’m encountering some chatter online about difficulties previous travelers have faced...

Shanghai to Ashgabat, the Plan

As many of you know, I was laid off from my financial job on New Year’s Eve (classy timing). But this upsetting twist has been an...