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  Culture Tour & Package - Central Asia Tours - 5 Days Kazakhstan Equestrian Tour: Almaty
Central Asia – A Fabled Region on the Silk Road

Central Asia is one of the origins of the Persian culture, from Cyrus the Great of the Achaemenid Empire, it had been divided into 3 parts, one of which was Bactria where the famous Bukhara, Samarkand and Khiva situated.

Central Asia is commonly known as the five republics in the central part of Asia: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.  In the vast region of Central Asia, there are lots of reputed figures and influential historic events which led the world history to a new page.  From Cyrus the Great and his descendant whom divided Central Asia into three lands, to Alexander the Great who ruled the countries in Central Asia, which was later conquered by Genghis Khan, all these had made Central Asia, mysterious and mesmerizing.  With the opening up of the Silk Road, Central Asia became the gateway between the East and the West and played an important role in the development of the Silk Road.

Central Asia, an ancient region resonant with history, is rich in historical sites and natural wonders.  Among them are the imposing architectures in Uzbekistan, some of them are inscribed on UNESCO World Heritage list.  In Kazakhstan, where traces of Turkic Khanate and Kazakh Khanate can still be seen, be amazed by the natural wonders of the largest landlocked country in the world.


Officially known as the Republic of Kazakhstan, the country is located between two different regions of Eurasia - Central Asia and Siberia.  Neighbouring to such countries as Russia, China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan, and sharing the coastlines with Iran and Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan is the ninth largest country in the world.  It is also a country rich in historical and cultural relics.  Before 16th century, the country was mainly inhabited by Turkic tribes.  In early 18th century, it was under Russian’s rule and became one of the Soviet regions.  After the Soviet Union was dissolved, Kazakhstan declared independence on 16 December 1991. The capital, Astana, is the major industrial and agricultural centre, and also a transportation hub of the country.

Situated in the heart of Central Asia, Uzbekistan was once an important gateway lying on the crossroad of the ancient trade route that connected the East and the West.  It played an irreplaceable pivotal role on the ancient Silk Road and contributed to the exchange of civilization between China and the West.

Neighbouring the Aral Sea in the northwest, Uzbekistan shares boundaries with 5 states: Kazakhstan to the north, Afghanistan to the south, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan to the east, and Turkmenistan to the southwest, with a total area of 447,400 sq. km. Tashkent is the capital of Uzbekistan. The Tian-Shan and Pamir-Alay mountain ranges lie in the southeastern part of the country, while the Turan Lowland and Kyzyl-Kum Desert are located in the northwest. Uzbekistan is located between two rivers, the Amudarya and Syrdarya. Uzbekistan has the largest population in Central Asia and a wide mix of ethnic groups, with the Uzbek being the majority group, accounting for about 80% of the Uzbekistan population.  Other ethnic minorities include Russians, Tajiks, and Kazakhs, etc. Uzbekistan has a dry continental climate, with extreme fluctuations in temperature. Winters are relatively short yet freezing, the northern part is comparatively colder than the south, in which the temperature can fall to -35°C. During summer, the southern part of the country reach a higher temperature than the north, hitting a peak of 45°C. Uzbekistan has a mild climate in spring (from April to June) and autumn (from September to October) in general.

Uzbekistan possesses abundant natural and energy resources, such as gold, oil, natural gas, and coal. In response to the increasing demand for energy and fuel from foreign countries, the heavy industries of extracting gold, oil, natural gas, and other minerals resources contribute to the major development of Uzbekistan’s economy. Uzbekistan also relies on agricultural processing.  It is one of the top five leading cotton producers and exporters in the world. Apart from that, the export of fruit and vegetables produced locally and animal husbandry also play a crucial role in Uzbekistan’s economy. The industrial development of Uzbekistan is prominent in Central Asia; predominant industries include metallurgy, chemical engineering, machinery manufacturing, and textile, etc. 

    1.  Hong Kong - Almaty                                     Approx. 7 hours flight 
    Take a non-stop flight to Almaty. Meet your tour guide and transfer to 
    the Central State Museum of Kazakhstan which houses the most significant collection of Kazakh historical, archaeological, and modern cultural and political artifacts. Onwards to Kok-Tobe Mountain, the highest point of the city at 1,100 meters above sea level to enjoy a panoramic view of mountains and the city.
    Accommodation at Rixos Hotel or similar (5-star)

    2.  Almaty City Tour & Stud Farm "Akhal Teke" Visit
    Visit Museum of National Musical Instruments and Park of 28 Panfilov Guardsmen which was constructed on May 8, 1975 for the 30th anniversary of the Victory of the Soviet people in the Great Patriotic War. Then visit Zenkov Cathedral (the Ascension Cathedral) which is a Russian Orthodox cathedral built by Andrei Zenkov, an architect famous as a founder of earthquake-proof construction. Onwards to the Central Mosque and Green Bazaar to feel the city’s pulse, its atmosphere and local color. You can sample mare’s milk (Kumis) and buy national delicacies there.
    After lunch, depart for Stud Farm “Akhal Teke”. Activities include walking and inspection tour in the territory of Stud Farm. Showing the local breed of horses. Demonstrations of riders on horseback and horse riding with an instructor
    Accommodation at Rixos Hotel or similar (5-star)


    3. Talgar Town & Kazakh Village Visit
    After breakfast, take around 1 hour drive to Talgar and visit Talgar Settlement and Turkic Fortress.
    Onwards to a Kazakh Village, where you will be welcomed by the villagers and experience some national ceremonies. After lunch at a yurt, there will be a trick riding demonstration.
    Accommodation at Rixos Hotel or similar (5-star)

    4. Assy Plateau
    After breakfast, take a 2-hour drive to Assy Plateau. Upon arrival, take a jeep tour around the plateau, stop at a yurt shepherd and experience nomadic lifestyle including meeting with a family who will offer their simple pleasure tea with milk and mare's milk. You may even have a chance to see how they are milking horse, experience to make a traditional drink with your own hands and horse riding around the plateau with a visit to the Observatory.
    Tonight transfer to the airport for returning flight back to Hong Kong.
    Accommodation at Rixos Hotel or similar (5-star)


    5. Almaty – Hong Kong                                Approx. 6 hours flight

    Depart Almaty for a non-stop flight back to Hong Kong

    5 Days Kazakhstan Equestrian Tour: Almaty
    - Unique opportunity to visit a Stud Farm “Akhal Teke”, one of the biggest private farms in Kazakhstan on breeding Akhalteke horses
    - Horse-riding at Assy Plateau, visit a nomadic family and savour tea with milk and mare's milk
    Visit an ancient Silk Road village and experience the customs of Kazakhs and savour local delicacies
    A mere sightseeing tour with no designated shopping points will be arranged
    - Tailor-made itinerary also applicable for 2 persons travelling together

  • 5 Days Kazakhstan Equestrian Tour: Almaty

    Hong Kong
    Hong Kong

    10 - 14 persons:
    from HK$ 19,380
    Single room supplement: HK$ 2,200
    15 - 19  persons: from HK$ 17,980 Single room supplement: HK$ 2,200
    20 - 24  persons:
    from HK$ 16,980
    Single room supplement: HK$ 2,200
    25 - 29  persons: from HK$ 16,280 Single room supplement: HK$ 2,200
    30  persons or above:
    from HK$ 15,580
    Single room supplement: HK$ 2,200
    Upgrade to Ritz- Carlton (5-star): From HK$910
    Single supplement at Ritz- Carlton: HK$2,450

    Price Includes:
    1.     Sightseeing tour as indicated in the itinerary.
    2.     International & domestic flight ticket (economy class) as indicated in the itinerary.
    3.     Transfer to the sightseeing spots.
    4.     All accommodations, based on double-occupancy.
    5.     All admission fees and activity expenses as indicated in the itinerary.
    6.     Meals as indicated in the itinerary.
    7.     Mandarin/ English speaking guide in each destination.
    8.     Group insurance is covered with max. HKD300,000 for the accidental death or permanental total disablement.
    9.    Hong Kong Tour Escort will be included for 10 people or more persons traveling together.
    Price excludes:
    1.     All airport tax, security & fuel surcharges ,custom, Aviation insurance tax and excess baggage fee.
    2.     Travelling document and visa fee
    3.     Meals not stated in the itinerary and alcoholic or imported beverages during meals.
    4.     Transfers to the starting and from the ending points of the tour.
    5.     Personal expenses such as laundry, phone call, mini bar consumption, beverage, medical care, porterage service at hotel and airport, optional tours and other services which are not specified in the itinerary.
    6.     Excursions and admissions to sites not included in your itinerary.
    7.     Personal travel insurance - as advised by the Travel Industry Council of Hong Kong (TIC), tour participants are recommended to purchase a travel insurance policy which covers at least emergency evacuation, death and disability before tour departure. Please consult the travel agency at which you booked the tour.
    8.     All expenses incurred by the tour member who extends his/her stay such as hotel accommodation, all local transfer, porterage service at hotel / airport and air ticket surcharge for extended stay or upgrade.
    9.   Porterage fee for staff from airport, hotel or other transports.
    10.   In the case of unexpected incidents such as typhoons, rainstorms, flight delay/cancel, natural disasters, political unrest or epidemic, the Company shall not be responsible for any additional costs such as hotel accommodation, transportation fees, long distance telephone charges, meal etc. as a result from the incidents mentioned above.
    11.   Discretionary gratuities for local guides and drivers and tour escort.
    1.     Child under 12 years old and share the room with parents will be charged 85% of the tour price.
    2.     Please refer to "Tour Terms and Conditions" for reference.
    3.     All fares are for reference only and are subject to change.
    4.     The above itinerary and price are valid till 31 December 2017
    5.      The above itinerary is for reference only and subject to change. We reserve the right to change the itinerary without prior notice.

    Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) passport holders may visit the Republic of Kazakhstan visa-free for a stay of up to 14 days.

    Below countries are exempted from visa requirement when entering into the Republic of Kazakhstan, for visit up to fifteen calendar days from 1 May 2015 to 31 December 2016, including Australia, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the UAE, the U. K. and the U.S.

    For further details about visa requirement, please visit official website of Consulate General of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Hong Kong and Macao SARs: http://www.consul-kazakhstan.org.hk/
    Tour Remarks

    1.    Itinerary includes flights, meals as indicated, local tour guide, entrance fees, hotel accommodation as indicated (twin-sharing), transfers to the sightseeing spots, TIC levy, and group travel insurance of HK$300,000.
    2.    Itinerary excludes airport tax, security and fuel surcharge, Uzbekistan Visa, gratuities (escort, tour guide & driver where applicable), expenses of personal nature such as alcoholic drinks and phone bills, personal travel insurance, etc.
    3.    Customized and small-group tours can also be arranged based on your travel schedule and needs.
    4.    Itinerary is for reference only and is subject to change without prior notice.
    Tour Terms and Conditions
    Reservation and Payment
    1. Please contact Silk Road Travel Management Ltd to make your reservation.
    2. A non-refundable deposit of 30% of the tour price per person is required upon submission of the booking form.
    3. Balance payment has to be made at least 45 days prior to tour departure or Silk Road Travel Management Ltd reserves the right to cancel the tour without prior notice.
    4. Payment can be made through bank transfer / remittance payable to SILK ROAD TRAVEL MANAGEMENT LTD.

    Kazakhstan Visa
    Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) passport holders may visit the Republic of Kazakhstan visa-free for a stay of up to 14 days.

    Below countries are exempted from visa requirement when entering into the Republic of Kazakhstan, for visit up to fifteen calendar days from 1 May 2015 to 31 December 2016, including Australia, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the UAE, the U. K. and the U.S.

    For further details about visa requirement, please visit official website of Consulate General of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Hong Kong and Macao SARs: http://www.consul-kazakhstan.org.hk/

    China Visa  (for travelling via Beijing)
    *72-hour visa-free transit in Beijing
    Starting from 1 January 2013, overseas passport holders of the following countries do not need a visa if transiting through Beijing Capital International Airport in Beijing, provided they hold valid passports, visas for the onward countries, final destination tickets and have booked onward flight seats, and stay in Beijing for less than 72 hours.
    Argentina, Austria, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States.


    Please note
    1. Although the tour-pamphlets indicate forms of transportation, hotels, places to be visited, duration of stay at each city and sights to be seen are subject to change.
    2. No refund will be made for any unused portion of the tour.
    3. A single passenger must be prepared to pay for single supplement if a roommate is not available.
    4. As advised by the Travel Industry Council of Hong Kong (TIC), tour participants are recommended to purchase personal travel insurance which cover at least emergency evacuation, death and disability.

    Cancellations and Refund
    1. For cancellation received 45 days before departure, the deposit will be forfeited but the balance paid will be returned.
    2. For cancellations received 44 to 30 days before departure, 50% of the tour cost will be charged.
    3. For cancellations received 29 to 11 days of departure, 80% of the tour cost will be charged.
    4. Full charge will apply for any cancellation received within 10 days before departure or unused portion.
    5. All deposits and payments are non-transferable.

    The tour operator and its associated companies and/or agents act only in the capacity of agent for the client. They shall not be responsible or liable for any injury, damage or loss of property or person, or whatsoever expenses arising from the use of any accommodation, conveyances of services, and from sickness, fire, weather, natural calamities, strikes or Government restrictions. Any loss or additional expenses, resulting from the above contingencies shall be borne by the client. The handling of baggage is at the client’s risk throughout the tour. Small articles, coats, umbrellas and other hand baggage are left to the responsibility of the client. All fares quoted are subject to change without prior notice. Should unforeseen circumstances require spending extra time on the tour, the cost of accommodation or any other expenses involved will be charged to the clients. No refund will be made for the unused portion of the tour. The relationship between the tour operator and the client shall be governed by the laws of Hong Kong and any disputes arising thereunder shall be exclusively subject to the jurisdiction of the courts of Hong Kong.
    The package tours operated by a licensed travel agent are under the protection by the TICF (Travel Industry Compensation Fund). Please make sure that the receipts for the outbound travel service are clearly franked to indicate levy payment equal to 0.15% (or the latest levy announced by TICHK) of the outbound fare paid. Bring along the photocopy of the receipt on the tour and deposit the original receipt at home or with a relative.

    Book Now!  Tel: (852) 2736 8828    E-mail: travel@the-silk-road.com

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Silk Road Travel Management Ltd. (Licence No.352017)
Office: Suite 1602, Chinachem Century Tower 178, Gloucester Road, Wanchai, Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 2736 8828
Fax: (852) 2736 8000
E-mail: travel@the-silk-road.com

It was such a wonderful journey. Although it took us quite a while to go through the customs at Tashkent airport, everything went on smoothly.  Thanks to Silk Road Travel’s detail-minded arrangement.

Mr. Jones
10 Days Uzbekistan Tour

Before Departure
A set of travel kit which includes a detailed itinerary, flight schedule, hotel information and contacts will be provided before departure.

Central Asia is dry in all seasons. Summer is hot and dry. However, the temperature between day and night varies, jacket is recommended. In winter, it is cold and snowy. The temperature will hit below zero degree.

Kazakhstan is the biggest landlocked country in the world; it has a diverse climate which varies from different regions. When spring begins in the South, the North might still be covered with thick snow. In summer, the temperature range is between 15ºC – 30ºC. In winter, the temperature of Astana can reach as low as -40ºC while it is around -20ºC the lowest in Almaty.

Uzbekistan is a double landlocked country; the weather is dry, the temperature is higher than Kazakhstan. The temperature in Winter can reach 0ºC while the temperature can reach 45ºC . The average temperature in Summer is 30ºC. The humidity is low.

Time Difference
Kazakhstan: GMT+6, 2 hours behind Hong Kong
Uzbekistan: GMT+ 5, 3 hours behind Hong Kong

The official language of Kazakhstan is Kazak while Uzbek in Uzbekistan. Both languages belong to the Turkic language family. Russian is also widely spoken as both countries were once members of the Soviet Union. English is not a common language even in sightseeing spots.

Long sleeves and loose clothing (preferably cotton or natural fibres) is recommended for daytime use, with a light jumper and/or jacket for the cooler evenings. There will be many walking tours throughout the trip; some involve dusty and rough areas (i.e. dirt, cobblestones, etc.). Therefore, comfortable, solid walking shoes or sports shoes are essential.

Light colour clothing can help protect you from sunburn. A hat with good shade protection and sunglasses are essential. Sun radiation can be strong in some destinations. Please bring your sunscreens and lotion along.

There is no dress code for most of the religious sites that you will visit, except that ladies are recommended to cover most part of their body including arms and legs. For ladies, please also bring a shawl in case needed.

The hotels that you will stay at provide in-room Wi-Fi service. Amenities are provided in hotels but still recommended to bring your own. Avoid going out at night for your own safety.

In Uzbekistan, hotel will take your passport and do the Office of Visas and Registration (OVIR); tourists have to keep the OVIR for the collection from officers during departure.

Food & Beverages
Central Asian cuisine is rich in meats and milk. Nan (big round baked bread), Shashlik (grill meats), Plov (fried rice with vegetables and beef), Manti (dumplings with beef or lamb), cheese and, camel and horse milk are their daily food. Horsemeat is a common food in Kazakhstan. If you have any dietary requirements, please advise us as soon as possible.

Local mineral water contains a higher level of minerals than western spring or bottled water and the taste can be rather "salty". Imported spirits and wines are available, however in some places the provenance of some spirits and wines is questionable and the prices inflated.

Avoid drinking tap water and eating cold dishes or beverages at the street market. Drink only bottled water and well cooked food during the trip.

The most efficient and comfortable way to travel is by air. Air Astana operates regular flights between Almaty in Kazakhstan and Hong Kong. To fly from Hong Kong to Uzbekistan, you need to take a connecting flight to Tashkent via Korea or Beijing. Coach and high-speed rail will be arranged occasionally. The itinerary states clearly the transportation that will be used throughout the trip. You may wish to bring some snacks with you for the long coach journey.

You are required to fill in two arrival declaration forms regarding the amount of currencies and specific items that you are bringing from your country of origin to Uzbekistan. One of the forms will be collected when entering Uzbekistan while the other one will be collected together with the departure declaration form, which should state the remaining amount of currencies and specific items upon departure. Please note that Uzbekistan currencies cannot be taken out of the country as there is a currency control. The custom officer will also collect your Office of Visas and Registration (OVIR) form on your departure.

Visa & Travel Document
Kazakhstan: HKSAR, Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, the U.K, the U.S, Spain, and Singapore passport holders are exempted from visa requirement when entering into the Republic of Kazakhstan for a stay of up to 14 days effective from 16 July 2015 to 31 December 2017.

For further details about visa requirement, please visit the official website of Consulate General of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Hong Kong: http://www.consul-kazakhstan.org.hk/

Uzbekistan: Every visitor must possess a valid Uzbekistan Visa, which can be applied in any Uzbekistan Embassy or Consulate. It is possible to apply for a Visa on Arrival with a Letter of Invitation (LOI) at the international arrivals hall of the Tashkent International Airport, if the following conditions are met:
• There is no Uzbekistan Embassy or Consulate in the your country of origin;
• There is not enough time for you to apply for the visa at the transit point even there is Uzbekistan Embassy or Consulate.

Letter of Invitation (LOI):
According to the regulations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Uzbekistan, Austria, Belgium, Great Britain, Germany, Spain, Italy, France, and Switzerland passport holders can get a Uzbekistan Tourist Visa directly at the embassy without an invitation letter from a ground tour operator. All other nationalities must submit a letter of invitation from a local tour operator when applying for the Uzbekistan Tourist Visa.

Silk Road Travel Management Ltd will help prepare the LOI for free upon confirmation of the Uzbekistan tour. Please ensure your travel documents are valid at time of travel (with at least 6 months’ validity).

Kazakhstan Country Phone Code: +7
Uzbekstian Country Phone Code: +998
Telephone: Most of the hotels have IDD lines which you can make IDD calls in your rooms or at business center. Internet: Internet connection is available at hotels (International brand). There are WiFi Internet zones at the airport; railway stations of major cities and some restaurants and shops, though the coverage might be limited. In order to get the all-time Internet connection, please contact your domestic Internet service provider.

Kazakhstan national currency is Tenge (KZT). Exchange rate as per: 1USD = 186 KZT. The highest banknote is 10,000 KZT.
Uzbekistan national currency is SOM. Exchange rate as per: 1USD = 3000 SOM.The highest banknote is 1000 SOM.

Hotels and shops often list prices in U.S. Dollar. It is better to bring U.S. Dollar or Euro (€) for easy exchange (small amount, fresh and clean notes preferable) and you are recommended to exchange small money for local use in bazaar and small shops. It is advisable to keep all documents for money exchange until departure. Small shops and restaurants accept cash rather than credit card and cheque.

No photography is allowed in some religious monuments, airports, railway stations or near military installation. Be aware of the sign of the sightseeing spot and the instruction from tour guide. Sometimes, it is needed to pay the fees for taking photos in some sightseeing spots.

If you wish to take a picture of a person or a child in the street, please obtain his/her consent first and do not touch their head, which is considered to take their luck away.

Memory cards and batteries are available in major cities, but it is suggested that you purchase your supply before arrival, particularly if you have a sophisticated type of camera that requires a specific film and / or batteries.

In Central Asia, Islam is the dominant religion. There are some customs and taboos that tourists need to respect and note. For example, physical touch between men and women is not allowed, eating pork and even talking about it are strictly restricted, and touching children’s head is a taboo.

Health information
The most common medical problems on tours are chest colds, sore throats, and the rare light bout of diarrhea or constipation. Bring along your own remedy for these ailments, as well as any prescription medicine you need since these may be difficult to find.

As it is practically inevitable in the areas where water is high in mineral and metallic salts, one should be prepared for minor gastric complaints. Consult your physician or pharmacist for recommended remedies.

Throughout the areas you will be travelling, one of the main health warnings is dehydration. At all times maintain a steady intake of non-alcoholic liquids.

IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you carry in your hand luggage any medicine you may require in case your suitcase is separated from you.
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