August 24th 2011: Mashhad, Iran – Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

Driven distance on August 24th 2011: 330km (210 miles)

Driven distance total: 10’310km (6410 miles)

First I tell you something about the entry from Iran to Turkmenistan. We “only” had 2 hours for the entire procedure to cross the border. I was totally in approx. 10 offices before we were in Turkmenistan. First I visited 3 offices to get the “Carnet” stamped from the Iranians, then the exit of Iran and finally the entry into Turkmenistan. Because of the car I had to go to another 4 offices, to be able to get the car into Turkmenistan. Anyways, for a total of 10 offices are 2 hours not too bad J. On the Turkmen side I felt a little bit like when I was doing military service in Switzerland! The military guys from Turkmenistan had a real military way to get along with passengers. They were quite strictly where you have to wait, how you have to park your car and where you have to go. Finally we could enter without any problems. Short after we arrived in the capital of Turkmenistan, in Ashgabat. We were basically speechless. Absolutely magnificent newer buildings, very special monuments and very clean streets. And the traffic is like in Switzerland. Everybody obeys the laws, and there is not a real hurry on the streets. Just thinking about, that a few miles away, in Iran, is chaos on the streets!!

And just imagine, after over 2 weeks Iran, to sit in an English pub and drink a big pint of beer, how great is that!! Well, CheersJ!


August 25th 2011: Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

Driven distance on August 25th 2011: 0km (0 miles)

Driven distance total: 10’310km (6410 miles)

So, what should I tell you about Ashgabat.. It is a very scurrile city.. Best is to make yourself a picture and google it (Highly recommended!). I just cite a passage out of the lonely planet guidebook. „Ashgabat was rebuilt in the soviet style, but its modern incarnation is somewhere between Las Vegas and Pyongyang, with a mixture of Bellagio fountains and Stalinist parade grounds“ J. More precisely it couldn’t be compared J!

Unfortunately it is almost impossible to take photographs, since in every corner is police and military. In the beginning we took some pictures, and immediately there was one military person coming, was looking at the pictures and told us which pictures we have to delete again. Also some persons don’t like it to photographed, but we could not really figure out the reason. In general seems Turkmenistan to be a friendly country!


August 26th 2011: Ashgabat - Mary, Turkmenistan

Driven distance on August 26th 2011: 440km (270 miles)

Driven distance total: 10’750km (6680 miles)

Today we went from Ashgabat to Mary in Turkmenistan. The street was absolutely terrible, even for central Asian standards! In the evening we had some trouble to find a hotel and finally we ended up in a hotel, which acts halfway as a brothel. We slept in the car since there was no room left. We didn’t miss the chance of observing that special bar and had some dinner and beer there. As described in the Lonely planet are the Iranian truck drivers not only to sleep here J! It was really amusing to check out Iranians dancing to Pop music! A local guy even showed a good Breakdance ShowJ!


August 27th 2011: Mary - Turkmenabad, Turkmenistan

Driven distance on August 27th 2011: 290km (180 miles)

Driven distance total: 11’040km (6860 miles)


The trip continued in direction Uzbekistan. Short after Mary we checked out the old ruin city of Merv. The absolute highlight were not the ruins, but much more the camel herd. We made fantastic pictures of the animals. The camels were eating really hard and stingy bushes! At the end we arrived in the city Turkmenabad, close to the border of Uzbekistan. After some time we found a nice new payable hotel. In the afternoon I just wanted to go to the car and get some things I needed, but then I found the bar and ordered a beer. Shortly after I got invited for several Vodkas and local beer! Was funnyJ.