Sunday 4 October 2009

Central Asia - Yazd

I have arrived in Yazd on my latest trip throgh Central Asia. I started the trip in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, and Ashgabat pretty much met my expectations. The enormous, elaborate public buildings that have been built with the new found wealth from selling their energy resources are just a little OTT. However, Ashgabat was only meant to be the jumping off point for gaining an Iranian visa and border entry. Gaining the Visa went ok but the cost for UK Ciizens was higher than for any other national, even more than for Americans, at 152EUR plus 35USD for a 'Letter of Invitation'.
With Visas in hand we set of for the Border about 50km south into the mountains. After about 4.5 hours we were through! A long, but fairly painless exercise. From the border we drove South for about an hour and set up camp on the side of a convenient mountain as the sun was setting. Next day we had a long drive to the Southeast of the Caspian Sea, where we camped again. Neither site was particularly good but broke up the journey to Tehran, which we arrived at the following day.
From Tehran to Yazd was another long drive, this is a big country. However, Yazd is great, last night I slept on the roof of our hotel so that I could see the sunrise. I was woken by the Adhan shortly after 04:00 and did get to see the sun rise over the old town at about 05:10. A nice but not spectacular sun rise. I'll try it again tomorrow before we set of for Persepolis.