March/April/May in Europe and Central Asia - Part I (Lots of photos!)

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Jul 6, 2006
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This spring I finally got a chance to go to Central Asia. Here is what my trip looked like:

Trip_Map_Central_Eastern_Europe_&_Russia_Map_2010.jpg
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Trip_Map_Central_Asia_2010.jpg
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Starting in Los Angeles, I flew to Amsterdam where I had a day stopover and continued by flying to Vienna. In Vienna, I met my friend Klaus, and traveled with him to Prague, Kutna Hora and Bratislava. We also spent about a week in Vienna.

From Vienna Klaus and I flew through Berlin to St. Petersburg. There we met my friend Gregory and spent a few days in St. Petersburg, went to Moscow and Pereslavl-Zalessky for a few days and came back to St. Petersburg for a few more days. We then went on a 4,000 kilometer train ride to Astana, in Kazakhstan

From St. Petersburg we went by train to Astana, the Kazakh capital. There we met another friend, Christian, and continued to Almaty. From Almaty we went for a few days to Kyrgyzstan, going to Bishkek and lake Issyk-Kol. (We left 2 days before the revolution!) From there we went back to Almaty to pick up some visas and continued by train to Shymkent, then crossed the border into Uzbekistan and went to Tashkent where we met another friend, Vladimir. Then we went to Samarkand, Buhara and Khiva. From Khiva my friends left to go back home, except for Klaus, who came with me back to Bukhara and to Termiz.

I was able to cross the Soviet "Friendship Bridge" into Afghanistan (I got my Afghani Visa in Almaty). I went to Mazar-e-Sharif and Balkh for a couple of days. That part of Afghanistan is very safe (by Afghani standards), the Afghans that I met were some of the friendliest people I have ever encountered anywhere!

I went back across the friendship bridge to Termiz, from there Klaus and I went back to Samarkand and crossed the border into Tajikistan to visit the Fan Mountains. Then we went back to Samarkand and took a train to Tashkent to catch our flight from Tashkent to Kiev through Riga. That however didn't happen since the Riga airport was closed because of the Icelandic Volcano eruption, so after 2 days of being stranded in Tashkent we flew to Istanbul instead. Klaus continued his trip by flying to Kiev, I spent a couple of days in Istanbul and flew to Chisinau (Moldova)

From Moldova, I went across Trans-Dniester to Kiev and met Klaus again. After a couple of days we took and overnight train to Lviv, then crossed the border into Poland and went to Cracow. From Cracow Klaus went back home to Vienna and I continued by going to Lodz. Then I went to Plock, Ciechocinek and Torun before flying back home to California from Warsaw through Amsterdam.

Unfortunately I did not go to Turkmenistan as I originally planned, due to the extremely strict visa policies 2 of my friends were not able to get a visa in time (due to their nationality). I'll come back to Central Asia and visit the country in the future when I'll be traveling in Iran.



Here are some photos from the trip: (I didn't realize there is a maximum of 10 photos per post here on Nikon Cafe, so I edited this post to remove the extra photos)


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04_Russia_007.jpg
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05_Kazakhstan_001.jpg
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06_Kyrgyzstan_004.jpg
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07_Uzbekistan_001.jpg
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07_Uzbekistan_002.jpg
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07_Uzbekistan_003.jpg
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Eventually I will post separate pages for each individual country along with descriptions, my observations and the history of the region.

More information and photos about the trip can be found on my website:
Jimbojack - Europe & Central Asia

(I had to edit this post to comply with the 10 photo policy, please visit my website if you would like to see more)
 
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LyndeeLoo

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What a fantastic journey, Phillip!!! I so envy you. Not only have you taken the trip of my dreams, you brought back stunning images to share - well done!!!
 
Joined
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Tony Admana
What an adventure! I am so envious..... Thank you for taking us along. I enjoyed looking at your great photos:smile:

Cheers,
Tony
 
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Medford, Oregon
After this trip you should check out the book, I The Footsteps of Marco Polo. You could relive your trip all over again. An excellent read for any history nut.
 

Butlerkid

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Exquisite photos! And I SOOOOO envy your trip! Thanks for the map showing all the places you visited. I love Prague but haven't been the all the other wonderful areas you visited.

More!
 
Joined
Jul 6, 2006
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Southern California
Here are some more photos from the trip, they can all be found on my website. Unfortunately I have not had much time to update it.

01_Austria_001.jpg
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02_Czech_004.jpg
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04_Russia_009.jpg
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07_Uzbekistan_009.jpg
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08_Afghanistan_007.jpg
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08_Afghanistan_012.jpg
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09_Tajikistan_003.jpg
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10_Turkey_004.jpg
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11_Moldova_001.jpg
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12_Ukraine_009.jpg
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13_Poland_005.jpg
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This weekend I'm leaving on a trip to the Middle East and either Pakistan or East Africa (depending on which Visas I can get). I'll be back in February but will try to post some photos while I'm traveling.
 
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