After breakfast, visit the museum of the local astronomer and poet Sufi Muboraki Vakhoni. Listen to a talk from his grand grand son, Aydar Malikmamadov, and learn about his solar calendar. Visit Namadgut village to see the Kahkha Fortress before exploring the local museum (subject to availability) to observe the historical local embroidery and excavation artefacts. Also see a typical 11th century Islaili shrine, Oston-I Shobi Mardon, with unique wood carvings and petroglyphs. Proceed to the village of Yamchun and bathe in the Bibi Fatima hot springs before visiting the ruins of Yamchun fortress. Return to Yamg for lunch. In the afternoon, drive to Langar and see the famous Wakhan Corridor in Afghanistan. On arrival in Langar, transfer to a traditional Pamiri House for your overnight stay.
Meal plan: Breakfast
Located at the end of Wakhan Valley, the small and quiet village of Langar lies deep within a gorge surrounded by steep, rocky slopes. Outside of the village there are stunning views over the canyon, where the Wakhan and Pamir rivers meet to make the Panj. Many archaeological and historical sites are dotted throughout the surrounding areas.
Built in the 4th century AD, Kahkha Fortress is located on the banks of Panj River along the border between Tajikistan and Afghanistan. It is named after the king of the Siahpushes-Qanqaha, who were known to be fire worshippers. Protected by a double layer of clay and stone walls, as well as 56 towers with gun slots, its inner layout consists of a citadel and 3 grounds, with the total length of the rampart extending to 750 metres. Erosion has damaged much of the inner walls, though numerous towers still stand.
Located in the Wakhan Valley within the Pamir Mountain range, the Bibi Fatima Hot Springs were named after the Prophet Mohammad's daughter. The crystal clear hot water flows from a stalactite cave and into a simple concrete room constructed against the rock face, in which men and women can seperately bathe at different time intervals. The water is believed to not only have many health benefits, but also boost the fertility of women.
Originally built between the 2nd and 3rd centuries BC, Yamchun Fortress is believed to be the oldest monument in the Wakhan region, though the current structure is thought to be from the 12th century. Constructed in a triangular shape, it was fortified with 36 towers and 2-metre-wide outer walls, while the inner layout is divided into sections consisting of a citadel, bastion, barracks and 2 open grounds surrounded by walls and towers. Stategically placed 500 metres above the valley, the fortress played a key role on the Silk Road, controlling the traffic, cargo and security in the region.
A high mountain valley stretching between the Pamir and Karakoram mountain ranges, the Wakhan Corridor separates Tajikistan and Pakistan. It is from this corridor that the Panj and Pamir Rivers emerge and form the Amu Darya. Traditionally used as a trade route between Eastern, Southern and Central Asia, the Wakhan Corridor is now predominantly inhabited by Wakhi herdsmen. Given its beautiful mountain scenery and remote location, it is a popular spot for mountaineering, trekking and wildlife-watching.
The House-Museum of Sufi Muboraki Vakhoni celebrates the life of the Tajik astronomer, poet, musician and Ismaili religious scholar who lived from 1843 to 1903. Originally from Badakshan, Vakhoni is little-known in modern academic works, though he played a significant role within the Ismaili traditions in the Pamir Mountains. The museum exhibits books and manuscripts written by the master, his "solar calendar", collections of ethnographic artefacts and even a model of a classic 19th-century Pamiri home.