After staying for a night in Mashhad we went to Sarakhs town in the north-east part of Iran, where we wanted to cross the boarder between Iran and Turkmenistan. Iranian boarder we crossed quite normally, but we were surprised, why iranian customs decided to put our car to the weighing-machine, because Volkswagen Tiguan isn`t a truck. Then we passed a bridge over the Tedzhen river on the neutral zone end entered to Turkmenistan. It was the first time, when i heard, that somebody was talking in Russian.
But it was very bad, that we spent more than 6 hours to cross turkmenian boarder. The customs checked intently all staff in our course. Of course, we understood, why soldiers made their work so carefully, because the Sarakhs is quite close to Afghanistan. But the most of time was spent on a red tape. But we managed to do it and after crossing the boarder we were met by a person from Owadan travel agency, who will be our guide during our staying in Turkmenistan. And we were happy to see, that he came on a Chevrolet Suburban – that big SUV was quite good and suitable for making car by car filming and pictures from both sides of the car. And the landscape there was wonderful – a real Garagumy desert!
After Tedzhen we entered to a very good highway, which goes directly to the capital of Turkmenistan and we were hurrying up, because we had planned a meeting with our firends from Volkswagen dealer in Ashgabat before. Thanks to our quickly and smart guide, we managed to cover the whole route from boarder to the dealership in 4 hours. And it was a real pleasure to go by that highway. All suurouding was beautiful: at the left side we saw Iranian mountaines, which we had seen from another side, when we had been to Iran. And at the right side there was a desert.
We came to Ashgabat at night and were fascinated by the modern architecture, full of glass, golden paint and white marble, but i`ll tell you about our impressions in future blogs. The main event for us for that day was a banquet in the Volkswagen Garagum Ulag dealer center, where we met with German Amassador in Turkmenistan, officials from the Great Britain embassy, Owadan agency members and other guests. Rainer mad a short presentation there and showed our Volkswagen Tiguan to everybody. The evening was nice and we were very glad to Timur Yakovlev and all Volkswagen Garagum Ulag team for this warm welcome. So our plan for one more day is to stay in Ashgabat.
Author: Peter Bakanov