Russia and Turkmenistan plan to launch joint cruise tours in the Caspian Sea in 2020, Trend reports citing Russian media.
According to the information, the Governor of the Astrakhan region Igor Babushkin told RIA-Novosti that variants of routes have been developed, including the main one – from Astrakhan along the Caspian sea with calls at the ports of Aktau, Turkmenbashi, Baku, Makhachkala.
"I discussed the issue of visiting the tourist zone "Avaza" and the port of Turkmenbashi with representatives of Turkmenistan. It was agreed that the Turkmen side will determine the tour operator. I am sure that both Iran and Azerbaijan will enthusiastically support our idea and the possibility of cruise communication," the Governor's words are quoted in the information.
According to the source, in 2020 the first cruise on the Caspian Sea - "Treasures of the East" on the Russian ship "Peter the Great" is planned. The Association of tour operators of Russia noted that according to the plan the ship will work out the program (11 days/10 nights), with stops in Baku (Azerbaijan) – Bandar-Enzali (Iran) – noushehr (Iran) – Turkmenbashi (Turkmenistan) – Aktau (Kazakhstan) – Astrakhan – Makhachkala /Derbent – Baku. Then, as expected, for the winter the ship will go to the Black sea, performing the cruise program "Adventure on Three Seas". The order of cruise prices is estimated at 10-15 thousand rubles per person per day. In total, the ship is designed for 310 passengers. Tourists will have access to several restaurants, bars, swimming pool, SPA-center and much more.
The tourism industry occupies a special place in the strategic plans of Turkmenistan. An example is the national resort zone "Avaza" - the country's first free economic zone, where working investors, firms and companies are provided with tax and customs benefits. The "great silk road" passed through Turkmenistan, there is a rich cultural heritage, diverse natural landscapes, unique archaeological sites - including ancient Nissa, Merv and Kunyaurgench included in the UNESCO list of "World cultural heritage", or, for example, Gonurdepe - the center of Margian civilization, ancient Dehistan. The foothills of the Kopetdag, flora, and fauna of the Karakum mountains, the Amu Darya coast, Koytendag, subtropical regions of Southwestern Turkmenistan are a godsend for fans of ecological tourism, the information says.