Access to Afghan Wakhan (July 2014):
- the Ishkashim checkpost is open
- the Afghan consulate is still operating in Khorog, visas are available
either in 15 min ($100) or in 3 days ($60).
Below are the most useful links I have found on getting to and around the Afghan Wakhan:
2018 practical advice from a Chinese trekker - see
A report (May 2014) by James D. Poborsa, with striking portraits of the Wakhi people there (and,
perhaps inevitably in a blog, of the author); see
A superb BBC film by Kate Humble, who - with appropriate humility - describes the life of Wakhi shepherds; see
78 min. film on Afghan Wakhan by CÚdric Houin - see trailer and order
A beautiful brochure published by the Aga Khan Foundation, a little outdated but with a
good map of the little Pamir:
Trekking information by Julien Dufour, who has probably the most informative website on the Wakhan:
Very practical travel advice:
The following website by Nicole Smoot
contains all the information you will need for travel (and trekking) there - see
Nicole also has a page dealing specifically with the Tajik Wakhan, here.
N.B. See however a June 2016 report on Taliban presence in Afghan Badakhshan -
More practical travel advice by the authors of the AKF brochure (see above):
Swiss newspaper report in German by the founders of the charitable association "Pamir Bridges"
"I am proud that I am Wakhi, I was Shepherd, I am Shepherd
I am the language of absolute faith, I was Shepherd, I am Shepherd"
- Nazir Ahmad Bulbul (Article in the Express Tribune of Pakistan)
Plan for a group tour by mountain bike in the Wakhan in July 2013
Article in National Geographic February 2013
Article in DestinAsian December 2012
Steve Swenson's Blog - August 2013
Afghanistan Analysts Network: fascinating article on the Ismaili community in the Wakhan. See
National Geographic post by Avery Stonich (for Dylan Taylor) - November 2013 -
note the comment about the incorrect visa (visiting the Afghan Wakhan from Tajik territory requires a double-entry Tajik visa for the return).
Comprehensive report with superb photos and excellent maps by Steffen Graupner, Kristina Kunze, Christine Fischer
& Matthias Muelleron on their 2016 expedition to the source of the Oxus and ascent of "Koh-i-Wakhan" (6094m).
Recent (July 2018) post by Marta Pascual Juanola on the Western Australia website.
IMPORTANT NOTICE ON SAFETY
The Pamirs - and especially the Wakhan - are very much "virgin territory" for tourism. Make certain that
you know the conditions of the tracks, rivers and bridges that you envisage taking
and check meteorological conditions. Take a good driver and a reliable vehicle - if your
route includes uninhabited territory, it is advisable to travel with at least two vehicles. For example:
a) in summer in the Great Pamir there are
large areas of treacherous terrain where a mud-slide has been covered with a baked clay surface that
looks stable but is not;
b) many mountain sides are covered in scree (broken rock fragments) that is unstable and very slippery.
c) flooding/flash floods can destroy roads and make driving dangerous
d) unseasonal snow can block the Pamir Highway and other roads
See photos below and the note on safety on the
The sponsors of the present website decline all responsibility for accidents.
All text and
photographs (c) Robert Middleton 2002
Web master Romanyuk