Tuesday, June 26, 2012
The closest you can ever get to the Caspian Sea in Turkmenistan is to head to the city of Turkmenbashi (named in honor of Turkmenistan’s first President), or specifically the Avaza resort, a resort that has grown so rapidly in the past 3-4 years that it could now be a city by itself. More than that, it is still growing at the same pace. Full of hotels, summer camps, health sanatoriums, restaurants and bars, the Avaza of the future is not yet even halfway complete. At this moment, there are construction sites stretching for over 50 kilometers north of the current-day Avaza. The hotels are great and are the biggest attribute of Avaza. It may also help to ask around and visit restaurants outside the hotel to try different dishes and kebabs, especially the ones out of fish. If planned well, one’s vacation in Avaza should go more than smooth and definitely pleasant. The new Turkmenbashi airport is flat-out gorgeous. Just the right size, very organized and clean. An American-style highway system has recently been laid from the airport to Turkmenbashi and straight to the heart of the Avaza resort. The hotels provide many amenities, responding to almost every age, taste and preference. The pools are cleaned every morning and there are lifeguards at the sea. There are also many restaurants, disco bars, museums and fun little tours on boat along the man-made river that runs through the entirety of the resort. My family and I stayed at the hotel named Kerven and enjoyed our time there. Would I go back to that particular hotel next time? No, but only because I would want to try one of the newer places that are currently being built. Either way, no matter what hotel you choose, you’ll always know it’s worth it when you see the view from your room and breathe in the fresh and healing Caspian air. The air and the sea should have been the main reasons you came down there anyway.