Tour description

Not far (60 km) from the capital of Tajikistan – Dushanbe is located the historical and natural Park Shirkent, which is famous for its prehistoric attractions - dinosaur tracks.

In this Park, hundreds of traces of four species of dinosaurs have been identified, which are still very clearly reflected on the rocky mountains of the Hisar range.

Shirkent Park is mainly known for fossilized dinosaur footprints. The animal that left these prints is attributed to a new genus and species Macropodasaurusgravis, there are still no analogues of these five-toed dinosaur footprints in the world. In total, eight locations of dinosaur footprints have been registered in our republic. Three of them are located in the mountains of the Shirkent River gorge.

Shirkent Park is located in the basin of the river of the same name on the southern slopes of the Hisar range with an area of 3190 hectares.

The monument of inanimate nature unites about 50 unique objects belonging to such categories as: geological, hydrological, glaciological. The most significant in this series are three different age locations of dinosaur footprints, with the total number of footprints of extinct lizards more than 400.

Among the variety of mountain landscapes, the mountains above Pashmi Kuhna are vey amazing. Such landscapes are not found anywhere else - a wonderful mountain climate at an altitude of 2000 meters, views of snow ridges and rivers with clean water. For tourists, there is a wide choice of routes for every taste, and mountain climbers expect snow-capped peaks that keep their inviolability.

The animal world is very diverse. The Shirkent fauna includes about 150 vertebrate species, including 30 mammal species. Mammals include rodents, large and small predators, including the snow leopard (Uncia uncia), rock marten (Martis foina), bear (Ursus arctos), ermine (Mustela erminea), and weasel (M. nivallis).

Birds have the greatest species diversity - 40 sedentary and 55 migratory species, rare of them are the white - headed barn owl (Gyps fylvus), Saker Falcon (Falco cherriug catsi), red-headed peregrine Falcon (F. perefrinoides), and other species.

Extensive Alpine meadows, rivers and streams provide shelter to the rich wildlife of the park. The panorama of the upper reaches of the Shirkent impresses with its grandeur and grandiosity of relief forms. Surrounded on all sides by high and impassable mountains, the valley is closed from the North by the snow-covered ridge of Machitli (Koldyrga), some peaks of which reach a height of 4400—4500m.


In Shirkent in the late Jurassic period from 160 to 140 million years ago, real dinosaurs lived on the territory in the floodplain of the Shirkent river, traces of which can be seen to this day.

SHIRKENTOSAUR (Shirkento sauropus shirkentensis)

Large and medium-sized three-toed footprints of a bipedal finger of a walking dinosaur. The first and fifth fingers are reduced and leave no traces on the ground. The foot is wide, with a slightly separated wide-rounded heel. The fingers are almost parallel to each other, their leading edge has rounded outlines, sometimes slightly pointed. There were no traces of mines. Axis the individual tracks almost parallel to the centerline of chains and deviate from it by not more than 7-10 cm Depth prints 3-5 cm foot Length-48 cm, width 38 cm

KHARKUSHOSAUR (Kharkushosauropus kharkushensis)

Large three-toed footprints of a bipedal finger-walking dinosaur 1-th 5-th fingers are reduced and do not leave traces in the front part of the tracks are strongly pressed into the rock. The heel part is isolated and has a rounded shape. Foot length-57 cm, width-47 cm.

MIRZOSAUR (Mirzosauropus tursunzadevi)

Three-toed oval tracks of a large bipedal dinosaur. The tracks are strongly pressed into the rock and surrounded by rollers of pressed soil. Indistinctly expressed prints of 3 short and wide fingers of a broadly conical shape are distinguished. The shape and size somewhat resembles a coal cast from a trace left in the upper Cretaceous sediments of the state of Utah in America. Foot length-68 cm, width-54 cm.

REGAROSAUR (Regarosauropus manovi)

Three-toed traces of a medium-sized bipedal finger of a walking dinosaur, the fingers are narrow. The depth of prints is 2-4 cm. the foot Length is 26 cm, the width is 16 cm.

yesAvailability: April - September
cool Direction: Dushanbe-Tursunzoda
enlightened Duration: 7 days /  6 nights 
angel Type of tour: group (6 or more persons)

Program of the tour

  • Welcome to hospitable Tajikistan!

  • We will meet you at the international airport of Dushanbe and take you to the hotel. The drive time to the hotel is 10-20 minutes. This is free time, tourists have the opportunity to relax and acclimatize. Dinner in the evening (we will pick you up at the hotel lobby at 19: 00).

08:00 – Breakfast at the hotel

08:30 – Departure from Dushanbe to the Shirkent village through the city of Hissar and Shakhrinav district

11:30 – Ascent from the road to the rock mass with dinosaur footprints (Shirkent-2) along the bed of a side tributary of the river. Further up the river we will make our way. A very beautiful path goes from the apiary along the crests of ridges and spurs. The trail follows a small river first, where there is a lot of cherry plum.

15:00 – Lunch

16:00 – Excursion  to the dinosaur tracks.

18:00 – Campsite, overnight at sites near the rock massif.

8:00 – Breakfast   

8:30 – approach via the trail along the picturesque slopes covered with juniper forest to the spring under the pass Pashmikuhna. The trail leads us to the crest of a side ridge, 1550 meters high. The ridge is wide enough with falling edges. It is very pleasant to walk along it, often there are groups of trees, among which there is an inevitable cherry plum. A small plateau is found on the ridge. Thick grass and overhanging clusters of cherry plum involuntarily beckon to rest. Higher and higher ridges rise up ahead, gorges are drowning in blue fog, the Shirkent river has disappeared in the gorges. 

12:00 – Lunch

13:00 – Ascent to the pass of Pashmikuhna along the trail on rocky slopes. Going up the ridge higher and higher, we go out on the rocks, skirting the ridge from the West side, and finally reach a height of 2640 meters. To the North is clearly visible Mechetlin ridge with ribbons lobbies and firn fields. The Shirkent river is somewhere far down in the West, and in front of the wall rises the rocky slope of the gorge of the Oljir river, the left tributary of the Shirkent river.

17:30 – Descent from the meadows to Algir is quite steep. First, the trail goes to a stormy stream, and then follows the descent of the stream for 150 meters, and the trail goes to the Bank of the river Algir  at the level of 1950 meters. Then we will get to the Kingdom of the forest. When you go down the trail to the mouth of the Algir, you get a grand even gloomy view. 

19:00 – Camping, spending the night at the spring, or higher-on the ridge under the pass.

8:00 – Breakfast    

8:30 – crossing the trail on the left slope along the Shirkent river (hunter's house). Opposite the mouth of Algira in front of us, rapidly sliding river Dussak-Dara. Between the Dussak-Dara and Shirkent rivers, the island-like black peak rises as an impregnable massif. Then the trail leads us high above the gorge.

12:00 – Lunch

13:00 – Transition along the river to the village Shirkent, Pashmikuhna, and then rise to Juapoya. Crossing the bridge on the river Cholb we overcome the spur, and approaching the village Pashmikuhna. The buildings of this abandoned village are visible as horizontal lines on the background of the front ridge of the mountains, and the houses of the village are very well in harmony with the layers of rocks. The panorama of the ridge is fully developed and impresses with its diversity.

18:00 – Camping, overnight stay

8:00 – Breakfast

8:30 – Excursion to  the "Shirkent Barrier". No everyone is able to look further and reveal the mystery of the mysterious Shirkent Barrier, since in the middle reaches of the Shirkent river bed is compressed by a difficult-to-pass canyon that protects the pristine world of this protected area.

12:00 – Lunch

13:00 – Descent to the confluence of the Shirkent and Harkush rivers

18:00 – Camping, overnight stay

8:00 – Breakfast

8:30 – Ascent along the Harkush river to the Sutun-Qamar pass, then descend into the gorge of the Sorbin river - the right tributary of the Karatag river. Karatag is a gorge where every year thousands of tourists go up to rest; fresh air and mountain breeze relax a person and give new strength and peace of mind.  

13:00 – Lunch   

14:00 – Descent of the Sorbin river to the Karatag river

19:00 – Transfer to Dushanbe, dinner and overnight at the hotel

8:00 – Breakfast 

Wire from Dushanbe airport

Come again, we always welcome guests!

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