Language Turkmenistan


There are two main answers: Turkmen and of course, Russian, and it can be hard to know when to use each one. As a general rule everyone does speak Russian, but most people do appreciate the effort if you’re able to throw in some Turkmen, even just as a gesture. This is a common theme throughout Central Asia, though it has manifested slightly differently in each country.

The first official language of Turkmenistan is Turkmen, which is written in Latin letters (usually, although there are still some remnants of the modified Cyrillic script that was in use until 1992), and is a Turkic language, very similar to Turkish and Azeri. This is the language that is encouraged by the government and society in general, and to try and use a few basic words or phrases of Turkmen is a nod to their heritage and separate identity to that of their recent Soviet past.

Here are a few basic words that will get for sure get you a few smiles and might even come in handy:

Hello Salam
Thankyou Sagbol or Rakhmet
Shop Dükan
Road/street ýol/Köçe
Pharmacy Dermanhana
Restaurant Restoran
Toilet Hajathana
Beer Piwo (taken from the Russian)


Numbers

One Bir
Two Iki
Three Üç
Four Dört
Five Bäş
Six Alty
Seven ýedi
Eight Sekiz
Nine Dokuz
Ten On


What is the English level in Turkmenistan?

You’ll actually probably be surprised at the level of English spoken in such a closed-off and un-international country. Especially in Ashgabat you’ll find plenty of people that speak at least a little bit of English. This is certainly not to say that it’s everyone, just that you might have been expecting it to be very few. It can be difficult to find opportunities to speak to locals, but occasionally you will come across someone who speaks English well. For the most part though, the people you’ll be interacting with are either staff at your accommodation who will speak reasonably good English, and servers at restaurants/cafes/bars, who will usually speak basically no English.



Is Turkmenistan currently open?

Yes!

It was a long wait, and they ended up being closed for 3 years for COVID, but the borders have finally re-opened. Read more about it here .






Example Tours

Turkmenistan Easter Tour
Ashgabat to Avaza, a canyon and a crater, and a bunch of other cool stuff, we hope you'll fall in love with Turkmenistan as much as we have!

March 30, 2024
8 days
US$1395.00
Turkmenistan Easter Tour
Bookings closed!
Turkmenistan Comprehensive Tour
We'll do everything you've heard of, plus some really wacky places that you've never heard of!

March 30, 2024
13 days
US$2015.00
Turkmenistan Comprehensive Tour
Bookings closed!
Turkmenistan Carpet Day Tour
If you thought Turkmenistan was an exciting destination, imagine seeing it on Carpet Day!

May 20, 2024
8 days
US$1495.00
Turkmenistan Carpet Day Tour
Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan Comprehensive Carpet Day Tour
From the ever-so Turkmen Carpet Day festivities, to the flaming Gates of Hell, the desolation of the Aral Sea, to the beauty of the Registan, this tour is for those who really want to delve into these two countries.

May 20, 2024
17 days
US$2795.00
Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan Comprehensive Carpet Day Tour
Turkmenistan Carpet Day Budget Tour
A great way to see a unique and very Turkmen event - who else has a National Carpet Day?!

May 24, 2024
4 days
US$995.00
Turkmenistan Carpet Day Budget Tour
Turkmenistan Extension
Continues on to the 5 Stans Tour, for anyone who wants to see more of Turkmenistan while you're already there.

June 15, 2024
5 days
US$820.00
Turkmenistan Extension
Turkmenistan Summer Tour
A week in Turkmenistan, why not? You'll get everything from a crazy marble city, to a cemetery adorned with the horns of mountain goats, and everything in between.

June 15, 2024
7 days
US$1440.00
Turkmenistan Summer Tour
5 Stans Summer Tour
Designed to be done in either one big tour, or in smaller sections, this tour is for anyone who wants to experience all the variety that Central Asia has to offer.

June 19, 2024
18 days
US$2680.00
5 Stans Summer Tour
5 Stans Autumn Whirlwind Tour
A great snapshot into 5 amazing countries.

Sept. 7, 2024
23 days
US$3825.00
5 Stans Autumn Whirlwind Tour
5 Stans Autumn Original Tour
Taking the scenic route from Astana to Ashgabat, this tour covers everything that makes Central Asia so special, including the World Nomad Games and Turkmenistan Independence Day.

Sept. 7, 2024
27 days
US$4325.00
5 Stans Autumn Original Tour
5 Stans Autumn Mega Tour
Bishkek to Bukhara, Astana to Ashgabat, and everything in between. This epic tour will take you right across Central Asia through canyons and gorges, cosmopolitan cities, across land borders, and even to a fiery crater.

Sept. 7, 2024
32 days
US$4945.00
5 Stans Autumn Mega Tour
Turkmenistan Independence Day Whirlwind Tour
The tour for anyone who loves to see a spectacle!

Sept. 26, 2024
4 days
US$995.00
Turkmenistan Independence Day Whirlwind Tour
The Original Turkmenistan Independence Day Tour
Some epic special events, the Gates of Hell, and Turkmenistan's favourite beach resort.

Sept. 26, 2024
8 days
US$1495.00
The Original Turkmenistan Independence Day Tour
Turkmenistan Independence Day Mega Tour
Starting with the spectacular Independence Day events, we'll visit the Gates of Hell, Yangykala Canyon, and loads of other places you've never heard of in this mega version of the tour.

Sept. 26, 2024
13 days
US$2195.00
Turkmenistan Independence Day Mega Tour
Turkmenistan Easter Tour
From a fiery crater to a colourful canyon, a beach resort to a mountain village, and a glistening capital to an ancient city. This tour gives a glimpse of all our favourite spots in Turkmenistan.

April 19, 2025
8 days
US$1395.00
Turkmenistan Easter Tour
Turkmenistan Extension
For those who want to see more of Turkmenistan while you're already there for the 5 Stans Summer Tour, exploring the west of the country, as well as Ashgabat and the Gates of Hell.

June 15, 2025
5 days
US$820.00
Turkmenistan Extension
Turkmenistan Summer Tour
Where better to spend your summer holidays than in Turkmenistan?

June 15, 2025
7 days
US$1440.00
Turkmenistan Summer Tour
5 Stans Summer Tour
This is the tour for anyone who wants to get a great snapshot of what Central Asia has to offer. Can be done all in one whack, or in smaller sections, whatever you like!

June 19, 2025
18 days
US$2680.00
5 Stans Summer Tour
Turkmenistan Independence Day Whirlwind Tour
For those who want to see the coolest Independence Day in the world, but only have a couple of days to do it in.

Sept. 26, 2025
4 days
US$995.00
Turkmenistan Independence Day Whirlwind Tour
The Original Turkmenistan Independence Day Tour
We were the very first to ever have foreigners attend the Independence Day events in Ashgabat, and we're still super excited by it every year!

Sept. 26, 2025
8 days
US$1495.00
The Original Turkmenistan Independence Day Tour
Turkmenistan Independence Day Mega Tour
Exclusive access to the epic Independence Day events, plus all the must-sees such as the Gates of Hell and Yangykala Canyon. But that's not all! This mega version of the tour also ventures into the far east to some of the least visited parts of the world.

Sept. 26, 2025
13 days
US$2195.00
Turkmenistan Independence Day Mega Tour
Turkmenistan New Year Tour
What better way to bring in the New Year than in Ashgabat!

Dec. 30, 2023
7 days
US$1350.00
Turkmenistan New Year Tour
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