Dear Fellow Adventurers,

It's time for another quarterly update, and what a busy quarter it has been!

A small group of YellowWood Adventurers have recently returned from Bhutan and had an amazing time Trekking the Trans Bhutan Trail:

A review from Ellie:

"A wonderful tour of Bhutan *****

Had a fantastic time in Bhutan with YellowWood Adventures. It was a small group so we could be flexible with the itinerary. The local partner, guide and driver were wonderful and really went out of their way to make it a great experience. We walked some of the beautiful Trans Bhutan Trail and visited some amazing cultural sites. Our guide was really knowledgeable and gave us a great insight into the country and its culture. We stayed in really good accommodation. All in all I would thoroughly recommend it."

To read more of our reviews click here

We have sadly had to cancel all our tours in Lebanon from October onwards due to the continuing conflict in Israel; and of course, we wish for a speedy end to this humanitarian crisis.

Not all countries in the Middle East are affected by this, however, and Oman in particular is booking well for next year. We have also included an add-on option for those who wish to visit the southern city of Salalah. You can click here to watch our recent webinar on Oman.

I joined one of our groups horse riding with Mongolian nomads towards the end of the summer - my fourth time in Mongolia. We had such a fun group dynamic and the experience was a joy from start to finish.

In a country where the beauty of the landscape is only exceeded by the hospitality of its people; our final night feasting and singing in the home of the extended family of our nomadic horsemen and guides is something I will never forget. 

We have also been running trips a bit closer to 'home' in Northern Spain...

[Image: Local guides Midori & Irene]

... and Georgia & Armenia, and we are returning for a special (Coptic) Christmas in Georgia in January 2024, alongside our safari trip in Uganda - both of these tours still have spaces available if you are looking to start your new year in style!

New for 2024: We are 'returning to Africa'!

YellowWood was founded in Ethiopia, and are doing a big 'return to Africa' in 2024 by launching new adventures in Malawi, Mozambique, Northern Kenya & Namibia. We could not be more excited by this - watch this space!

And one to read...

Finally, I have recently been reading Kathleen Hopkirk's Central Asia - through writer's eyes (1993). Kathleen was married to Peter Hopkirk who wrote probably the greatest book covering the period of espionage between Victorian Britain and Tsarist Russia in the region: The Great Game: On Secret Service in High Asia (1990) - together they shared a fascination and insight into this vast and complex melting pot of cultures.

Kathleen has studiously drawn on a multitude of famous traveller's accounts throughout history - and woven them into her own expert knowledge and experience, making this book shine like the glazed tiles of a souring minaret:

“…But it was not until the fourteenth century that Samarkand took on the appearance we now associate with it – the souring minarets and the domes of glistening turquoise and cobalt blue. Tamerlane’s long rein, from 1370 to 1405, was almost entirely taken up by military campaigns, but in the course of conquering most of the known world, he never forgot his beloved capital, and always sent back the best artists and craftsmen of the countries he had defeated, together with vast armies of slaves for the manual work...."

Click here to read more excerpts about the history of Tamerlane and Samarkand in our recent blog post.

If you would like to see Samarkand for yourself why not join one of our Uzbekistan tours next year?

The undiscovered Silk Road of Uzbekistan

Until next time,

Sam McManus, MD

[Image: horse riding around in Mongolia]

[Image: Local guide Lhab Dorji horsing around in Bhutan]