GBAO (Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast) starts at Kalaikhum and ends at the Kyrgyz border at Kizil-Art Pass. This region of Tajikistan is a special border zone and an additional permit is required to travel there.
From 2004, the GBAO permit is issued on a slip of paper issued by OVIR (the Department of visas and registration of foreign citizens). Previously, the permit was stamped into your passport.
The GBAO permit will list the regions in Gorno-Badakhshan that you are allowed to visit, which will be some or all of: Darvaz, Vanj, Rushan, Shugnan, Ishkashim, Roshtqala and Murghab. Sometimes it may say "all regions". Make sure that all the regions you plan to visit are listed. In particular, if you plan to travel in the Wakhan river valley the GBAO permit must have "Ishkashim" listed, or the Russian border guards will not permit you to pass.
How to obtain GBAO permit?
There are mainly three ways to obtain the GBAO permit:
- You can apply yourself after your arrival in Dushanbe in the Department of visas and registration of foreign citizens (OVIR) of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. It takes one day but sometimes takes more time. Therefore, if you want to continue your trip directly after your arrivals or in the next day early morning, this way is risky.
- The alternative and recommended way is to obtain GBAO permit via the Embassy of Tajikistan in your country or your neighbour country with the support of our Letter Of Invitation. The list of Tajikistan Embassies abroad are listed here: Tajikistan embassies abroad.
- In case you have the Tajik visa but not GBAO permit, you can send us a copy of your visa and passport along with the permit fee and we organize the permit before your coming to Tajikistan.
Note that for obtaining GBAO permit, you have to show/send your visa. Also a copy of your passport will be required.
If you are interested in our support, please send a request for obtaining the GBAO permit.