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Photo Friday Story – in praise of Central Asia

The Photo Friday section on my site has long been a popular blast of vicarious escapism. I try to keep the idea fresh by changing it round from time to time.

In its latest incarnation I am inviting people to tell a story through their photographs. To summarise a journey or an experience through a few sentences and a selection of favourite photographs. If you’d like to contribute please scroll to the bottom of this post for what to do.

The first contributor is from adventurer and long-distance cyclist Stefan Pinckney. He explains what keeps drawing him back to Central Asia.

What draws me back to Central Asia

Ever since cycling through Central Asia I have had a strong urge to return. There is a combination of things that mix together to make this a truly magical region.


The varied types of remoteness that you experience either in the vast deserts of Turkmenistan or the mountainous areas of Tajikistan put an extra edge on the feeling of really being “out there”.

Mystique and Culture

Be it all the amazing mosques and mausoleums in Uzbekistan or cycling next to the Panj River just across from Afghanistan, the mystique and culture in this region is incredible.


It is both frustrating and amazing to meet the different types of people in this region. Both from the very poor people who hardly have food for the day but still want to share, to the incredibly frustrating bureaucrats that follow the old Soviet ways and give you an idea how things were in the bad old days behind the “iron curtain” of the Soviet Union.

Landscapes and Mountains

Mesmerising landscapes that almost look too perfect to be real. Here you will be surrounded by incredible mountains stretching above 7000 meters. For me this is as good as it gets.

Read more about Stefan’s expeditions here.

If you would like to contribute a story to Photo Friday here’s what to do:

  • Choose a concise, interesting tale
  • Tell your tale in just a few sentences: the essence of the piece should come through the images
  • Make sure the photos you want to use are on Flickr and that I can access HTML code.
  • Send me an email. Remember to plug your own website or project too!
  • Thank you!
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  1. A really nice variation on “Photo Friday” – I hope you get some readers sending stories (sorry mine are to boring for you!)

  2. Awesome photos; the scenery is incredible. Big mountains like that really are hard to describe – it’s just a different scale to what we’re used to in the UK and the rest of Europe.




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