HOTELS : There are
no restrictions on where foreigners can stay in Turkmenistan. When
Turkmenistan gained independence, there was an acute shortage of hotel
accommodation, a situation which the Turkmen are working hard to
rectify, with feverish hotel construction underway in Ashgabat. A row
of luxury hotels has recently been built on the edge of town along a
road known locally as the ‘Miracle Mile’. These are small hotels with
between 15-40 rooms that are owned and run by various ministries and
governmental organizations. Architectural motifs are mosques, palaces
and fortresses. Every provincial centre has at least one hotel, but
visitors should not expect Western standards of comfort and amenities.
The exception is a new hotel which recently opened in Turkmenbashi;
however, as it only has 40 rooms, it is advisable to contact a
recognised Turkmen tour company for a reservation. Accommodation and
services in hotels are payable in local currency or US Dollars.
REST HOUSES : Dom Otdykha (literally ‘rest houses’) were built
on the shores of the Caspian Sea by co-operatives and other concerns
for fatigued workers. It is sometimes possible for travellers to
obtain accommodation in them.
CAMPING : There are campsites on the shores of the Caspian Sea,
and the facilities are in the process of being improved.