After an amazing 14 days travelling the Pamir Highway from Osh to Khorog, it was time to find our way back to civilization. We were originally planning a shared taxi ride but when we found out that a flight was just $90 while the taxi was $60, this one was a no brainer.

Seeing the small plane on the runway and knowing that it flies THROUGH the mountains rather than over them, really made this an easy decision. We usually book tickets online, but there was no online booking at this office. Just a hole in the wall with a grumpy man on the other side. We suddenly realized just how much we take the ease and efficiency of booking online for granted.

Small Plane Pamir Highway
The Tiny Plane Sitting On The “Runway”

When we got to the “airport”, we were disappointed to find out that the plane was sold out for 2 days! We really needed to get to Dushanbe within 24 hours to get our visas going for Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan & Iran, so we were slowly retreating from the idea and looking back at the long, uncomfortable taxi ride. It’s not like we’re not used to uncomfortable modes of transportation!

That’s when the man at the “airport” (really just a patch of pavement with a luggage conveyer) asked if we wouldn’t mind getting on a helicopter instead.

“Mind?! We would be stoked if we could get on a helicopter!”

Helicopter Pamir Mountains
Our Helicopter!

He must’ve seen the glee in our eyes, because within two hours he had arranged for us to be in a helicopter with the owner of Tajik Airlines. There were no other tourists in the chopper, just a couple of other Tajik Air employees and the man behind it all, who spoke perfect English and even let us sit up in the cockpit with him for most of the two hour flight!

Inside Helicopter Pamir Mountains
Inside The Helicopter

Sometimes in travel, things just come together and make for the perfect trip, this was one of those times. After having such an incredible trip through the Pamir Mountains, we were now flying through them. The cabin in the helicopter wasn’t even pressurized, so the windows were open and we could put our hands (and our camera) outside for amazing views.

Views From The Helicopter Over The Pamir Mountains
Views From The Helicopter Over The Pamir Mountains

The smiles didn’t leave our faces for the entire 2 hour flight, and for two days afterwards. Sometimes words lack the capacity to describe an experience, this is one of those times.

Check out the quick video below!

This was our first helicopter ride. Have you ever been in a helicopter? Tell us about it below…

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Nick Wharton & Dariece Swift

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Nick Wharton and Dariece Swift are the owners and founders of Goats On The Road. Together they have been travelling and working abroad since 2008 and have more than 20 years of combined experience in online business, finance, travel and entrepreneurship. Their expert advice has been featured on the Lonely Planet, CNN Money, Business Insider,  WiseBread and Forbes and they also spoke at the World Tourism Forum in Istanbul about the business of travel blogging.

Learn more about Nick Wharton and Dariece Swift on their respective author archives on this site and on the Goats On The Road About Us Page.

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21 thoughts on “Khorog to Dushanbe: A Helicopter Ride Through The Pamir Mountains! (with Video)

  1. Awesome, you guys! What an incredible finish to a fantastic trip through such amazing country. We just arrived in Savannah, Georgia by train. Seems pretty tame, but we’re having fun.

  2. While searching for info on Tajikistan I found this video. Truly amazing!! Such a cool and beautiful country. Hopefully I am able to visited it soon! Best

  3. Saw the amazing video and post on it and I really want to do it too! Is it possible for anyone to book a flight on the helicopter? If so, how can I go about doing it?

    1. Hi Zach,

      We weren’t able to book the helicopter, but just lucked out. Check out the “airport” when you arrive and see whether or not it’s a helicopter or a plane that’s flying!

    2. I have no idea how to book the helicopter flight, as apparently it was just a fluke. You book your airplane at the airport in Khorog, but sometimes a helicopter shows up We were with the owners of Tajik Air actually (totally random), fingers crossed you’ll get a helicopter!

  4. Wow ! what an amazing experience and trip and informative and enticing blog, you have certainly inspired me to plan our trip. We will have our 9 year daughter with us so not sure how this will be for her. any advise would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you

  5. That’s good luck indeed!!
    We are travelling to the Pamir region in october. I hope the same happens to us or at least… we can get a normal flight instead haha

  6. VERY cool…and a Soviet one on top of all else. We love when unplanned cool stuff happens in our travels. You’ve got to be there in order for it to happen, right?

    Came *that close* to riding in an MI-8 ourselves in Russia, but it didn’t quite happen.

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