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Getting there & away

Ariana Afghan Airlines (079 9175 338; in Marco Polo Hotel) fly to Kabul (2500Afg, one hour) three times a week. Go to the office the day before travel to get your name on the manifest, then again on the morning of departure to confirm they’re still flying and to get your ticket. Kam Air is reportedly setting up flights to Kabul.

Minibuses and shared taxis for all points outside of Badakhshan depart from the Bandar-e Takhar station in Shahr-e Nau. The main destinations are Taloqan (500Afg, nine hours), Kunduz (550Afg, 10 hours), Pul-e Khumri (600Afg, 12 hours) and Kabul (800Afg, 1½ days, overnighting in Pul-e Khumri).

To get further into Badakhshan, go to Bandar-e Baharak in the old town. HiAces leave for Baharak (150Afg, two hours), Ishkashim (600Afg, eight hours) and Jurm (250Afg, four hours) from here. Travel beyond Ishkashim requires a permit.

Vehicle hire in Faizabad and throughout Badakhshan is expensive – around US$200 per day.