The Darvaza Gas
Crater | Turkmenistan
Travel Guide

The 'Gate to Hell' in the Kara Kum Desert

'I fell into a burning ring of fire.' -Johnny Cash

The Darvaza Gas Crater (Gates of Hell, Door to Hell)

The Darvaza Gas Crater in Turkmenistan is known locally as the 'Door to Hell' or ''Gates of Hell'. In 1971 while searching for natural gas in the desert, a Soviet research team's drilling rig collapsed an underground pocket of gas. It is said that the escaped gas was thought to be detrimental to local communities, and so it was set afire in the belief that the gas would burn itself out after a few weeks. Yet almost 40 years later it’s still burning, making for a surreal site in the middle of a sparse desert.


The Kara Kum Desert of Turkmenistan, north of the Turkmenistan capital city Ashgabat.

How to Visit the Darvaza Gas Crater

Koryo Tours runs two annual tours to Turkmenistan and the Darvaza Gas Crater in Spring and Autumn. Tours to Turkmenistan include spending the night camped at the Darvaza Gas Crater, allowing for viewing in the evening, night, and morning.

We can also arrange Turkmenistan Independent Tours if our group tour dates don't work with your schedule.

Updated April 2019

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