Qalai-Khumb is a rather non-descript place, halfway between Khorog and Dushanbe on the Pamir Highway. Geographically, it looks like the perfect stop-over, but the place has little of the charm of other villages around.
Just beyond Yoged, you can go animal spotting in the Darwaz range (but you need a permit).
North of Qalai-Khumb there are good hiking routes, but landmines are a danger you should be aware of. Find out more in our guide to trekking in Tajikistan.
Qalai-Khumb is a good place for a meal, though. Oriyono, located right next to the central bridge, has a superb view from its river balcony.
The town has several more restaurants, a basic market and a petrol station.
There are plenty of places to stay in Qalai-Khumb as well. Karon hotel is the most expensive and eye-catching hotel, but browse around and you will find a bevy of simpler hostels and homestays. Guesthouse Roma and the house of Bakhrom Sangakov have come recommended. More tips are welcome.
Border crossing and border market
5 km east of Qalai Khumb is a bridge over the Panj river, in the village of Ruzvai. The border crossing to Afghanistan is open to foreigners, but it closes frequently. The same goes for the weekly border market.
Your questions and reports are welcome in the Ruzvai – Nusai border crossing forum thread.