Kyrgyzstan Travel Guide


Kyrgyzstan Holidays - Tours and Adventure Travel Guide

PureTravel Says
“Central Asia has always been a place of great mystery to travelers because of the country’s culture, traditions and history. Because of this, Kyrgyzstan is actually becoming a popular destination for visitors. With a total area of 199,900 square kilometers, Kyrgyzstan is a landlocked country bordered by Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and China. With a terrific atmosphere along with all sorts of adventurous activities like skiing, white water rafting and horse riding, to name just a few, it is an amazing Central Asian republic to visit.”

Kyrgyzstan Holiday Highlights

Skiing, Scuba Diving & Rafting - Kyrgyzstan offers a good opportunity for skiing, with ski resorts like Kashka-Suu, Suluu-Tor, and Nooruz. You can also find some Kyrgyzstan tours for heli-skiing.

There are numerous lakes and rivers with clear water, which offer scuba diving and rafting. Lake Issyk-Kul, for one, is an excellent spot for scuba diving because of its transparent and clean waters. For rafting, you can also find some guided tours in Kyrgyzstan, one of which is on the Kekemeren River.

History, Culture, Monuments, & Architecture – The history of Kyrgyzstan is fascinating and ancient, going back as far as 201BC. People of the Turkic ethnic group are known as Kyrgyz. It began with a few Kyrgyz people who started to live in the upper Yenisey River Valley. Yenisey is the fifth longest and the largest river system flowing towards the Arctic Ocean.

The valley is known for its archaeological culture, such as the Tashtyk culture. In terms of culture, the influence of the Russian era is still quite visible. Because of a diverse population, different culture and traditions can be seen in Kyrgyzstan, and that has given rise to some of the spectacular monuments in all cities of the country. They are also one of the most frequently visited areas by visitors who come to the country for a holiday.

Hunting - Hunting is a popular activity whilst on a Kyrgyzstan tour. On the northern coast of Issyk-Kul, you can find a range of hunting opportunities. Why not try a new experience such as hunting Marco Polo sheep and Ibex.

Trekking, Hiking & Mountaineering - Kyrgyzstan is a wonderful location in Central Asia for hiking, trekking, and mountaineering. The availability of some of the highest mountains, along with some beautiful peaks, has made it a fantastic place for mountaineers. Lenin Peak, Pobeada Peak, Khan-Tengri Peak are only few of the peaks available for mountaineering. For a new experience why not try a horse trekking, which is sure to delight.

When To Go

The climate of Kyrgyzstan can be quite varied with different ranges of temperatures found in different regions. The temperature can be as high as 40°C in the summer in southwestern Fergana Valley. However, the temperature can change considerably because of elevation. Snowfall can also be witnessed in the winter.

If you’re looking to travel to Northern Kyrgyzstan or Naryn Region, June until September is a good time. If you are looking to travel to Southern Kyrgyzstan, such as in Osh region, then March until October is a good time for this area.

When organizing your trip, do consider which activities you would most like to participate in to determine the best time of year for your Kyrgyzstan trip.

Top Tips

  • There are flights into Kyrgyzstan and to travel within the country, minibuses can be found. Bishkek, in particular, offers quite a few minibuses within the capital city.
  • Be alert when driving in Kyrgyzstan as the roads can be dangerous.
  • Drink bottled mineral water whilst in the country.
  • Stay away from any political gatherings.
  • Do check the up to date advice on rules and regulations for visa and passports to avoid any inconvenience in Kyrgyzstan.
  • Always respect the customs and conventions practiced by the people.

Kyrgyzstan Holidays in Focus

Skiing, Scuba Diving and Rafting

One of the most amazing activities on your visit to Kyrgyzstan is skiing. There are some sophisticated facilities for skiing in Kyrgyzstan since there are several ski resorts in Bishkek. For instance, you can go to the mountain ski base Nooruz, which is 1,980 meters above sea level. Ski lifts are available and are 2,300 meters and 500 meters long.

You can also choose the mountain ski base at Oruu-Sai, which is 2,200 meters above sea level, with three lift lengths of 750, 800, and 1,500 meters. Along with these ski centers, you can find several other facilities in Bishkek that can be accessed easily.

If you seek an activity which is yet more adventurous, why not contact local Kyrgyzstan tour organizers and sample heli-skiing. In Kyrgyzstan, you can go heli-skiing or even heli-boarding in Tien-Shan Mountains. The specialist tour operators will be able to help you organize a truly memorable trip, whilst taking into account the locations for heli-skiing and heli-boarding.

Kyrgyzstan offers a lot of lakes and rivers with clear water. Because of the clarity, scuba diving is possible in some of those lakes. Lake Issyk-Kul is the best place for scuba diving as this is known for its clean waters. Along with scuba diving, you can enjoy the atmosphere that this lake will create, especially with the presence of the snow-capped peaks. You can also enjoy fishing at this location.

However, if you are looking for more adventurous activities, then arrange a Kyrgyzstan tour for rafting in Kekemeren River. Rafting can be started at the point near the Aral settlement, which has a height of 1,400 meters. An advantage of rafting in this river is that the difficulty level increases gradually. Starting from the difficulty level of class 2, it can go up to class 4.

Apart from Kekemeren River, with similar rafting length of 25 kilometers, Chui River and Chong-Kemin River can also be considered for rafting. Chui River offers a maximum difficulty level of class 5.

History, Culture, Monuments and Architecture

People from Turkic ethnic group who were known as Kyrgyz were the first people to settle in Central Siberia. Because of an amalgamation of two cultures known as Pazyryk and Tashtyk, these people are considered to be from Turkic nomadic tribes.

The history of Kyrgyzstan started in 201 BC, but it witnessed the greatest boom and expansion in 840 AD with the defeat of Uyghur Khanate. However, the extensive domination of Kyrgyz came to a halt in twelfth century with the Mongol’s introduction. Then in the nineteenth century the southern part of Kyrgyzstan was taken over by Khanate of Kokand. After this, the Russian Empire came into being, which faced a lot of revolt. This revolt and rebellion made a lot of people migrate to neighboring states like China.

The Soviet era then began in 1919 and this was the era during which there were many social developments including improving the overall literacy rate in the region. The country was subject to constant evolution and there was opposition from some groups within the state, which ultimately led to the country’s independence on August 31 1991.

Today, Kyrgyzstan consists of seven provinces with Bishkek and Osh, which are considered as independent cities. All the cities and districts in Kyrgyzstan offer some great monuments showing amazing architectural skills.

For instance, Shabdan Baatyr, Statue of Freedom, Manas Sculptural Complex in Bishkek, Przhevalsky Monument in Issyk Kul Province, Shah-Fasil Mausoleum, and the Burana Tower in Tash-rabat are just a few of the many monuments that you can see during your tour.

Hunting

Hunting is a popular pastime in Kyrgyzstan, especially among the nomadic people. Generally, hunting takes place in regions like Chu, Talas, Naryn, and Issyk-Kul. In Kyrgyzstan, you can hunt for Central Asian mountain goat, mountain turkey known as ular, wild boar, wolf, fox, hare, marmot, ducks and pigeons. However, there is nothing as incredible as hunting for Marco Polo sheep and Asiatic ibex.

The Marco Polo sheep is known as the largest living sheep. It can be hunted from mid-August until early December in the regions like Inner Tian-Shan, Issyk-Kul oblast, and Karasay-Sirt Valley. March is also a good time for hunting.

For the Asiatic ibex, you can come in the same season. The Asiatic ibex will also be found in similar regions as the Marco Polo sheep and you will have to use a horse as transportation.

Trekking and Mountaineering

Kyrgyzstan trekking tours are truly amazing, as these tours will help you to experience the picturesque beauty of the regions Issyk-Kul and Naryn first hand. Trekking along the Terskey-Ala-Too range is fascinating as well. Horseback trekking in Kyrgyz Ala-Too adds to the adventure.

Mountaineering is exceptional in Kyrgyzstan because of the availability of several peaks. Lenin Peak is the highest mountain in the Trans-Alay Range and is a good choice for climbing. July and August offer the best climbing expeditions.

Along with Lenin Peak, Khan-Tengri Peak can also be considered for mountaineering as it offers different routes for climbing. Besides choosing these peaks, you can find several other mountains, peaks and rocks, all of which are sure to fulfill all of your mountaineering desires.

Adventure

Kyrgyzstan offers some astounding opportunities for adventurous activities. You can combine all of the above activities to experience the ultimate action-packed holiday. Surely, there is nothing as adventurous as climbing up the Lenin Peak or stalking the Asiatic ibex.

Classic Itineraries

  • Visit Kyrgyz Ala-Too which is outstanding for horseback trekking.
  • Visit Inner Tian-Shan for spectacular hunting.

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