Kyrgyzstan – Mountains, Lakes & Nomads

Burana Tower, Kyrgyzstan – © Ramona Cazacu
Golden eagle used for traditional hunting, Kyrgyzstan – © Ramona Cazacu
Elechek Show, Hotel Umai, Kryrgyzstan – © Ecotour
Skaska, Kyrgyzstan – © Ramona Cazacu
Rounding up horses near Jeti-Oguz, Kyrgyzstan – © Ramona Cazacu
Jeti-Oguz, Kyrgyzstan – © Ecotour
Russian Orthodox Cathedral, Karakol, Kyrgyzstan – © Ramona Cazacu
Lake Son-Kul, Kyrgyzstan – © Ecotour
Nomadic farmer, Kyrgyzstan – © Ramona Cazacu
Road to Lake Son-Kul, Kyrgyzstan – © Ecotour

Holiday Highlights

  • Travel the old Silk Road
  • Magnificent mountain scenery
  • Probably the remotest and most untouched Ffestiniog destination
  • Learn about the history of Central Asia
  • Immerse yourself in its daily life and culture
  • Family run or locally owned accommodation
  • Friendly welcome guaranteed
  • 11 Days from £2,350pp
BOOK NOWTailor this tour for independent travel

Tour Dates:
Tuesday 21 July to Friday 31 July 2020

Kyrgyzstan is a remote mountainous country bordering China and forms part of the Old Silk Road. Much of its rural population is still nomadic and this tour gives us the chance to understand their history and way of life whilst marvelling at the magnificent scenery in which they live.

ITINERARY

Days 1 & 2 – Bishkek

Flight from London via Istanbul to Kyrgyzstan’s capital, Bishkek. Transfer to our hotel where, after a morning’s rest, we have a light lunch followed by a guided city tour. Evening meal at our hotel.

Day 3 – Ala-Archa Gorge

A visit to the Ala-Archa Alpine National Park, south of Bishkek, to enjoy a picnic lunch and short optional walk. Dinner once more at the hotel and enjoy an “Elechek Show” of traditional Kyrgyz women’s head dresses and costumes.

Day 4 – By Train to Lake Issyk-Kul

We take the train from Bishkek to Balykchy, a five hour journey through mountain and “canyon” scenery. Balykchy is at the western end of the large Lake Issyk-Kul, the northern shore of which is a favourite summer resort area for Bishkek’s city dwellers. Cholpon-Ata is one such resort and we overnight here.

Day 5 – Kyrchyn Gorge and Karakol

Karakol is the main town at the eastern end of the lake but we take a side trip en route to visit the remote Kyrchyn Gorge, the ancient meeting place of the Kyrgyz tribes and now the home of the World Nomad Games. In Karakol we see the Chinese influence in the pagoda shaped mosque and the magnificent wooden Russian Orthodox Cathedral. We are now just 93 miles from the Chinese border.

Day 6 – Jeti Oguz

A day trip to the Jeti Oguz (7 Bulls) sandstone rock formations which guard the alpine valley south of Karakol. Return to Karakol for overnight.

Day 7 – Golden Eagles and Mountains

Travel along the more remote south side of the lake for more amazing sandstone scenery. We visit a local man who teaches us how they still hunt with eagles before continuing our journey further into the mountains to Naryn (6,500ft high) for an overnight stay.

Day 8 – Tash-Rabat

Visit one of the finest examples of 15th Century stone caravanserai (roadside inns) on the Old Silk Road. We are now at 10,400ft and the rest of the habitation in this area consists of the familiar yurts which the nomadic people take to their summer pastures. Return to Naryn for overnight.

Day 9 – Son-Kul and the Kemin Valley

We visit the lake at Son-Kul (9700ft), have lunch in a yurt and continue to the Kemin Gorge where we stay in a remote guest house.

Day 10 – Return to Bishkek

A visit to the Burana Tower, the remains of an Old Silk Road Fortress town, en route back to Bishkek where we are treated to a BBQ evening meal in the garden of our hotel.

Day 11 – Bishkek to London

Early flight from Bishkek arriving London mid-afternoon same day.

Click here to read a blog of the research trip for this holiday.

Tour Route

Tour route map

Selected Hotels

Hotel Umai, Bishkek

Light House Hotel, Cholpon-Ata

Hotel Amir, Karakol

Hotel Aska, Naryn

Kok-Archa Guest House, Kemin Gorge

Please note - hotels can be subject to change

Price Includes

  • Flights in Economy Class by scheduled airline
  • Rail travel as detailed
  • Other travel by private mini-coach
  • All accommodation with en-suite facilities
  • All breakfasts, lunches and evening meals
  • All entrance fees as appropriate
  • Airport and other transfers
  • Services of a tour leader from London and throughout the tour plus local professional Kyrgyz guide

Price per person

Escorted holiday: £2,350
Single room supplement: £150
Deposit for this holiday: £200

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