February 11, 2015

10 Weekend Getaway & Day Trip Destinations from Bishkek

While Bishkek is the main hub for travelers, businessmen, andAla-arche 3 - by Vasily Shumkin expats in Kyrgyzstan, the mountains in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan just skirt around the edge of the city, so if you want to get into the heart of Kyrgyzstan’s gorgeous mountains, a trip out of the city is definitely in order. For people that are looking to combine work and travel in Kyrgyzstan in 2015 or just need to get out of the city for a day or two, Kyrgyzstan has a lot to offer in the areas surrounding Bishkek. There are options for hikers, horseback riders, history buffs, skiers, snowboarders, train lovers, and even for people just looking for a beautiful place to relax.

  1. Ala Archa National Park (Season: All)

The mountains in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan (or rather, the mountains to the south ofAla Archa by Vasiliy Shumkin it!) give you just a small taste of what awaits you in Ala Archa. Ala Archa is an oasis just 40 kilometers to the south of Bishkek that contains 50+ mountain peaks, 20 glaciers, rivers, waterfalls, and springs.  There are lots of trails to enjoy that reach throughout the park, a unique alpinist graveyard, and plenty of places to camp for the night. Winter tourism in Kyrgyzstan is particularly popular in this area because of all the great places to go ice climbing.

  1. Burana Tower (Season: All)

Burana Tower is an ancient Silk Road monument you can find 80 kilometers eastBurana by Vlad Ushakov of Bishkek near the town of Tokmok. The tower was once a central point in the medieval town of Balasagun. Visitors can pay a small fee to climb to the top of the tower, just be careful! There is no good lighting inside the tower and the steps are steep. From the top you can see the entire surrounding valley. There is also a small museum on the premises, remains of ancient burial mounds, and a field of ancient stones carved to resemble warriors.

  1. Kegety Gorge (Seasons: All)

Kegety Gorge is a beautiful gorge just 75 kilometers outside Bishkek with lots of alpine meadows, streams, spruce forests, as well as a 20-meter-hala archa -1 by vasiliy Shumkinigh waterfall. In the winter, the waterfall is a popular attraction because it freezes and makes astunning sight, even attracting ice climbers. Kegety Gorge is not overrun with visitors, so it is a nice quiet destination to enjoy some horseback riding, hiking, or picnicking.

  1. Issyk Ata Hot Springs (Seasons: All)

The Issyk Ata Gorge is 80 kilometers outside Bishkek and neighbors the Kegety Gorge. While the gorge is a beautiful area unto itself with royal peaks and several waterfalls, the hot springs within thegorge are the main draw for visitors. The springs are said to have healing powers for people with numerous diseases and have been visited by travelers for centuries.)

  1. Arpa Tektir Village (Seasons: All)mountains by Vasily Shumkin

Arpa Tektir is a small, traditional Kyrgyz village located behind the Kegety and Issyk Ata Gorges. Summer and wintertime tourism opportunities are both available in this largely unknown area of Kyrgyzstan. There are a couple tour companies in Bishkek that offer cross country skiing there in the winter. In the summer, mountain biking, horseback riding, and homestays are also possible.

  1. Boom Gorge (Season: Summer)

Boom Gorge is Kyrgyzstan’s most popular white water rafting destination. snow by Vlad UshakovIt is located roughly 120 kilometers outside of Bishkek and houses the boisterous Chuy River.   Even if you haven’t had much experience rafting before, this is a good place to start. The rapids in the Boom Gorge range from class 2-4.

  1. Ski Bases (Season: Winter)

There are several ski bases located close to Bishkek: Zil, Orlovka, Chong Korchok, and Too Ashu. Skiers will definitely want to take advantage of these in the winter. Wintertime in Kyrgyzstan promises a lot of snow and ski bases are one of the few ways to engage in a more active vacation or getaway.

  1. Osh (Season: All)osh -2 by Vlad Ushakov

If you want to drive to Osh, it certainly won’t be a quick trip. However, if you hop on a 45-minute flight to Osh, you can get there early in the morning and have a whole day to explore the southern city of Osh. Visit the bazaar, the sacred mountain of Suleiman Too in the middle of the city, or the Great Silk Road Museum. This is an ideal destination for businessmen who plan to combine work and travel in Kyrgyzstan in 2015 because Internet is readily available to you in Osh if you need it.

  1. Balikchi (Season: Summer)

Issyk Kul by Vlad UshakovIf you are a fan of train travel in Kyrgyzstan, there is a train from Bishkek to the town of Balikchi you can take in a matter of 4-5 hours. The village of Balikchi is an older Soviet industrial town thatdoes not have a lot of popular attractions, but it is next to Lake Issyk Kul, the pride and joy of Kyrgyzstan! Take in the scenery during your train travel in Kyrgyzstan and then savor the beauty of the lake and maybe even go for a swim.

  1. Chong Kemin Valley (Season: Spring – Fall)

Chong Kemin Valley is a picturesque farming valley roughly 170 kilometers outside of Bishkek. This peaceful area is ideal for hiking and horseback riding. If you need a breath of fresh air and want to just relax is an area filled with mountains, wildflowers, and gurgling rivers and occasional farming villages, this is the place for you.

TRAVEL IN KYRGYZSTAN 2015

Once you find the place you want to visit, the only question left is, “How do I get there?” Many of these places can be reached by public transit, but as of right now in Kyrgyzstan, that also means getting there will take much longer than you may want to spend due to the current organization of the public transit system. For traveling in Kyrgyzstan in 2015, I recommend doing one of the following: 1) Rent a car to drive yourself wherever you’d like to go or 2) Contact a travel agency that can set you up with a car a driver from a local tour company that knows how to get to these destinations to lower your chances of getting lost and who can translate for you if needed. Once you have got transportation figured out, you are good to go! Enjoy the fresh mountain air, Silk Road History, and chance to relax in Kyrgyzstan’s stunning mountains.

Pictures by Vasiliy Shumkin, pictures by Vlad Ushakov

1 day

Sightseeing trip to Bishkek

Bishkek is Kyrgyzstan’s capital city, located in the Chuy Valley to the north of the country. It’s also by far the largest city in Kyrgyzstan silk road with a population of over 1 million. S ...

From 
$40
Price from 40 USD to 80 USD per person (the price depends on a group size). The price 40 USD per person is available for groups of 6 people.
More info
1 day

Ala Archa Gorge: one-day trip

Ala Archa is a gorgeous national park that contains 20 glaciers, over 50 mountain peaks, 2 rivers, waterfalls, and springs. It stretches over 2,200 hectares and contains elevations ranging f ...

From 
$40
Price from 50 USD to 100 USD per person (the price depends on a group size). The price 50 USD per person is available for groups of 6 people.
More info
1 day

Off-road Day Trip from Bishkek

Want to get out and go somewhere not many people see? Don’t have a lot of time? This trip is perfect for you. There is a jailoo (summer pasture) with yurts and shepherds a lot closer to Bish ...

From 
$94
Price from 94 USD to 130 USD per person (the price depends on a group size). The price 94 USD per person is available for groups of 5 people.
More info
7 days

Sightseeing Trip to Kyrgyzstan: North & South

Explore destinations of unparalleled beauty in this Kyrgyzstan tourism packages that’ll take you from Kyrgyzstan’s Chichkan Gorge in the south to the town of Kemin in the north. During this ...

From 
$1250
The price depends on a group size. The price 1250 USD per person is available for groups of 4 people.
More info
8 days

Cultural Tourism on Lake Issyk Kul

This trip takes you to several places around Lake Issyk Kul, the world’s second largest alpine lake (6,236 km²). Start by visiting a national park then drive along the shores of Lake Issyk K ...

From 
$1475
The price depends on a group size. The price 1475 USD per person is available for groups of 4 people.
More info
14 days

Bike Tours in Kyrgyzstan: Crossing Kyrgyzstan (14 Days)

An amazing bicycling trips for cycling around Kyrgyzstan! Fresh air and kyrgyz nomadic culture to fill you in with excitement and discoveries of unique history. Tour will take place from Tal ...

From 
1275
The price depends on a group size. The price 1275 EUR per person is available for groups of 4 people.
More info
9 days

Ski and Snowboarding Vacations on Issyk Kul

Ski in one of the best unusual ski resorts in the world! Stay in a hotel that’s just a few meters away from a ski lift. Here you’ll find slopes for children, beginners, and expert skiers ali ...

From 
$1550
The price depends on a group size. The price 1550 USD per person is available for groups of 4 people.
More info
8 days

“Leader Climb” - Kyrgyzstan tourism packages to the Ala Archa Gorge

Ala Archa National Park is located 40 kilometers from the capital city of Bishkek and holds 20 glaciers, 2 rivers, over 50 mountain peaks, waterfalls, and springs. This is one of the most po ...

From 
$970
The tour price is 970 USD. The price doesn't depend on the amount of people in a group. The tour will be fulfilled even if only one person buy it.
More info
14 days

Bike Tours in Kyrgyzstan: Variety Tour

If you are active and adventurous, we can offer you this unforgettable trip. Imagine yourself staying in different yurt camps at different altitudes, cycling in the mountains, horse trekking ...

From 
1420
The price depends on a group size. The price 1420 EUR per person is available for groups of 4 people.
More info
16 days

Horse Riding Tours in Kyrgyzstan: In the Steps of Marco Polo

We shall go by traces of well-known traveller Marko Polo through the most beautiful pass on the Great Silk Way. This magnificent travel will lead you to the high plateaus which divided the W ...

From 
$1780
Price from 1780 USD to 3100 USD per person (the price depends on a group size). The price 1780 USD per person is available for groups of 6 people.
More info
11 days

Travel from Kyrgyzstan to China: The Best of Both Worlds

Visit 2 countries in 11 days on this Silk Road tour: Kyrgyzstan and China tourist attractions! Start off in Kyrgyzstan, a stunning mountainous country that is still home to nomadic peoples. ...

From 
$2710
Price from 2710 USD to 3595 USD per person (the price depends on a group size). The price 2710 USD per person is available for groups of 5 people.
More info
1 day

Issyk Ata Gorge: one-day trip

Located roughly 80 kilometers from Bishkek, the Issyk Ata Gorge is enthroned in mountains, which the higher you go, become stunning alpine meadows. Riverbeds and streams cut through the bott ...

From 
$40
Price from 40 USD to 100 USD per person (the price depends on a group size). The price 40 USD per person is available for groups of 6 people.
More info
1 day

Educational Kyrgyzstan tourism packages to Burana Tower

Starting of in Bishkek, we will travel to 3 different UNESCO sites: the Nookat settlement (Krasnorechenskoe ruins), Suyab settlement (Ak-Beshim ruins), and Burana Tower (Balasagyn ruins). Pl ...

From 
$40
Price from 40 USD to 100 USD per person (the price depends on a group size). The price 40 USD per person is available for groups of 6 people.
More info
14 days

Off-road Adventure through Untouched Kyrgyzstan

Kyrgyzstan is simply stunning. So many parts are barely explored, cataloged, and photographed. On this trip you will visit some of the hardest to get to and least touched parts of Kyrgyzstan ...

From 
$2000
Price from 2000 USD to 2300 USD per person (the price depends on a group size). The price 2000 USD per person is available for groups of 5 people.
More info
6 days

Wildlife Photography Trip to Remote Kyrgyzstan

Have you ever heard of Kel Suu? Most people haven’t either. It’s one of the most stunning lakes in Kyrgyzstan and it’s in an area so remote you’ll think you’ve reached the edge of the world. ...

From 
$1050
Price from 1050 USD to 1200 USD per person (the price depends on a group size). The price 1050 USD per person is available for groups of 5 people.
More info