Rivers and lakes of Kyrgyzstan
In one week, you will discover the most beautiful places in Kyrgyzstan, the heart of Tien Shan, including Chong Kemin National Park, Issyk Kul Lake, the 2nd largest mountain lake in the world, and the mythical Song Kul Lake, great summer meeting of Kyrgyz nomads.
Arrival by air in Bishkek. Meeting with your guide at Manas airport. Transfer to Bishkek. City tour in Bishkek, then transfer to Chong Kemin valley through the Burana tower. Night in homestay.
In the morning transfer to Issyk Kul lake, on the way visit of Kyzyl Terek red canyon (1470 m. alt.), a red canyon similar to the Creek canyon, but smaller. Picnic in the canyon. We continue our road to the lake Issyk Kul (1606 m. alt.), second biggest mountain lake of the world. Arrival in Tamchy village, visit of eagle-man. Then meeting with our local family. Dinner and night in homestay. Musical evening.
Free morning on Tamchy beach, then drive to Kochkor along Issyk Kul lake and Orto Tokoy dam lake. Arrival in Kochkor, visit of the village and a craft center. Night at the inhabitant.
In the morning we continue our journey that will climb to the pass of Kalmak Ashu (3470m. Alt.). From the pass we walk to a peak or to the lake, and then we drive around the lake to join a jailoo (alpine) along the south shore of the lake. Traditional meal and overnight in yurts. (3090m. Alt.)
The whole day is at our disposal to enjoy the silence and to discover the daily life of nomadic yurt. (options: demonstration nomadic games; hunt petroglyphs, walk or riding to the lake; discovery of nomadic lifestyle; Kyrgyz cooking classes.) Dinner and overnight in yurt.
In the morning, drive to Kyzyl Oy village where we will have lunch, through the Karakitchi pass 3350 m. Then we drive to the high valley of Suusamyr, visit of the Kojumkul village, name of a Kyrgyz hero of the last century. After, the road cross by a tunnel the mountains of the Kyrgyz Alatoo, and down to Bishkek. Dinner in local restaurant. Night in guesthouse.
Depending on your flight time, your guide will join you to the airport and help you check in for your flight. If your flight is later in the day your guide will show you more places in Bishkek before your flight.We hope you enjoyed your trip to Kyrgyzstan and we hope you come back again to explore other counties in Central Asia with us.
Nomad's Land were brilliant organising a week tour for 4 friends and myself. Fabien really listened to what we wanted. No cities, beautiful nature, some hikes and seeing the people.The tour he designed couldn't have been better. Our guide Alex was incredibly knowledgeable about Krygyzstan, he was relaxed and nothing was ever a problem. We loved our holiday, learned a lot and can't recommend this company enough.
Tailor-made trip, flexible and welcoming team, super friendly guide and hikes adapted to our abilities and our desires. Wonderful way to discover Kyrgyzstan!
On your way
Chong Kemin National Park KG
This park encompasses the entire Chong Kemin Valley. There are many trails still virgin or almost. Several passes between Issyk Kul Lake or Kitchi Kemin Valley.
The total area is 126,514 hectares. Here in the park the river Chon Kemin flows. More than 780 species of plants grow and rare mammals such as snow leopard, brown bear, maral, Eurasian lynx, golden eagle, himalayan griffon vulture (Gyps himalayensis), bearded vulture (Gypaetus barbatus), saker falcon and sablefly are found.
Song Kul lake KG
The scenary Song Kul (or Song Kul) lake is the main pasture of nomads. Hundreds yurts are built during summer. The beautiful lake large of about 25-35 km is a natural reserve. Many species of birds are stopping during their long migration. Some tombs from Sakh times and petroglyphs are most ancient traces of live. Different trekking or horseback riding roads are joining the place.
Orto-Tokoy water reservoir KG
The Orto-Tokoy reservoir is the first reservoir built in Kyrgyzstan. Construction began in 1941 and ended in 1960. It is located on the Chu River, behind the village of Kochkor. Its length is about 18 km, its volume is over 470 million cubic meters, and its maximum depth is 47 meters.
The main purpose of the reservoir is to regulate the water level of the Chuy River in order to irrigate for agricultural land in Chui Oblast and southern Kazakhstan.
Kochkor is a town of shepherds located in Naryn oblast 200 km from Bishkek. It is located at 1800m. alt. The city has 17,000 residents. Most of them are shepherds or farmers. With the Kyrgyz hospitality, tourism is an increasingly important for economy. It is a starting point to reach the sights as Lake Song Kul, Sarala-Saz pastures, Lake Koelykoek, the salt mine Chong Tuz, and also the crossroads between Issyk Kul lake and City Naryn. Places for visiting: the women cooperative "Kochkor Kutu" which develops Kyrgyz crafts. Opportunity to see a demonstration of the production of livestock market mouton. The cattle market held each Saturday is always a colorful and lively event,don't miss it.
Konorchek canyon KG
A small Creek canyon! But you can walk two days around the red cliffs. The main valley named Konorchek, and the small canyon starting from the train bridge named Kyzyl Terek can be visited in 2 hours walk. A good option on the way to Issyk Kul lake.
Issyk Kul lake KG
The Issyk-Kul lake has a length of 182 km, a maximum width of 60 km and covers an area of 6,236 km². This makes it the second largest mountain lake in the world behind Lake Titicaca. Located at an altitude of 1,606 m, it reaches 668 m deep. About 118 rivers and streams flow into the lake. The largest are the Djyrgalan (Jergalan) and Tyup. It is fed by springs, including many hot springs and snowmelt, and it has no outlet. Its south side is dominated by the Tian Shan mountain range of wild beauty. The lake water is slightly saline and level down about 5 cm per year.
The Issyk-Kul lake is an important step on the Silk Road, a dirt road for travelers from the Far East to Europe. Many historians believe that the lake was the point of origin of the plague that hit Europe and Asia in the early and mid 14th. The status of the lake as a place of passage for travelers allowed the plague spread across the continents through the medieval merchants who unknowingly took away the vermin infested with them. Armenian monastery from the 14th century was found on the northeast coast of Lake retracing the steps of a medieval map used by Venetian merchants on the Silk Road.
Burana Tower KG
Burana Tower is seven km. far from the city of Tokmok. It is an 11th century minaret, and one of the first buildings of such type in Central Asia. The original height of minaret was 45 meters. Today the tower is 24.6 meters high, the remaining part came down during an earthquake in the 15th century. In the 10th to 12th centuries, Karakhanids khanate was a great feudal state of Central Asia and Kazakhstan.
The founders, "karakhans", chigil tribes by birth, lived in the Tien-Shan and for a short time of the second half of the 10th century they conquered a large territory. One of the capitals of this state was Balasagun. In Karakhanids' time new towns and settlements were developing, the centers of big cities were improved and Moslem religious buildings were built in the town of Balasagun. Burana tower, mausoleums and other buildings found after archeological excavations are the witnesses of that build up. The town's life declined slowly, people left it, the buildings fell apart and finally in the 15th century it ceased to exit.
What is included
All transportation in a private vehicle
All airport transfers
Accommodation as described in the program
Meals (3 per day)
Bottled water & tea
All the activities listed in the program
Entry fees at national parks and/or border zones listed in the program
Entry fees at museums and historical sites listed in the program
Domestic flights mentioned in the program
A contribution to our sustainable development projects
Organisation of the trip & local taxes
What is not included
International banking fees (PayPal, ...)
Travel & repatriation insurance
Visas / LOI (if applicable)
Alcoholic and soft drinks
Additional costs due to unexpected personal events (health, loss of luggage, ...)
Tips for guide & driver (always optional, always appreciated)
Through various ecotourism projects and initiatives, Nomad's Land aims to increase awareness of ecotourism and responsible travel, for a sustainable development of the tourism sector.
Rural development in Nepal
The Nepalko Sathi association leads its actions in favor of the Sherpas of Khembalung in the Arun valley (Province of Koshi). Nepalko Sathi
From Tumlingtar airport we reach by jeep the small town of Kahandbari where we are greeted by Kibutie and his family. From there, we climb to the small village of Gontala, in the heart of the actions of Nepalko Sathi (three days of walking), then we go up to Saissima, where Tendi Sherpa is rehabilitating the hamlet of his childhood. From Saissima it is possible to continue and make a loop towards Makalu and the impressive surrounding peaks (under tent).
Beyond the Glacier, a short film over the water in Central Asia
Conflicts over water in Central Asia are at the heart of the short film Beyond the Glacier, directed by David Rodríguez Muñiz in 2019. An interesting documentary that takes the form of a journey, from the glaciers of Kyrgyzstan to the sea of Kyrgyzstan. Aral.
Silk Road Yurt Camp
Another yurt camp that Nomad's Land is supporting so that shepherds of Song Kul Lake can get extra income from tourists. With the family of Sagyn and Jumabek, we have prepared this camp in order to keep all the nomadic authenticity. You can participate in the daily activities of nomads. Not far from the camp, you can access the shores of the lake but also the petroglyphs hidden in the nearby mountains.