Destination Guide: Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan Tourism starts in Bishkek, the capital city. Located in the North of the country, it is full of trees, squares and statues with the backdrop of high mountains.
I visited Kyrgyzstan among a group of 5 friends in July. Like most tourist, we started our trip in Bishkek.
We visited the following places around Bishkek: (can be visited all in one day)
Ala Archa National Park
Ala Too Square
Ala Archa National Park
The national park is 40 km away from Bishkek city, about 1 hour drive. The park, which includes the gorge of the Ala-Archa River and the mountains surrounding it, is a popular destination point for weekend picnickers, hikers, horse trekkers, skiers as well as mountain climbers.
In Kyrgyz, the archa, which gives the park its name, is a bright or many-colored juniper which the Kyrgyz people have traditionally held in special esteem, using smoke from its burning wood to chase away evil spirits.
The Osh Bazaar is the main market place in Bishkek. Its name is taken from the town of Osh is South Kyrgyzstan.
It is a great place to have a glimpse at the local life and culture as they sell eveything: fruits, clothing, cleaning products, bread, flour, seeds, meat, hardware... We were offered to taste many things (candys, dried fruits, sweet cakes... and horse sausage), a real adventure for your palate.
Be very careful of your belonging at the Osh Bazaar. While I feel generally being safe, three of my backpack zipper was opened unknowingly, but all my belonging remained inside...
Ala-Too square is the absolute center of the town. The place has many fountain, a big statue of the natioal hero Manas (whose story is combination of exploits from different warriors).
Burana Tower is about 1 hour from Bishkek city on the way to Lake Issyk Kul.
The tower is all that remains of the ancient powerful city of Balasugan. The rest disappeared with the fall of the feudal state and some earthquake.
The tower has been renovated in the 1970s as it was in danger of collapsing.
There was a wedding gathering during our visit.
Horse riding is available around Burana Tower. The scenery is really beautiful
When visiting a country that is not touristic, one always wonder what food is going to be like. In general the cuisine is a mix of Russian, Turk and Chinese Islamic recipes.
Below are photos of the food we ate during our trip to Kyrgyzstan.