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kyrgyz transport and itinerary advice

New York City, New...
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kyrgyz transport and itinerary advice

We're a couple of independent American travelers going to Kyrgyzstan as part of a larger five week trip in late April and May, also involving Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. We speak a little bit of rudimentary Russian, and we have experience traveling in the Caucasus, northeast Asia, and Eastern Europe.

Our plan is to arrive in Kyrgyzstan from Uzbekistan, probably via taxi or marshrutka to Osh. It would also be possible to travel into Kyrgyzstan from Tashkent to Bishkek (with Kazakh visa) via marshrutka or train. Which route is more scenic and which would you recommend?

Once in Kyrgyzstan, we'll have about two weeks to to linger before heading to Almaty, Kazakhstan, in order to fly home.

During this time, we would like to see Arslanbob, Bishkek, and some towns around Issyk-Köl (and/or maybe Söng-Kol). We tend to prefer small villages and homestays with day hikes, as we're quite fit but not into camping or serious trekking. Are there any other can't-miss destinations accessible via public transport that you might recommend in terms of culture, history, or nature?

After arriving in Osh, what would be the best way to visit some of these places? Presumably, we would be traveling by marshrutka. Would it be better in terms of attractions and scenery to go via Naryn and Issyk-Köl (east) or via Toktogul (north) in order to finish at Bishkek? Which route features the nicest scenery and the most pleasant places to spend a few days along the way?

Please advise us so we can create a workable route and trajectory.

Thanks in advance.

Tel Aviv, Israel
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1. Re: kyrgyz transport and itinerary advice

Hi there again i answered you in the Uzbek forum. Based on my own experience head for kochkor and go to the CBT, shepherds life or any of the offices there that arrange yurt stays by song kul lake. The lake is beautiful and the yurt stay is a very authentic experience. Its fairly high altitude so you may have some ill effects for a day or two. The yurt people graze their animals from mid june to towards the end of september. The resf of the year they stay in villages so you would have to go at that time of the year. If you go to cbt office they may give you a driver called Marap. This guy is great, speaks good english and if you havent already been to osh he would be able to help you. Btw the yurt stays can include hiking and horse riding.

good luck

angie

www.angietravels.com

New York City, New...
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2. Re: kyrgyz transport and itinerary advice

Thanks, Angie. Sounds amazing but I read in the Bradt Guide to Kyrgyzstan that Lake Song Kul will still be inaccessible in mid-to-late May--which is when we will be visiting--b/c of the cold weather. Plus there's nowhere to sleep up there so early in the season. I suppose we'll have to stick to Arslanbob and Issyk Kul in terms of visiting the countryside. But we appreciate your input, nevertheless.

3. Re: kyrgyz transport and itinerary advice

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