Our pick of the best experiences in Kyrgyzstan
Practically untouched by tourism, over 70% of mountainous Kyrgyzstan sits above 2,000m. The Tien-Shan or ‘Heavenly Mountains’ still have numerous virgin peaks never summited by man; you can also track the elusive snow leopard. Immense ranges give way to expansive steppes dotted with nomadic yurt camps and grazing yak.
To the East lies vast Issyk Kul Lake and Karakol, adventure capital of the country and jumping-off point for trekking, climbing, horse-riding and freeriding. Nearby lie the intriguing petroglyphs of Cholpon-Ata.
Marvel the views from Naryn, a city located at the foot of a picturesque gorge. For a truly unforgettable experience, interact with locals and sleep in a traditional Krygyz yurt by the glass-still shores of Song Kul Lake.
South in Fergana Valley discover the varied 3000-year history of Osh with its mosques and Soviet relics. By contrast, the leafy capital Bishkek is relatively young and has a Bohemian feel with international restaurants, museums and thriving arts scene.