Trip Summary: Kyrgyzstan | 10 Days
Next Group Trip: Spring 2017
Group Size: Max 16 persons
Price From: $2900 per person
Itinerary | 10 Days
Day 1: Travel to Kemin Valley, one of Kyrgyzstan’s most beautiful national parks to stay with a local homestead and recover from your international travels. It is from here that our first nomadic experience on horseback with start the following morning. While in route to Kemin Valley, we’ll make a short visit to a historical-architectural complex known as the “Burana Tower” (XI century) that was once a major stopping point along the Silk Road Trading Route. Accommodations: Kyrgyz home “Ashu Guesthouse” (home of Stanbek Toichubaev), After this night we will be staying mostly in Kyrgyzstan’s traditional nomadic shelters, yurts.
Day 2: After breakfast travel on horseback along the river of Chong-Kemin to a shepherds camp (in Kyrgyz called a jailoo) called Kol Almaty. Upon arrival we will lunch as guests in a local shepherd’s yurt, after which we will continue our journey to the nearby alpine lakes (e.g. Lake Chelek, etc.). This day’s journey is somewhat of an acclimatization day in preparation for the more rigorous traverse of Ak-Suu Pass the following day. Accommodations: Shepherd’s yurt or tent
Day 3: Today you will have a long day ahead. After a short breakfast at 7:00 am, we start our approach of Ak-Suu Pass through rocky, alpine trails. At the foot of the pass you will see many of the Tian Shan’s mighty peaks and glaciers. Here in this remote section of the Himalayan Orogenic Belt, we will break and brunch before summiting to the pass. At the top of the pass we will be at an elevation of 4,050m (13,287ft) and then descend down into the alpine meadows of The Chong Ak-Suu Gorge. We will spend the night in a mountain pasture know as “Ayuluu-Tor.” Accommodations: Tent/Camping
Day 4: After a late breakfast and spending some time enjoying the majestic natural surroundings we will continue towards the valley of Issyk-Kyl Lake, following the Chong Ak-Suu River. Along the way our local guide will teach us how to identify some of the nature food sources native to this region, such as the plentiful wild and tasty mushrooms. Lunch will be a picnic near the end of our first horseback excursion. By afternoon we will have reached the village of Grigorievka, from which we will travel towards Ak-Suu Valley, near the provincial town of Karakol. On the way to Ak-Suu, we’ll visit a site with ancient petroglyphs from 800 BC- 100 AD, that displays incredible detail of some of the Kyrgyz ancestral cultures. Most are of long-horned ibex, along with some wolves, deer and hunters, and some rocks appear to be arranged in sacred circles. Most of the carved stones, which range from 30cm to 3m in size, are oriented to face southwest or southeast, and this would indicate some form of sun worship. We’ll also make a stop in Karakol to visit a the Dungan Mosque, famous for its authentic architecture and being built completely of fitted wood (i.e. no metal nails, etc.), and a Russian Orthodox Church that dates back to Tzarist Russian Empire. Accommodations: Yurt stay
Day 5: After good breakfast start trekking to Altyn-Arashan Valley, which is situated at 2450 m. Here we will not only take in the incredible sight of snow-packed Peak Palatka (5260 m - 17,260 ft) and Tashtanbek Tor Bashy Peak (4600 m – 15,091 ft), but also soak in the natural thermal springs. We will camp in wonderful location surrounded by magnificent rock formations and the source of many rivers and streams that are formed right here from the snow and glacial melt. Accommodations: Yurt stay or tent
Day 6: This is another long and rewarding day. After an early breakfast we’ll trek from Altyn Arashan to Kurgak Tor valley. From there ascend to Kurgak-Tor, 3 000 m where we will see more amazing views of the valley and pass by two waterfalls. On the way you will see the local shepherds’ life and if you are adventurous enough, you can enjoy a drink of “kymyz” or fermented mares milk. Our day will continue as we hike through Ala-Köl pass (3860 m) to the alpine lake Ala-Kol. From the pass we will see a breathtaking panorama of Takyr-Tor glacier and the Five-thousand Peaks of Terskey Ala-Too. We will set up camp near Ala-Kol Lake and rest from our day’s journey. Accommodations: Yurt stay or tent
Day 7: Wake up near Ala-Kol lake, an earlybreakfast and prepare for hike down to the town of Karakol (trekking time 3-4 hours). We’ll enjoy a traditional Kyrgyz dish for lunch, served in the home of a local family, before continuing our journey to the village of Bokonbaevo, located on the southern shore of the Issyk-Kul Lake. On the way to Bokonbaevo we’ll visit the unique and fantasy-like Skazka Canyon where you will see some of Kyrgyzstan’s most beloved geological formations. We will also visit Kyzyl-Tuu village (a village of yurt makers) to see how Kyrgyz people make their yurts (boz yi) and national carpets. For those interested, there is also a handicrafts museum. Dinner & overnight in a yurt camp in Tuura-Suu village to rest up for our final horseback tour to commence the following day. Accommodations: Yurt stay
Day 8: From Tuura-Suu village, travel horseback to the jailoo & “Tash” with some local eagle hunters and falconers. As we ride we will enjoy their company as we learn about their way of life and the cultural legacy passed down to them by their ancestors. Lunch will be accompanied by a beautiful panoramic view of Issyk-Kul Lake and will be followed by a backcountry ride to “Ular-Tash” for further breathtaking scenery and nomadic experiences with local horsemen and shepherds. Later we will arrive at the jailoo "Ashuu-Tor" and overnight in with local shepherds in their yurts. Accommodations: Yurt stay
Day 9: After breakfast at Jailoo Ashuu-Tor, we will travel with the eagle hunters across the mountain river “Tuiuk-Tor” and spend the morning with them riding up to Kyzyl-Kia Pass which is at an altitude of 3300 m. At the top of the pass we will have another beautiful panoramic view of the surrounding mountains. Here we will eat lunch as we enjoy the scenery. Afterwards we will make our way down to the “Jazuu-Kechuu” jailoo, where dinner will be ready for us in a local shepherd’s home. We will spend the night there and you can choose between sleeping in the house, a yurt or tent. Accommodations: Yurt stay
Day 10: The final day with the shepherds and eagle hunters will start early. We will ride following the Korumdu River and will see some beautiful views of the scenic rivers and landscape. Along the way we will stop for a last picnic lunch. At the end of the day we will travel back to Bishkek, drop our things off at a homestay, and spend the evening exploring the city. Most people will be catching their flights out of Bishkek the following morning. Accommodations: Homestay
This Acanela Expedition © is the perfect fusion between comfort & adventure. Embark on this small group exploration and have hands-on encounters with local peoples and cultures, while experiencing all the historical & culinary highlights along the way.
Private dates upon inquiry.
All inclusive package including accommodation for all nights, in-country transport by private bus, train, or flight, lecture and instruction materials from our expert guides, all activities, and meals as listed on the itinerary. *International Airfare and Visa Fees are not included.
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