Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

Talk about a mouthful and a hell of a lot of points in scrabble, Kyrgyzstan is just that and Bishkek is its green and pleasant capital city. Bishkek isn’t the most exciting place, that’s for sure, but it is a nice place to spend a night or two. The main attractions in Kyrgyzstan are in the mountains and the alpine scenery and Bishkek is the place to set your journey. With my time constraints I was only able to do a day hike but it was gorgeous and well worth it.

Bishkek is surrounded by the Tian Shan Range which has some massive peaks, some even into the 7000 meter range, which is really, really high-trust me. I went into the Ala-Archa Canyon and did a guided hike for the day. It was really pleasant and a moderate hike at best but the scenery was great with waterfalls, rugged cliffs and most of all-clean air, it made for a nice day.

After the hike I just headed back to Bishkek and walked around the easily manageable streets and checked out all the local attractions. They were few and far between with a couple of cool government buildings and a philharmonic that was quite nice but the people watching is what made Bishkek memorable for me. The women are very attractive and they seem to wear clothes that look like they were painted on them. They are so ungodly tight, it looks like one of those swimsuit shoots where they paint the models-thats how tight the clothes were.

The people, both men and women were a curious mix of Russian and Chinese, as would make sense with the location of the country but still unusual to see and to hear the Asian looking people speaking Russian.

My final account of my time in Kyrgyzstan was that it is very pleasant and a nice place to see. Like a lot of Central Asia, the highlights are in the scenery and in the mountains. The surrounding mountains around Bishkek make for a memorable backdrop and I would certainly recommend checking it out as part of a bigger trip in the region-not as a prime destination.

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  1. SO it sounds like Kyrgyz is not on the highly recommended list, haha.

  2. You and I…the only Terps I know who have been to Bishkek! ­čÖé LOL

  3. True that! Congrats on your wedding-2 days after my birthday btw!

  4. You can’t have a proper name in Scrabble…right?

  5. With respect, it sounds like you spent only 2-3 days in Kyrgyzstan and only saw Bishkek and one of the nearby mountain valleys (I’ll guess Ala Archa)- this doesn’t really qualify you to say how worthy it is of seeing. You were impressed with the scenery between Almaty and the Kyrgyz border- it doesn’t come close to what you could have seen in Kyrgyzstan. Similarly, the scenery around Bishkek is great, but pales in comparison to what you would have seen had you spent some quality time exploring the country. Also, there are very few Chinese people in Kyrgyzstan. Why would hearing Asian-looking people speaking Russian be any stranger than hearing Asian-looking people speak English? Millions of Asians in the ex-Soviet ‘stans speak excellent Russian, often as a first language.

  6. It qualifies me to say that what I saw was great and I know how awesome the rest of the country is supposed to be. I look forward t going back. The whole region is fantastic. I hope to do a big trip in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. I really want to travel the Pamir Highway soon. Everyone I know that has done it raves about it. Thanks for the comment.

  7. hi, just to let you know,Ben above is right, there are very few Chinese people in Kyrgyzstan.The main ethnic group -Kyrgyz- have nothing to do with them, despite the location. Kyrgyz belong to Turkic peoples and because of the processes of migration, conquest, intermarriage, and assimilation, many of the Kyrgyz peoples who now inhabit Central and Southwest Asia are of mixed origins.

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