Into the Wild. Kyrgyzstan
In one of the least visited regions on Earth, take a walk in the wild in Kyrgyzstan, land of horse games and eagle hunters. Explore the ancient cities of the Karakhanids, with visits to the sites of Uzgen and Balasagun and gaze in wonder at the ramparts of the mysterious fortress of Koshoy Kurgan. Hike among some of the most impressive works of nature on the planet with stays in the majestic Jeti Oguz gorge and hikes around the southern lakes of Kol-Suu and Son-Kul. Take a journey along the silk road with a stay near the caravanserai lodge at Tash-Rabat and view a twinkling night sky full of millions of stars from the step of your yurt. Although Kyrgyzstan is already off the beaten track, go one step further with visits to the scenic village of Jyrgalan and the remote beautiful lake of Sary-Chelek.
Wake up among the stunning natural beauty of Kyrgyzstan with stays in nomadic yurts and enjoy the warm hospitality of the local people with stays in small guesthouses and homestays in small towns and villages.
- Explore the vast natural beauty of Kyrgyzstan with its Alpine ‘jailoo’ meadows, stunning lakes, pretty waterfalls and the impressive Jeti Ozguz and ‘fairy-tale’ gorges
- Meet a family of eagle hunters in Bokonbeyevo, take a sunset boat ride on Issyk-Kul Lake and meet the Dungan people who inhabit the area around the lake’s shoreline
- Discover the ancient cities of Uzgen and Balasagun, home of the enigmatic ‘Burana Tower’, as well as marvel at the mysterious, towering walls of the fortress of Koshoy Korgon
- Have a go at making the traditional and moreish dish of Boosok, learn to build a yurt and watch a traditional horse game of ‘Kok Boru’
- Stay in traditional yurts set up in the picturesque countryside, cosy homestays and guest houses in small towns and villages and traditional hotels in cities
Trip style: Unique
Max group size: 15
Duration: 21 Days
Trip style: Unique
Group size: Minimum 6 / Maximum 15
Trip code: IKBB
Cost: $6375.00 AUD twin share
Single supplement: $395.00 AUD
- 20-nights accommodation in traditional and unique family run hotels, guesthouses, homestays and yurts
- Meals as specified in itinerary (B = Breakfast / L = Lunch / D = Dinner)
- All transport as specified in the itinerary
- Services of your Inverted Atlas trip leader and local guides
Optional experiences (not included):
- Bishkek: Night at the Opera or Ballet
- Cholpon-Ata: Boat ride on Issky-Kul Lake
- Jygalan: Horse riding to Turnaluu Kol (Crane Lake)
- Son-Kul: Kok-Boru game
- Son-Kul: Horse riding
- Tash-Rabat: Yurt Building
* Please note some optional experiences must be booked prior to travel. You will be given the option to add these experiences at check out
Trip price does not include
- International airfares or domestic airfares
- Airport transfers on arrival and departure
- Visa for Kyrgyzstan (if required)
- Any expenses associated with COVID-19
- Meals not included as per trip itinerary including drinks and mini bar
- Additional accommodation before or after the tour
- Items of a personal nature including but not limited to laundry, souvenirs, porterage etc.
- Travel insurance – please note comprehensive travel insurance is a condition of travel with Inverted Atlas
Journey Rating – Adventure
This trip travels through remote areas of Kyrgyzstan, an area of the world not accustomed to tourism and where few travellers have ventured. Local infrastructure more often than not, will rarely be up to the standard you expect at home or from other more well-travelled destinations. Toilets you encounter in public restrooms or in remote unscheduled stops along the way may be of the eastern ‘squat’ variety and toilets in homestays and small guesthouses may have a squat ‘outhouse’. There are some long travel days, where we will be checking in to either a yurt camp or cosy homestay or guesthouse at the close of the days journey. These unique types of accommodation will not have all the creature comforts you expect from a hotel and will often be shared. Kyrgyzstan has a several microclimates and the climate can change rapidly depending on the area in which you are travelling, some of the areas we will visit on this trip are also at altitude. Facilities such as pharmacies, banks and ATM’s can be found in large cities but will be absent from towns, villages and remote places.
People following vegan, vegetarian and gluten free diets are advised to bring some supplemental snack food from home. We will do our best to accommodate your requirements, however this can be difficult in an area of the world where meat and bread are the staples of the local diet.
A note about fitness
This Kyrgyzstan tour requires an excellent level of physical fitness. This trip involves long trekking days to get to some of the sights visited. Most of the trekking is optional and easy, however you will get the most out of the trip if you are able to walk up to 10km over rough and uneven surfaces and can participate fully. In addition, you should be able to climb up to 200 stairs unassisted and use an eastern style squat toilet (beware if you have knee issues). Pease also be aware that a small portion of this trip is at altitude.
You will need to be able to carry your own luggage to and from the vehicle and into the accommodation. (Due to OH&S regulations our trip leaders are not able to assist with luggage.)
In addition, you should be in good health, with no major chronic conditions requiring frequent medical attention. This trip often travels through remote locations where the availability of a hospital or even phone reception to call an ambulance is limited. While all our trip leaders are required to have a valid first aid certificate, they are far from doctors and any assistance they are able to provide will be limited to basic first aid. For more information please see our booking conditions.
Traveling by yourself? No problem, we love single travellers and don’t believe in penalising them by charging half the trip price again for our single supplement. With us you are only paying the actual cost to have a room all to yourself. If you’re up for making a new friend, you can elect to share with another single traveller of the same sex and only pay the twin-share price. The choice is yours!
Please note the single supplement on this trip only includes large cities like Osh and Bishkek where we stay in hotels. Yurts are shared with other group members, as are some homestays and guesthouses. Due to the size of these cosy properties, they often do not have enough rooms to accommodate one person having a room to themselves.
Trip leader description
Accompanying you along your journey will be your Inverted Atlas trip leader. Your trip leader is a logistics extraordinaire, keeps the trip running smoothly and ensures you have the best time possible on your trip. It is important to know that while your trip leader has the best job in the world, they aren’t actually on holidays, but rather they are there to make sure you have the best time while you are on your holiday! Your trip leader may at times need some time out so that they can complete back of house tasks that ensure everyone continues to enjoy the trip. It is also your trip leaders’ job to handle any issues (heaven forbid!) that come up while you’re on your trip like:
- If you lose your passport or other travel documents
- If there is a problem with your room at the booked accommodation – seriously please tell your trip leader don’t wait until you leave
- If you become unwell and need to find a pharmacy
- Assisting with restaurant recommendations or additional sightseeing during free time
- Questions regarding the itinerary
Your trip leader will have some good local knowledge about the destination in which you are traveling, however they are not a ‘local guide’. You’re welcome to ask your trip leader anything about the trip and if they don’t know they will find out and get back to you. Other people you will meet along the way are ‘local guides’ who are generally available to the group in specific towns or at specific sites like national parks, temples or archaeological sites. These people are the local experts and will be able to answer any questions you may have about the history and culture of a specific site.
This itinerary is correct at the time of upload to our website and we have composed it in good faith. From time to time we may elect to make changes before departure, if we are making a big change we will of course notify you, however if it is a small change this will be reflected in the final trip notes. So, make sure you download these prior to departure. Small changes prior to departure are usually made with the groups best interests in mind and come about due to liaising with our best resources – our past travelers and of course our trip leaders! The ability to change and evolve depending on what our travelers enjoy is what makes us such a great trip operator.
While we strive to operate our trips exactly to the letter of the itinerary, sometimes we may need to make changes on the ground while the group is on the road. This is all part of the adventure of traveling and we would ask that you come on your trip with an open mind and a good sense of humour because as much as we want it to, everything doesn’t always go to plan. In fact, these impromptu situations often make the best stories that you can have a laugh with your friends about later.
Minimum Age: 18 years
Due to the shared natures of a large portion of the accommodation on this trip, we are only accepting those over the age of 18 years.
There is no upper age limit for this trip, but you should consider the above fitness requirements prior to booking. If you are 65 years or over, you will be asked to complete our Health Check Form and have your medical practitioner sign it to confirm you are in good health and able to participate safely on this trip.
Please note that comprehensive travel insurance is a condition of travel with Inverted Atlas. Insurance must include provision for medical situations, emergency medical repatriation to your home country and personal liability at a minimum. Proof of valid travel insurance will be requested by your trip leader on arrival at the pre-departure meeting. Please have this paperwork available for them. If you are unable to provide proof of comprehensive travel insurance, you may not be allowed to join the trip and no refund will be payable.