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Horse Riding Holiday in Kyrgyzstan

Admire the amazing landscapes of Kyrgyzstan from the horseback. Son-Kul is a lake of extraordinary beauty, hidden among the high mountains of the Tien Shan. It is impossible to take your eyes off the blue of the water surface, which reflects the heavenly blue and contrasts with the emerald color of the jailoo, high-altitude pastures painted with a flower carpet surrounding the lake. Glades of edelweiss are scattered under your feet as stars and drops of morning dew resemble crystal beads, shimmering with all the colors of the rainbow.

Key information

  • Rider weight limit: 100 kilograms / 220 pounds, but if there is a person of a bigger weight or a very tall person, just let Hotel Asia Mountains know in advance so they could find the right horse for them.
  • Horse height range: 140 centimeters
  • Tack type: the organizer has two types of horse saddles that are handmade. The first is a saddle with a multipartite compound tree and the second is a saddle with a compound tree and a figured pommel
  • Horse breed: typical Kyrgyz horses - well-trained, tough, and foot sure, they are small (140 cm) but muscular, strong and have a flat back. Kyrgyz horse has four basic gaits: walking, ambling, trotting, and galloping. It moves at great ease on harsh terrain and at high altitudes.

Highlights

  • 5 - 7 hours of horse riding for six days
  • Conquer mountain passes on horseback
  • Pass through gorges, walk along the lake edges
  • Opportunity to see mountain goats, marmots, predator birds, rodents, yaks, hares
  • Take a glimpse of nomad life with their yurts, herds
  • 9 nights accommodation
  • Airport transfers

Skill level

  • Beginner

Styles


6 days with instruction
Group size: Minimum of 4 participants
Airport transfer included: Manas International Airport
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Accommodation

In Bishkek, you will stay at Hotel Asia Mountains, while during the trip you will stay at local yurts.

The tour is based on twin / double rooms in hotels and guest houses, in yurts accommodation is four people in one yurt.

Program

The route of this trip passes on the northern shores of the high-mountainous Son-Kul Lake. You have to conquer mountain passes on horseback, cross emerald-green jailoo, pass through gorges and walk along the very edge of the lake.

Yurts of nomads, herds of horses, lambs and cows, vast expanses, and flower carpets are waiting for you. In the summer months, the high-mountainous harsh land turns into a fairy tale worthy of the pages of the great writers of antiquity, and you have to read this book of the greatness and eternity of mighty nature.

Itinerary

Day 1: Bishkek

Arrival at Bishkek Airport is expected in the early morning. Reception at the airport by the local tour guide and drive to the hotel. In the afternoon city tour with a visit to the National Museum, the central square of the city Ala-Too with the changing of the guards, the Osh market and the historical complex Manas with Alley of Youth and Philharmonic Hall. Overnight at a three-star hotel.

Day 2: Bishkek - Kyzart village (270 km / 5 hours)

After a delicious breakfast, drive to the village of Kyzart. This trip takes about 5 hours and takes you towards the Tien Shan Mountains at an altitude of 2200 meters. On the way, you will visit the historical-architectural complex of Burana Tower. Burana tower (minaret) is located on the territory of an ancient settlement 90 kilometers away from Bishkek. The historians and archeologists proved that the settlement was once the capital of Karakhanid Khanate and was called Balasagun founded in 10th century AC. Burana tower is the central monument of this complex.

Drive to Kochkorka village where you will be able to visit the Altyn-Kol felt-products cooperative shop, see the shyrdak show (the process of making Kyrgyz national shyrdak felt carpets for yurts) and have lunch. Another 80 kilometers and you will be at the place of your stay. Overnight at the guest house.

Day 3: From Kyzart village to Kilemche Jailoo

Today you begin the horse tour from the village of Kyzart. The path passes a country road along the large full-flowing river Bazar-Turuk. Further, a moderate ascent to the Boordu pass will be waiting for you. The pass offers a beautiful view of the jailoo (summer pasture) Kilemche and the surrounding mountains. After riding for a little more you will find yourself in the pasture itself. Overnight at the local yurt camp.

Horse ride: 20 kilometers / 12 miles, 6 hours. Elevation + 300 / - 100 meters.

Day 4: Along the Kilemche Jailoo

After breakfast, you have to cross the entire Kilemche pasture and stop for the night at the foot of the Tolok Pass. The name of the pasture is translated as “carpet”, and this “carpet” covers the hills with flower patterns as if it was a shyrdak (colorful Kyrgyz carpet).

There are many nomad yurts scattered along the path. Hospitable people are glad to greet you with lepyoshka (round Kyrgyz bread) and koumiss (the national drink). Overnight in yurts.

Horse ride: 15 kilometers / 9 miles, 5-6 hours. Elevation + 500 meters.

Day 5: Going to Jaman-Echki

Move up to the Tolok Pass and just a little further another pass Chon-Konush awaits you. An amazing view of the Kilemche pasture opens from the pass, and the pass itself is rocky and breathtaking, which can only be crossed on horseback.

From the pass, Son-Kul is still far away, but going down lower and lower the lake is getting bigger and bigger, the mountains on the other hand are getting higher and higher behind us until the lake fills your entire field of vision and the southern mountains rise above the lake. Your night stay (yurts) is going to be at a place called Jaman-Echki. Dinner and overnight.

Horse ride: 15 kilometers / 9 miles, 6-7 hours. Elevation: + 500 /- 500 meters.

Day 6: Along the shore of Son-Kul Lake

From the place of Zhaman-Echki, you will pass along the shore of the lake and further along the Tuz-Ashuu gorge. Finally, you will reach the path that goes up to the Tuz-Ashuu pass (3220 meters). Here you will overnight in yurts. Translated from Kyrgyz, the name means "direct pass."

In summer, it is a real paradise for nomads and livestock. In addition to the traditional countless flocks of sheep, goats, cows, and horses, yaks can often be seen here.

Horse ride: 18 kilometers / 11 miles, 5 hours, + 300 /- 200 m

Day 7: Tulpar-Tash pasture

Today you will ride along the lake to the Tulpar-Tash pasture which is located in the northwestern part of Son-Kul Lake. This is one of the most beautiful places of Son Kul.

The luster of the surface of the lake can be seen from afar. On the shores of the lake, there are burial mounds of noble leaders of nomadic tribes and stone statues of the Kyr-Jol Turks (VI-VIII centuries). In this place you can find stone figures that have been preserved since the heyday of the Turkic Khanates - these are real monuments to outstanding ancestors that were established in the places of their burial. We will ride horses along the lake. Local people live and graze cattle in the meadows (jailoo) around the lake from June to September.

Here you can feel the freedom of nomadic life. You may see many yurts on the shore of the lake and you can also try the traditional Kyrgyz drink - koumiss (mare’s milk). Dinner and overnight in yurts.

Horse ride: 20 kilometers / 12 miles, 6 hours, + 100 /- 100 m

Day 8: Return to Kyzart village

Today will be your last day of horse riding. The horses are tired and for sure you will be a little tired too. The last hurdle you have to overcome today is the Uzbek pass.

You will get to the point of 3400 m above sea level and take a last look at the Son-Kul Lake with its astonishing panorama. Having done so, you will return back to the village of Kyzart. Overnight at the guest house.

Horse ride: 18 kilometers / 11 miles, 6-7 hours, + 100 / -1200 m

Day 9: Kyzart village - Bishkek (280 kilometers, 5 hours)

Unfortunately, the time at this beautiful place is over and you drive back to Bishkek. You will again be captivated by the beautiful landscape.

You will enjoy the view of one of the most beautiful rivers in Kyrgyzstan, River Kekemeren, continuing going to Suusamyr and soon will dive to the main Kyrgyz road going from Bishkek to Osh and come into the green wide valley (steppe). The mountains surrounding it gave the valley so much space that for a moment one may forget being in the harsh mountain country.

Here you may see many nomads who brought their yurts for the summertime.

Going through the picturesque Suusamyr valley, you will rise the Tuya-Ashu pass, and go down to Bishkek. Coming to the capital in the evening. Farewell dinner and overnight at the hotel.

Day 10: Departure

Transfer to the airport in the morning.

Trip intensity: level 2 medium, beginners

It will require physical abilities and endurance, special clothes, and shoes. You also need the necessary gear: a small backpack, warm clothes according to weather, snack, and water. Physical activity takes several hours a day with rest breaks.

You must have skills of being in the mountains, horse riding or cycling, the ability to use special equipment like trekking poles; the ability to move along more complex mountainous terrain, to cross small rivers, etc. Active programs are full of physically active days.

Location

This will be an amazing and exciting adventure. You will be like a great traveler of the Middle Ages; mountain passes, gorges, and valleys are waiting for you where there are no man-made buildings except for the yurts of the shepherds which they erect every summer bringing herds of livestock (horses, cows, sheep, and even yaks and camels) to graze in the summer months.

Once upon a time, caravans of merchants passed here and the cavalry of the great khans guarded the borders of immense possessions. To this day, in the local area, you can find Chinese, Turgesh, Turkic coins, head adornments, buckles, and arrowheads that were forgotten or lost during the existence of the Great Silk Road.

The greatness of the Tien Shan mountains takes your breath away. The space that opens up to the eyes of the traveler fascinates and brings a feeling of complete freedom which people all lack so much in stuffy big cities. Hotel Asia Mountains invites you to forget about the hustle and bustle and leave the noisy streets, breathe in the fresh mountain air and finally plunge into the atmosphere of peace and quiet, beauty and grandeur of nature.

Food

Full board meals are included. Additionally, you will receive one liter of drinking water per day per person during the tour.

The Kyrgyz food used to be seasonal. In the summer it was vegetables, berries and fruits, and in winter the diet was mainly of dairy food and meat. Kyrgyz people eat mutton, horse meat, beef, camel meat, goat meat, and yak meat. Mutton and horse meat are especially appreciated.

At the moment, many tourists come to Kyrgyzstan and the local population, adjusting to it, cooks more lenten dishes. You can easily find vegetarian food, but you should definitely try national dishes such as Besh-Barmak, Manti, Shorpo, Dymlama, Kazy, Pilov, Ashlyam-Fu, Samsa and Kuurdak.

Nowadays there is no problem with finding drinks. You can easily find all you want in shops: from water to coca-cola lite. But usually, people drink tea in families. In such destinations as Son-Kul, Tash-Rabat, high in the mountains you will be offered kumys (traditional drink from horse milk) or shoro (grains drink).

There is no problem with alcohol. You can easily find beer or more strong drinks in shops. The only thing is that alcohol drinking in public places is forbidden.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Drinks

The following drinks are included:

  • Water

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

What's included

  • All transfers in private car / bus
  • Entrance fees according to program
  • 9 nights accommodation in guest houses, hotels, yurts during the trek (4 people in one yurt)
  • Horses
  • Horse guides (1 horseman for 4 horses)
  • Full-board during the complete tour
  • English speaking guide
  • Shyrdak show in Kochkorka village
  • Water – 1 liter per day per person

What's not included

  • International airfares
  • Alcohol beverages
  • Personal insurance (obligatory)
  • Changes in the program
  • Excursions not included in the program
  • Tips for driver / guide and hotel personnel
  • Single supplement

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at Manas International Airport (FRU). Airport transfer is included in the price.

Your program starts in Bishkek. You can get to the international airport in Bishkek city by various airlines: Aeroflot, Turkish Airlines, S7, and others from Russia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, China, Kazakhstan, and other countries. Hotel Asia Mountains does not sell international air tickets, but they can recommend where to buy them.

You will be met by a representative at the airport and taken to the hotel. On the way, you can attend an exchange office and exchange money or do it during the day.

Airport: Manas International Airport Airport transfer included: Manas International Airport No additional charges. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 45% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.
10 days / 9 nights
from --
Availability information

Individual dates are also available. For more information, please send an inquiry,

Pricing information

The price options below are based on a group of four. The prices will be lower depending on how many people are joining the tour. Please find the following prices per person for more information:

  • More than 10 people in the group: 990 USD per person
  • More than 8 people in the group: 1,100 USD per person
  • More than 6 people in the group: 1,200 USD per person
  • More than 4 people in the group: 1,350 USD per person
Minimum group size

This trip requires a minimum of 4 participants

Sunday July 3, 2022
(10 days / 9 nights)

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