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Name Melanie Thiemann
Country Germany

My Trip to Kyrgyzstan

I visited Kyrgyzstan for the first time in May 2019 and stayed for two weeks.  I came to see my daughter, who lived there for one year. For the first five days we stayed in Bishkek, where she was working.  I had the chance to explore the city and found it impressively big, with many soviet remains like buildings, soldiers in front of the buildings of the government etc.  

At first glance many things seemed out of order (streets, cars …) and I wondered how people could deal with it so easily.  But it only took a short time to get used to these things and find amazing things like the big green trees in the middle of many streets, the canal system beside the streets and the fruit sellers on every corner.  I also liked the cafes, fancy restaurants with Kyrgyz meals like Laghman and huge parks, where you can take comfortable rests.  I was really impressed by the Osh-Bazaar, where you could really buy everything you could imagine. My best experience there was when I strolled over the bazaar one day and suddenly found myself next to a Kyrgyz band, who played amazing songs.

After a few days we went to see the countryside and our first trip took us to Son Kol, which is located about 3000 m above sea level.  First we stayed for one night at the foot of the mountain. There was a big temperature difference between Bishkek and this part of the country. Our plan was to hike up to Son Kol, but the weather was too snowy, so we did not dare. Instead we found a driver, who took us up in his old rough-looking car. He gave everything to take us there, fought with ice, snow and even with a burning motor. Thanks to his braveness we finally arrived at our Yurt camp and had three great days in untouched nature. The people in the camp, where we stayed our first night were very friendly, cooked an original Kyrgyz dinner called Plov for us and helped us out with everything. I really enjoyed the way of life in the camp, which was without any luxurious equipment, but with the luxury of having time for yourself, being there in harmony with nature. 

Next day we hiked about 15 kms to our next Yurt camp. We saw free walking Yaks (first time in my life!), cows, sheep and nature, nature, nature. I was deeply impressed by the huge mountains, the lake, the silence all around. And in the evening, there was a sky full of stars to admire - more than I had ever seen in Germany.

Back in civilization, we went to the biggest lake of Kyrgyzstan, the Yssik Kul. We went there by Marschrutka, which is a way of traveling, I started to like more and more during my stay. At Yssik Kul, we stayed in a Yurt camp again. The temperature again, changed a lot, from about one degree to maybe 30 degrees. I was really impressed by this amazing lake, which had a kind of meditative atmosphere. We were very lucky to see a great sunset there. From there, we went on a short trip to Skazka canyon. We hiked through it in one day. Again I was impressed by the completely different kind of nature, compared to the scene, we had explored at Son Kol. Now we found red rocks, dusty roads and a completely different vegetation. 

In summary I`d like to say that Kyrgyzstan is a country, one should really have seen. I loved the people, who were all very friendly, curious about foreigners and their way of life.   I loved the landscape, the meals. And the most important point, I really liked getting to know a culture, which is different from my own and make so many new experiences.

Name Melanie Thiemann
Country Germany

I really enjoyed the way of life in the camp, which was without any luxurious equipment, but with the luxury of having time for yourself, being there in harmony with nature.


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