Frequently Asked Questions About Kyrgyzstan
General FAQs for Kyrgyzstan
Which is the capital city of Kyrgyzstan?
The capital of Kyrgyzstan is Bishkek, which is also the country’s largest city. It has a population of over one million people and was formerly known as Frunze during the Soviet era. The city lies in the northern foothills of the Ala-Too Mountains at an elevation of about 800 meters above sea level. It is home to a large number of museums, theaters, and other cultural attractions, as well as numerous parks. Bishkek serves as an important transport hub in Central Asia. It has international airports and train connections to many cities within the region.
What is best currency to use in Kyrgyzstan?
The official currency of Kyrgyzstan is the som (KGS). The som is divided into 100 tyiyn and is available in denominations of 1, 3, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 som. As of February 2021, the exchange rate was roughly 74 KGS to 1 US Dollar. ATMs are available in larger cities and travelers’ cheques can be exchanged in most banks. Major currencies such as US Dollar, Euro and Russian Ruble are accepted in some establishments. Credit cards are widely accepted but their use is more limited outside of Bishkek.
What are most spoken languages in Kyrgyzstan?
Kyrgyz is the official language of Kyrgyzstan. It belongs to the Turkic language family and is closely related to Kazakh and Uzbek. Additionally, Russian is widely spoken in Kyrgyzstan as a result of its long-standing relationship with Russia during its time as part of the Soviet Union. Other languages spoken include Uyghur, Dungan, and Uzbek. English is not widely spoken in Kyrgyzstan but visitors may find some people who can understand and/or speak it in larger cities such as Bishkek. It is recommended that travelers learn some basic phrases in the local language to help them get around more easily.
When is the best time to travel to Kyrgyzstan?
The best time to visit Kyrgyzstan depends on what type of activities you are planning. For outdoor activities such as hiking, July and August offer the most favorable temperatures. Winter sports enthusiasts should plan their visit around January or February when snowfall is at its peak. Spring (April-May) and fall (September-October) are great times to explore the countryside and take in the beautiful scenery, as well as visit some of the country’s major cities. Travelers should avoid visiting between June-August due to extreme heat.
How many days are required for traveling in Kyrgyzstan?
The number of days required for a trip to Kyrgyzstan depends on which destinations and activities you plan to visit and how much time you would like to spend in each place. Generally speaking, a 7-10 day trip should be enough time to explore the main cities such as Bishkek, Osh, Karakol, Issyk Kul, and Cholpon Ata. If you are interested in more outdoor activities such as trekking or horseback riding, then 10-14 days would be recommended to ensure that you have enough time to explore the stunning scenery of Kyrgyzstan.
What is the emergency number in Kyrgyzstan?
In the event of an emergency, travelers to Kyrgyzstan should dial 102 for police, 103 for ambulance services, and 101 for fire department assistance. Additionally, visitors can contact the Ministry of Emergency Situations on +996 312 54 10 09 or 112 from a mobile phone in case of any natural disasters or other emergencies. It is important to note that English may not be widely spoken, so it is best to have a few phrases in the local language written down or ready on your phone. It is also recommended to register with the local embassy prior to departure in case of any unforeseen situations. Kyrgyzstan is a relatively safe place to visit but being prepared for any eventuality is always advised when traveling abroad.
Places FAQs For Kyrgyzstan
What are the popular tourist places in Kyrgyzstan?
Kyrgyzstan is a country filled with natural beauty and culture, making it the perfect destination for travelers looking to explore! Here are some of the best places to visit in Kyrgyzstan:
– Bishkek: Explore the city’s vibrant nightlife and cultural attractions.
– Karakol: Visit the stunning lake and nearby glaciers.
– Issyk Kul Lake: Admire the turquoise waters of this majestic lake.
– Ala Archa National Park: Hike to alpine meadows, glacial lakes and snow-capped peaks.
– Osh: Discover ancient history and vibrant markets in Kyrgyzstan’s second largest city.
– Cholpon Ata: Relax on the sandy beaches and explore nearby petroglyphs.
– Son Kul Lake: Camp in the highlands and soak up breathtaking views of Kyrgyzstan’s vast landscape.
– Tash Rabat Caravanserai: Marvel at this 15th century Silk Road trading post.
– Son Kul Nature Reserve: Observe the unique wildlife and stunning mountain scenery of this pristine reserve.
How do tourist get around in Kyrgyzstan?
The best way to get around in Kyrgyzstan is by car. Driving in Kyrgyzstan can be a bit challenging due to the mountainous terrain, so it is recommended that travelers hire an experienced driver or tour guide if they are unfamiliar with the roads. Public transport such as minivans and buses is available and relatively inexpensive, though keep in mind that these can be overcrowded and uncomfortable for long journeys. Taxis are also widely available, though it is important to make sure you agree on a price before getting into the taxi. For those looking to explore Kyrgyzstan’s wilderness, horseback riding is a popular option and can be arranged through most accommodation providers. Hiking is also a great way to explore the countryside and there are many well-marked trails for those seeking adventure.
Budget FAQs For Kyrgyzstan
What is usual cost of traveling in Kyrgyzstan?
The cost of a trip to Kyrgyzstan depends largely on the length of your stay and how you choose to travel. Generally, budget travelers can expect to spend between $30-50 USD per day on accommodation, food, local transport and sightseeing costs. For mid-range travellers who want more comfort and convenience, the daily cost can be around $50-100 USD. Luxury travelers spending more on hotels and activities can expect to pay upwards of $150 per day. As a general rule, it is always best to plan ahead and budget for your trip in advance so that you can make the most out of your time in Kyrgyzstan!
What is the cost of average meal in Kyrgyzstan?
Meals in Kyrgyzstan can vary depending on the type of restaurant you visit and your location. Generally, budget meals in local restaurants cost around $3-7 USD while a mid-range meal will be around $10-15 USD. For those looking to indulge a bit more, an upscale dinner can cost up to $20-30 USD. Keep in mind that prices can vary depending on your location and the type of meal you order. If you are traveling on a budget, there are also plenty of local markets and street food stalls where you can find delicious snacks and meals for around $1-3 USD per item.
What is the average cost of stay in Kyrgyzstan?
Accommodation in Kyrgyzstan can range from budget guesthouses to luxury hotels. Budget travelers can expect to pay around $15-30 USD for a single or double room with basic amenities such as hot showers, TV and Wi-Fi. Mid-range accommodations typically cost between $50-100 USD per night and include more comfortable amenities such as air conditioning, private bathrooms and a restaurant. Luxury hotels can cost upwards of $100-200 USD for a single or double room with additional features like spa facilities, swimming pools and fine dining.
What is the cheapest time to visit Kyrgyzstan?
The cheapest time to visit Kyrgyzstan is during the winter months from November through February. During this period, accommodation and flight costs tend to be lower than usual and some of the country’s most popular attractions are less crowded. That said, it can get quite cold during this time of year so make sure you bring plenty of layers and warm clothing. If you’re looking for a more moderate climate, the spring and fall seasons are usually very pleasant with temperatures ranging from 5 to 25 degrees Celsius.
Culture FAQs For Kyrgyzstan
How are the people in Kyrgyzstan?
The people of Kyrgyzstan are warm, friendly and hospitable. They are proud of their culture and traditions and will be more than happy to share their stories with you during your visit. Kyrgyzstan is a perfect destination to experience the hospitality of Central Asian culture and make some lifelong memories!
What is the most popular food in Kyrgyzstan?
– Lagman: a soup made from beef or lamb, vegetables, noodles and spices
– Beshbarmak: boiled meat served with noodles and a variety of sauces and herbs
– Plov/Osh: a rice dish cooked with vegetable oil, carrots, onions and mutton
– Manti: steamed dumplings filled with meat, potatoes and onions
– Samsa: pastries stuffed with beef or lamb and vegetables
– Shashlik: skewered pieces of marinated pork, chicken or beef grilled over an open fire
– Kuurdak: a stew made from mutton, potatoes and onion.
Which sport is the most popular in Kyrgyzstan?
Sports are a popular past time in Kyrgyzstan, with the most popular being wrestling, martial arts, soccer and horseback riding. Wrestling is considered to be an important cultural symbol and dates back centuries in the country’s history. Martial arts such as judo, karate and taekwondo are also very popular amongst Kyrgyzstan’s youth. Soccer is widely enjoyed and the national team has competed in a number of international tournaments. Horseback riding is especially popular amongst the nomadic shepherds and riders take part in competitions such as kok-boru, where teams compete by grabbing a goat carcass off the ground and galloping to their goal.
What are the most popular religions in Kyrgyzstan?
The majority of the population in Kyrgyzstan are Muslims and the country is home to over 1,000 mosques. The second most commonly practiced religion is Christianity, with followers mainly concentrated in the northern regions. Additionally, there is a small yet growing presence of Buddhism amongst citizens as well. The freedom of religion is guaranteed by law and all religions are respected by the government. All religions coexist peacefully in Kyrgyzstan and religious harmony is a celebrated part of the country’s culture.
What are the popular festivals celebrated in Kyrgyzstan?
– Nauryz: marking the first day of spring, it is celebrated with singing, dancing and feasting
– Kurman Ait: honoring the Kyrgyz national hero.
– Chychkan: a traditional horse race held in Central Asia.
– Ala Kukhuu: a celebration of traditional music.
– Ordooba: a harvest festival celebrated in the autumn months.
– Ysyakh: a celebration of nature and renewal.
– Uluu Tokoy: honoring the arrival of spring and symbolizing fertility.
What souvenirs to buy from Kyrgyzstan?
– Handcrafted carpets: made of goat and sheep wool, these often feature elaborate religious or tribal motifs.
– Embroidered items: colorful traditional Kyrgyz clothing such as shyrdaks, ala kiyiz and felt boots.
– Leather products: wallets, bags, horse saddles and horse bridles.
– Musical instruments: including the komuz and temir komuz.
– Jewelry: silver necklaces, earrings and bracelets, often featuring traditional Kyrgyz designs.
– Food items: dried fruits, honey, jams, nuts and local tea blends.