Kyrgyzstan

Kyrgyzstan is an undiscovered gem in Central Asia between Russia and China.  It is fiercely independent and also welcoming and very hospital to guests.

The World Nomad Games have been a great hit as an alternative to the commercial Olympics and have been held in 2014 and 2016. The Nomad Games were held September 2, 3 and 4 2018 and will be held again in Turkey in 2020

Come with us to explore the Silk Road and the beautiful sites of Kyrgyzstan.

Both Kyrgyzstan and this site is organized into two cities and seven regions.  This site’s regions are divided in Silk Road and history in valleys clockwise starting from Bishkek  ( Bishkek, Choy Region, Issyk Kul Region, Naryn Region, Osh, Osh Region, Batken Region, Jalal-Abad Region, Talas Region )

And Adventure Experience in the hills, mountains, lakes and rivers Choy Region Adventure Experience, Issyk Kul Region Adventure Experience, Osh Region Adventure Experience, and Jalal-Abad Region Adventure Experience.

Nomad Games Archers 1
Archers performing at the shore of Lake Issyk Kul where the Nomad Games will be held in September 2018. Source: http://www.rejectedprincesses.com/blog/world-nomad-games

Kyrgyzstan’s recorded history spans over 2,500 years, encompassing a variety of cultures and empires. Although geographically isolated by its high mountains, which has helped preserve its unique culture, Kyrgyzstan has been at the crossroads of several great civilizations as part of the Silk Road. and it has been at the center of cultural and economic routes for millenia.

Karasuu Bazaar 4
Karasuu Bazaar near Osh

 

The root of  the word Kyrgyz means forty and Kyrgyzstan was founded by uniting forty tribes.  Long inhabited by a succession of independent  clans and local kings, Kyrgyzstan has remained independent in spirit, though periodically it has fallen under foreign control. Kyrgyzstan became a nation only after the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991.  And today, while Kyrgyzstan faces significant issues, it is a model democracy in the Islamic world and a light of how peace is possible for the world.

Many of the caravan routes on the Silk Road changed over time, with different variations of East to West.  The route passing through Kyrgyzstan remained the same because the Tien-Shan and Pamir mountains funnelled traffic to oasis cities like Osh and rest stops halfway on the journey from east to west.

Further west out of Kyrgyzstan, the Fergana Valley  north of the Trans-Alay Range  was a natural gateway to the west and  is linked to the Mirzachül steppe by the narrow Khujand GatesKhujand is mostly likely on the same site as Alexandria Eschatea (Greek Ἀλεξάνδρεια Ἐσχάτη), literally “Alexandria the Farthest”, was a city founded by Alexander the Great, at the south-western end of the Fergana Valley (modern Tajikistan) in August 329 BCE.

Tian Shan Mountains 2
The Tian Shan mountains are among the highest peaks in the world and run between China, Kazakhstan and Kyrgystan. Source: https://www.dkfindout.com/us/earth/mountains/tien-shan/

Northern Route of the Silk Road

The northern route of the Silk Road travelled northwest through the Chinese province of Gansu from Shaanxi Province  rejoin at Kashgar, and the other going north of the Tian Shan mountains through TurpanTalgar, and Almaty (in what is now southeast Kazakhstan). The routes split again west of Kashgar, with a southern branch heading down the Alai Valley towards Termez (in modern Uzbekistan) and Balkh (Afghanistan), while the other travelled through Kokand in the Fergana Valley (in present-day eastern Uzbekistan) and then west across the Karakum Desert. Both routes joined the main southern route before reaching ancient Merv, Turkmenistan.

Silk Road in Kyrgyzstan

In the Middle Ages  three routes of the Silk Road passed through the territory of modern Kyrgyzstan – Pamir-Alay, Fergana, and Chuya.

  • The Pamir-Alay route went from Termez through Samarkand, along the inflow of the Kyzyl-Suu to Alay and led to Kashgar.
  • The Fergana route went from Samarkand through Khujand to the city of Osh. Osh was the main intermediate trade point whence caravans went further to Kashgar across the Torugart Pass.
  • The Chuyy branch passed from Tashkent, Ispedzhab, Taraz, Talgar, Nuzket (Kara-Balta) and Balasagyn (Buran). From there caravans traveled along the Boom Canyon to reach the Issyk-Kul area and further to China across the Tian Shan

The presence of caravan routes led to the emergence and growth of rich cities, trade and craftsmen’s villages, caravanserais and medieval Kyrgyzstan became one of the cultural centers of ancient Turkic people.

 

Learn More

The Most Facinating Silk Road Destinations in Kyrgystan – Silk Road Explorer

http://www.tourstokyrgyzstan.com/ – Tour Agency and General Information about travel to Kyrgystan

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