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Kyrgyzstan ?Travel Guide
Facts, Attractions, Transport, Food, Money, Visa, Travelogues, Nightlife, Culture, Links ...
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Guys, I want to post this news that I translated into English from Akipress for you to consider if you decide to travel by night. It can happen in any place in the World. Just be carefull. ok? here's the news:
"On August 6, two cyclists from Belgium and Germany were robbed on the OTMOK pass. They were on their way to Bishkek when two malefactors attacked them at 1 AM. They took 100 USD, player, bike wheel, and clothes. Total damage is 700 Euro".
Be careful, good people! your Denis
The local currency is Kyrgyz Som (KGS) is approximately 40 to 1 US Dollar. It is easy to exchange your money in any more or less big city or town. Exchange offices do not request your ID or passport. It’s better exchange your money in banks of in exchange offices by shops or companies. Do not exchange money on the street or at bazaars. You may find yourself a victim of swindlers there… ATMs are available only in Bishkek and Osh. If you need to cash your money, do it in one of these two cities.
Most of the flight from Europe and Russia fly in during night time where there is no public transportation to the city. You can wait at the airport till morning (watch your money) and then take a mini-van to Osh bazaar for about $1 (40 KGS) or go to the city by taxi for about $8 (300 KGS). Do not offer more then $10 for a car. You can find someone on board while flying to Bishkek and share the taxi with them.
Russian is the most common language in cities, especially in Bishkek, whereas Kyrgyz is quite common in rural areas and in the mountains. Most of the youngers in Bishkek speak English. There are more and more adults speaking English too.
The most famous place for new comers from Europe and USA is the Fat Boy’s Café. It’s locater in the downtown on the cross road of Chui Avenue and Tynystanova Street. Although there are not that many English speakers there during the day, you will find bunches of them in the evening. The café also has a nice library of books in English (no fee to take).
Food /vegetarians better come in summer/
The main dish is anything with meat (mostly beef and lamb). You can find many vegetables during summer, but in winter those are quite expensive and not tasty. For Chinese lovers I would recommend “Bakyt” place (cross road of Sovetskaya and Frunze Streets). It has the best composition of prices and quality.
The most common transportation are “marshrutka’s” – mini-vans. Ground transportation is relatively cheap. It’s 5 KGS (12 cents) in Bishkek for any destination within the city. Bishkek-Issyk-Kul would be around 150 KGS (4 USD). Bishkek-Osh is about 800 KGS ($20). As for cabs, it’s pretty much the same price for unofficial street taxi and official taxis that you order on the phone.
Visas and registration
Please, check with the Kyrgyz consulate if you need registration upon your arrival before you depart. For those countries that need registration, you have to go to OVIR within 3 days…otherwise they can fine you at the airport when you leave the country.
If you plan to go to Talas, you better get a multiple-entry Kyrgyz visa and multiple-entry Kazakh visa. There are two roads to Talas and the good one goes via Kazakhstan. You can use the bad road without crossing Kazakh border in summer. But it may be problematic in winter because the road is high in the mountains and may be closed because of the avalanche danger.
“Kumys” is a very traditional Kyrgyz drink. Many people would want you to try but try only if you have a strong stomach. It’s made of fermented horse milk and may cause you some memorable moments if you are not prepared
“Sheep eye” – you better like sheep eyes if you are a guest at a Kyrgyz family. People normally cut sheep for special occasions and serve its eyes to the most respected gests…and foreigners are normally the ones most respected regardless of their age
“Bread carrying” – if you are hosted in a Kyrgyz family, always make sure that you do not put your bread upside down. I’m not sure if it’s Muslim or traditional Kyrgyz, but it’s something that people care about.
Anything else? – to the Kyrgyz HC’s: Please add any other useful information or edit what I wrote if you think something is not exactly correct.
Edited by: deniskov19 on 08.08.2007 deniskov19 on 27.10.2006 deniskov19 on 30.08.2006 deniskov19 on 21.07.2006 deniskov19 on 26.04.2006 deniskov19 on 24.04.2006
|Last postings about Kyrgyzstan from other users
I live in city centre in Bishkek - Kyrgyz capital. Mountains starts at 30 minutes drive outside Bishkek.
a lot of interesting things, just visit my city (or may be town), and i will show you everything.
World's second largest salt water lake. Second highest mountain range in the world.
Alarcha Naturschutzgebiet, Burana Denkmal, Bischkek Stadt, Yssyk-Kol See! usw.