Combination of Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan
Mixtures of the cultures in the countries of the Great Silk Road makes this region more attractive for people from different countries. From ancient times the different tribes were traveled from country to country and brought the different traditions and style of life to the Central Asia. Now you have a great opportunity to visit Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, the small unique part of the Great Silk Road, to return to the past and to learn resemblance and difference of two cultures.
You will enjoy wonderful and different views of the biggest Kazakh natural reserve – Altyn-Emel, walk along the Aktau Mountains, and listen to the Singing Barchan (singing-dune) song – a unique occurrence of the nature that has many related legends. During this tour you will visit magnificent historical places, beautiful Kyrgyz Mountains, relax on the shore of Issyk-Kul Lake - the Pearl of Kyrgyzstan, learn about the culture of people and eat the tastiest national dishes.
Destination: Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan
Duration: 10 days
Season: June - middle September
Route of the program: Almaty – Tamgaly Tas – Bashi – Karakol – Kochkokr – Song-Kul – Chon Kemin - Bishkek
Day 1: Almaty
Early arrival to Almaty. Meeting with the guide and transfer to hotel. After short rest city tour: Visit to Republic Square and Monument of Independence. Walk via old city center (today: Square Astana) to the 28 Panfilovtsev Park. Along the Avenue of memory obelisks with names of 28 fighters of the 1075th regiment of the 316th shooting division, accepted unequal battle with German tanks in the winter of 1941 are established during fight for Moscow), Zenkov Cathedral (monument of cult architecture of Christians in Kazakhstan). Also we will visit the Museum of Musical Instruments, Abai Theater. Overnight at the hotel.
The entrance to Golden Room of National Museum is paid by the clients if they prefer to visit this room, about 7-8 USD per person.
Day 2: Almaty – Tamgaly-Tas – Almaty (250 km)
Breakfast in the hotel. Leave Almaty and drive west to visit Tambaly Tas. These Petroglyphs are from various ages, but they mostly date to the Bronze Age. "Paintings" done in the "animal" style of the Saaks are located separately from the ancient Petroglyphs. In some instances, however, they complement them and even overlay them. Medieval petroglyphs images have been hammered out on the hills surrounding the canyon, and in the waterless small canyons . Listed in the UNESCO World Heritage list. Excursion on the site. Drive back to Almaty. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 3: Almaty – Basshi (260 km; 5-6 hours of driving including excursions)
Breakfast in the hotel. Visit Almaty Green Market. Later on transfer to Basshi in Altyn-Emel National Park. On the way we will pass by Kapchigay and Besh Shatyr Necropolis. Excursion. Cross the dam over Ili River and drive around mountains of Altyn-Emel National Park. The name of the park stands for Golden Saddle in Kazakh language. According to the legend, when Genghis Khan was passing by this beautiful land at sunset, the mountains reminded him of a golden saddle. Overnight stay in the family-run guesthouse.
Day 4: Altyn Emel National Park
After breakfast we will drive to the “Singing Dunes” 150 meters high sand dune situated in between two rocky mountain ranges, is a truly spectacular. There are only few of these lonely standing sand dunes in the world. People say when the air is dry enough; wind going through the sand grains emits a noise that resembles organ music. There is a superstition; a dream of the person, who succeeds to climb the top of the dune, will come true; but if the traveler loses his way, he is a greater sinner. Later on visit Aktau Mountains. These colorful chalky hills, formed from bluish-gray sandstone and red clay, interspersed with yellow and pink cornelian, jasper and white quartz, reminiscent of a layer cake Dinner and overnight stay in the family-run guesthouse.
Day 5: Basshi – Charyn – Kegen - Karakol (400 km, 7-8 hours of driving)
After breakfast transfer to Karakol via Charyn Canyon. The Canyon has been described as the Grand Canyon’s little brother. This is not to detract from the sheer splendour of the canyon itself. The vista of dramatic erosion made by the river Charyn below and the elements has created a dramatic and impressive landscape. After the walk in the canyon Kyrgyz-Kazakh border crossing. Arrival to Karakol city. Check in to the hotel. Dinner in Uighur family. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 6 (If it is Sunday, it is possible to visit in additional Sunday animal market in the morning)
Karakol - Jety Oguz - Issyk Kul Lake - Kochkor (280 km, 6 hours of driving)
After breakfast city tour in Karakol with visiting Russian Orthodox Church, Muslim mosque in Dungan Style. Later on transfer to Kochkor village along the southern shore of Issyk-Kul lake, that is the second largest mountainous lake in the world on the altitude of 1607 meters above the sea level. On the way a visit to Jety-Oguz gorge, the place is famous for its red rock formations. On the way optionally an eagle hunting show. Upon arrival to Kochkor dinner and accommodation in the guesthouse.
Day 7: Kochkor – Song - Kul Lake (160 km, 2 hours)
After breakfast a visit to local workshop, that was organized by the local women, they produce the goods of felt. You will take part in the process. Later transfer to Son-Kul Lake that is situated on the altitude of 3016 meters above the sea level. This place is famous among the local people who come here with their cattle and families as here the pastures are very rich. Dinner and overnight in the yurt.
Accommodation: yurt – classic (accommodation by four people in a yurt in a traditional way on mattresses. No beds)
Day 8: Song-Kul – Chon - Kemin (240 km, 4 hours)
After breakfast free time in the lake, it is possible to have a walk in the mountains, or to stroll to the lake, visit local shepherds and taste traditional Kyrgyz drink called Kymyz made of mares’s milk, optionally a horse riding. Lunch in a yurt and later transfer to Chon-Kemin gorge. Dinner and accommodation in mountainous guesthouse. Accommodation in Ashu guesthouse – comfort
Day 9: Chon-Kemin - Bishkek (155 km – 3hrs)
After breakfast transfer to Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan. On the way a visit to Burana Tower, a place on the Great Silk Road dated to 11th century. Upon arrival to Bishkek check in to the hotel. Later a city tour of Bishkek, visit the Central Ala Too Square, Historical Museum, Oak Park. Dinner at the local restaurant. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 10: Bishkek - Airport
Transfer to airport for the flight back home.