Kyrgyzstan Landmarks

Skaska Valley

On the southern shore of Lake Issyk-Kul, about 4 kilometers from the village of Tosor, there is an unusual place – Skazka, the fairy tale canyon. The gorge in Kyrgyzstan was named because of its bizarre rocky landscape, which has been transformed into fabulous sculptures and formations by the wind for many years. Some formations in “Skazka” were named after their resemblance to well-known objects. For example, a number of mountain ranges in the gorge are called the “Great Wall of China” because of their resemblance to the Great Wall of China. The mountains also show statues of a hippopotamus, a snake, a dragon, a sleeping giant and even entire castles. Since the different stones have amazing colors, the rock statues are not only because of their unusual shapes,

According to topschoolsintheusa, Bizarre shapes have formed from red sandstone in the Skazka Canyon. During a hike, visitors can look through peepholes, marvel at turrets and towers and discover hidden nooks and crannies. Nature has formed a Chinese wall of sandstone that runs through the entire canyon. Sure-footed tourists with a head for heights can also walk over them. But it is also impressive from below. A special highlight, however, are the colorful mountains: They shine in the colors that are otherwise only known from the autumn months: The color spectrum ranges from yellow tones to red to dark ocher and brown tones. With a little imagination you can see elephants, giants, rhinos and ghosts in the mountain formations. There are no proper trails in Fairy Tale Canyon, but that is exactly what makes this area so special. Here you have the opportunity to stroll around in an almost unchanged bizarre landscape and take wonderful photos.

Issyk Kul lake

The Issykköl Lake is located in the northern Tian Shan Mountains in eastern Kyrgyzstan. Issyk-Kul means “warm lake” in the Kyrgyz language; although it is surrounded by snow-capped peaks, it never freezes over. Lake Issyk-Kul is 182 kilometers long, up to 60 kilometers wide and has an area of ​​6,236 square kilometers. This makes it the second largest mountain lake in the world behind Lake Titicaca in South America. Over 118 rivers and streams flow into the lake; the largest are called Djyrgalan and Tyup. The Issyk Kul lake lies at an altitude of 1,607 meters and reaches a depth of 668 m.
During the Soviet era, the lake became a popular vacation spot with numerous sanatoriums, boarding houses, and vacation homes on its north shore, many of which were concentrated in and around the town of Cholpon-Ata. These experienced difficult times after the dissolution of the USSR. However, the hotel complexes are now being renovated and simple private bed and breakfast accommodations are being set up for a new generation of health and leisure guests. The city of Karakol is the administrative seat of the Issyk-Kul region in Kyrgyzstan. It is located near the eastern tip of the lake and is a good starting point for excursions in the area. Its small old town center contains an impressive wooden mosque and a wooden Orthodox church that was used as a stable during the Soviet era.


Karakol is the fourth largest city in Kyrgyzstan, near the eastern tip of Lake Issyk-Kul. The city is about 150 kilometers from the Kyrgyz-Chinese border and 380 kilometers from the capital Bishkek. Karakol has about 66,000 inhabitants and is the administrative capital of the Issyk-Kul region. The city is culturally shaped by different ethnic groups such as Uzbeks, Russians and of course Kyrgyz people. It therefore offers a great opportunity to discover other nationalities and cultures within a small radius. Karakol is one of the main tourist destinations in Kyrgyzstan and also serves as an ideal starting point for hiking, mountaineering, cycling and skiing.

The famous animal market

One of the largest animal markets in Kyrgyzstan takes place around two kilometers north of Karakol’s center on early Sunday mornings. Locals buy and sell horses and sheep and offer beautiful leather goods for sale. The location of the market in the midst of half-ruined flour mills may seem inconspicuous, but on a clear day the backdrop of the whitewashed mountains is more striking from here than from the city center. Holidaymakers can walk to the bazaar in around 25 minutes from the city center.

The Prevalsky Museum

This museum should not be missed when visiting the city of Karakol. Nikolay Przhevalsky was one of the first Russian geographers to begin detailed studies of the geography, flora, and fauna of the Central Asian countries. From 1870 he arranged four large expeditions to Mongolia, China and Tibet. During his expeditions he revealed the exact direction of the mountain ranges and boundaries of the Tibetan Mountains. He described nature, climate, flora and fauna in the areas he examined and discovered over 200 plant species. Przewalski also gathered an enormous zoological collection that included several thousand species of plants, animals, birds, fish and insects. In 1888, on the eve of his fifth expedition to Central Asia, he died of typhus. The memorial museum was opened in Karakol in 1957.

Karakol Kyrgyzstan

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