FAQ

What language do poeple speak in kyrgyzstan ?

Maybe the most important question and the respond is a little more difficult than usually !

The official language is Kyrgyz. For 80% of the population, Kyrgyz is a native or second language. At the same time, as in all post-Soviet countries, most local residents are fluent in Russian, which also has the status of an official language in Kyrgyzstan. Unfortunately, English is not so widely distributed among the population, as, for example, Russian. You should also know that the population of the Uzbek nationality prevails in the south of the country, so if your route passes through the Osh or Jalal-Abad regions, do not be too surprised to hear the Uzbek speech here.

The Kyrgyz language belongs to the Turkic language group. Currently, there are more than 16 nations in the world that are related to it. Therefore, if you are a little acquainted with one of the Turkic languages, for example, Turkish, Kazakh or Tatar, be sure, you will easily understand in Kyrgyzstan. During the trip, we strongly recommend that you communicate more with the local population in order to better understand the identity and diversity of nomadic culture. A knowledge of a pair of universal phrases in the Kyrgyz language will greatly facilitate your stay in Kyrgyzstan, help you to make friends and make you a welcome guest in any family.

Do i need a visa to go there ?

To fulfill your dream on a journey through the country of the Great Silk Road is easier than you think! In 2012, Kyrgyzstan opened its borders to 45 countries around the world. At present, the visa-free regime for up to 60 days is still for Austria, Australia, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Vatican, Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Hungary, Germany, the Netherlands, Greece, Denmark, Iceland, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Canada, the Republic of Korea, Kuwait, Latvia, Lithuania, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, New Zealand, Norway, United Arab Emirates, Poland, Portugal, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, USA, Finland, France, Croatia, Czech Republic, Switzerland , Sweden, Estonia, Qatar, Brunei Darussalam, Bahrain and Japan. This means that citizens of these states can enter, leave, follow transit, move and stay on the territory of Kyrgyzstan without a visa on one of the valid documents.

Citizens of Belarus, Kazakhstan, Russia, Tajikistan, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Moldova, as well as Vietnam, North Korea, Cuba and Laos can freely travel around Kyrgyzstan. In addition, the visa-free regime operates in the country for Malaysian citizens (up to 30 days), Turkey (up to 30 days), Ukraine (up to 90 days), Uzbekistan (up to 60 days) and Mongolia (up to 90 days).

In addition, currently the simplified visa regime in Kyrgyzstan applies to citizens of the following countries: Bulgaria, Israel, Cyprus, Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Montenegro, Andorra, Argentina, Brazil, Thailand, Mexico, San Marino, the Philippines, Albania, Brazil, Indonesia, the Republic of South Africa, Chile, Venezuela and Oman. From which it follows that the citizens of the above-mentioned countries can obtain entry visas for Kyrgyzstan for a period of up to one month on the basis of personal appeals.

E-visa is a good option to travelers that from a country that are not listed in visa free countries. You can apply and get your visa online on http://www.evisa.e-gov.kg/

Maybe vaccines ?

No mandatory requirements for entry into Kyrgyzstan and no vaccinations are officially required. In short, no danger but it is always better to be in good standing with your vaccines!

How i can us my phone to communicate during my trip to Kyrgyzstan ?

Of course, there many wifi point in the capital and in the hotels and guesthouse. We also can provide you a kyrgyz sim card with a full connection in 4G. The country code for international call is + 996.

What about safety in kyrgyzstan ?

Perhaps this is the most frequently asked question, which interested travelers. Perhaps you did not know, but in 2015 Kyrgyzstan entered the list of countries safe for travel according to the British edition of “Telegraph”, therefore, it is safe to travel here. In addition, the Kyrgyz people themselves are quite friendly and always ready to help any tourist, if you need to specify the road or give some advice.

Of course, in spite of the fact that Kyrgyzstan is considered a hospitable country you need to observe the basic rules of safety while you are here: 

  • Carry a copy of your passport at all times. You can store the original in the hotel safe. Almost all hotels have them in their rooms.
  • It is better not to carry large amounts of cash with you, especially if you are going for a walk. This applies to both the city and the countryside. It is best to take some cash with you for unforeseen expenses.
  • In places of large crowds (markets, public transport, etc.) take security measures to protect your documents and money.
  • If a police officer approached you on the street to check documents, he must present a service certificate at your request. You need to show your passport.
  • If there are suspicions of abuse of authority by internal affairs officers, try to clarify the name, rank, place of work of the employee and inform the embassy or the internal affairs body of Kyrgyzstan about this.
  • If you have been fined illegally, detained, arrested, seized or spoiled your documents, you have the right to demand a meeting with your embassy staff in Kyrgyzstan.
  • If you arrived in Kyrgyzstan for extreme sports, you need to register with the Ministry of Emergency Situations of the Kyrgyz Republic and notify your embassy about the composition of your tourist group and the itinerary.
  • Carefully study the security measures of staying in the mountains. Obey and follow the advice of guides and guides.
  • Be careful when crossing roads. Fasten your seat belts on all trips around the country.
  • If you rent a car, do not leave valuables in it.
  • On Lake Issyk-Kul, the safety of tourists during the preparation and conduct of the tourist season is provided by the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the country. During this period, the country's law enforcement agencies expose the mobile posts of the road patrol service (DPS) from the fixed Kordai-Bishkek-Balykchy-Cholpon-Ata-Karakol post.
  • Discard visits to nightlife without guides
  • In case of emergency, you can always call 101 (fire service), 102 (police), 103 (emergency medical service), 104 (gas emergency service) or simply dial 112 (a single emergency response number).
  • In addition, embassies can also be a good support in case you have special formalities or need any legal advice. Since Kyrgyzstan is a tourist country, Bishkek has 25 embassies of the world's main countries, where tourists come from. For example, here you can find the addresses and contacts of the embassies of the USA, Germany, France, Great Britain, China and Republic of Korea, etc. 

What is the religion in Kyrgyzstan ?

Kyrgyzstan is a secular state. The dominant religion in the country is Islam, 85% of the population profess it, the remaining 15% refer to Christians. Also in the country there are small groups of Baptists, Pentecostals, Adventists, Bahá'ís Faith, Jews and Buddhists. Despite the fact that the overwhelming majority of the population is Muslim, in Kyrgyzstan there are no strict rules regarding clothes, so tourists can wear absolutely everything. The exception is the mosque, which cannot be entered without a T-shirt, in shorts or any other unsuitable clothing. At the entrance to the temple, shoes must be removed. 

And about the population ?

The population of Kyrgyzstan is over 6 million. Ethnically the peoples in Kyrgyz Republic are Kyrgyzs (73%), Uzbeks (14%), Russians (5%) and others

Can i take pictures of everything in Kyrgyzstan ?

No difficulty is put in the way of visitors who wish to photograph places of historic interest. Photography inside some religious monuments and in airports, railway stations or near military installation may not be allowed. If in doubt, ask your local guide. Please also note that there is a fee for photography in most sightseeing places.

 

What sort of weather can i expect ?

Kyrgyzstan is an ideal place for traveling. As a rule, sunny, clear weather is established in the country in early spring and lasts until late autumn. The annual number of hot days is 247 days, which is approximately 2,900 sunny hours. However, in summer, showers and rains are quite rare. The best time for tourism is from the beginning of May to the end of September.

The climate of Kyrgyzstan is sharply continental and is caused by three factors - mountainous terrain, remoteness of the country from the sea and its location in the center of Eurasia. Typical features of this type of climate are hot, dry summers (+ 20 C to + 38.4 C) and cold, snowy winters (+1 C to -25 C). At the same time, the duration of the day in June is 15 hours, and in December - 9 hours.

If the route of your trip passes through the mountains, and most likely it will be, since most of the territory of Kyrgyzstan is located in the mountains of the Tien-Shan and Pamir-Alai mountains, you should take with you not only sunscreen, glasses, hiking boots, but and a sweater. The fact is that in the daytime in the mountains it is very hot, but with sunset without warm things cannot do. In general, for each category of tours our guides have elaborated an universal list of belongs necessary for travel on https://www.baibol.kg/tourism-in-kyrgyzstan/things-to-take.pdf, please use it as a guide.

Is it safe to drink tap water ?

The first thing you need to know is that drinking tap water is safe, almost all over Kyrgyzstan. For travelers, this means that they do not have to spend money on buying bottled water, but perhaps, that strongly recommended in the first days, until your body adapts.

And about the kitchen, what should I expect ?

As for food, Kyrgyzstan is a real oasis of a wide variety of culinary offerings. Here you will find cafes and restaurants offering not only National or Oriental cuisine, but also dishes of European cuisine. At the same time, you can be absolutely sure that all dishes will be made from fresh and natural products, since it is not customary in Kyrgyzstan to use GMO.

The national cuisine of the country is characterized by an abundance of meat dishes, which can be enjoyed at dinner, in any chaikhana, snack bar, cafe or restaurant, where you will be offered a traditional beshbarmak, kuurdak, manty (steamed meat), rice with meat) or lagman (an adapted version of the Japanese ramen). Choosing from exotic dishes it is better to stop your choice on an incredibly tasty dish of hunters - tash-kordo.

World fast food chains are not very common in Kyrgyzstan, but their local counterparts, offering hamburgers and hot dogs, you can find almost at every step. Also, we recommend you to taste tasty and useful national drinks: kumis, shoro, chalap etc.

What is the best way to change my money in Kyrgyzstan ?

You will be surprised, but in Kyrgyzstan you can exchange currency almost anywhere and at any time of the day. And this applies not only to Bishkek, where commercial and state banks, as well as currency exchange offices come across almost at every step, but also remote provinces. In general, the sale and purchase of currency, as well as money transfers are carried out in dollars, euros, British pounds sterling, Turkish lira, Chinese yuan, Russian rubles and Kazakh tenge. Most banks on weekdays are open from 9:00 to 17:00, while small currency reception offices are open around the clock.

The national currency in Kyrgyzstan is the som. The som rate is floating and set by the National Bank in relation to the main foreign currencies. The country uses money in nominal value: banknotes - 20, 50, 100, 200, 500, 1000, 5000 soms.

There is ATM's available in Kyrgyzstan ? Are credits cards accepted ?

The majority of banks and hotels accept Visa and MasterCard. Many shops only accept cash, though some may take cards. Smaller cities and rural regions accept payments almost entirely in cash (Kyrgyz soms). ATMs can be found in cities in larger towns, but not in small villages. ATMs will accept most major cards, and there are no restrictions on ATM usage as in other countries (beyond a daily limit that depends on cards). Currency exchanges are also prevalent, and generally have a reasonable exchange rate.

Do i need to get an inssurance before leaving ?

As this kind of services in Kyrgyzstan is still developing, it is advisable to be insured at home by your local insurance company. Since this year, we have builded a partnership with Mondial Assistance. You can suscribe easely on this link : ...........

Did you know some good places to go out in Bishkek ?

Of course !