Kyrgyzstan road trip : The Ultimate 3-Week Travel Guide and itinerary

Our travel guide to discover Kyrgyzstan overland by 4×4, van, motorbike or bicycle

Kyrgyzstan, which means “the land of the Kyrgyz”, is a small jewel in the middle of Central Asia. Crossed by the Celestial Mountains, this small mountainous country is home to vast wilderness areas steeped in a thousand-year-old nomadic culture.

In this article, we give you some precious tips and practical information to organize your road-trip in Kyrgyzstan!

Travel guidebook about Kyrgyzstan, central Asia : 24 of the best off-road routes
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Hello! We're Olivia & Victor, authors of the OunTravela guides.

Over the years, our passion for adventure has led us to create original travel guides sold in over 70 countries worldwide. Our mission is to spread a travel philosophy based on adventure, freedom, improvisation and exploration. Our guides inspire travelers to explore the world's forgotten paths, encountering wilderness and civilizations.
We hope you find this article, based on our own experience, useful.
Happy reading!

Why travel to Kyrgyzstan?

Traversed by the Celestial Mountains and the famous Silk Road, Kyrgyzstan is a diverse country of wild beauty. Peppered with dizzyingly high peaks reaching up to 7,000m, the land sprawls amongst a magnificent backdrop of green mountains, offering beautiful vistas populated by the sleek outline of horses and the white yurts typical of local nomadic tribes. From desert steppes to wide valleys crafted by time and erosion, this small landlocked country in Central Asia is an ideal destination for an adventure off the beaten paths.

Kyrgyz people hospitality is unforgettable. Their yurts’ door is always open to you and they’re always willing to share some heat, a cup of tea, hot bread or a bowl of vodka… despite the language barrier (main spoken languages there are Kyrgyz and Russian)!

Given the topography of the country, the use of 4×4 is essential: stony tracks, rivers to cross, snowy passes… Nevertheless, these are the same tracks that will allow you to access beautiful, rarely visited areas and locals for whom you will be a curiosity. It is also possible to do horse trekking, which is a funny way to experience nomadic life in the mountains. We have some local guides to recommend on our dedicated page: Horse riding in Kyrgyzstan.

Our travel guide book : Explore Kyrgyzstan

Accompanied by our loyal comrades – a hardy Toyota Land Cruiser nicknamed “Mr Wolf” and the valiant Yamaha 600 XT, “Mrs Crocodile” – we have been exploring Kyrgyzstan since 2017. Our time in this country and with its inhabitants has forever left its mark on us, so much so that we decided to write a book about it! We are convinced that the hospitality of the Kyrgyz people and the beauty of their country will leave a lasting impression on you. Designed like a roadbook, and illustrated with a multitude of maps and photos, EXPLORE KYRGYZSTAN  is both a tool and guide for independent travellers who wish to discover, understand, and visit Kyrgyzstan.

It is up to you to pick from this selection based on your desires and time constraints. Use this guide to build a personalised itinerary of your own, but do remember to let the Kyrgyz natural hospitality and any spur-of-the-moment decisions sway and tempt you.
We recommend including at least one day of outdoor activities to your itinerary (hiking on foot or horseback, rock climbing, white water rafting, etc.) to turn this trip into an unforgettable adventure!

Savage Kingdom
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How to organise your trip in Kyrgyzstan?