Day Trip to Ala Archa from Bishkek

The entrance to the National Park

As part of the Deputy Minister of Culture wanting me to see as much of Kyrgizstan before leaving she said that I would have her driver at my disposal the whole last day.

She advised me to go to Ala Archa, a National Park about 50kilometers from Bishkek, which I thought was a good idea. The park also seemed easily enough to visit on public transport, by first taking a mashrutka to the gate and hitchhike from there, but this was was way more comfortable where we could stop and take prictures along the way.

If you have days at your disposal you can trek and camp for days in the Ala Archa Canyon, visiting lakes, mountain tops and waterfalls, but I was going on a night bus to Osh and only had the day. I ended up walking on the paths between the parking the river where locals were having picnics and horses were walking around freely. Climbing a massive rock for some views of the valley was the last thing I managed to do before I had to head back for my onwards transport to Osh.