Story: ‘Kyrgyz are one of the ancient Turkic peoples of Central Asia, who inhabited the mountains and valleys of the Yenisey and Altay regions and later the Tien Shan mountains. For hundreds of centuries, they led a nomadic life, their socio-political organization was based on tribal confederacy and their economy was centered on animal husbandry. Kyrgyz became sedentary involuntarily after the 1930s when Stalin introduced the sedentarization policy to establish Soviet rule among the various nomadic tribes of Central Asia.’
“Horses are a man’s wings” ~ Kyrgyz proverb
“Only a horse and an agreeable conversation can shorten a long journey” ~ Kyrgyz Proverb
“If you are given only one day’s life, spend half of it in the saddle” ~ Kyrgyz Proverb
KYRGYZSTAN // A mini portrait
Quote: “The value of your homeland is known once you’re in another place”
Population: ~ 5 million
Home to more than 90 nationalities: Kyrgyz, Uzbeks, Kazakhs, Tajiks, Russians, Ukrainians, Germans, Uighurs, Dungans (Chinese Muslims), Koreans and others.
Onwards, the car hurtled on bumpy roads past little villages, with colourful rooftops. All a blur, my camera busy capturing time before it succumbs to modernity.
As we drew closer to Ala Archa, wild horses bounced onto the road. They were curious, & trotted closer to our car. It was a herd of horses on their very own little adventure, with manes of deep chocolate & black.
Horse riding is popular in Kyrgyzstan, as throughout Central Asia. There are various horse trek activities available lasting for days to a couple of weeks.
We passed through several valleys, with breath taking vistas. Deep gorges, with islands of juniper trees scattered over grand spans of land.
Clear mountain streams gushing over rocks, from one bendy corner to another.
Bishkek, has a distinct soviet feel to it, from the moment you walk off the plane. Lot’s of Russian influence, given it’s history. Massive roads, some lined with rows of birch trees, communist symbolism, & austere architecture. It does feel like going back in time.
Even though Bishkek is rather undeveloped, the nature in beyond the city is one of extreme raw beauty. It’s not for everyone, with it’s harsh conditions. For those with a love for nature & hiking it is definitely worth checking out.
I lost some of my pics. Going through the remaining pictures brings back an urge to go back, & rediscover the land. Hurry up next Summer!
Where has your most memorable travel experience been?