If you’re planning a trip to Kyrgyzstan and wondering what things to do in Bishkek then we’ve got you covered!
Any visit to Kyrgyzstan will bring you to Bishkek. Nestled in the north of the country, close to the Kazakh border, Bishkek is the furthest capital city from an ocean.
As you land at Manas Airport you may be lucky enough to spot snow-capped peaks on the outskirts of the nation’s capital. Such views and the epic hiking trails that accompany them are what draw many to this landlocked nation.
Some of these lie just a stone’s throw from the nation’s capital. Meaning that if your time here is short you will still be able to get your hiking boots muddy.
Bishkek is a great place to plan out your trip. Certain hiking trails may be inaccessible due to weather conditions. Bishkek’s CBT and the Trekking Union of Kyrgyzstan will be able to help in this area.
The heart of Bishkek is not particularly big, therefore you will spend most of your time on foot. Public transport is limited, but picking up a taxi is pretty easy. For longer trips, it may be worth booking through your accommodation or negotiating at the bus station.
READ MORE: Be sure to check out our guide for travelling in Kyrgyzstan to help you plan your entire visit there!
The Best Things to do in Bishkek
For many travellers, Bishkek is not what draws travellers to Kyrgyzstan. That being said there is certainly enough to do in and around Bishkek to keep you occupied for a couple of days at least.
Let’s check out some of the best things to do in Bishkek.
1) People watch at Ala-Too Square
The main square in the centre of Bishkek. Home to protests in times gone by, this is the nominal centre of Bishkek. A statue of Manas, the hero of the epic 500,000 line poem of the same name, stands triumphantly in the centre.
This poem holds a special place amongst Kyrgyzstan’s population, and as result you will hear quite a bit amount Manas during your time in Kyrgyzstan.
Next to the statue of Manas is a gigantic flag pole which is raised on a regular basis throughout the day. Behind both is an excellent piece of brutalist architecture, the State History Museum.
In the evening the square fills with skaters, couples and families enough an evening under the squares lights.
2) Wash the World Away at the Zhirgal Banya
One of the great bathing traditions alongside Japanese onsen’s and…