|Legend has it that when God had created the world he called all the people together and gave each people a piece of land to live. The Kyrgyz, however, did not appear as they had fallen asleep. When they woke up, they were shocked to discover that all the land had been given away and that nothing was left. They went to God and beseeched Him to give them a piece of land also. So God looked around, over the whole world, but could not find a piece of land which He had not already given away. Finally He said “All the land has already been allocated, except for one small piece. That piece is so beautiful however that I wanted to keep it for Myself, but I will give it to you.” And that piece of land now is called Kyrgyzstan.
Discover the hospitality of the Kyrgyz people and enjoy the amazing beauty of our nature.
Discover Kyrgyzstan with Ecotour.
Let us show you our country - on horseback, bicycle or foot through a variety of tours. Each of our tours is of a specific nature and yet, except for one or two exclusions, has the flexibility to be adapted to our customer’s individual requirements.
Back in 1998 we, Elmira and Samira (two Kyrgyz sisters), conceived and created Ecotour. When we created Ecotour there were three over-riding principles that we adopted, and these principles are still paramount today.
Firstly we are proud of our country and heritage, and we wish for people everywhere to get to know our country and our people. Secondly we also feel that it is important to follow good ecological principles, for our benefit and the world as a whole. Finally we want to see many people benefitting from our efforts and so community-based tourism prevails in all our activities.
Our tours are many and varied (see 2019 schedule) and each year we develop some new tours and programmes.
New programmes for 2019:
• We offer 2 new botanical programs: searching for Wild Tulips (April 14- 28) and a botanical tour May 26 – June 6 2019.
• Several new cycling and mountain bike programs, with easy, medium, difficult and very difficult itineraries. A tour for e-bikes is added to the programs, bikes for rent in Bishkek.
• A new 2 week hiking program near Son-Kul.
• A short roundtrip, with visit of the highlights of the country and festival in July.
• Come to us by train, not by plane. Less CO2 and more pleasure (more information on request).
Our tours can be organized for individual travelers or groups of up to 10 people (and sometimes more) and for families with (young) children. For the majority of our tours you can specify the start date and length of the tour.
We offer active holidays that require a good physical condition, relaxed tours with more comfort and thematic tours, like textile and botanical tours 2019. Overnight stays will be in hotels, B&B’s, guesthouses, with local families, tents and of course in yurts, the nomadic dwellings made out of felt. Guests who have specific dietary requirements (i.e. vegetarian, gluten free, etc.), can also take part in most of our programs.
In central Bishkek we have our own hotel, UMAI. Here we offer warm, friendly and comfortable accommodation, rooms with a/c, satellite TV, free Wifi and private toilet facilities along with good meals.
Our ambition is to awaken within you an interest in Kyrgyzstan and the tours organized by the Ecotour team, and we hope that one day we will meet each other in our country. We are looking forward to seeing you.
In an oasis of Central Asia...
Deserts and steppes are characteristic for the nature of Central Asia. The mountain chains of the Tien-Shan with Issyk-Kul lake at its heart is an oasis in the middle of this arid region. Issyk-Kul lake (180 km long and 60 km wide, max. depth 668 m) is the second largest high mountain lake in the world. The lake is 1,600 m above sea level and is surrounded by mountain ranges with altitudes up to 7,439 m. A combination of extreme depth, thermal activity and mild salinity means the lake never freezes. Within a 4 hour car journey of the lakeshore you can see many different landscapes; semi-deserts, steppes, mountain meadows and forests, sub alpine and alpine meadows, snowdrifts and glaciers. They are inhabited by many species, some of which are threatened by extinction the snow leopard, the Marco Polo sheep and the Ibisbill being the best known.
...an old nomadic culture has survived
The traditional culture of the Kyrgyz people has survived throughout time. In summer some of them go into the mountains with their yurts and their livestock in order to take advantage of the lush summer pastures, and where they live in harmony with nature - secluded from “civilization” - as they did thousands of years ago. The Kyrgyz are very hospitable people to whom time is not important.