Petroglyphs are images carved or scratched into rocks and stones in ancient times, from the Paleolithic period to the middle Ages.
The Cholpon-Ata petroglyphs are an open-air temple where religious ceremonies connected both with the spiritual world and the life of the nomads were performed.
The subjects of the drawings are diverse, but mostly dominated by images of animals: goats, argali, deer, bulls, horses, dogs, wolves, etc. There are scenes of predator attacking animals, scenes of walking and horse hunting, riders on horses and camels, and numerous images of people.
In Kyrgyzstan petroglyphs date between the II Millennium BC and the VIII century AD, with the majority being from the period of VII-III century BC. Petroglyphs tend to be located on or near ancient burial sites.