Cycling Issyk-Kul


17 day tour, individually or in small groups, since 2005

Meet the nomads and their culture. Sleep in yurts, the nomadic tents made of felt.
Listen to children sing their folksongs and play the traditional instruments of the Kyrgyz.
Watch kymyz (fermented mare’s milk) being made

During your bike tour there will be plenty of time to enjoy the local nature

A wonderful tour taking in much of the Issyk-Kul region and part of Naryn.
This part of Kyrgyzstan is undoubtably the most beautiful and you will have time to get to know it and some of the people who live there.

About tour

This is a 17 day tour on your own or rented bicycle in a country not often visited by western tourists.

A trip with Ecotour means an unusual and unforgettable vacation. Our trips are suitable for those who do not insist on luxury, love the mountains, appreciate the silence and do not want to travel in large groups.

Level of difficulty – this is not a very difficult tour. The tour passes through mountainous regions with frequent slopes and every now and then a stiff climb (usually graded as 3rd level). If you cycle regularly, are in good physical condition and are not scared of a short climb, then this trip is perfect for you. With regular breaks and the different activities available on this tour it is well within the scope of a reasonably experienced biker.

Accommodation – the tour takes you around the south side of Lake Issyk Kul. You will stay in hotels, guesthouses, with local families and in yurts.

Travelling in a group – a group consists of a minimum of 4 and a maximum of 8 participants. The cycling distances per day are between 60 and 95 km. If necessary you can ride along in the minibus. Your luggage will be transported by minibus, along with the interpreter, and will be within reach during the whole trip.

Rest days – we have planned sufficient days of rest during the trip. During these days you will have the opportunity to explore the countryside or nearby towns and villages, and go for a hike or ride a horse.

Bicycle – Ideally you should bring your own bicycle. However, bicycle rental is available. As many of the roads are often in a bad condition we advise you to bring a good mountain bike or a strong trekking bike. You also have to bring your own helmet and orange or yellow safety jacket

Day By Day Programme

Here you can find a detailed description of the tour with routes and locations

  Day 1Departure from your local airport.
  Day 2Arrival at Manas Airport where you will be met and taken to your hotel. After lunch preparation of bicycles followed by some sightseeing in Bishkek with your guide/interpreter. Stay in hotel.
  Day 3By minibus first to the Burana Tower near Tokmok. We will visit the remnants of a town at the Silk Road. Here we start cycling over a secondary rather flat road to Kemin, (45 km ) from there by car to Cholpon Ata, a niche resort at the north sid of the lake. Stay in hotel.
  Day 4Cycle along the north side of Lake Issyk-Kul to Oruktu, a small village with an open-air hot spa, close to the edge of the lake. We can take a bathe here and will stay in a guesthouse near the spa. 68 km cycling over a good asphalt road.
  Day 5Continue along the north side of the lake. After 77 km we arrive in Karakol. This is a friendly town at the east side of the lake. Sightseeing in Karakol. Places of interest that are worth visiting include the Dungan Mosque and the Russian Orthodox Cathedral. Stay in hotel.
  Day 6We cycle from Karakol along the south side of Lake Issyk-Kul to the turn off to Jeti Ogus. This is one of the most beautiful gorges in Kyrgyzstan located at the altitude of 2.200 m. We will see famous red rocks the “Seven Bulls” and the “Broken Heart”. Many legends are told about these rock formations. In the small village there is an old Russian Spa. If one wants to take a bath or have a massage, this is possible to arrange. Back to the main road and continue to Jenish. Stay in a guesthouse near the lake. Total 31 + 55 km.
  Day 7Daytrip – discover the valleys around Jenish, total 62 km, of which 28 km asphalt. Visit a hot spa and take a bath. Stay in guesthouse.
  Day 8To Sonun, a yurt camp in a semi desert area. Stop for a short hike in the Fairy Tale Canyons. About 79 km. Stay in yurts.
  Day 9Leisure day in yurt camp. The lake is very close and it is possible to go swimming.  Stay in yurts.
  Day 10Cycle to the village of Bokonbaevo, 18 km and at an altitude of 1.600 m. After 3 km again asphalt road. We will stop to meet a man who hunts with golden eagles and to see his bird(s), and then into the mountains to the yurt camp at Temir-Kanat, 20 km of partly asphalt road. From the village of Temir-Kanat to the yurt camp is a short steep climb where you will have to walk up. Stay in yurts.
  Day 11Leisure day in yurt camp, time to relax, hike, ride horses. Stay in yurts.
  Day 12Today again a rather short cycling part. From Temir-Kanat into the Kongur Olung Valley over a reasonably good asphalt road to the village Toguz-Bulak. We will stay in this nice village and have time to hike some or help cooking Kyrgyz meal.
  Day 13Continue through the valley and turn to the main road along the river. At the village of Kyzyl-Tuu a local family will show how they make yurt frames and yurt decorations. We will have lunch with this family. Over the next couple of km you will slowly climb to 2.200 m (false flat), and then descend again to 1.700 m. In the village Kara-Tala we will spend the night with a local family. (50 km cycling).
  Day 14Leave Kara-Tala, and cycle through a pleasant canyon but over a bad road, 35 km. Then over an asphalt road to Kochkor (1.800 m), a centre of felt making. Total 97 km. Stay in B&B.
  Day 15From Kochkor to Boom, 48 km alongside a water reservoir and over a pass at 2.100 m, then down. Here the minibus will be waiting for you. Asphalt road. By minibus to Bishkek. Stay in hotel.
  Day 16Free day for shopping, visiting the Osh Bazaar etc. Lunch is not included. A cycling tour in Bishkek will also be possible. Stay in hotel.
  Day 17Transfer to Manas airport and departure.

Due to unforeseen circumstances, it might be necessary to make small changes in the program.
We ask for your understanding.

Tour specifics

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.

June 9June 25
4 and more persons
For four and more persons
price€ 1.345 pp 
For two persons
price€ 1.795 pp

For bookings of 4, or more, persons we offer a 5% discount. In case there are less participants than required, if you pay an additional fee, the trip will go on as planned.

Terms of payment

Your booking will be confirmed upon receipt of a deposit of euros 250 per person.  The outstanding balance must be paid either 8 weeks before departure or in cash upon arrival.  We do not accept debit or credit cards.

• Transportation by minibus
• Transfer from and to the airport
• All meals, breakfast, lunch and supper
• Stay in hotel, B&B, guesthouse, yurt and homestay
• Program as described
• English/German (as required) speaking guide/interpreter

• Flight
• Insurances
• Personal expenses
• Entrance charges if applicable
• Tips
• Alcoholic and other bottled beverages
• Activities not mentioned in the program

If you have to cancel a tour you already booked, we have to charge you a cancellation fee.
If Ecotour cancels the tour, of course you will get back the full amount you paid.
If you cancel your trip, depending on the time your message reaches us, you owe Ecotour the following amount:

till 42 days before departureone pay the deposit
day 42-till day 2835%
day 28-till day 2140%
day 21-till day 1450 %
day 14-till day 575%
day 5 – till day 290%
on the last day before and the day of departure100%

A trip with Ecotour means an unusual and unforgettable vacation.
Our trips are suitable for those who do not insist on luxury, love the mountains,
appreciate the silence and do not want to travel in large groups.


Kyrgyzstan is a land full of beautiful experiences and wonders unique…
click the link below

Mountain passes, bad tracks, off-road, and firm climbs over 3000 m characterize this route.
Not all slopes are steep, but some are very long and on dirt roads.
But it is worth the effort.