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Horse tour around Son-Kul lake

Tour Country:



9 days

Price per person:

870-1875 USD

About tour:

On this 9-day program you will visit two of the most beautiful parts of the country. You will experience the reality of everyday life in a mountain village.  During the tour you stay 2 nights in a nice guesthouse and 3 nights in a yurt camp in Son-Kul.  The trip will take you first to the Chon Kemin valley at the border with Kazakhstan and next to a plateau at 3100m with the second largest lake of Kyrgyzstan. Due to the high altitude it will be cold here at night, even in summer, so bring warm clothes.

This horse-riding program is also suitable for those who do not have much experience in horse riding. Because you make day trips and return to the guesthouse or yurt camp for the night, it is possible to prolong or shorten the daily hours of riding. An experienced horse guide ride along and if necessary, can give instructions about how to ride.

Transportation is by minibus and an English-speaking guide/interpreter will accompany you for the whole tour.

Tour program:

Day 1 – Home Airport

Departure from your home town.

Day 2 – Bishkek city tour

Arrival at Manas Airport, here our guide/ interpreter will wait for us. Transfer to the hotel in Bishkek. After some rest and lunch, sightseeing in Bishkek. You can visit the Old Square and walk along the oldest park in Bishkek – Oak Park. Passing by the National Opera and Ballet Theatre you will get to Victory Square build for the 40th anniversary of the victory in the Great Patriotic War (second world war).

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Accommodation: hotel Umai or equivalent.

Day 3 – Bishkek – Chon-Kemin valley

By Mercedes Minivan to Chon Kemin valley. The Chon Kemin Valley is a beautiful valley and only about 2 hours from Bishkek. This east-west valley stretches for many km. into the mountains. It is rich in agriculture and forestry, an ideal place for riding and trekking. The location of your guesthouse is at the edge of the forest. After lunch you can start horse riding for about 4 hours.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Accommodation: guesthouse.

Day 4 – Chon-Kemin valley – Green lake

Horse riding in Chon-Kemin is a valley.  In 1997 a National Park was established here with a total area of 5,000 hectares. It includes all the forests of the Kemin District and is inhabited with unique species of flora and fauna. Horse riding today in the mountains, it is possible to ride to the Green Lake at 3200m. Picnic lunch. Return to the guesthouse in the afternoon.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Accommodation: guesthouse

Day 5 – Orto-Tokoy – Kochkor – Son-Kul – Kalmak-Ashuu pass

Leave Chon Kemin after breakfast and through the Boom gorge to the turn off to the Kubaky Pass (2160m).  Soon after the pass you will see the water reserve of Orto-Tokoy and descend to the road to Kochkor. Kochkor is the centre of felt making, the women from the surrounding village have started a cooperative shop where they sell their products. It is interesting to visit this shop, named Altyn Kol (means golden hands). From here continue to Son-Kul. After 50 km over a good asphalt road you turn into the Tolok valley. Through a very scenic landscape you drive up to the Kalmak Ashuu pass (3446m.)  and after another 50 km you will see the lake. You will stay in a yurt camp at the north side of the lake. In the afternoon already some time to do some horse riding.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Accommodation: yurts.

Day 6 and 7 – Son-Kul lake

On these 2 days you can ride up in the mountains or around the lake and meet the herdsmen living here and taste kymus, fermented mare milk and a delicatessen for the Kyrgyz people.

Son-Kul lake is 29 kilometres long and 18 wide with an average depth of 13 metres. It is located on a wide plateau surrounded by mountains that are around 4,000m high.  There are many shepherd families on the plateau and they spend their whole summer here with their cattle, sheep and yaks. In the winter months no one is allowed to live here, this also means there are no permanent buildings. It is not a place for swimming or bathing, around the shore it is muddy and mostly moor.

When the sun disappears behind the mountains, it soon gets cold. There are small stoves in yurt, but still warm clothes are needed.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Accommodation: yurts.

Day 8 – Bishkek 

Departure for Bishkek.  On the way you will visit he Burana Tower and museum, not far from the town of Tokmok – an architectural complex of the 10e century which survived from the times of the Great Silk Road. In the middle ages it was a city of Balasagun that was the capital of the Karachanid Khaganate – a Turkish dynasty of that time. You will see the 24 meter minaret and mausoleums which were reconstructed also see Balbal, grave stones from the middle ages.  Arrive in Bishkek in the afternoon.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Accommodation: hotel Umai or equivalent.

Day 9 – Manas airport

Transfer to the airport and depature.


Your luggage will be in the accompanying transport.

Equipment: For this trip you will need the following: 4 season sleeping bag, walking boots, waterproof jacket and trousers, fleece jacket or similar, warm hat and gloves, sunglasses, 2 x 1 liter water bottles, sun cream. A down jacket, pair of sandals, swimming suit and are recommended.

  • • Transfer from the airport and back
  • • Accommodation in Bishkek (including early check-in)
  • • Transportation by minibus
  • • All meals, breakfast, lunch and supper
  • • Stay in yurts and guesthouse
  • • Horses to ride in Chon Kemin and Son-Kul
  • • Horse guide
  • • Program as described, English speaking guide/interpreter
Does not include
  • • Insurances
  • • Personal expenses
  • • Tips
  • • Alcoholic and other bottled beverages
  • • Activities not mentioned in the programme


Fixed price per person



    About the company

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