Address Bulan-Sogottu

Cottage Number 3

722100 Cholpon-Ata

Kyrgyz Republic

Air bases: 1. US Airforce base in Bishkek (International Manas Airport)

2. Russian Airforce base in Kant (20 km from Bishkek)

Kyrgyzstan is the only country in the world housing both US and Russian military bases

Airfields international airports are found in Bishkek and Alma-Ata

Small airfield close to Cholpon-Ata

Aitmatow Chinghiz Aitmatow, the the best known writer of Kyrgyzstan.

He is said to have written 'the most beautiful love story in the world' (Luis Aragon wrote about Aitmatow´s dissertation: Djamila)

12.12.1928 - 10.06.2008 (died in Nuremberg)

In 1990 became the last Soviet ambassador for Luxembourg

His grave is located close to Bishkek, in the place where his father was executed during the Stalinist purges of 1938

Alma Ata the most important town of Kazakhstan

2 hours drive away from Issyk-Kul

Apostle see Matthew The Apostle
Arrival It is possible to get there from the cities of Bishkek or Alma-Ata (Kazakhstan) by car/taxi/bus

Aurora spa resort

a famous health retreat during the Soviet Union located at the end of the village (15-20 min by foot)

The hotel architecture resembles the naval ship Aurora, from the Revolution of 1905

It is open all year round, complete with bar, steakhouse, park, shopping facilities and automatic tellers (ATM)

Balbal Balbal ancient Turkic standing stones
Bank exchange in the Aurora spa resort(village end)

Automatic teller Aurora spa resort (village end)

Currency exchange in Cholpon-Ata

Barbecue 1. is permitted on the cottage property

2. Barbecuing facilities are in close proximity of the indoor pool (20 m from the cottage)

Base camp see Chan-Tengri and Peak Pobeda
Billiard table 350 Som/h for bookings (phone: 0555202220-Maksim)
Boating boat tours in Cholpon-Ata
Burana Tower the oldest minaret in Kyrgyzstan (11th century)

located in the city of Tokmok

Bulan-Sogottu village housing the hotel complexes Meridian, Aurora etc.

approx. 2 km along Lenin Street

Bus There are several bus stops in the village

Minibus taxis, can be caught in Lenin Street

Car rental can be also rented without driver

Right-hand traffic (drive on right)

Care should be taken on traffic circles / roundabouts: moving in vehicles have right of way. Traffic on traffic circles / roundabouts

goes counterclockwise.

Chaotic traffic behaviour

Zero tolerance for drivers concerning alcohol consumption

Police are corrupt

Caretaker Andrei
Canoes and kayaks are available for rent
Celestial-mountains see Tien-Shan
Child daycare building 9, 2nd floor
Chan-Tengri the most striking summits in Kyrgyzstan (Khan Tengri, Hantengri Feng)

during the Soviet Union the height was given as 6,995-m

recent measurements show the height as 7,010 m

A 7,000 m mountain, Kyrgyzstan's 3rd highest after the Pobeda and Lenin Peaks 

lies on the borders shared with Kazakhstan and China (3-Country-Peak)in 1931 it was first climbed by Ukrainians under Pogrebetzky

Base camp open: July 1 – September 10
China neighboring country of Kyrgyzstan

China built the main roads throughout Kyrgyzstan

the biggest market in Central Asia is found in Bishkek primarily selling Chinese goods

Nearest Chinese border: approx. 200 km

Cholpon-Ata the most important tourist destination in Issyk-Kul

approx. 1 million guests annually

Bars, discos, shops, banks, museums

16 km westerly

Christianity Early Christian monasteries from the 6th Century can be found in Issyk-Kul

is the supposed resting place of Matthew the Apostle

Churches: in Cholpon-Ata, in Karakol

Cleaning/Laundry in the Meridian complex

Socks: 5 Som, T-Shirt: 20 Som, blouse: 30 Som: jeans: 40 Som

Climate continental climate

In summer up to +45°C (Issyk-Kul: +35°C), in winter up to -30°C (Issyk-Kul: -25°C)

248 mm annual rainfall in Cholpon-Ata

Corruption Kyrgyzstan, like the surrounding countries, are fraught with corruption
Currency KGS (Kyrgyzstan Som)

1€ = 78.38 Som (July, 2017)

Daylight hours in winter about 9 hours

(December:  8.30 - 18.00)

Disco 1. Aurora spa resort

2. Kapriz Hotel Complex

3. Cholpon-Ata

Diving PADI-diving base in Cholpon-Ata
Doctor Emergency medical helpline: Phone 103

1. in Meridian resort complex

2. in Aurora spa resort (end of village)

Necessary surgery or advanced medical procedures should be performed before or after visit in Kyrgyzstan

Medicine, bandages and disposable syringes should be brought with

Consult your physician prior to departure concerning any medical queries

Dungan the Chinese Muslims who immigrated to Kyrgyzstan
Electricity 220 V (sometimes less), adaptors are not necessary

occasional electricity failures (typically lasting 2 hours)

Fauna Marco polo sheep, wolves, black vultures, bearded vultures, griffon vultures, snow-leopards, bears, lynxes, bee eaters,

common mynahs, black kite, marmots

Fridge put on warm (teplo), otherwise freezing may occur
Fire department contact: 101
Fireplace lever-operated chimney, opens vertically

Chimney flue closes by 45 ° rotations of the lever

Fish there are typically 3 different types of fish that are sold in Issyk-Kul

Siga (about 4€), salmon trout (about 10€), trout (about 5€)

Fitness moderately equipped gym in the Meridian Hotel

100 Som per person

Flora in the mountains there are a lot of gentians and edelweiss

The biggest walnut forest of the world, however comprising only 4% of woodland area (4,000 m above sea level)

Gas the stove is equipped with electric plates as well as three gas hobs, electric switch for gas

Please notify the caretaker if the gas cylinder is empty

Gas problems: Phone 104

Germans there are less than 17,000 ethnic Germans living in Kyrgyzstan

Comprising of the Volga-Germans (1942) and the earlier Mennonite Germans (since the 16th century)

Main settlements: near to Bishkek (Kant, Krasnaja Rechka)

Groceries 1. found in the Meridian complex

2. numerous shops within the village as well as the petrol stations (24 h)

Gold on the north shore was the site of intensive gold mining but is now largely depleted
Hairdresser 1. in the Meridian Hotel complex (see Massage)

2. in the Aurora spa resort (village end)

Herzen Theodor Herzen (died 29-06-2003 in Hürth near Cologne)

Well-known German artist that lived in Kyrgyzstan


Horse riding available in most villages
Induction stove additionally available for cooking

2 induction cookware is available

Internet 1. reasonably-priced SIM cards available  in the village as well as in Cholpon-Ata

Registration not necessary

2. WiFi in the Aurora spa resort (village end)

Inylchek Glacier the second-longest glacier outside of the polar regions (62 km) in the world

one of the biggest water reservoirs in the world,  oxbow-shaped

the larger southern glacier grows (calves from the Merzbacher lake) while the smaller north glacier shrinks: geological anomaly

Islam currently the dominant religion

during Soviet rule was forbidden to practice

sponsorship from Saudi Arabia (construction of mosques, schools etc.)

contributes to the lowering of alcohol abuse

Issyk-Kul the prime attraction of Kyrghyzstan ("The Pearl of Kyrgyzstan")

the second largest high-altitude mountain lake (after Lake Tititaca)

the fifth-deepest lake (668 m, average: 270 m)

of tectonic origin, still thermally active

1,606 m above sea-level, 182 km long, 58 km maximum width

perennial, never freezes over (summer: 25°C-28°C)

several underwater settlements (water levels rose)

250 km from Bishkek (Frunze)

Rich in minerals and non-radioactive uranium (pH = 7.7)

Kapriz High-rise hotel complex 5 km from Cholpon-Ata

125 rooms / cottages

the second most popular hotel within the Karakol Ski resort (2,300 m height, 120 beds) with a fine-dining restaurant and sauna

spa -  next to ski lift


Karakol town located in the eastern shore

of Issyk-Kul (Prezhevalsk)

1884. Founded as a garnison city by Russian cossacks

Founder: Baron von Kaulbars

100 km away (1,5-2 H journey time) from the Meridian Hotel

Minibus taxi (Marschrut): 100 Som

The best skiing area (12 km, is found within the centre of Karakol, 6 km from the entrance of the national park) with the mountain

hotels and upper ski base (see ski)

old Dungan mosque (nail-free construction method)

old Russian-Orthodox cathedral, Russian blockhouse architecture and ugly Soviet "new buildings"

Kazakhstan 50 km away

Neighboring property/land: Property of the president of Kazakhstan

A gift from the president of Kyrgyzstan

Lenin Monuments of Lenin can be found in several places around Issyk-Kul
Lenin Peak 7,128 m (the second-highest summit of Kyrgyzstan)
Manas Kyrgyz national hero
Manicure see massage (from 500 Som)
Marschrout see Minibus taxi

Main street of the village is named after Lenin

Massage 1. in the Meridian complex, neighboring building

From 1000-1500 Som/h

Massage, paraffin treatment (350 Som), hot-stones, cosmetics, manicures, pedicure, hairdresser

2. in the Aurora spa resort (village end)

Matthew the Apostle

purported to have died in Issyk-Kul

Resting place -possibly in the former Armenian abbey within the village

Merzbacher Gottfried Merzbacher (1843-1926), alpinist, geologist

the most famous German explorer in Kyrgyzstan

A Jewish fur-trader from Munich who sold his shop in 1888 and with the finances dedicated his time to expeditions in the Caucasus

(honourary doctorate) and Tien-Shan range (Royal professor h.c). and amateur geographer, he was the most important cartographer

and explorer of the Tien-Shan range

compiled map of Tien-Shan 1:100.000

first climbed the Inylchek glacier in 1903

could not climb Chan-Tengri, because "Merzbacher-lake" obstructed his access, crossed the Tien-Shan range from the west and arrived in China

Merzbacher Lake one of the most spectacular high-altitude lakes

between the northern and southern foothills of the Inylchek Glacier

6km long and 1 km wide reservoir with the swimming "icebergs"

whose dam burst at the end of July of 2003, and often floods every year around August

Merzbacher Station Global Change Observatory (GCO) at 3,400 m high since 2011

Climate change research station ("Gottfried Merzbacher Station) under the direction of the institute of applied earth sciences in

Bishkek (Alexej Dudashwili) and the geo-research centre of Potsdam (Ulrich Wetzel)

www.dradio.de / dlf / broadcastings / forschak / 1077242/

Meridian New hotel complex in Bulan-Sogottu (village entrance) in Issyk-Kul


many cottages belonging to government officials

Microwave microwaveable dishes without metal should be used
Minibus taxi Marschrut, extremely cheap
Mountaineering Karakol is a starting point for mountaineering tours to Chan-Tengri and Peak Pobeda
Mosque the oldest mosque in the region is found in Karakol (1907)
Museums 1. Cholpon-Ata: Museum complex Ruch Ordo
NABU German Nature and Biodiversity Conservation Union

Runs the only zoo with Kyrgyzstan; inside Karakol


the snow leopard conservation area in Issyk-Kul

Paddleboat/pedalo 500 Som/h (phone: 0555660254 Sergei)
Pamir high mountain within Kyrgyzstan
Pedicure see massage
Petrol approx. 30% of the German petrol price
Pharmacy 1. Lenin street, near the end of the village

2. in Aurora spa resort (end of the village)

Phone country code Kyrgyzstan: 00996

preferential mobile phone network: Beeline

reasonable prices

SIM cards available within the village and in Cholpon-Ata

www.beeline.kg, phone (in English): *611#4 #

Emergency numbers:

Fire department: 101, police: 102, emergency medical helpline: 103, gas problem: 104

Pobeda Peak the highest peak of the Tien-Shan range within Kyrgyzstan (7,493 m)

worldwide the most northern 7,000-m mountain

In 1938 first climbed and named "20 years of Komsomol" (assumed height: 6,930 m)

in 1943 exact measurement ... and named 'Pobeda' = 'Victory Peak' ( victory over Nazi-Germany)

In 1956 the second ascent was completed without knowledge of the first ascent

In 1958: only after the third ascent it became clear that 'Pobeda Peak' is identical

with  "20 years of Komsomol Peak"

Police unreasonable, regular spot-checks of drivers

high frequency of corruption

follow 0 alcohol limit for drivers

Post the nearest postal office in Cholpon-Ata

Stamps sometimes available

Postboxes: none

Postcards in the cottage are for sale (400 Som each)
Radioactivity Safe levels of non-radioactive uranium and radioactive uranium isotopes are found in Issyk-Kul,

corresponding to the natural values and points for non-raised radioactivity by nuclear waste, measurement January, 2014.

Ramadan holidays / fasting period for Muslims
Religion during Soviet rule,  majority were atheist

today approx. 75% Sunni Muslims, 20% Russian Orthodox Christians

as well as, Bukharan Jews, Buddhists, Catholics, Nestorians, Lutherans

Restaurants quite reasonable prices

(Tea: 70 Som, coffee: 70 Som, beer: 80 Som, soup: 250 Som, main course: 500 Som)

Rock paintings near Cholpon-Ata
Russians 12.5% (approx. 600,000) of the population of Kyrgyzstan
Russian language all educated Kyrgyz can speak Russian
Saki a people who settled in Kyrgyzstan 2000 years ago, amongst others
Sailing catamaran (1,000 Som/h), wind surfing (250 Som/h)

(Phone: 0555660254 Sergei)

Sauna 800 Som/h (phone: 0555202220-Maksim)
Semjonow Tien-Shan pioneer, Russian geographer (1856) failed to climb the Inylchek Glacier
Sneezing is impolite, avoid in restaurants
Snow leopard NABU operates a inaccessible conservation area near Issyk-Kul
Ski nearest Ski resort: in Karakol (100 km away, very good)

Skiing opportunities: November - April

0,8-4,5 km downhill, 7-53%

the highest ski lift station: 3,040 m

Ski hotel: 1. Kapriz, www.kapriz.kg (150$ / double room, at 2,300-m height)

2. Upper ski base Karakol. www.karakol-ski.kg

new ski equipment rental: 1,000 Som/day

Sunny days 2,900 annual sunny hours in Cholpon-Ata
Surfing Windsurfing (250 Som/h, phone: 0555660254 Sergei)
Swimming There are 2 swimming beaches belonging to the Meridian resort complex

1. swimming-pool: 100 Som/h (phone: 0555202220-Maksim)

Tax 17 %
Taxi private and official taxis as well as minibus taxis (Marschrut)
Tea staple drink

Etiquette: pour the cup half-full, add more later

Temperature summer: typically during the day 25°C - 30°C

winter: typically during the day-5°C - 5°C (scarcely snow)

Tennis 200 Som/h
Tien-Shan "Celestial mountains"

Running from East-West: Tashkent Gobi Dessert: 2,500 km

Central Tien-Shan predominantly within Kyrgyzstan, east of Issyk-Kul

Tip restaurants often add a gratuity of 10-15%

Taxi drivers expect no tip

Toilets outside of Meridian: outhouse pit toilets -need getting used to

Fee usually 3 Som

often extremely poor conditions

Tours contact: +996550209184 or +996559888006
Train the nearest railway station is in Balukchy, on the east shore of Lake Issyk-Kul

There is a daily train to


TV satellite television
Underfloor heating both bathrooms and the livingroom are equipped with under-floor heating

left counter below: Bath, right counter: Living area

Uzbeks minority in Kyrgyzstan (13.8%, more than Russians)

Uzbek flat bread available in food stores

Uranium rich deposits, the percentage of dissolvable non-radioactive uranium in Issyk-Kul is unusually high (measurement: January, 2014)
Vodka Almost every adult man drinks vodka

Vodka consumption is declining as a result of growth of Islam

Voltage see Electricity
Vaccination standard vaccinations: Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, measles, polio


hepatitis A/B, tick-borne meningoencephalitis, rabies, typhus

Issyk-Kul/Tien-Shan: malaria-free

Wolf high prevalence, are hunted
Yurt tent of the Kyrgyz nomads

a Yurt can be found in the Aurora spa resort