"Central Asia, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan" Top 5 Page for this destination Bishkek Travelogue by Upstate1NY

Bishkek Travel Guide: 120 reviews and 327 photos

Images of a capital

The capital of any country will have monuments and memorials to moments in it's history and the heroes of those moments.
Bishkek is no different, in fact if it did not have them, then it would be different. The fact that it had what one might expect was familiar, only the setting was different. Yet as an expression of the people it was still quite significant.
Regrettable I had not come to Bishkek to be a tourist in the usual sense so I was not as well equipped or prepared to discover significant local events and history as I should have been.

Victiory celebrated

I was mildly surprised to see a monument with what I would believe was a female angel. I regret I lack knowledge about Islam. The Kyrgyz Republic is 86% Muslim, while I had no doubt I would see and meet people of faith in the God of Abraham, I wish I understood more about what I was seeing. I lacked knowledge to give context and really understand what this represents.

Forty Maidens, the origins of the Kyrgyz people

The legend says that forty Maidens emerged from Lake Issyk Kul and that they were the origins of the Kyrgyz people. There are several monuments and statues celebrating this legend, this was the largest I saw, right in the heart of the "government district" in Bishkek

The Kyrgyz Peopel

This monument seems to celebrate the former lifestyles of the Kyrgyz people The falcon is the national bird and an "Iconic" image of the independence they represent.

Bishkek, scenes and sights

This central plaza was the site of a major celebration of Kyrgyz independence while I was there. While I never had a direct feeling that I was threatened in any way while I was there, I had asked what I might expect to find and see of interest if I attended the "festivities", several individuals of the hotel staff suggested that it might not be a good idea. I did travel through the city by taxi later that evening without major incident (the taxi was diverted away from areas several times by police and once money seemed to change hands). I had heard earlier that "if you are in trouble, don't make it worse by calling the police" but other than the incident with money from the taxi driver I saw nothing to confirm that warning.

Kyrgyztelkom Building

If you can't read Russian, the building says Kyrgyztelcom, i.e. the telephone company!
Of course the microwave towers on the top "gave it away" as well. My hotel, Silk Road Lodge, had hi-speed internet connections available in every room. So whether the Kyrgyz Republic is considered "up to date" or not, internet access is!
This street corner was the intersection of two major streets in Bishkek, Sovieteskia and Cheuy. As is often the case in cities in former states of the USSR there was a pedestrian "underpass" under the intersection.

pedestrian "protection plan" an underpass

These underpasses for pedestrians usually have small stalls for "one man shops" these were the closest thing to "capitalism" that the USSR allowed in "days of yore". In the "old" days they just sold candy, trinkets, newspapers etc.

Handicapped accessability

While the grade was certainly much too steep for a person in a wheelchair to navigate by themselves these ramps did mean that, with help, even these areas could be reached by the handicapped.

  • Page Updated Jan 18, 2006
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