Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan: Travel/Tourist Information Guide
Bishkek is the capital city of Kyrgyzstan. With a population of more than 900,000 it is the largest city of Kyrgyzstan. It sits in the Tien Shan mountain range in the Chui Valley. It is a relatively new city, but it has some pretty interesting historical sites.
Transportation in and around Bishkek
There are a couple of ways to get in Bishkek. The easiest one is by plane via the Manas International Airport. There are a lot of international flights that arrive and depart from this airport. Another way to get in Bishkek is by train. The train goes from and to Moscow twice a week. In addition, there is also a train that goes from and to Balykchy. Also, you can get in Bishkek by car and by bus. The best highways connect Kyrgyzstan with Kazakhstan.
Once you arrive in Bishkek there are a couple of ways in which you can get around the city. The first option is by minibus. The minibuses are known as Marshrutkas and have an extensive network. They are easily identifiable with the number and the basic route on the front. To hail one simply hold out your right-hand parallel to the ground. When you want to get off you need to say "stop". Another way to get around is by bus and trolleybus. They have specific bus stops and work until 22 p.m. In addition, you can get around Bishkek by taxi. There are several private firms that are easily reached through their numbers. Some taxis have a meter, but you have to make a request for it to be turned on. Lastly, you can get around the city by renting a car. However, keep in mind that driving is difficult since the drivers are aggressive, the road rules are not abided and the police are corrupt. Anyhow, if you have to travel to different places it is the best and the most convenient way to do it.
Bishkek is a pleasant city with interesting things to be seen. There is not much to be seen and you can view the best attractions in a day or two, but it is still worth a visit. For instance, the Ala-Too Square is a great place for you to wander around. It is a vast area of concrete with a statue of Erkidik in the middle. There are also dancing fountains with synchronised sound and light show. Just next to the Square is the State Historical Museum where you can learn more about the history of Kyrgyzstan and the culture of the Kyrgyz people. If you want to do some shopping then you should visit the Osh Bazaar. In this place, you can buy a lot of traditional things such as clothes, food, souvenirs etc.