Bishkek, once a caravan stop on the Silk Road, is now Kyrgyzstan’s capital and financial centre. It’s set in the foothills of the snow-capped Tien Shan mountains.
Wide, tree-lined avenues and numerous parks, a legacy of the Soviet era, make it one of the greenest cities in the world. And with its colourful bazaars and culture, it’s one that’s well worth discovering.
At the time of writing, there was civil unrest in Kyrgyzstan. Please check with your embassy to find out about any warnings and restrictions before you travel.
If you venture out with expert guides and warm clothing in the winter you might be able to spot snow leopards, ibex and red wolves. Adventurers might want to drive out to the Ala Archa National Park and hike up the gorge, where the flowers – tulips, irises and poppies – are particularly beautiful.
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