Temir-Kanat: rural villages, mountains and pastures

9, 10, 11 August 2019 

Temir-Kanat is located in the most rural parts of Kyrgyzstan and offers the possibility to explore a varied environment between steppe and desert, perhaps taking advantage of some nomad camp where traditional yurts are available to tourists for longer stays.


Temir-Kanat is a village in north-eastern Kyrgyzstan which is home to a thousand inhabitants and is located at an altitude of about 7,550 feet. Not far from the village, numerous nomad camps offer the possibility of staying overnight in traditional yurts, as a convenient base for exploring the surrounding environment on foot or on horseback, among a landscape dominated by majestic mountains and deep valleys.

The village is located about 4-5 hours by car from the capital Bishkek, along a paved road and, given the very modest costs, visitors may just use a taxi. However, it will be difficult to find the facilities where to stay overnight, as they are usually not available on-line, so it may be better to book a full package through a local operator who is in direct contact with the yurt camp.

The best (and perhaps the only) season to visit Temir-Kanat is summer, when temperatures are pleasant and allow people to enjoy outdoor life to its fullest. It must however be considered that during this period the rains are not rare and therefore it's better to stay at least 2-3 nights, to have a sufficient buffer in case of bad weather .

The yurts (the typical "mobile" homes of the nomads in Central Asia), are very basic but comfortable, and heavy blankets are provided for the cool or cold nights at such altitudes. Meals are cooked by the local family and include a good variety of traditional Kyrgyz dishes.

Now let's take a look at some Temir-Kanat photos taken at the yurt camp where we stayed...

Nomad camp in Kyrgyzstan
A Yurt camp located on a hill not far from Temir-Kanat, which can be reached parking the car near a stream and walking (uphill) for about 40 minutes (luggage is transported by horses).
Yurts Yurt
Kyrgyz nomads Cow with calf
The yurts are surrounded by beautiful green pastures where cows and horses graze.
Stream originating from a glacier
A stream close to the camp has strong milky waters, as it carries clay from the moraine of a nearby glacier.
Green valley in Kyrgyzstan Valleys in Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyz steppe Asian steppe
The landscape in Temir-Kanat is dominated by green valleys cultivated with vegetables and fruit, set in the middle of barren mountains.
Agriculture in Kyrgyzstan
A walk on top of a hill offers a beautiful view onto the valleys below and over a nearby mountain range full of glaciers.
Succulent plant Edelweiss
The high mountain vegetation of Kyrgyzstan includes succulent plants, colored lichens and numerous edelweiss.
Perennial snows in Kyrgyzstan Kyrgyzstan glaciers
Mountains in Kyrgyzstan

The mountains south of Temir-Kanat exceed 13,000 feet and have peaks with perennial snows and imposing glaciers.

Horse riding in the steppe
Tourists in Temir-Kanat have the possibility to take horseback rides, even without any previous experience, under the supervision of the owner of the herd.
Steppe Kyrgyzstan
Temir-Kanat Temir-Kanat
The beautiful steppe landscape in the mountains around Temir-Kanat.
Kyrgyz dishes
Kyrgyzstan typical dish
Meals are served inside a yurt and eaten sitting down on a carpet. Among the typical Kyrgyz dishes we find this kind of sandwich made of tomato slices, eggplants, cheese and mayonnaise (excellent, especially for the quality of the vegetables which are produced locally with natural methods).
Kyrgyz cuisine Cuisine in Kyrgyzstan
Other typical Kyrgyz dishes are lamb stew with potatoes, cabbage, peppers and other vegetables. While for dessert there are excellent homemade jams and honey to be spread onto bread.

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Kyrgyzstan travel guide

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