Nomadic horse trek


Experience Kyrgyz culture and the best scenic Central Asia in the most exciting way possible. Dive headfirst into the world of horse trekking and experience Kyrgyzstan through its scenic valleys and sweeping vistas, and come away with an experience of a lifetime. This unique adventure offers the opportunity to learn the basics of horse riding and to practice your new skills amongst the mountains of the Tian Shan Range.

You will make your own horsewhip, gallop through open fields and learn to play traditional Kyrgyz horse games. Stay with local shepherd families, and truly get a taste of nomadic life. Your teachers and guides are expert horsemen and you will be immersed in a truly authentic Kyrgyz Nomad experience. This trek is excellent for those with little to no horse-riding experience. As well as outdoor enthusiasts looking for a unique adventure, and has options up to 9 days to fit into any schedule!

  • Duration:9 days
  • Season: July August
  • Category: combined –auto/horseback
  • Level of Difficulty: Medium to Moderate
  • Group Size: any
  • Highlights: Song-Kul Lake, Jashyl-Kol Lake, Kaiyndy Jailoo
  • Experience: Basic horse ricing, Horse care training, Advanced horseriding techniques, Putting on horseshoes, Participating in horse games
  • Requirements: weatherproof warm clothes, trekking boots, hat, sunglasses, sleeping bag, and sunscreen.


Bishkek to Kyzyl-Oi village 

Bishkek to Kyzyl-Oi: Depart from Bishkek in the morning and drive about 200km south to Kyzyl Oi village.  Nestled deep in the Suusamyr Valley and alongside the mighty Kokomeren River, Kyzyl-Oi is an idyllic mountain village full of friendly people and wonderful guesthouses where you will stay and rest up for your ensuing adventure.

Kyzyl – Oi to Oi-Kaiyng 

Kyzyl-Oi to Oi-Kaying: Today your journey begins just outside of Kyzyl-Oi village, where you meet your guides and get acquainted with your horses. Setting off, you will slowly ascend along a very easy trail through the Oi-Kaying Jailoo. At the 6 kilometer mark, you will pass a large rock with ancient Persian writing, an interesting sight for archeological enthusiasts and history lovers alike. After this you will continue through the Jailoo for about 15km, ascending gradually until you reach your camp spot at an elevation just below 3000m, overlooking the valley from which you just came.  You will camp near local shepherd settlements and learn a little about Kyrgyz nomadic life and taste the local cuisine.

Entertainment: Evening you will start to learn “how to make you own Kyrgyz horsewhip”.  You will not be allowed to do horse galloping without your own, handmade horsewhip.

Oi Kaying to Sary Kol 

Start the day by continuing to climb gradually up the Oi Kaying Jailoo until you reach the mountain pass sitting at 3411m.  Here you will be rewarded with an incredible panoramic view of the valley below, dotted with horses, cattle, yurt settlements, and fir forests. As you snake your way down from the pass watch as the landscape around you changes from high alpine to dense forest.  You will split from the main road, continuing on a smaller trail that traverses the mountainside, weaving between fir trees and winding creeks.  After about 20km from your starting point, you will settle along the shores of Sary-Kul, a splendid lake surrounded by lush greenery and serene forests.

Entertainment: Continue your workshop on making the horsewhip.

Sary-Kol to Tegerek 

Today continue horseback tour from Sary-Kol to Tegerek. The itinerary goes through the mountain’s valley and crossing several rivers. This day you will not cross the massive passes but many mountain hills open up for you, providing different views of the nomad’s landscape with a lot of cattle on the pastures. Feel the nomad’s spirit as you walk on the street of the nomad’s land.  Enjoy your horse ride and work on your horseriding skills. After crossing the final uphill Kok-Kya, you will ascend the Jailoo Tegerek. Camping in the wild.

Entertainment: Today will have been the 4th day to get used to horseback riding. You will already have learned practical horseback riding skills. It is time to finalize your workshop on making the horsewhips. Everybody should have its own, handmade horsewhip to be ready for the horse raсing the following days.

Tegerek to Kyzart

From Tegerek the ride proceeds on to the Kyzart Pass, traversing rolling hills and open fields. On the way will be a break in the valley Ok-Torkoy, where you can have a nice lunch in the yurt camp Ok-Torkoy. After a good rest, you continue the tour to the Kyzart pass. After arriving at the Kyzart Pass, there will be transportation provided to Kyzart village and you will spend the night at a local guesthouse. Enjoy a shower and a warm bed for the night, and recharge for the rest of the adventure that will continue the next morning!

Kyzart to Kilemche 

After breakfast at the guesthouse from the village Kyzart, return to your guide team and continue your adventure. You will arrive at the Kyzart Pass, where your guide team welcomes you back and has everything ready to go. So your journey continues on the horseback by crossing the Kyzyl-Kiya jailoo. Ride over the Chaar-Archa Pass (3061m) into the Chaar-Archa Valley and eat a tasty lunch by the racing river, with views of the 4400m Baba-Ata Mountain. After lunch, you cross the river and follow the trail over lush hills to the Kilemche Jailoo. The name means “like a carpet,” and this swathe of grass covers the whole mountain range. Stay the night at a yurt camp.

Entertainment: In the afternoon you will have some free time at Kilemche Jailoo. Your guide instructor will show you how to put the horseshoes on and tell you about the Kyrgyz horses.

Kilemche to Songkol

Having eaten breakfast at Kilemche, you will spend the morning climbing the Jalgyz Karagai pass (3400 m). The trek crosses the Song-Kol Mountains and into the lake’s basin. The rocky and spectacular climb affords wonderful views of Kilemche jailoo.  After lunch at Jaman Echki, follow the lakeshore west to the yurt at Tuz-Ashuu. Upon arrival meet your host family of Kyrgyz shepherds. Food and accommodation will be provided by local families in yurts.

Entertainment: This day you can practice your first horseback galloping in the valley.

Songkol Lake

Today will be a relatively straightforward and easy ride to the western part of the lake along the lakeshore. It will be a good opportunity to check your horseback riding skills on Song-Kol’s flat, open valley. Explore jailoo and learn more about the Kyrgyz nomadic lifestyle. In addition to this, you may have the chance to participate in traditional Kyrgyz horse games, an experience unique to this tour. Stay the night at Tulapr-Tash yurt camp.

Entertainment: In honor of your penultimate day on this equestrian tour, it will be organized horse game Kok-Boru. In this game, you can participate as a player at will.

From Songkol to Bishkek

Today you will wrap up your journey. Start at Tulpar-Tash and leave SongKol to Kyzart village via Uzbek Pass. The pass opens up to a spectacular panoramic view of all of Song-Kol valley. Ride down to the village and have lunch before a transfer will be provided to Kochkor village.  End of the tour (You can stay in Kochkor to plan your next trip to Issyk-Kul region or return to Bishkek by public transport) 

Nomadic horse trek

Departure End Status Price Book

Jul 29, 2024 - Mon

Aug 6, 2024 - Tue




If you have any questions about the tour, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Once all your inquiries have been addressed and you are ready to proceed, we will issue an invoice for the deposit payment. You can make a bank transfer for 20% of the total cost as a prepayment. Upon your arrival in Bishkek, you can pay the remaining amount before the trip commences.

To more fully satisfy your expectations and preferences for this route, please pay attention to the following wording: “The cost of the tour is determined taking into account the fact that the accommodation facilities will have two people in one tent, 4 people in one yurt. But through individual negotiations you can make adjustments to suit your specific needs and preferences. We will take an individual approach to each guest and can discuss all aspects in detail.

The following services are included in the tour:
– Local guide service (basic English speaking)
– Horse rental for 9 days
– All accommodations during the horse trek (8 overnights: camping, yurt overnights, homestays)
– All meals during the tour
– Horseman services
– Tent/mat rental
– All transfers (Bishkek to Kyzyl-Oi village, Kyzart village to Kochkor). You will use the local private community taxi drivers.

The following services are not included in the tour:
– Accommodations in Bishkek hotel and Kochkor guesthouse
– Meals in Bishkek
– Air tickets.

If you are a beginner or have never ridden before, there’s no need to worry about doing horse treks in Kyrgyzstan. 90% of our visitors have no prior experience in horseback riding but can manage the horse treks with ease. We provide our clients with quiet and calm horses, and comfortable saddles, and carefully select the most suitable trek for horse tours. To assist you in learning how to ride a Kyrgyz horse and manage it, our horseback guides act as individual instructors.

The horseback riding rules. 


When preparing for horseback riding tours in Kyrgyzstan, it’s important to have the right clothing and equipment to ensure your comfort, safety, and enjoyment. Here’s a suggested list:

– Riding Helmet: A well-fitted, approved equestrian helmet is essential for safety. Protecting your head is crucial in case of falls or accidents (we will provide you with helmets).
– Riding Boots: Invest in a pair of sturdy, comfortable riding boots with a low heel. They provide grip in the stirrups and protect your feet from getting caught.
– Riding Pants: Opt for comfortable, stretchy riding pants or breeches that allow freedom of movement. They should be durable and without any loose fabric that could get caught.
– Layered Clothing: Kyrgyzstan’s weather can be unpredictable, so pack layers to adapt to changing temperatures. Consider a moisture-wicking base layer, a fleece or sweater for warmth, and a waterproof or windproof outer layer.
– Riding Gloves: Choose gloves that offer good grip and protect your hands from friction and blisters. They should be flexible enough to handle reins and other equipment.
– Sunglasses and Sunscreen: Protect your eyes and skin from the sun’s rays. Choose sunglasses that provide UV protection and bring a high SPF sunscreen for exposed areas.
– Riding Socks: Wear comfortable, moisture-wicking socks that are tall enough to prevent chafing from the boots. Consider bringing an extra pair in case they get wet.
– Backpack or Saddlebags: Carry a small backpack or saddlebag to hold essentials like water, snacks, a camera, a map, and a first aid kit. Make sure it’s secure and won’t hinder your movement.
– Sleeping Bag: Bring a good quality sleeping bag with a temperature rating comfort not less than – 1C.
– First Aid Kit: Pack a basic first aid kit with items such as bandages, antiseptic wipes, pain relievers, insect repellent, and any necessary personal medications.
– Rain Gear: Kyrgyzstan experiences occasional rain, so pack a lightweight, waterproof jacket or poncho to stay dry during unexpected showers.
– Hat or Cap: Bring a wide-brimmed hat or cap to protect your face and neck from the sun. It will also help keep you cool on hot days.
– Personal Items: Carry personal items such as a flashlight, pocket knife, hand sanitizer, and a small towel for convenience.

We recommend traveling with a soft material bag and a small day-pack. Please bear in mind the horses will be carrying your luggage, so ensure they are of good quality, have strong straps, and secure zips. Bag bags or expeditionary trunks will be more suitable.

When it comes to clothes, it’s all about layers as you could experience temperatures ranging from zero to thirty degrees Celsius. Though the weather will usually be less extreme than this, you will find yourself adding and removing layers frequently during the day, especially if you are walking. As such, lots of layers are essential, and we recommend packing a range of clothes from T-shirts, long sleeve T-shirts, jumpers, shorts, and trousers.

– Thermal Underwear
– Good quality fleece pullovers and trousers-100% polyester
– A good rain/windproof jacket with a hood and trousers
– Good quality socks with cushions and climate control (several pairs)
– Lightweight trousers (the combat style is the most practical, especially the ones that unzip to make shorts) for walking
– One pair ankle-length boots or walking shoes with a good grip profile. We recommend ‘cortex’ as it is light and breathable, though leather is better in wet and snowy weather. Please ensure you have ‘broken in’ the boots; new ones could cause aggravation.
– Fleece hat with earflaps and sun hat.
– You may like to bring a pair of rubber slippers/flip flops to pad around in.
– Light gloves

– Torch (plus spare batteries)
– Penknife – either Swiss Army or Leatherman, though the guide will have one.
– Sunglasses with UV protection
– Sun cream with high SPF
– Insect Repellent
– Blister plasters

We recommend carrying the following items in your daypack as you will not be able to access your main bag while you are out walking or riding:
– 1 x 15/20 liter daypack with air-comfort system/back support.
– Waterproof jacket
– Extra fleece/warm layer
– Sun hat
– Sunglasses
– Sun cream with high SPF
– Lip salve
– Lightweight scarf that can double up as a headscarf.


Kyrgyzstan has a free visa entry for many countries. Please check your availability on the e-visa online service –

Cancellation Policy


Cancellation Period: Cancellation requests must be submitted in writing (email) within the specified cancellation period. The cancellation period may vary depending on the type of tour and its duration.


Cancellation Charges: The following cancellation charges will apply:


Cancellations made 15 days or more before the tour departure date: 50% of the tour cost will be deducted as cancellation fees.


Cancellations made between 14 and 5 days before the tour departure date: 70% of the tour cost will be deducted as cancellation fees.


Cancellations made within 5 days of the tour departure date: 100% of the tour cost will be deducted as cancellation fees.


No-Show: If a traveler fails to join the tour on the scheduled departure date or cancels on the departure day, no refund will be provided.


Refunds: Refunds, if applicable, will be processed within 10 days after receiving the cancellation request. The refund amount will be subject to the cancellation charges mentioned above.


Partial Cancellations: If one or more members of a group booking cancel, the applicable cancellation charges will be based on the number of travelers remaining on the tour.


Changes and Modifications: Kyrgyz Tourism reserves the right to make changes or modifications to the tour itinerary due to unforeseen circumstances or factors beyond our control. In such cases, we will make reasonable efforts to provide suitable alternatives, and no compensation or refund will be provided.


Travel Insurance: We strongly recommend that all travelers purchase comprehensive travel insurance to cover unexpected cancellations, interruptions, or other unforeseen events.


Force Majeure: Kyrgyz Tourism shall not be liable for any cancellations or modifications caused by events beyond our control, such as natural disasters, strikes, political unrest, or other force majeure events.

Essential Travel Guidelines:

  1. Respect Local Culture and Traditions: Honor the local customs, traditions, and religious practices during your travels.
  2. Support the Local Economy: Whenever possible, opt for local products and services to contribute positively to the local economy.
  3. Fair Pricing: Ensure fairness in your transactions for accommodation, food, and other services.
  4. Shoes Off Indoors: Remove your shoes when entering homes or yurts as a sign of respect.
  5. No Smoking Indoors: Abide by no-smoking rules when indoors.
  6. Communicate Preferences: Share your food and accommodation preferences with your hosts to enhance your experience.
  7. Seek Permission for Photos: Always ask for permission before taking photographs of people or their property.
  8. Friendly Interaction: Be approachable and engage with locals to foster connections and cultural exchange.
  9. Safety Precautions: Exercise caution during the evening and night, especially in crowded areas.
  10. Protect Your Valuables: Safeguard your documents, money, and valuables, and be wary of pickpockets in busy markets and streets.
  11. Verify Official Requests: If someone claims to be from the police and requests your documents, wallet, or camera, suggest going to the police station together.
  12. Avoid Giving Belongings: Never hand over your belongings to strangers.
  13. Proper Footwear: Wear suitable hiking shoes for outdoor activities.
  14. Weather-Ready Clothing: Even in summer, bring warm, waterproof clothing and carry sunscreen and insect repellent.
  15. Water Safety: Avoid drinking very cold water from unknown sources.
  16. Alcohol Caution: Drinking alcohol at high altitudes can be risky; consume in moderation.
  17. Respectful Dining: If the food doesn’t suit your taste, sample a small portion and express gratitude.
  18. Hydration After Meals: Avoid cold water after eating; opt for hot tea or c. It aids digestion at high altitudes.
  19. Warm Attire: Keep warm when in mountainous regions, especially after meals.
  20. First Aid Kit: Carry your necessary medications and a basic first aid kit.
  21. Speak Up: If you feel unsafe or have concerns, discuss them with your tour staff, host, or tour manager.
  22. Responsible Disposal: Properly dispose of your litter, packing up all non-biodegradable waste.
  23. No Littering: Refrain from dropping cigarette butts or litter; preserve the environment.
  24. Protect Fragile Ecosystems: Recognize that high-altitude vegetation is delicate; tread lightly and minimize environmental impact.
  25. Mindful Hygiene: Use available natural toilets; if none are present, stay at least 40-50 meters from water sources and bury all waste and paper.
  26. Leave Only Footprints: Leave a positive impact by taking memories in photographs, not by leaving litter or footprints.

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