Issyk Kul is the largest and the most famous lake in Central Asia. From Kyrgyz the name means “hot lake”, from unknown sources “sacred lake”, too.
It has an interesting geographical position; it is hidden in the basin between the two ranges of Tien Shan Mountains, known as Kuingey Ala Too and Terskey Ala Too which create a spectacular view from any sides of it. The length is 182 km, the width is 60 km. The maximum depth is 700 meters, which makes the second deepest alpine lake after Baikal. There are more than one hundred rivers and streams flowing in the lake (the largest are Jyrgalan and tup rivers) and none of them flows out. It is located at the altitude of 1, 600 meters above sea level.
The history that the Issyk Kul lake is connected with is very rich. There found around 60 ancient settlements under the water of the lake, the most famous of them is Chiguchen, the capital of Usun statehood that were influent in the area from 3rd century BC to 2тв century AD. Even the Chinese emperor tried to get support from them against Huns sending one of the princesses to mary the Usun kunbag (governor).
There are many places to visit around the lake. The northern shore boasts with nice hotels and resorts as well as cottages to host tourists from all over the world. The best time for beach holidays are summer months, but Issyk Kul can be visited whole year around. In Cholpon Ata, the resort town on the northern shore, you can visit local Historical museum, Petroglyphes, Rukh Ordo complex. You can rent a 4wd to drive to Semenovskoye and Grigorievskoye gorges, hike in Altyn Arashan and Jeti Oguz gorges, make striking photos in Skazka (Fairy Tale) canyons, and meet the hunter with eagles in Bokonbaevo and yurt masters in Kyzyl Tuu villages. In winter Karakol is a great place to visit for its exceptionally beautiful and well-equipped ski resort.
Issyk Kul is a perfect destination for all kinds of leisure, so make sure to make a tour here. You book a tour package with all services or rent a car and make a flexible program.