The Alay region of Kyrgyzstan, roughly the area directly south of the Tajik border, is one of the best places for trekking in Kyrgyzstan both for its variety, and the sheer scale of the landscape.
Places to go
At Tulpar Kol, you can see peaks over 7000 m that mark the border with Tajikistan, and try your hand at trekking peaks over 5000 m like Peak Yukhina. On the other side of Sary Mogol, you can hike passes over 4000 m that see more yaks than tourists. Daroot Korgon and Sary Tash offer similar opportunities, just a little bit less spectacular.
South of Gulcha, there is wonderful scenery as well, with the added bonus of a bevy of yurts and associated livestock in summer. Perfect if you want to meet more locals. Not far from Osh, the Kichi or Small Alay offer opportunities for day hikes and overnight stays. In particular, at the Kyrgyz-Ata National Park and Abshir-Ata waterfalls.
Trek guides and reports
These are the trek guides we have so far:
- Sary Mogol Pass – Jiptik Pass (Heights of Alay) – 5 days
- Tulpar Kol / Peak Lenin BC to Travellers Pass (1 day)
- Treks around Gulcha
Please post your trek reports and questions in the Trekking in Alay forum thread.
For more on trekking maps, where to buy/rent trekking gear, when to go, … see Trekking in Kyrgyzstan.
You do not need a permit for any of the hikes above. Officially, you need one for Peak Lenin, but most people do not bother with it.