Things to do in Bishkek

Activities in Bishkek

Bishkek is the capital city of the Kyrgyzstan Republic and sits in the Tien Shan mountain range in the Chui Valley.

Bishkek is a relatively new city but has plenty of historical sites, bazaars and parks ready for you to explore. Bishkek makes a great base to start your trip into the mountains and alpine lakes of the stunning Kyrgyz mountains.

Here are our recommendations on what to see in Bishkek.



OSH BAZAAR

Explore the colourful, aromatic streets of the Osh Bazaar, one of the largest bazaars in Bishkek. Just a 15 minutes from the hostel, escape into the winding maze of shops and small stands to find everything from local treats, fresh produce, handmade goods, clothing items, and electronics.

Join us on our Osh Bazaar Tour.

Alternatively, take a look at our virtual tour of Osh & Dordoi Bazaar from the comfort of your own home!

Tips:

  • Bargaining – while prices are generally quite affordable, you are welcome to bargain for the best deal.
  • Try a taste of Bishkek – make sure to try some kurut and bozo
  • Personal belongings: As with all large cities, it’s best to be mindful of your belongings and only take what you need. Leave your valuables safely at the hostel, and bring only a copy of your passport for identification.

Time: 2 – 5 hours

 Directions:

  • Take marshrutka #132 from the western bus station or;
  • Walk down Jibek Jolu (across from the bus station) eastward until you reach the Rosneft gas station. Take a right and continue until you reach the bazaar.

Holy Resurrection Cathedral

Holy Resurrection Cathedral

Make sure to stop by and marvel at this beautifully designed white and blue cathedral. Established in 1944, the building was designed by prominent Soviet architect Veryujskii.

Join us on our Bishkek City Tour

Today, visitors can go inside to see the pristine religious relics and witness the twice-daily religious service involving robed priests and a small choir.

Tips:

  • Religious services take place at 9:30 AM and 6:30 PM daily

Time: 1 – 2 hours

Directions:

Take marshrutka #113, #114, #213 or #214 from across the road on Jibek Jolu.



State History Museum

How much do you know about the Kyrgyz culture and history? Head to the State History Museum on a rainy day and discover its collection of around 90,000 historical artefacts, including sizeable archaeological and ethnographic collections, as well as materials relating to contemporary Kyrgyzstan.  Unfortunately, It is currently under reconstruction and its re-opening date is unknown.

Join us on our Bishkek City Tour

Opening hours:

10 am to 5 pm (Closed on Mondays; Currently under reconstruction until further notice)

Directions:

Take marshrutka #111 or bus #7/35 from across the street at Jibek Jolu to Ala-Too Square.

Mikhail Frunze Museum

Frunze Museum

Did you know that there’s a museum dedicated to the life of Mikhail Frunze, the Bolshevik military commander who brought Central Asia under the control of the Soviet Union following the revolution?

The museum contains over 6500 objects related to Frunze and gives an impression as to the life of Russians in Kyrgyzstan in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Time: 1-2 hours

Entrance:

25 som (adult); 15 som (children)

Opening hours:

9:30 am to 5:30 pm (closed Mondays)

Directions:

Take marshrutka #114, #214, or #344 from across the street at Jibek Jolu to the intersection with Razzakova, then walk south to Frunze.



State History Museum

How much do you know about the Kyrgyz culture and history? Head to the State History Museum on a rainy day and discover its collection of around 90,000 historical artefacts, including sizeable archaeological and ethnographic collections, as well as materials relating to contemporary Kyrgyzstan.  Unfortunately, It is currently under reconstruction and its re-opening date is unknown.

Opening hours:

10 am to 5 pm (Closed on Mondays; Currently under reconstruction until further notice)

Join us on our Bishkek City Tour

Directions:

Take marshrutka #111 or bus #7/35 from across the street at Jibek Jolu to Ala-Too Square.



Ala Too Square

The square was built in 1984 to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Kyrgyz SSR. In 2003, the Erkindik statue replaced the statue of Lenin, which is now located behind the State History Museum.

Nowadays it features a monument of the national hero, Manas. The square is often crowded, both during the day and in the evening, and serves as a central location for celebrating national holidays and events.

Join us on our Bishkek City Tour

Direction:

Take bus 7 or marshrutka 111, 129, or 224 across the street at Jibek Jolu until you reach the square

Time 1-2 Hours



Kyrgyz National Museum of Fine Arts

Established in 1935, the museum contains over 18,000 works that showcase all stages of development of professional visual arts.

Location:

Abdrahmanova (Sovietskaya) / Abdymomunova, 4.2 km from the hostel. From the bus station, take marshrutka #224 and get off at the opera.

Entrance:

50 som adults / 25 som students

Hours:

9am-5pm Tue-Thu & Sat-Sun, 10-4pm Fri

Time needed: 3-4 hours

Dordoi Bazaar

Dordoi Bazaar

It is the largest wholesale and retail market in Bishkek, and one of the Asia greatest public marketplace, comparable to Bangkok Chatuchak or Tehran Grand Bazar. It’s been described by a western journalist as ‘a modern monument to the power of raw commerce’.

Trade at Dordoi starts in the morning, at 6 am, and many stalls begin closing around 1 PM, so it is best to arrive early.

Location:

Out of town, 10km from the hostel. Take Marshrutka #114 until GOIN shopping centre (Jibek jolu/Sovietskaya), from there take the 144, 185, 193, or 224 to Dordoi Bazar.

Take a look at our virtual tour of Osh & Dordoi Bazaar from the comfort of your own home!

Hours:

6am – 2pm / Time spent : 3-4 hours

Bishkek Mosque

Central Mosque

This mosque has been built in 1995 with the financial support of a kyrgyz entrepreneur, arabic sheikh and the islamic foundation. 95% of mosques in Kyrgyzstan are built by Arabs.

The mosque has 3 halls, the main of which can fit up to 600 people. On Fridays, the area of the mosque can hold up to 5-6 thousand people.

Location:

Moskovskaya / gogolya, 6km from the hostel. Take bus #35 or marshrutka #113 from bus station to the central mosque.

Hours:

Open 24/7   /   Time spent: 1-2 hours



Panfilov Park

A small recreational park, offering a beautiful scenery for a stroll, a roller coaster ride, eating ice cream or just enjoying the lively atmosphere. You can even ride a devil’s eye (now under construction) to get an aerial view of the city.

Join us on our Bishkek City Tour

Location:

Frunze / Panfilova, 3,3km from hostel. Take Marshrutka #111 until Chui/Panvilova or bus #7

Hours: 2-3hours, Entrance free

Kyrgyz sculpture

Turgunbai Sadykov Museum – National Academy of Arts

A scientific and methodological museum attached to the Kyrgyz National Art Academy, with first and second floors full of sculptures of Sadykov’s work and more exhibitions (painting, ceramics, etc.) throughout the halls.

Location:

50 Togolok Moldo, near the Sports centre, 3km from the hostel.
From the Western bus station, take bus #7 or marshrutka #111 #224 #344 until Togolok.

Hours:

2-3 hours, Mon-Fri 09:00-12:00 / 13:00-16:00.

Oak park

Oak Park open-air museum

Looking for a some peace and quiet? With its small alleys, fountains, and flowers, this is one of the nicest spots to hang out.
Oak Park offers many different Kyrgyz sculptures from various epoches. While walking up from Oak Park to Chuy avenue, you can easily pay a visit to Erkindik painting gallery as well and enjoy its wide range of style and artists.

Join us on our Bishkek City Tour

Location:

Oak Park, 4km from the hostel. From the western bus station take bus #7 or minibus #111 #129 until Chuy/Tynystanova, and walk back for 100m until Oak Park and the gallery.

Hours:

1-2 hours, open every day, free entrance.