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What to Do in South Shore

Dive into a destination filled with nomadic culture and natural beauty.

Filled with a rich nomadic cultural heritage and uncommon natural beauty, the South Shore destination is home to a wide array of engaging activities, tours, and treks along the southern shore of Lake Issyk-Kul. If you've always dreamed of staying in a yurt, then we're the destination to make that dream a reality. During your days, live like a traditional nomad by trekking or horseback riding through the countryside. Or make a cultural connection by joining a workshop designed to showcase the best of nomadic traditions like a half-day experience in handicrafts or yurt building.

No matter your choice of activity, South Shore offers a remarkable way to enjoy Kyrgyzstan's unique culture and diverse natural beauty.

Map of Sites, Attractions and Things to Do in South Shore

Cultural Tours

Unique cultural activities fill the southern shore of Lake Issyk-Kul, and our tours showcase the best experiences in the region. Learn the ancient traditions of nomadic hunters through our Salbuurun tour, learn to build a yurt from world-class master builders, or take our handicrafts workshop for the chance to create a colorful felt souvenir using traditional methods. Or if you're hoping to relax, book time at our mobile sauna for a truly quirky South Shore experience. 

Trekking in South Shore

The landscape in South Shore is unique in all of Kyrgyzstan. Red-rock canyons and gorges dot the landscape as its contours reach toward the Terskey Ala-Too range of the Tian Shan Mountains. There are a number of phenomenal half- and full-day hiking routes, as well as several multi-day trips that take in stunning panoramas over the lake. Trails are well-marked and many are ideal for self-guided adventures, although local guides are available for every route in the region.

Natural Attractions

The sheer natural beauty in South Shore is among the most compelling reasons to visit. Fairytale canyons vie with gushing waterfalls for the prettiest sights around, and if you're hoping to get wet then you'll thoroughly enjoy the handful of hot springs spread across the region. We've collected the most engaging sights in the region — as well as information on how to visit — so that you can include your favorite activities in your trip.

Museums and Historical Sites

As you take in the narrative arc of the southern shore of Lake Issyk-Kul, you'll even find evidence of a regional history whose timeline pre-dates the Silk Road. South Shore's historic sites and museums offer an intriguing look for the curious traveler.

Outdoor Activities

South Shore may be best known for its nomadic culture, but its outdoor adventures are equally engaging. Perhaps you're hoping to enjoy the best beaches along the lake (we have several great ones!), or maybe you've dreamed of horseback riding through the rugged natural landscape (totally possible!). And if you're a keen mountain biker, we have adventures to suit your tastes as well. We've assembled a full collection of the best outdoor adventure experiences in the region.

Cultural Activities

South Shore is a destination filled with rich nomadic culture — some have even called it the motherland of Kyrgyz culture. Learn the history behind the nomadic traditions that spark the imagination. Learn all about our stirring folk music traditions, our ancient techniques in yurt building, our long history of pressed felt-making, and our fascinating legacy of falconry (Salbuurun).

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