Naryn — Asia Travel

narynNaryn — is a small country town in south-eastern part of the country, with an area of 41 thousand square kilometers. The population of it is 35 thousand people. The city is situated at an altitude of 2020 meters above sea level at the foot of the ridge of the Naryn-Too, in a picturesque area on the banks of the same river. 180 kilometers to the south of Naryn there is the railway station Balykchy and the distance to the border crossing site «Torugard» on the border with China is 186 kilometers.

The main religion of Naryn’s residents is considered to be Islam, an official language — Kirghiz, but almost everybody is the well-spoken in Russian.

The climate is continental, characterized by cold, long winters and warm, dry summers. Average winter temperature is-17C, summer +18 C. Annual rainfall is 300mm, occurs usually in autumn and winter.

The History of the town is quite ancient. It was laid at the site of ancient settlements, formed on the caravan route to Kashgar. In 1868year, troops of the Russian imperial army established a military garrison here, which later took an active part in the defeat of the Kokand Khanate.

In 1920 year, there had been a momentous battle of the Revolutionary soldiers of the Red Army with the White Guards that took many lives. Thus, the memorial constructed in the center of the town is a tribute to this bloody event.

In 1927 year Naryn received the status of the regional center.

Etymology of the name of the city is not fully understood. In general, «Naryn» in Central Asia, is the specific designation of soup made of horse meat. Perhaps, in these places it is perfectly cooked, moreover that the meat of horse is a national product in Kyrgyzstan. Or perhaps a city name comes from Mongolian «sunny» or Chinese «narrow», which sounds very similar to Kyrgyz «Naryn».

These days the town is the regional and district cultural and administrative center of Naryn region and the free economic zone of «Naryn». There are headquartered of public, private and voluntary organizations and urban regional subordination here, as well as the Kyrgyz Foreign Ministry consular department, the administration of «Torugard» customs.

Naryn is quite modern, industrial city with well-developed social infrastructure.

The most interesting of cultural and educational facilities are considered to be: State University Museum, Music and Drama Theatre and National Theatre of «Manas Ruhu.»

But of course, the main tourist interests are the local attractions. In general, the Naryn and adjoining area has tremendous tourism potential, because 70% of the local area is mountainous. Thus, the scenic mountain passes and rough mountain rivers, deep gorges, glaciers and eternal snow, stunning lakes and waterfalls, as well as the ancient original culture — make local places quite unique.

Naryn is the starting point for many tourist routes running through the mountains of Tien Shan. Hence, from here people start going to hunt on mountain goats and mountain sheep of Marco Polo tours, as well as multi-day hiking and horseback expeditions, going to the tops of mountains.

Perhaps, the Naryn River – is the main tourist attraction in the city, and it’s not because of the fabulous coastal scenery. Being calm and unhurried in the plains, it seemed to become crazy in the mountains. The rapid and violent it rushes its stream on the mountain gorges, filling with roar the whole neighborhood. River – is a cherished dream of those whose body needs a constant adrenaline rush. Rafting of all categories of complexity — that is what attracts adventurers here from all over the country and abroad.

Season of rafting on this unruly river proceeds from April to November and a level of complexity varies depending on the season. Experts advise to do rafting here at the most «stable» water — in late August and September.

For lovers of ecotourism it is a real paradise in the area of the Naryn.

Son-Kul Lake – used to be the second largest natural lake in Kyrgyzstan, located 90 kilometers to the north-west of the city. It lies at an altitude of 3016 meters above sea level, from October to June is bound by a thick shell of ice. The best time to visit the Son-Kul is the period from May to October, when the local jailoo — alpine meadows are visited by shepherds with their flocks. During this period, visitors are placed in the pastoral yurt, which gives a possibility to get acquainted with the life of nomads, special excursions are organized in the surroundings of the lake that are rich in burial mounds and graves, accompanied by guides — shepherds who, know local places the best way. In July, on the coast folk festivals are annually organized, accompanied by the equestrian games and competitions for the best cooking dishes of national cuisine.

Another beautiful lake is Chatyr-Kul, located in the region and is part of the indispensable reference for attractions of Naryn. It is situated at an altitude of 3530 meters above sea level near the pass of Torugard and is the third largest natural body of water in the country. The nature of the lake is rich and varied well, it is enough to say that this area is a part of Karatal Zhapyrykskiy State Reserve.

naryn2The beaches of Chatyr-Kul is a beautiful relic forest, consisting of the Tien Shan blue spruce and juniper Turkestan, the lower tier of plants is represented by shrubs and herbs, such as: buckthorn, ephedra, yarrow, St. John’s wort, coltsfoot, valerian and others.

The fauna of the coastal strip is rich and varied; here you can find bears, wolves, snow leopards, mountain sheep, foxes, red marmots. Avifauna is represented by 60 species of water birds. They are all of a special interest: Indian mountain goose, red-listed, and various species of ducks, for which the lake Chater-Kul is a favorite nesting place.

In addition, fans of historical attractions will not be left disappointed with a trip to Naryn. They are able to get visit into historical and cultural area, a set of «Tash-Rabat», which includes two historic facilities: the settlement of Koshoy Korgon and in fact, the caravanserai of Tash Rabat.

The Settlement of Koshoy Korgon is located 12 kilometers from the village of At-Bashi of Naryn region. The ruins of ancient town are dated from VII to X centuries AD and as the legend associated with the name of Kosho – the uncle of Manas, epic hero of the same name. Legendary Koshoy built citadel on the site, defended the Kyrgyz people from damaging raids of the ancient Chinese. More than 29 years the fortress was impregnable bulwark against the enemies until they treachery and betrayal way killed the hero.

The gallery of rock paintings is also of incredible interesting, located 30 kilometers from the village of Kazarman in Saimaluu-Tash canyoun. Tens of thousands of hectares of land contain petroglyphs dating back to II century BC — VIII century AD. Cave paintings depict scenes of war and everyday life, hunting, departure rituals, magic signs and fleece. Also near Kazarman another settlement of X-XII centuries survived — a monument to the era of Saks and Usuns, surrounded by mounds of five-meter burials.

tash rabat2Tash-Rabat – is a medieval caravanserai, one of the few great surviving monuments of that era. It is situated 90 kilometers from Naryn, near the village of At-Bashi, in the picturesque valley of Kara-Koyun. The monument dated from the XV century and was built in one of the busiest caravan routes from China to Europe. This is the largest building of that era, built of stone. However, Tash-Rabat attracts not only in its size and unusual selected material that was used for construction. It was designed and built based on a clear symmetry element method, which was not inherent in oriental architecture of the Middle Ages.

Lost in a deep gorge, a vast and gloomy giant gives the impression of a military fortress, and not an inn, which was quite justified in terms of frequent attacks on trade caravans.

The tourism potential of the Naryn region and the region itself, is indeed infinite. Everyone can choose here a tour for the soul, to have a great relaxation, have fun and recharge the outlook, which as it is known does not happen to be very much!