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Mountains with Meanings

This heart of Asia hides not only the coolest mountains to ski, snowboard or para-glide, but also very interesting hills of mysterious structures. If the one alarms his fantasy and look at them with special view, then the doors of wonderland will open in front of his eyes for a moment!

This is probably what happened when they made the legends about the bllod-red bull-shaped hill in Issyk Kul region of Kyrgyzstan. About seven same sized hills are standing side by side there and here is what they say in myths:

These are the seven bulls, which were meant for the sacrifice, together with a woman. She was the wife of a king and his enemy stole her in order to give him moral shock. He decided to return her to him , only after killing her. Once he stabbed her with knife, the huge amount of blood came out rushing and took the bulls away to where they are standing right now…

Really tragic but something unusual to listen, is it not?

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Tian Shan Kyrgyzstan

Here is one of my favorite topics to talk about – Celestial Mountains of Kyrgyzstan. The country is surrounded by mountains, which make up above 90% territory of it. Among the mountain systems of Kyrgyzstan, apparently the biggest and the most famous one is Tian Shan, “Celestial Mountains” from Chinese.

This large system of mountain ranges is actually located in whole Central Asia. However, the highest peak in the Tian Shan, Victory Peak 7,439 meters (24,406 ft), is located in Kyrgyzstan. The Tian Shan’s second highest peak, Khan Tengri (Lord of the Spirits)-7,010 metres (23,000 ft), is the natural border between Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.

The Torugart Pass, at 3,752 metres (12,310 ft), is another border, which separates the territories of Kyrgyzstan and China’s Xinjiang province.

There are much more peaks, which keep attracting tourists, lovers of winter sports and professional climbers. Even in summer, the mountains are not left alone; their beautiful and calming nature welcome everyone for lovely picnics and hiking activities.

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Exploring Kyrgyzstan

People visit our country for different reasons. Some have business to do in Kyrgyzstan, others come to study, not because the education is higher in quality, but probably for low prices… And the most amount of visitors are here to travel; not because it is cheap! It is because the country has a stunningly beautiful nature!

Our country has the places that are untouched, which is so rare in our modern world. Pristine water of rivers and alpine lakes, majestic mountains and their virgin peaks are what attract everyone and make them come all the way from Europe or even farther away.

Number one attractions of Kyrgyzstan are its mountains. They make up 90% of the country. 85% of them are over 1,000 meters and 40% are over 3,000 meters. Apparently, it gives a lot of challenges and opportunities to the lovers of mountain expeditions.

There are so many options and the one may get lost among the huge choice of mountain peaks. So, the most famous ones would be Tian Shan and Pamir mountain ranges. Each of them can make up another huge topics, so I also can’t wait to share them with you soon!

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Who run the world? Girls!

I ask your forgiveness if I was pretty straightforward with the topic :) But I just can’t stop being amazed by our Kyrgyz women! They have always been very strong and active in everything they did: at home, as well as in society. Let me share one of the fun activities, where they showed extreme skills in horseback riding.

Kyz kuu or kyz kuumai, literally “girl chasing”, is a traditional sport among the Kyrgyz people. The process looks like a simple horse racing, but is often referred to as a “kissing game”.

This is how the game goes: A young man on horseback waits at the starting line. A young woman, also mounted, starts her horse galloping from a given distance behind the young man. When the young woman passes the young man, he may start his horse galloping.

The two race towards a finish line some distance ahead. If the young man is able to catch up to the young woman before they reach the finish line, he may reach out to her and steal a kiss, which constitutes his victory.

However, if the young man has not caught up to the young woman by the time they reach the finish line, the young woman turns around and chases the young man back to the starting line. If she is in range of the young man, she may use her whip to beat him, which signifies a victory for her!

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Meet host families!

Our nation is known for hospitality and friendliness. Our elders say that guest is greater than the father, which literally means that guests deserve the most respect and care possible from a host. So, if you are planning to visit us one day, keep that in mind before worrying about which hotel to choose.

Local houses  may not have that much modern comfort but it will be a perfect chance to know more about the country through its citizens.  It may even surprise you that even the nomadic families, who live on the mountains in yurts are happy to share their humble homes with guests! This is how hospitable Kyrgyz people are!

 

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Little party never killed nobody…

Since the blog was started with our national cuisine, I felt like we got into the huge topic and it will not be easy to simply jump into another one. I really wanted to share the whole process of meeting guests and the unique table prepared for them. It really is interesting and worth seeing! I would also suggest you to eat before watching, since it may tickle your appetite a lot! :)

 

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Help yourself, my dear guests!

We, Kyrgyz nation have a unique tradition: whenever the guests come to our homes, we do not let them leave our house without having some meal with us. If they are in  a big hurry, then we make them try at least a bite of bread and salt!

So, why not to invite you to my virtual party, full of our delicacies! If you are meat lover, then Kyrgyz national food is definitely for you! Number one food would be th one, called “Besh barmak”, which means “Five fingers”. The name was given due to the fact that they used to prefer having it with hands, without using fork or spoon. It is a yummy combination of pasta and meat.f20130604084610-kumis

There is a very unusual drink if you are feeling thirsty. It is called Kymyz and is made of horse milk! Do not hurry to be shocked, because a lot of our foreign friends have fallen in love with it already!