Getting There & Away

The park entrance is 100km off the Bishkek–Osh highway, travelling 50km from the coal-mining town of Tash-Komur on a road that's more good than bad before turning onto a smaller road at the bazaar town of Altykaragai (Алтыкарагай) for a considerably slower journey the remaining 50km. From the park entrance in the village of Arkyt, it's a windy 11km up to to the lake itself.

With a private car, the trip takes about two hours total without stops. On public transport, it takes a little longer. One direct marshrutka departs Osh (400som, six to nine hours) at 7.40am each morning, returning at 6am the next day. If that's sold out, Kerben-bound minibuses from Osh via Jalal-Abad and Tash-Komur pass by the Altykaragai junction, where it's possible to transfer to once-daily afternoon marshrutkas to Arkyt that return to Kerben early the next morning.

For the CBT office, up the parallel Kara-Suu Valley in Kyzyl-Köl, transfer in Altykaragai to one of several daily minibuses departing from Kerben (80som), Kara-Jyrgach (80som) or Tash-Komur (100som).