Guest post: Bishkek springs Lush

It’s friday evening. As a weekend apporaching and I haven’t seen much besides my computer for most of the week, I genuinely wish only about one thing. To get on a plane and get to Bishkek.  I need its refreshing air, high mountians and smiling faces. But this will have to wait, just like other posts about other places. In sum it’s “deadlines” time for me.

For now enjoy my colleague Kristian Krohg-Sørensen’s insight on my hometown. He is right Bishkek springs Lush…

Arriving in Bishkek, there was one word springing to my mind: Lush. I like saying that word; just as much as I like saying Bishkek. Capital of the mountainous Kyrgyz republic, Bishkek offered all the relief I needed after coming from the dusty steppes of neighbouring Kazakhstan: green leaves sprouting out from every crack in the concrete; shady parks hidden away from the bustle of the main streets; and an impressive wall of snowy white mountains that from the city just looks like a painted prop but upon further scrutiny turned out to be real enough. 

A passionate hiker, I got out of the city as soon as I could, joining other enthusiasts from the Kyrgyz’ trekking union. There are few things in life that are more satisfactory than going for a long, tough hike in the morning, and then coming back to the city in the evening, in time for a beer and shashlyk shared with friends. Those impossibly beautiful landscapes still on my mind, I spent a further few days exploring the city and its half-abandoned Soviet architecture, its quaint museums and the labyrinthine Osh market. 

Five things you should not miss in Bishkek are 1) a walk in the mountains; 2) the time-capsule that is the Frunze museum; 3) a dish of plov at the Chaikana Jalal-abad; 4) a trip to the fun-fair ; and 5) beer and shashlyk at café Derevyanka.

NB: All photographs are taken by Kristian Krohg-Sørensen. Click on pictures to view larger