TIEN SHAN - HEAVENLY MOUNTAINS
BEST OF KYRGYZSTAN - BIRDWATCHING
DATE 04.05 - 19.05.2024 (16 days)
TOUR LEADER Michael Westerbjerg Andersen. The language we speak on our tours is either/and English, German and one of the Scandinavian languages.
FEE From 3,250 USD pr. person in shared DBL room from Bishkek. From 8 to 10 participants
SINGLE SUPPL. 600 USD for a single room
DEPOSIT 700 USD pr. person
VISA Most nationalities does not need a visa. Information when booking the tour
VACCINATION Yes, against COVID-19 (If no vaccination PCR-test might be needed). Miksture will keep updating
GROUP SIZE Min. 8, max. 12 participants
Our ‘Best of Kyrgyzstan bird birdwatching’ shows you the best of Kyrgyzstan, a landlocked country with spectacular scenery, interesting historical and cultural sites, wide varieties of exciting habitats, and of course both well-represented with some of the finest Central Asian birds found in this fascinating country. We focus on the birds of Kyrgyzstan's mountain and semi-desert regions.
During the Soviet era, most of Central Asia was closed to Westerners. The few ornithologists who visited Kyrgyzstan were escorted to bird sites near the capitals. Interesting bird sites, but certainly not adequate for the amazing avifauna. It is different today where visitors to a greater extent can choose. For the ornithologist, Kyrgyzstan has a lot to offer, and the bird life can be described as a cocktail of species from the Middle East, southern Siberia, and the steppes from eastern Austria to Mongolia. Several areas are ornithologically unknown and always contain ornithological surprises.
The theme is unambiguous - it's about observing as many of the region's birds - as good as possible too. A journey that also gives participants the opportunity to enjoy magnificent landscapes and meet Central Asia's nomadic people. The countries of Central Asia have been ornithological dream destinations for years but are still logistically difficult to access. The journey has an expedition-like character but is a quality product: maximum time in the field, excellent bird places, informal travel, and formidable nature. The ornithological ambition is a high priority, but there is room for ornithologists at all stages of knowledge. The most important thing is enthusiasm. The program is based, among other things, on Miksture's ornithological expeditions since 1994 as well as the undersigned's other experience in the areas.
We’ll drive up into the Tien Shan Mountain range where the highly sought after Ibisbill occurs. We also visit the Walnut forests in southern Kyrgyzstan - broadleaf forest. Many mountain birds live in the mountains which roughly considered form the northernmost Himalayas with Tien-Shan as the all-dominated mountain range. This applies to species that we also know from the central and southern European mountains. In general, there are many species that are also widespread in southern Europe, as well as many local breeds, the most distinct of which, presumably over time, will gain status as independent species. Not only is a virtue made of seeing as many species as possible, but also as good as possible. Prior departure, a detailed species list and Practical information will be sent.
Tour start: Bishkek, capital of Kyrgyzstan 04.th May 2023
Joining one of our expeditions, you are going to have the very best opportunities to watch and photograph the wildlife and pristine landscapes. In Miksture, we enjoy comfortable accommodation and cuisine, but most important: We enjoys the maximum amount of time in the field and ee will be in the field positioning ourselves for the opportunities of a lifetime!
Breathtaking mountainous landscapes of Kyrgyzstan with snow-capped peaks, alpine lakes, meadows, and rivers
Central Asian bird specialities
Lakes and Rivers: Ruddy Shelduck, Red-crested Pochard, Ferruginous Duck, Bar-headed Goose, Demoiselle Crane, Horned Grebe, Ibisbill, Lesser Sand Plover, Terrace Sandpiper, Pallas's Gull, White-winged Tern, Black Stork, White Stork, Pygmy Cormorant, Little Bittern, Great Egret, White-crowned Penduline Tit, Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler, White-throated Dipper, Brown Dipper;
Tien Shan Mountains: Himalayan Snowcock, Horned Grebe, Ibisbill, Lesser Sand Plover, Black Stork, Bearded Vulture, Himalayan Vulture, Cinereous Vulture, Booted Eagle, Golden Eagle, Upland Buzzard, White-browed Tit-warbler, Hume's Leaf Warbler, Sulphur-bellied Warbler, Greenish Warbler, Wallcreeper, Little Forktail, Blue Whistling Thrush, Eversmann's Redstart, Blue-capped Redstart, Güldenstädt's Redstart, White-throated Dipper, Brown Dipper, Altai Accentor, Brown Accentor, Black-throated Accentor, White-winged Grosbeak, Mongolian Finch, Plain Mountain Finch, Brandt's Mountain Finch, Red-mantled Rosefinch, Red-fronted Serin;
Steppe and walnut forests: Daurian Partridge, Common Pheasant, Pallas's Sandgrouse, Booted Eagle, Eurasian Hoopoe, European Roller, European Bee-eater, White-winged Woodpecker, Lesser Kestrel, Eurasian Hobby, Saker Falcon, Turkestan Shrike, Long-tailed Shrike, Lesser Grey Shrike, Indian Golden Oriole, Rufous-naped Tit, Songar Tit, Azure Tit, Yellow-breasted Azure Tit, Booted Warbler, Sykes's Warbler, Upcher's Warbler, Bar-tailed Treecreeper, Rosy Starling, White's Thrush, Himalayan Rubythroat, Little Citrine Wagtail, Richard's Pipit;
Stay in the yurt-camp run by Kyrgyz nomads;
Maximum amount of time in the field, positioning ourselves for the birdwatching;
Flexible, with plenty of time and respect for your birdwatching and photographing;
Meeting the Silk Road hospitality;
Expert tour leader with 25+ years expedition experience
Ruddy Shelduck, Red-crested Pochard, Ferruginous Duck, Daurian Partridge, Common Pheasant, Himalayan Snowcock, Pallas's Sandgrouse, Bar-headed Goose, Hill Pigeon, Oriental Turtle Dove, Eurasian Corn Crake, Demoiselle Crane, Horned Grebe, Ibisbill, Lesser Sand Plover, Terek Sandpiper, Pallas's Gull, White-winged Tern, Black Stork, White Stork, Pygmy Cormorant, Little Bittern, Great Egret, Bearded Vulture, Himalayan Vulture, Cinereous Vulture, Booted Eagle, Golden Eagle, Shikra, Upland Buzzard, Eurasian Scops Owl, Eurasian Hoopoe, European Roller, European Bee-eater, White-winged Woodpecker, Lesser Kestrel, Eurasian Hobby, Saker Falcon, Turkestan Shrike, Long-tailed Shrike, Lesser Grey Shrike, Indian Golden Oriole, Rufous-naped Tit, Songar Tit, Azure Tit, Yellow-breasted Azure Tit, White-crowned Penduline Tit, Bearded Reedling, Horned Lark, Turkestan Short-toed Lark, Pale Sand Martin, White-browed Tit-warbler, Hume's Leaf Warbler, Sulphur-bellied Warbler, Greenish Warbler, Clamorous Reed Warbler, Blyth's Reed Warbler, Booted Warbler, Sykes's Warbler, Upcher's Warbler, Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler, Common Grasshopper Warbler, Barred Warbler, Hume's Whitethroat, Wallcreeper, Bar-tailed Treecreeper, Common Myna, Rosy Starling, White's Thrush, Himalayan Rubythroat, Little Forktail, Blue Whistling Thrush, Eversmann's Redstart, Blue-capped Redstart, Black Redstart, Common Redstart, Güldenstädt's Redstart, Common Rock Thrush, Blue Rock Thrush, Siberian Stonechat, Isabelline Wheatear, Desert Wheatear, Pied Wheatear, White-throated Dipper, Brown Dipper, White-winged Snowfinch, Altai Accentor, Brown Accentor, Black-throated Accentor, Citrine Wagtail, Richard's Pipit, Tawny Pipit, Meadow Pipit, White-winged Grosbeak, Mongolian Finch, Plain Mountain Finch, Brandt's Mountain Finch, Common Rosefinch, Red-mantled Rosefinch, Twite, Red-fronted Serin and Pine Bunting
HABITATS COVERED Mountains, Walnut-forests, and semi-desert plains
EXPECTED CLIMATE Distinct mainland climate which is locally influenced by the heights. Kyrgyzstan’s great distance from the oceans and the sharp change of elevation from adjacent plains strongly influence the country’s climate. Deserts and plains surround Kyrgyzstan on the north, west, and southeast, making the contrast with the climate and landscape of its mountainous interior more striking. The lower parts of its fringing ranges lie in belts of high temperature and receive hot, drying winds from the deserts beyond. The amount of precipitation the country’s westward- and northward-facing slopes receive increases with their height. The valleys have hot dry summers, with a mean July temperature of 28 °C. In January the average temperature is −18 °C. Annual precipitation varies from 180 mm in the eastern Tien Shan to 760 to 1,000 mm in the Kyrgyz and Fergana ranges. In the most populous valleys, rainfall ranges from 100 to 500 mm a year.
MAX GROUP SIZE 12
TOUR PACE & WALKING Moderate.
ACCOMMODATION We will stay in the 3-4**** hotels in Bishkek and Karakol. We will stay in community-based guesthouses when we explore Tien Shan and southern Kyrgyzstan. We stay two nights in yurt camp in Son Kul with European toilet style. There will be a place to wash hands and face and a shower room
ELECTRICITY AND POWER SOURCES We have electric power in hotels and guesthouses. We have limited electricity in the community-based yurt camp, which provides electrical power (220 Kv) between 18:00 – 22:00 with the help of a generator.
FOOD Breakfast, 15 lunches, and 15 dinners are included during your stay in The food is excellent! Good hearty, tasty and healthy home-cooked food in the best sense of the word based on fresh ingredients: Soups, poultry, vegetables, and pilaf - rice dishes with mutton and lamb and the indispensable bread nan. Tea is served with meals. There will also be an opportunity to taste the local wine or traditional kumus made from fermented mare's milk. Please let us know your dietary requirements in advance so that we can prepare the supplies accordingly.
OTHER ATTRACTIONS spectacular scenery and Kyrgyz culture
PHOTOGRAPHIC OPPORTUNITIES Very good
SCHEDULED 2024 DEPARTURE 04.05 - 16.05 2024
Tour Leader: Michael Westerbjerg Andersen
Tour price (per person): from USD 3,250
THE TOUR AT A GLANCE...
We advise participants to arrive latest early evening of 3.th May or a day earlier in Kyrgyzstan. For hotels recommendations, we will advise participants on request.
Day 1 Meeting point Biskek International Airport, or at your hotel. Place and time to be announced to participants. After meeting, transfer to centre of the capital Bishkek. Afternoon excursion. Overnight in hotel. LD
Day 2 Domestic flight to Osh and transfer to Arslanbob via Uzgen. BLD
Day 3 Arslanbob; walnut forest. BLD
Day 4 Arslanbob to Toktogul Reservoir via main road Osh - Bishkek. Birdwatching enroute. BLD
Day 5 Toktogul Reservoir to Bishkek. O/N hotel. BLD
Day 6 Ala Archa National Park and fishponds in afternoon. O/N hotel. BLD
Day 7 Bishkek - Cholpon Ata along northern shore of Issyk Kul. O/N guesthouse. BLD
Day 8 Night excursion - White's Thrush. Early up (01:00 night, and transfer to Grigorievskaya. Early morning transfer towards Karakol. Arrival Karakol. Accommodation for two nights. O/N hotel. BLD
Day 9 and 10 Birdwatching Tien Shan Mountains for the next two days. Day-excursions. Evening back to Karakol. O/N BLD
Day 11 Karakol - Tamga via Jeti Oghuz. O/N guesthouse. BLD
Day 12 Barakaun Gorge - Hight altitude birdwatching. O/N guesthouse. BLD
Day 13 Tamga - Son Kul. O/N in yurtcamp for the next two nights. BLD
Day 14 Son Kul, all day. O/N yurtcamp. BLD
Day 15 Son Kul - Bishkek. O/N hotel Bishkek. BLD.
Day 16 Tour concludes or extension to northern Kazakhstan. B
Costs: From 4 to 10 participants: From 3,250 USD pr. person in shared DBL room.
Single supplement: 600 USD
Deposit: 700 USD
Group size: Minimum 4 and maximum 10
Availability: Spaces available for May 2024
Expedition Leader: Michael Westerbjerg Andersen, owner and founder of Miksture Expeditions
Tour dates, prices, single supplement rates, approximate flight costs and spaces available for this tour are displayed on our website. Please see under IMPORTANT NOTES below.
The tour fee includes:
Guiding by Miksture/Michael Westerbjerg Andersen;
Transportation according to program in Kyrgyzstan in private A/C vehicles with experienced driver;
Domestic flights: Bishkek - Osh (Day 2)
Accommodation in Kyrgyzstan (15 nights);
All breakfast, lunch and dinners in Kyrgyzstan from Day 1 to breakfast Day 16;
Necessary permits sites and other paperwork;
Services of tour leader;
Local expert guides;
Administration from Miksture;
Field instructions and assistance;
National Park entrance fees;
Practical information and packing suggestions;
The tour fee does not include:
International flights to/from Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan;
Alcoholic beverages and soft drinks;
Personal expenses for eventual extra arrangements not mentioned in the program;
Travel insurance – mandatory!;
Money for own expenses and anything strictly personal (e g laundry, phone calls, any excess luggage charges, snacks).
Single Supplement: The single supplement cost for this tour will be charged if you wish to have single accommodation. Pls contact Miksture. If we cannot provide you with a rooming partner for these nights although you choose to share, the single supplement will become applicable. We will make all reasonable efforts to ensure that a rooming partner is found if you do wish to share.
IMPORTANT NOTES: a) Due to constantly fluctuating exchange rates, we quote our tours in USD. The tour price is however fixed only in the currency printed in bold, and the actual cost in the other currencies listed will be adjusted according to prevailing exchange rates at the time of final invoicing (usually 4 months before the tour.) The same applies to approximate flight and single supplement rates, which are also quoted in the respective fixed currency. b) Rates are based upon group tariffs; if the tour does not have sufficient registration a small party supplement will have to be charged. c) Furthermore, these costs are subject to unforeseen increases in tour related costs and may have to be adjusted as a result. d) Lastly, we may be forced to change or alter the itinerary and / or the designated Miksture leader/s at short or no notice due to unforeseen circumstances; please be aware that we will attempt to adhere as close to the original program as possible.
Special Notes: It is important for the comfort and domestic airport transfers of your fellow travellers that you do not over-pack. Kindly, if possible, stick to 20kg (44lb) for check-in luggage and 8kg (+-18lb) for hand luggage.
Fitness: In general this tour does not require a high level of fitness, but participants should be in good general health. Should you have any physical limitations, please notify us in advance of departure.
ARRIVAL & DEPARTURE DETAILS:
This tour departs from Bishkek in the midday of day 1. It is thus imperative to arrive the day before the tour begins. The tour will conclude after arrival to Bishkek Airport (Day 16). The information in respect of arrival and departures is a guide only. Precise arrival and departure information will be send to you in your Tour Confirmation package once the tour has been officially confirmed. if you wish to arrive early and/or depart late and would like assistance in this regard, kindly contact the Miksture office.
Visa requirements differ by country, nationality of the traveller and duration and purpose of your intended stay. It may be necessary to obtain a visa or electronic travel authorisation in advance of your travel. It is therefore vitally important that you check with Miksture for exact visa requirements.
This tour does not include any International airfares. The main tour will commence and conclude in Bishkek. Please DO NOT book any flights until you have consulted the Miksture office for confirmation on the status of the tour.