This section is dedicated to take away all your "I wish someone had told me that before I went!" experiences. This way, you are better prepared for what to expect, what not to expect and can spend less time settling in, and more time making new friends in your chosen hostel. We share our insider knowledge of tips, tricks and important things to look out for in Bishkek. To help you make friends with Bishkek before you visit, we've included a few helpful and fun things you should know about the area. Enjoy!
In the early nineteenth century, on the territory of today’s Bishkek, Madali Khan founded the Kokand fortress Pishpek, which had the largest garrison in the Chu Valley. The fortress was in the center of the ways of the nomads from winter to summer pastures and here, taxes were collected from caravans. The fortress was taken by Russian troops in the mid-nineteenth century and the fortress was destroyed. During Soviet times, Bishkek was a capital of the Kyrgyz Soviet Socialist Republic. Since the nineties, it has been a capital of Kyrgyzstan; today, its population is more than eight hundred and fifty thousand people.
You definitely need to check the local food, as it is delicious, exotic, and quite cheap. Plus, the portions are really big. You do not have so many monuments that you can visit. The Forging Fortress is an ancient citadel in Bishkek. Some of the fortification hills and part of the walls of the tower are preserved. The Kyrgyz State Historical Museum is one of the largest in Central Asia and it has more than eighty years of history. The National Museum Gapar Aitiev is named in honor of the artist Gapar Aitiev and the museum tells the story of a traditional Kyrgyz-applied art from the Soviet period.
Bishkek can easily be described as the most hostel-friendly city in Central Asia. Bishkek hostels have it all. The vast majority of hostels in Bishkek are located literally across the whole city, so you can choose your neighborhood according to your preferences without any problems. Hostels in Bishkek are cheap, and sometimes you can get ridiculously cheap promotion packages. To make the situation even more welcoming, most hostels in Bishkek offer outstanding conditions, which could be hardly expected from the prices. It is hard to explain how hostels in Bishkek manage to be so cost efficient and offer such a great service, but as long as they do, you can take full advantage of it.
Written by local enthusiast for Bishkek hostelsGeorge Traveller