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Ditch the tropical vacation; visit Nepal and climb Island Peak this autumn!

Discover the Celestial Mountains

Experience the Adventure Capital of Central Asia


TOTAL DISTANCE: 1000 kms of driving

MAX ALTITUDE: 4000 meters


LODGING: Mix of yurt camps, hotels, guesthouses, camping

GROUP SIZE: 12 people Max

kyrgyzstan trekking expedition map
Map of tour route


Stunning mountains. Remote yurt stays. Azure alpine lakes. Nomad culture. World class trekking. Cosmopolitan City life. Soviet history. This is the side of Kyrgyzstan that we want to show you.

Kyrgyzstan is the ultimate destination for adventure-hungry travelers looking to experience the raw beauty of Central Asia.

Come with us to trek in the Celestial Mountains, stay in yurt camps with nomadic families, relax on one of the biggest mountain lakes in the world, peak behind the former Soviet Iron Curtain, and become a member of a fun-loving team of adventurous travelers from all across the globe.

Who This Trip is For

Kyrgyzstan is for you if you enjoy…

  • NATURE: Vast parts of Kyrgyzstan are undeveloped and unspoiled. The country is home to some of the most beautiful mountains in the world and a vast array of other landscapes, including desert and alpine meadows.
  • TREKKING: We embark on a multi-day trek through the Tian Shan aka the “Celestial Mountains” in Northern Kyrgyzstan.
  • LOCAL CUISINE: Kyrgyz food is delicious and we aim to show you a wide variety of the country’s culinary traditions. Vegetarians options are always available as well!
  • HISTORY: From being a vital link on the legendary Silk Road to its more recent ties to the Soviet Union, Kyrgyzstan is a country steeped in fascinating history.
  • OFF THE BEATEN PATH ADVENTURE: We visit places solo travelers can’t go. The trip is for travelers who truly want to connect to places, local people, landscapes, and food without being rushed around in the process.
  • DIVERSITY: This is a well-rounded itinerary that features a little bit of everything. Trekkers, foodies, cultural fanatics, and casual travelers should all be able to enjoy this trip in Kyrgyzstan.

Upcoming Dates





July 27th - August 9th, 2024Available!$750$3300
July 20th - August 2nd, 2025Available!$750$3300

Have a question or ready to book?

Whether you’re just curious about this trip or are ready to make a deposit, we’re here for you.

To submit an inquiry or make a trip deposit, please fill out and submit the form below.

Your Trip Leaders

Noemi Liebi

Noemi grew up in the mountains of German-Speaking Switzerland where she naturally developed a deep love and respect for mountain environments.

She is a talented photographer, aspiring climber, and speaks at least 5 languages fluently including Arabic (and probably a few more that we don’t know about), which she taught herself in a matter of months by watching YouTube videos. 

Noemi has spent the last several years traveling, hiking, and photographing her way around many different countries in the Middle East, South and Central Asia, and Europe, and we could not be more stoked to welcome her to the Epic team! 

Highlights of the Tour

  • Go for a multi-day trek in the Celestial Mountains
  • Soak in natural hot springs
  • Camp out next to a high altitude mountain lake
  • Witness an eagle hunting demonstration
  • Opportunities to ride horses
  • Eat delicious Kyrgyz food
  • Explore the highlights of Bishkek
  • Learn about Kyrgyz nomadic culture
  • Sleep in comfortable hotels, tents, and yurt-stays


Today is the big day! You’ll finally get to meet your fellow tour partners as well as guides before heading off into the Kyrgyz wilds. Before heading out, we’ll have a short debriefing where we talk about the details of the trip.

Our first stop is the Burana Tower just outside Bishkek. This is one of the most famous archeological sites in the country. Locals also love to sell fresh fruit here.

Afterward, we drive about an hour to Konorchek Canyons where we will be spending the bulk of the day. This area is a favorite among locals and a bit of a hidden gem. We will hike around the rust-colored canyons for a few hours before departing to our final destination: Kochkor.

In Kochkor, guests will have the opportunity to visit a legendary craft store (owned by an amazing woman) and visit an old salt mine. The latter is believe to have therapeutic properties, particularly for the lungs. A great place to ready ourselves before heading into the high mountains!

Note: Guests are asked to arrive either prior to or very early on Day 1 (before 6 am). The first day will be long so we want to have as much time as possible.

We hit the road and make for one of our favorite places in Kyrgyzstan: Song Kul. This high alpine lake, located at 3000 meters high, is only a few hours drive away, yet you feel like you’re in Alaska!

Once we arrive at Song Kul, guests will have the opportunity to unwind and relax or explore the lake further. Horse riding is very popular here as is drinking kumis, a Kyrgyz delicacy.

Today we depart from Song Kul to Krygyzstan’s largest and most famous lake: Issyk Kul. This enormous body of water is the 6th deepest lake in the world and never freezes. It’s waters are crystal clear and are framed by beautiful red sand beaches and snow-capped mountains.

We’ll head straight to our yurt located on the shores of the lake. It’s a special place surrounded by desert formations, hushed by the wilderness, and kissed by the turquoise waters of Issyk Kul. 

A short but epic sunset hike in a nearby secret canyon is on the program for the late afternoon. 

We depart from our beloved yurt camp and travel east along the south shore of Issyk Kul. Along the way, we’ll stop by several epic locations.

First is Fairytale Canyon, whose rock formations resemble those in Utah or Arizona. There we will be met by some local eagle hunters and they will demonstrate to us one of the most respected trades in Kyrgyzstan. 

Afterward, we head to Barskoon Gorge, famous for being Yuri Gagarin’s favorite vacation spot and the center of the world accordingly to one ancient scholar. We’ll have a picnic here and will have the chance to visit a lovely waterfall nearby. 

From our picnic place, we travel deeper into the gorge until we begin to climb. Our goal is to reach the top of the Arabel Plateau (4000 meters), which will be highest altitude on the trip. No worries, we won’t linger long but be prepared for snow. 

Finally, we depart back to the lake and check into our guesthouse in Tosor.

Wake up with an epic sunrise over the lake a maybe a cool dip! Today, we head for the Karakol Valley via the southern shore of Issyk Kul, home to the amazing Ala Kul.

Arriving at the trailhead just outside of Karakol (the city), we’ll officially start the trek. The trail is covered by lush woods the entire way.

After 5-6 hours walk, we’ll reach a small yurt camp and will have our lunch. Ala Kul will be about 1100 meters above us.

Once re-energized, we’ll hit the trail again and walk another 2-3 hours until we reach High Camp. This is our resting place for the night.

Total trekking distance: 13.7 km
Altitude Gain: 950 meters
Trekking Time: 5-7 hours with breaks. 
Accomodation: Tents 

Today’s going to be an epic day! We wake up early and start the ascent to the magnificent Ala Kul. Situated at 3500 meters, this is one of the highest and most beautiful lakes in Kyrgyzstan.

Since we have already hiked halfway up the steep trail the day before, we only have another 500-600 meters  to gain to achieve the Ala Kul cauldron. This portion of the trail is mostly boulder fields and can be quite steep and exposed to the sun. 

After reaching the lake, we will eat lunch and take time to enjoy the scenery. After lunch, we have our 2nd push of the day: trekking over a mountain pass to yet another incredible valley below. 

After we descend the pass, we arrive at a lush yurt camp and settle in for the night. 

Total trekking distance: 6.8 km
Altitude Gain: 940 meters
Trekking Time: 6-7 hours with breaks. 
Accomodation: Tents or Yurts

We will depart our camp early while the weather is fair. Today is an easy day! We drop more than 1000 meters of altitude to reach our destination: a riverside yurt camp complete with hot springs!

Altyn Arashan is one of the most magical places in Kyrgyzstan. It is famed for the thermal water that runs from the nearby mountains and this is pumped into local saunas. The water is the perfect temperature and is a great way to ease those tired muscles after 2 days of hiking. The views of the valley aren’t too bad either. Our accommodation will be in comfy yurts with hot spring baths just 50 meters away.

Total trekking distance: 9.2 km
Altitude Gain: 50 meters
Trekking Time: 2-3 hours with breaks. 
Accomodation: Yurts

Sadly, we must leave Altyn Arashan and head back to Karakol. We have the chance to get one last dip into the hot springs at sunrise with coffee. 

We’ll make our way back via Kamaz (Russian 4×4 school bus – tank hybrid). This ride can be a bit bumpy but the scenery is out of this world Drive time should be around 2-3 hours Karakol where hot showers and laundry await.

Later in the afternoon, the team will have the opportunity to visit a few cultural during their free time landmarks around Karakol, including the Holy Trinity Cathedral, Dungan Mosque, and a Soviet antique store.

That night, we have a special activity planned: a sunset boat trip on Issyk Kul! Bring your favorite summer-wear and drinks!

We’re heading back out into the wilderness folks! This time to an isolated section of Kyrgyzstan located on the Chinese border referred to as Sary Jaz. Not many people visit this part of the country for whatever reason. But it is a spectacular region with quintessential Kyrgz landscapes: lush jailoos (summer meadows), towering peaks, and vast open skies.

We will be making several stops on the way to Sary Jaz: at a historical site, a quick bathroom break in Kazakhstan, and an epic viewpoint where, on clear days, we can see the gorgeous Khan Tengri (7000m).

We will arrive at our campsite in the late afternoon where we prepare dinner and accommodation. Guests have the opportunity to ride horses, hike, or just chill out for the rest of the day.

Camping in Sary Jaz will be a highlight of our trip as the heavens are crystal clear.

Following our long journey from the previous day – this “zero driving day” is purposed for soaking in the true beauty, vibe, and grandeur of the Sary Jaz region. The plan is to go for a horse trail ride to a remote part of this valley where the mountains straddle the China border and just take in this extremely remote and untouched part of the world. 

Photography opportunities on this day are next level so make sure you bring your camera!

We will end the day with a tasty home cooked dinner from our camp staff and another beautiful night under the Sary Jaz star scape. 

Today, we load back in our trusy Kamaz and return to Karakol and back to civilization via Chonn-Ashu Pass (3822 meters).

When we arrive, we will check into our accommodation and you will be reunited with your beloved, long-lost shower and a comfy bed.  

We begin the last leg of our journey back to Bishkek. But it’s not the end of the tour yet! We still have to see the northern shore of Issyk Kul and the pastoral hamlet of the Chong-Kemin Valley. 

Chong-Kemin is a wide valley with lots of room to breath and wander. Our hotel will be an excellent one and will feel like a palace in a lot of ways. We will have cultural activities planned for the night and, after an amazing dinner, a bonfire as well.

Today is our last full day in Kyrgyzstan and by God it’ll be a good one! We’ll head back to Bishkek for one last hurrah!

Whilst in Bishkek, we will get to explore the city’s many hidden gems, including Soviet monuments, lush parks, famed breweries, and maybe even a secret speakeasy 😉

We’re going to be finishing of Kyrgyzstan tour in (Kyrgyz) style people!

We say goodbye and arrange for transfers to the airport for those who are flying out over the next 24 hours. Check out of the hotel is around 11 am on this day.

You can choose to stay at the same hotel if you are not flying home right away, though any additional nights at the hotel are not covered by Epic.

What People Have to Say


There are two dominant languages: the native Kygryz language and Russian.

Most western nationalities do not need to obtain a visa in advance to visit Kyrgyzstan, including the USA, EU countries, the UK, Australia, and Canada.

A mix of hotels, yurt stays, cabins, and tents while camping. Prices are based on shared accommodation (2 people in one room).

You should have decent fitness to properly enjoy this adventure. Although there is no extreme high altitude on this tour, you will be required to hike a few days over mixed terrain with the occasional steep ascent and descent.

Additional Resources

Adventure Guide

Hailing from the Toronto region of Eastern Canada, with a background as a former standout athlete (hockey of course) and a  love of mountain adventure, Clark is a welcomed addition to the Epic team.

In addition to being a keen photographer and adventurer, Clark brings his brilliant sense of humor, leadership skills, and positive attitude to everything he puts his mind to. 

When he is not leading trips, he is working on taking over the hard apple cider game in Canada as a skilled craft brewer. 

Adventure Guide

Noemi grew up in the mountains of German-Speaking Switzerland where she naturally developed a deep love and respect for mountain environments.

She is a talented photographer, aspiring climber, and speaks at least 5 languages fluently including Arabic (and probably a few more that we don’t know about), which she taught herself in a matter of months by watching YouTube videos. 

Noemi has spent the last several years traveling, hiking, and photographing her way around many different countries in the Middle East, South and Central Asia, and Europe, and we could not be more stoked to welcome her to the Epic team! 

Adventure Guide

As our man on the ground in Mongolia, there is not much this legend can’t do. As a native the Bayan-Ölgii province of the Western Mongolia Altai, Syerik has been working as a guide and tourism entrepreneur…

for the past several years and is one of the rising stars in Mongolia adventure travel industry. 

He is currently building a beautiful Ger (Yurt) camp near his hometown where he will host Epic Mongolia team members on our trip as well as other travelers from around the world! 

He is the perfect guide for your trip to Mongolia. Serik did an amazing job giving us a well rounded experience in the Altai NP region and down in the Gobi…
The food was fantastic and Serik gave us many opportunities to learn about the Kazakh culture in that region including traditional meals. (I can’t recommend enjoying the milk tea enough!)

– Coastal

Head of canine operations

Choriza started off life as a care-free vagabond on the streets of Madeira Island without any place to call home. From the moment we met her, we knew this dog was just different, and it was pretty much love at first sight. 

She gave up the dog street life in favor of joining her new dad Chris to become a full-time member of the Epic family towards the end of 2022.

These days she can be found listening in on the fringes of important Epic business meetings while half-asleep on the couch. She is a keen hiker, lover of mud, rare steak, and might just be the sweetest little dog we have ever seen. 

Adventure Guide

An experienced trek leader and
IFMGA aspirant ski guide, avid alpine climber, devoted adventure photographer.

Organized and guided trekking expeditions, climbs and ski tours in Tajikistan’s Pamirs, Patagonia, Peru, Morocco, Nepal, Kyrgyzstan, Georgian and Russian Caucasus and Kamchatka.

A full member and meets the organiser of the British Alpine Club. Visited over 40 countries, lived in the UK for four years. Certified first-aider.

We joined Andrew on a fantastic trip to the Fann Mountains in Tajikistan, pure nature and magnificent scenery! Andrey was super prepared and led us safely up and down numerous passes and through some rough and icy cold rivers. Thank you for a very memorable trip, your planning and prep was excellent!

– Monika Steinlechner

epic expeditions team

Adventure Guide

Our man in Nepal, Sandip is what we like to call a “Swiss Army Knife”. There is not much Sandip can’t do when it comes to helping Epic to run our expeditions smoothly in Nepal.

His tireless work ethic, passion for all things trekking in the Himalayas, and smart decision-making mean that Sandip is a truly invaluable member of our team.

Sandip is passionate about showing visitors to his country an amazing time, and he goes above and beyond to make sure that happens. 

His company Himalayan Masters is Epic’s trusted partner in Nepal and one of the country’s top new tour agencies.

We really enjoyed the entire journey, and I would like to say that Sandip is truly professional. He guided us and he is a hardworking person, providing us with the best service and taking care of each one of us. Plus, he is super funny! The kind of professionnal you always want to find on your path for your explorations! 

– Alexandra Ruth

Fairy Meadows

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Our Favorite Experiences

#1 Sunrise from Reflection Lake

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#2 Hiking to Nanga Parbat Base Camp

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#3 Playing cricket with the locals

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Trips Where We Visit Fairy Meadows

Our flagship Pakistani adventure tour.  Road trip with some  hiking and cultural immersion.

A trekking-style tour that features some very remote locations, inlcuding a K2 viewpoint.

Adventure Guide

João has born in the mountains of Madeira Islands in Portugal. Nature lover, writer, musician, guide, for him, a day without contact with outdoor vibes is a nightmare. 

With a degree in Cultural Studies in Portugal and a Master of Arts in Global Cultures and Creativity in the U.K.

João found out what really matters in life can be found on the trails, and in the contact with people from different backgrounds and cultures.

Guiding, crazy trekking missions, and sharing observations about the natural world, – these are some of João’s passions. 

After trekking to K2 Base Camp and exploring all over Northern Pakistan, he fell in love with the country and the local people. His experiences resulted in his desire to share these feelings with the world.

João is one of the most experienced guides at Epic and his skillset and positive mindset in the mountains is second to none

When not in Pakistan, João is  guiding and exploring in the Madeira Islands trails –  discovering some of the hidden treasures on his Portuguese Island.

João I can not thank you enough for the off the beaten paths and views you keep giving. Definitely one of the most challenging and amazing hikes we did 1200m meters all the way up to Fanal forest and circling back to the hidden village. Wow!

– Jeffery 

travel hunza valley

Adventure Guide

Sohail is the newest addition to the Epic team and we are beyond stoked to have him on board. As a veteran of the Karakoram and a native of Karimabad in Hunza, there is not much Sohail can’t do in the mountains. 

Besides having the ability to speak more languages than we can count, Sohail has explored every corner of Gilgit Baltistan and logs more trekking miles 

in a year than most people will do in a lifetime. As of the summer of 2022, Sohail has summited Gasherbrum 1, Gasherbrum 2, and K2 – three of Pakistan’s five 8000-meter peaks. Sohail guides several trips including our annual bespoke expeditions but specializes in Hunza Valley tours.

Chris and Sohail, and the team at Epic are FANTASTIC! Highly recommend anyone to do a tour with ‘Epic’. They have the perfect balance of fun, excitement and wild adventures, tied in with being super professional and ensuring your safety/health in a foreign environment. Don’t waste a moment and book a tour with these guys as the value for money is UNREAL!

– Borgan

iran travel tour

Adventure Guide

Pedro’s been traveling all around the globe since 2009. His keen interests in documentary photography, rural life, and local people from different ethnic groups have been the focus of many of his professional projects.

Since 2012, he has developed his passion for travel and awesome shared experiences into a full-time adventure photography tour leader position.

Pedro has found himself continuously going back to the Middle East, with his likely favorite destination being Iran. Pedro lead his 11th tour in Iran with Epic in spring 2020

When Pedro’s not traveling the world with Epic Expeditions, you’ll find him based in the western south of Portugal planning he’s next adventure missions, logistics and working out his photos in local exhibitions.

 I loved the combination of hiking, camping around breathtaking scenery mixed with the cultural aspects. The guide (Pedro) is knowledgeable and work very hard to make the trip as memorable as possible. All in all an epic adventure with some extremely epic individuals! Go for it, you won’t regret it!

– Coastal

Diane Bouvet

Adventure Admin / Marketing

After fleeing from the corporate fashion world in Paris towards the start of 2020, Diane has been working as a web developer and graphic designer remotely from various bases across the globe

She brings all of her incredible design and organizational power to Epic Expeditions and is responsible for many of the beautiful behind-the-scenes design elements. 

Diane has been to Iran and to Pakistan twice including all over Gilgit Baltistan and KPK.

k2 gondogoro la trek

Head of Operations | Guide

A veteran of Pakistan travel, Ralph is an experienced guide, photographer and writer who specializes in documenting remote locations. 

Not one to simply go where everyone else does, he insists on exploring new and lesser-known areas.

Together with Epic Expeditions, he shows people parts of Pakistan that most other operators don’t even know about. He is particularly fond of the village of Barah, which he believes will become just as famous as Hunza one day.

Just got back from EBT’s Trekking Amongst Giants 15 day tour. The experience was first class. Ralph, our head guide, ensured that the entire trip ran smoothly and relatively on time (a bonus for anyone travelling in Pakistan). We had so many unforgettable days on the tour and the trekking was well-planned, safe but also a rewarding challenge. 

– Calvin

Traveling to a non-tourist destination can be a little intimidating but EBT takes all of the worry and trepidation away. From the pre-trip call to meeting the wonderful staff in person you can tell that you are dealing with a company that has a passion for what they do each and every day. Ralph, Zahid, and Khan were supportive, kind, and always willing to go the extra mile to make sure that everyone on the trip was getting what they wanted out of the experience.

– Katrina 

adventure tours pakistan

Founder | Adventure Guide | Director

Since he started exploring the world, Chris has been seeking out every shade of adventure in various parts of the globe and had visited more than 70 countries along the way. 

Over the last 10 years, Chris has logged more than 7000 trail miles across five continents and climbed multiple 6000 + 7000 meter peaks in Pakistan and Nepal.

A few years back, a distant dream and a deep passion for the mountains and the people of Pakistan led Chris to co-found Epic Expeditions at a time when foreign adventure tourism in Pakistan was almost nonexistent. Since then, Chris has guided more than 20 expeditions to various parts of Northern Pakistan.

Chris believes in using photography and powerful adventure experiences to dismantle negative stereotypes regarding what mainstream media considers “dangerous” countries while facilitating unique and meaningful memories in the mountains for countless people from around the globe. 

For him, an ideal start to the day begins with a steaming cup of good coffee, the beam of a headlamp, alpine boots, and a camera in hand.

He lives in Madeira Island when not leading expeditions in far-flung lands. 

Chris also works as a writer and photographer on his blog Off the Atlas – an adventure travel blog all about Pakistan.  

Read this interview our staff did with Chris to learn more about him!

Chris believes in Pakistan and its people, and he believes in the value of journeys shared with others and family cultivated on the road. Honesty and integrity are at the heart of what he does, and this really shines through in his work as a guide. He also makes great coffee – whether at 5am in an empty guesthouse or half way up a Himalayan peak.”

– Will De Villers

Pakistan is a magical country! Had 3 of the best weeks of my life thanks to Epic Backpacking Tours with owner, and one of our awesome guides, Chris. From detailed itinerary, preparation with an equipment list, and visa assistance. To amazing food, great porters, helpful guides, and great accommodations. Epic really hit home run after home run. […]

Their desire for adventure and amazing trip is just as high as yours. Bring a good pound of coffee for the trip. French press coffee every morning and no average tin coffee, plus you’ll be in your guides good books.

– Clark Tyler

epic backpacker tours

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