Flowers tour – Endemic flowers of the northwest Tian-Shan, 14 days

Tour dates – April 20 – May 03, 2022.  Dates can be changed if the group is already formed.

Scientists, students, photographers and any botanical enthusiasts are invited to take part in the tour. Endemic flowering plants in Kyrgyzstan are the most vulnerable group of plants. Especially vulnerable representatives of biodiversity in Central Asia are Tian-Shan endemic plants. More than 4100 species of flowering plants are known in Kyrgyzstan. Kyrgyzstan is considered to be one of the richest countries in Central Asia by the number of flowering plant species. Distribution of endemic species throughout Kyrgyzstan depends on climate, soil, and technological factors. By the instrumentality of the expedition we envisage learning more about the endemic and endangered plants of the Tian-Shan in Kyrgyzstan. We set it as the objects to understand reasons for the disappearance of the plants and to learn from local residents about rare plants. We are also interested in studying natural conditions of the plants. Despite the modest size of Kyrgyzstan, the country has an extraordinary variety of environmental conditions. Most of the country’s territory is occupied by mountains, the highest altitude of which reaches more than 7450 m. The lowest bottomland is 450 m above sea level. The natural conditions determine the habitat for endemic plants. The tour route runs through various climatic zones, where we observe not only endemic, but also other species of plants. Mainly, we visit the Northwest Tian-Shan. The route begins in the capital of Kyrgyzstan, Bishkek and ends in the southern capital – Osh. During the trip, we visit places that hold titles of natural heritage of UNESCO. We also explore semi-desert plants in a savannah and relict walnut-tree forest in Arslanbob. We also visit biosphere reserve Sary-Chelek.

The duration of the tour is 14 days. During the tour, we cross the western part of the country and visit high, mid and low mountain zones, as well as semi-desert zone. The most favorable time for the trip is April, May, June, July                                                                              PROGRAM

Day 1. Arrival in Bishkek

Meeting at the airport. Hotel accommodation.

Day 2. Briefing

Acquaintance with the travel programme, and the guide. Excursion to the National Park Ala Archa. In the morning, drive to the northern slopes of the Kyrgyz ridge. In the national park we can see Tulipa zenaidae; Tulipa ostrowskiana; Juno orchioides; Paeonia hybrida. In the evening, return to the hotel.

Day 3. Bishkek - Talas

In the morning, departure for the southwest of the country. The route leads through an alpine pass Too-Ashuu and then through an alpine valley Suusamyr. Along the way, we try to find endemic plants: Tulipa greigii; Tulipa ostrowskiana, and other rare plants. Overnight at a hotel in Talas town.

Day 4. Outskirts of Talas - Talas Valley

The Talas valley and foothills of the Talas ridge delight with its beauty. Here grow: Tulipa talassica, Tulipa greigii; Juno orchioides; Paeonia hybrida; Geranium sophiae; Scutellaria lanipes. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 5. Talas - Chatkal Valley

After breakfast, we head to Chatkal - the natural heritage of UNESCO. On the way we can see: Tulipa ostrowskiana; Arenaria talassica. Stay at a guest house in Chatkal.

Day 6. Chatkal valley

Chatkal is a wild pristine nature land. Here one can find many kinds of plants and animals. Chatkal is the habitat of: Tulipa kaufmanniana; Juno orchioides. Overnight at the guest house.

Day 7. Chatkal - Kerben

The path lies south to the southern slopes of the Chatkal Range. On the way we can see: Convolvulus krauseanus; Cousinia echinopifolia; Cirsium schakaptaricum. Overnight at the guest house.

Day 8. Kerben - Buzbu-Too Mount - Kyzyl-Dzhar savannah - Sary-Chelek

After breakfast, we visit the southern slopes of Mount Buzbu-Too, and then we cross a savannah and again head to mountains, to forest zone, to the famous lake Sary-Chelek, which is located in the biosphere, and is a UNESCO heritage of international significance. On the way we can see: Tulipa anadroma; Elisanthe fedtschenkoana; Silene fedtschenkoana; Paeonia hybrida; Astragalus caudicosus; Hedysarum chaitocarpum; Hedysarum gypsaceum; Hedysarum turkestanicum; Sphaenocarpus eryngoides; Convolvulus krauseanus; Eremostachys cephalariifolia; Phlomis knorringiana; Salvia schmalhausenii. Overnight at a guest house.

Day 9. Sary-Chelek

The day is to be devoted to study of endemic flowers of the Sary-Chelek biosphere reserve. Here grow: Campanula eugeniae; Pyrethrum sovetkinae; Cousinia knorringiae; Cicerbita kovalevskiana; Allium dodecadontum. Overnight at the guest house.

Day 10. Sary-Chelek - Arslanbob

The route proceeds to an amazing and unique place - relict walnut tree forests of Arslanbob. The walnut tree forests are the only ones in the world by distribution area of more than 600,000 thousand hectares. Here we can observe blooms of: Hedysarum chaitocarpum and Cicerbita kovalevskiana. Overnight at the guest house.

Day 11. Arslanbob

The day is to be very informative: an excursion to waterfalls, visit to a walnut tree forest. Horseback riding as a separate tour through a forest is available for interested enthusiasts. Among endemic plants we can see: Elisanthe fedtschenkoana; Eremostachys cephalariifolia; Silene fedtschenkoana; Cicerbita kovalevskiana. In the evening, dinner with national dishes. Overnight at the guest house.

Day 12. Arslanbob - Osh

In the morning after breakfast we head to Osh, the southern capital of Kyrgyzstan. Thus we get to the eastern part of the Ferghana Valley. Along the way we try to see: Silene fedtschenkoana; Delphinium knorringianum; Andrachne pygmaea; Phlomis hololeuca; Phlomis knorringiana; Cousinia laniceps; Cousinia stellaris. Hotel accommodation.

Day 13. Osh

The day is dedicated to the ancient city Osh, (3000 years). We ascend Sulaiman-Too mountain - a UNESCO cultural heritage site. Those who wish can visit a local bazaar. We also visit the museum of local lore. Free time. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 14. Osh – Airport

From Osh city, return flights to Bishkek or direct to home airports. A special vehicle delivers the participants to the airport.

  • - Meeting and seeing off at the airport
    - Accommodation in hotels 3 * according to the program (double occupancy)
  • - Flights from Osh to Bishkek
    - Three meals a day for the whole program,
    - Transport according to the program,
    - Guide-expert,
    - Entrance fees to reserves,
    - Bottled water
  • - International air fare to Bishkek / Osh and back
    - Rental of individual equipment
    - Surcharge for single occupancy
    - Cost of visa and consular services
    - Personal expenses in a hotel: bar, international calls, etc.
    - Insurance
    - Any changes to the program
  • - Visa

Price on request

According to the request and interest, we can negotiate the optimal price for your budget.

Price depends on the number of participants

The optimal number of participants is 2-15


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