Soviet Spas and Healing with Horse Milk

Posted by on July 24, 2013

One thing I really enjoy about Bishkek is the presence of so much nature and so many quirky trips within the Chuy Valley where the city is located.

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Mountain view of Issyk-Ata resort.

One of these highlights is the old Soviet-Era health resort at Issyk-Ata.

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Lenin on the lookout.

There are certainly plenty of reminder of the halcyon days of the USSR, with Lenin on lookout and a number of hammer/sickle combinations celebrating the union of Soviet states.

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Elegant relics, of a more civilized age.

For a Kyrgyz twist, though, Kumiz is also a popular focus of time spent at the Issyk-Ata Sanatoria. The fermented milk of a mother horse, this stuff is said to be good for the skin and stomach and restorative towards all sorts of bodily ailments.

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First try: fermented horse milk.

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Looking for a lovely trail.

Bring your map, too, as there are a number of good hikes to be done from the health resort.

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первии водапад б иссук ате.

I’m hoping to get back up there sometime soon in order to hike what looks to be a beautiful path over the Alamuddin Pass and down to a DIFFERENT Soviet-era Sanatoria a couple of valleys over.

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Soviet-era bar?

That sounds like alot of work, though. For now, a Soviet-era beer?

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7 Responses to Soviet Spas and Healing with Horse Milk

  1. steven

    Been there one too many times (twice), but the mud bath will leave you speechless, I promise.

    • Stephen

      Was that the one you described as a hive of scum and villainy and fungi? I’ve really gotta check the place out next time I head through there.

  2. steven

    That will be the one.

  3. Adam

    How did you get there from Bishkek??

    • Stephen

      There’s a bus direct from the East Bus Station. It leaves a couple of times per day, first around 9a and last around 6p with a cople in between, but I’ve never been able to get hold of a hard schedule for it. Just turn up to the station and it’ll be the last stand away from the entrance. It takes a couple of ours to get there, though, so try not to leave too late.

  4. Adam

    Awesome thanks for the advice! I can’t find Issyk Ata anywhere on a map. Do you think I’ll be able to get onward travel from their to Kochkor? Is it close to Tokmok because if not I can make my way to Tokmok and hop on a marshutka to Kochkor.

    Thanks again

    • Stephen

      There won’t be anything direct for Kochkor, unless you happen to stumble across a family miraculously headed that way. The times I’ve just missed a bus I usually try to hitch my way to Tokmok, so that is definitely an option.

      As to the location, plug this into google maps: 42.6001358,74.9101657 It’s the next valley east of Alamuddin, if memory serves, but I’m away from home and don’t have my Chuy Valley maps handy.

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