Photo: Dennis Keen

Over 60 nationalities can visit Kyrgyzstan without a visa. This includes many European and former Soviet countries, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Singapore, Korea, the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.

While many other nationalities are eligible to receive a visa on arrival at the airport in Bishkek, some require a visa in advance.

Wikipedia has a helpful page listing the visa policy for different nationalities. If you are in doubt, you should check with the Kyrgyz embassy in your own country.

If you need a visa in advance, the IAF or our Kyrgyz hosts can provide a supporting letter for your visa application. You can request this when you register, or email

When booking flights with one or more connections, please check whether you need a transit visa.

Please also note that if you plan to arrive by land via Almaty in Kazakhstan, you might need a Kazakh transit visa.

Getting there

Bishkek’s Manas International Airport is the main hub for daily flights with Turkish Airlines, Pegasus, flydubai, Ukrainian International Airlines and Aeroflot.

Shuttle buses will be provided from Manas Airport to Cholpon-Ata. Please contact us to enquire if there are places left on the shuttle bus.

Alternatively, you can hire a private taxi to Cholpon-Ata for around 3,000 som, approximately $45 or €40, at Manas Airport.

Accommodation and food

Accommodation with full board will be reserved for all who registered before August 1st, 2017 at a cost of $45-$55 per room per night, and full board (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) – $20 per person per day.  Payment is in cash in dollars on arrival.

Those who registered after August 1st, 2017, please contact us directly to enquire about room availability. 

Alternatively, there are many inexpensive hotels and hostels in Cholpon-Ata that you can book via

Weather and clothing

September is a beautiful month in Kyrgyzstan, with daytime temperatures averaging around 25°C, making it perfect for swimming in Issyk-Kul. Bring your swimming costume.

When packing, bear in mind that the meeting and most activities will be held on a high plateau in the mountains, and in September nighttime temperatures can drop to 13°C. Bring clothes for warm and cool weather.


Currency exchanges and ATMs are available in Cholpon-Ata and throughout the country.

The cost of living in Kyrgyzstan is low in comparison with many countries, and most necessary things, such as medicines, can be purchased locally.

Market stalls will be laden with tasty produce and beautifully crafted clothes and souvenirs, and bargaining is part of the experience. So when you see something you like, put on a smile and start haggling!

Next steps

Register Cholpon-Ata Programme Saker Conference