Kyrgyzstan – Run The Silk Road Marathon

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  • Duration: 6 / 8 Days
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Run the Silk Run takes place annually in northern Tian Shan mountains, in eastern Kyrgyzstan, on the shores of Issyk-Kul Lake (1609m). The race route traverse through part of the Silk Route with historic architecture and magnificent alpine views along the run. The race, which is held in May each year, is dedicated to the memory of Satymkul Dzhumanazarov – a Soviet marathon runner from Kyrgyzstan, who took his place as a bronze medalist, on the podium of the Olympic marathon in 1980.

Issyk-Kul Lake, a protected marshland and a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, is an endorheic lake, the tenth largest lake in the world by volume and the second largest saline lake after the Caspian Sea. Issyk-Kul means “warm lake” in the Kyrgyz language; although it is surrounded by snow-capped peaks, it never freezes. Aside from the protected marshlands, the lake is also surrounded by two mountain ranges –  Ala-Too (sunny) Mountains to the north and to the south the Terskey (shady) Ala-Too Mountains.Issyk-Kul was a popular stop on the Silk Road. The Silk Road or Silk Route was an ancient network of trade routes that were for centuries central to cultural interaction originally through regions of Eurasia connecting the East and West and stretching from the Korean peninsula and Japan to the Mediterranean Sea.

The 9th international marathon of Kyrgyzstan – Run The Silk Road will be held on 2 May 2020

Train and Run with Running Coach ~ Liew Wei Yong

We are forming a team to take part in Run The Silk Road 2020 with running coach, Liew Wei Yong.

Voted by Run Society as one of the best 16 running coaches in Singapore, Liew Wei Yong is certified in everything from sports management to personality/behavioural assessment, she has been training runners for 15+ years while competing in killer marathons like the Elite Ultra, Gobi and Sahara Desert runs. She is also overseeing training for the Four Seasons Hotel, HP, SWEAT and NTUC running groups. This feisty trainer always finishes marathons within the top 16 and prides herself on being placed first in the Women’s Endurance category at the 2015 Sports Hub Stepper Challenge.

Before the run, Wei Yong will be training with the team. The training will cover:

1) A full and half marathon training program consists of the mileage to clock per day.
 
2) Tracking of progress every week. Team members are required to submit personal data from tracking devices, such as Garmin, Strava or others. Team members will be advised accordingly, based on each person’s data to train effectively.
 
3) A monthly strength training session. There are 4 training sessions:
 
1st session: 5 Jan 2020
2nd session: 2 Feb 2020
3rd session: 1 Mar 2020
4th session: 5 Apr 2020
 
Stand A Chance to WIN A Pair of Salomon Sense Running Shoes !
A BIG thank you to Liv Activ for sponsoring 2 pairs of Salomon Sense road running shoes ! All our 2020 running participants will stand a chance to win a pair! The lucky winners will be notified via email, after the lucky draw at the end of 2020!
 
Option to Extend for Sight-Seeing with Day Hikes after Run
The 8D extended itinerary (2 days extension) includes:-
 
(1) Day hikes in 2 of the most beautiful gorges in Kyrgyzstan
– Grigorievka Gorge and Djety Oguz Gorge –
 
Grigorevka is one of the largest and best known of the beautiful gorges on the north shore of Issyk-Kul, in the Kungey Ala-Too (Sunny Ala-Too) Mountains. It is a long and picturesque gorge and famous for its wooded slopes and three mountain lakes.
 
Jeti Oguz is a sandstone formation about 25 km southwest of Karakol. The name means “seven bulls” because the rocks formation looks like seven bulls. Jeti-Oguz is a protected Nature Monument in Kyrgyzstan. On the approach to Jeti Oguz, there is another rock formation that resembles a broken heart. Legend says that this is the heart of a beautiful woman who died of a broken heart after two suitors killed each other fighting over her. These two rock formations have become symbols of the Issyk-Kul region and are popular images for photographs and paintings.
 
(2) The ancient historic city of Karakol
– Karakol, formerly Przhevalsk, is the fourth largest city in Kyrgyzstan. Nestled between the Tian Shan Mountains and Lake Issyk Kul, it is a city of traditional Russian houses that date back to 100 years old. Aside from the traditional Russian houses, Karakol is also known for the Dungan Mosque (a unique building in a style of the Chinese pagoda) and the Russian Orthodox Holy Trinity Church (built of wood without a single nail used). Being close to the Tian Shan Mountains, it serve as a base for trekking in summer.
 
(3) Bokonbaevo Village
– Bokonbaevo is the largest settlement in the south of Lake Issyk-Kul. This village is famous its beautiful and untouched rural landscapes and fresh air. It also offer a glimpse into the nomadic life of Kyrgyz people and eagles/falcons hunters.
 
 
 

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DAY DESCRIPTION MEALS
1

Arrive Bishkek. If there is time, take an afternoon easy hike in Ala Archa Natural Park and some sightseeing tour of Bishkek.

Overnight: Bishkek hotel (800m)

B/L/D
2-3

Transfer to Cholpon Ata town (Issyk Kul Lake). Next day raining run around 8-10km in the morning.

Overnight: Cholpon Ata hotel (1633m)

B/L/D
4

Race day.

Overnight: Cholpon Ata hotel (1633m)

B/L/D
5

Transfer to Bishkek.

Overnight: Bishkek hotel (800m)

B/L/D
6 Depart Bishkek. B/L/D


Run Itinerary with Extension

DAY DESCRIPTION MEALS
1

Arrive Bishkek. If there is time, take an afternoon easy hike in Ala Archa Natural Park and some sightseeing tour of Bishkek.

Overnight: Bishkek hotel (800m)

B/L/D
2-3

Transfer to Cholpon Ata town (Issyk Kul Lake). Next day raining run around 8-10km in the morning.

Overnight: Cholpon Ata hotel (1633m)

B/L/D
4

Race day.

Overnight: Cholpon Ata hotel (1633m)

B/L/D
5

Transfer to Karakol. Visit Grigorievka Gorge for a day hike enroute.

Overnight: Karakol hotel (1750m)

B/L/D
6

Transfer to Bokonbaevo Village. Visit Djety Oguz Gorge (Seven Bulls) for a day hike enroute.

Overnight: Bokonbaevo hotel (1809m)

B/L/D
7

Transfer to Bishkek.

Overnight: Bishkek hotel (800m)

B/L/D
8 Depart Bishkek B/L/D
Option to Extend for Sight-Seeing with Day Hikes after Run
The 8D extended itinerary (2 days extension) includes:-
 
(1) Day hikes in 2 of the most beautiful gorges in Kyrgyzstan
– Grigorievka Gorge and Djety Oguz Gorge –
 
Grigorevka is one of the largest and best known of the beautiful gorges on the north shore of Issyk-Kul, in the Kungey Ala-Too (Sunny Ala-Too) Mountains. It is a long and picturesque gorge and famous for its wooded slopes and three mountain lakes.
 
Jeti Oguz is a sandstone formation about 25 km southwest of Karakol. The name means “seven bulls” because the rocks formation looks like seven bulls. Jeti-Oguz is a protected Nature Monument in Kyrgyzstan. On the approach to Jeti Oguz, there is another rock formation that resembles a broken heart. Legend says that this is the heart of a beautiful woman who died of a broken heart after two suitors killed each other fighting over her. These two rock formations have become symbols of the Issyk-Kul region and are popular images for photographs and paintings.
 
(2) The ancient historic city of Karakol
– Karakol, formerly Przhevalsk, is the fourth largest city in Kyrgyzstan. Nestled between the Tian Shan Mountains and Lake Issyk Kul, it is a city of traditional Russian houses that date back to 100 years old. Aside from the traditional Russian houses, Karakol is also known for the Dungan Mosque (a unique building in a style of the Chinese pagoda) and the Russian Orthodox Holy Trinity Church (built of wood without a single nail used). Being close to the Tian Shan Mountains, it serve as a base for trekking in summer.
 
(3) Bokonbaevo Village
– Bokonbaevo is the largest settlement in the south of Lake Issyk-Kul. This village is famous its beautiful and untouched rural landscapes and fresh air. It also offers a glimpse into the nomadic life of Kyrgyz people and eagles/falcons hunters.
DATES PRICE
29 Apr-4 May 2020 $1,500.00 (SGD) / person
29 Apr-6 May 2020 (extension itinerary) $1,600.00 (SGD) / person

Group size: Minimum 6 people

Package fee for the 8D extension itinerary :

2-3 people: $2,850 (SGD) / person
4-5 people: $1,860 (SGD) / person

Inclusions
  • Return airport transfer in Bishkek
  • All land transfer as in itinerary
  • Sight-seeing tour as in itinerary
  • English-speaking guide
  • Twin/trip sharing accommodation
  • Meals as in itinerary
  • 1l bottled drinking water per person/day
  • Full/half marathon/10km race registration fee, race pack, race t-shirt and souvenir medal
  • Support from a professional running coach
Exclusions
  • International airline taxes and fuel surcharge
  • Visa Fee (if needed)
  • Single Supplement
  • All beverages except boiled drinking water during trek
  • Meals not indicated in itinerary
  • All tipping
  • Personal travel insurance (mandatory to cover agent insolvency and running event/distance)
  • Personal expenses like shopping, laundry etc
  • Personal travel & running gear
  • Emergency evacuation and medical expenses
  • Compensation for damaged or lost of personal items (eg: travel gear and equipment, cameras and any valuable items etc)
  • Any expenses including accommodation, meals & transfer outside the stipulated  itinerary – i.e. any person leaving the group for personal travel, illness/injury or any form of extension of stay
Pre-trip support:

1. Trip briefing and information kit
2. Gear list and gear discount from selected Singapore outdoor outfitters
3. Training program/advise from Liew Wei Yong

We carefully select and establish strong working relationship with our local operator to ensure safe participation by everyone. Our local partner is one of the biggest and most established adventure operators in Kyrgyzstan.

Visa

Holders of ordinary passports issued by the following countries do not need a visa to enter Kyrgyzstan as long as their trip does not last longer than the visa-free period listed below.

Duration

Countries

Unlimited

Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Cuba, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Moldova, North Korea, Russia, Tajikistan, Vietnam

90 days

Mongolia, Serbia, Ukraine

60 days

Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, Sweden, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America, Uzbekistan, Vatican

30 days

Malaysia

Citizens of all countries, including China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan, can apply for an e-visa from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs through the www.evisa.e-gov.kg website. Processing takes 5 working days, and the price will depend on the duration (from 30 to 90 days) and the number of entries. Payments can be made with VISA and MasterCard. 
The electronic visa is valid for arrivals and departures at Manas International Airport (Bishkek), Osh International Airport (Osh), and various land crossings with China, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

For latest updates and details of visa application, please visit www.evisa.e-gov.kg.

Money

Currency exchange services are available at hotels, banks and moneychangers. Banks and moneychangers accept most major currencies like USD, EUR and GBP. Note that neither banks nor moneychangers will accept any foreign currency that is torn, marked, excessively crumpled, or defaced in any way, so be sure to carefully check any notes you intend to bring into the country for defects. Watch out also for differing small-bill (USD20 or less) and large-bill (USD50 or more) rates; the bigger bills get better rates. Check and count your cash carefully before leaving a moneychanger. Do not fall prey to petty cheats.

Outside of the major cities, banks and moneychangers are scarcer so make sure you carry enough cash.

Kyrgyzstan is still very much a cash economy. Credit cards are rarely used. ATMs are common in Bishkek, but less available in small towns.

Electricity

Kyrgyzstan’s electricity is 220V and 50HZ. The plugs used are the two narrow round pins Type C and Type F, which are commonly used in Europe.

Language

Being part of the former Soviet Union, the official language used is mainly Russian especially in the cities. As you move out into the rural areas, Kyrgyz, a Turkic language, is more commonly spoken by the nomadic Kyrgyz people. English is gaining popularity but still spoken only by those serving tourists.

Drinking Water

Tap water is said to be potable in Bishkek but safer to rely on bottled or boiled water. For the rest of the country, it is better to drink bottled water that is readily available, or boiled water at camp.

Tipping

Tipping is generally not practiced in Kyrgyzstan, except for tour/trek guides, porters and long haul drivers. Tipping in hotels is also not expected, with the bellman or porter being the exception. You should plan on tipping the hotel porter $1 per bag and perhaps a little more at a higher end hotel.

Full service restaurants typically impose a service charge and that is usually considered to be sufficient. Tipping is also not expected in taxis and drivers would usually return your change.

 
Travel Safety Advice

With evolving world situations that may occur unexpectedly due to natural disasters, pandemics/epidemics, conflicts and unrests, it is best to read up and keep tabs on news and developments at your destination country and region before the trip. Check on the country’s official website and/or your own foreign ministry website for any travel advisory or safety precautions to be taken while abroad.

As with traveling in anywhere in the world, regardless of the local crime rate, stay vigilant and take care of personal safety. Good to read up on any possible exposure in the country prior to departure.

It is a good practice to register with your respective foreign ministry if there is such a service provided to citizens, to contact you in order to make sure that you are safe and, if need be, assist you should an emergency (e.g. natural disasters, civil unrest, etc.) occur when you are overseas.

For Singaporeans, this is the link to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ eRegister:
https://eregister.mfa.gov.sg/eregisterportal/common/preLoginEregisterView.action.

 
Travel Insurance

It is highly recommended to purchase comprehensive travel insurance(s), upon payment of your trip, to cover adverse situations that may occur while you are overseas or even before departure. Ensure that the coverage is suitable for your destination and the activities that you are participating in. Be familiar with the terms and conditions before purchasing and travelling abroad.

 
Travel Immunization Advice 

There is no compulsory vaccine to be taken to enter Kyrgyzstan. You should, however, be up to date on routine vaccinations, especially vaccines against water-borne, food-borne, parasitic and other infectious diseases (examples: hepatitis, typhoid and tuberculosis) while traveling to any destination. You are encouraged to consider having vaccinations before you travel. At least eight weeks before you depart, make an appointment with your doctor or travel clinic for a basic health check-up, and to discuss your travel plans and any implications for your health, particularly if you have an existing medical condition.

Recommended routine vaccinations for travellers in general:

Hepatitis A

Spread through consuming contaminated food and water or person to person through the faecal-oral route. Risk is higher where personal hygiene and sanitation are poor.

Hepatitis B

Spread through infected blood and blood products, contaminated needles and medical instruments and sexual intercourse. Risk is higher for those at occupational risk, long stays or frequent travel, children (exposed through cuts and scratches) and individuals who may need, or request, surgical procedures abroad.

Rabies

 

Spread through the saliva of an infected animal, usually through a bite, scratch or lick on broken skin. Particularly dogs and related species, but also bats. Risk is higher for those going to remote areas (who may not be able to promptly access appropriate treatment in the event of a bite), long stays, those at higher risk of contact with animals and bats, and children. Even when pre-exposure vaccine has been received, urgent medical advice should be sought after any animal or bat bite.

Tetanus

 

Spread through contamination of cuts, burns and wounds with tetanus spores. Spores are found in soil worldwide. A primary series of 5 doses of tetanus vaccine is recommended for life. Boosters are usually recommended in a country or situation where the correct treatment of an injury may not be readily available.

Typhoid Fever

Spread mainly through consumption of contaminated food and drink. Risk is higher where access to adequate sanitation and safe water is limited.

Influenza

A vaccine specific for a given year to protect against the highly variable influenza virus.

For more information and professional advice on travel vaccinations, please consult your doctor or travel clinic.

For people residing in Singapore, you may visit The Travellers’ Health and Vaccination Clinic (THVC) at Tan Tock Seng Hospital:

Travellers’ Health & Vaccination Clinic
Address: Level 4, Clinic 4B, Tan Tock Seng Hospital Medical Centre
Contact number: 6357 2222
Website : https://www.ttsh.com.sg/Patients-and-Visitors/Medical-Services/Travellers-Health-and-Vaccination-Clinic/Pages/default.aspx.