kyrgyzstan – features

It’s been about a day and a half since I returned from three weeks spent in Kyrgyzstan. I was there over my school’s winter break with a group of 9 other students, a professor and a former student working on stories throughout the country. There was a broad range in our coverage….everything from homelessness to race issues to maternity care to illegal coal mining.

Over the next few days I’ll post some images from stories that I worked on during the trip.

It’s hard to condense and explicitly describe how the trip was when I get the question, “How was your trip to that country I can’t pronounce or remember?”

So I’ll try in these coming posts to write out a solid explanation of what the experience was like, how it made me feel and what we hope to do with it.

This post contains feature images that don’t specifically fit into any story that I spent time on. The in-betweens, I guess.

114 Responses to kyrgyzstan – features

  1. oh wow… what intimate, telling shots. thank you for sharing.

  2. ICA says:

    For a place I can’t even pronounce, it looks beautiful. Thanks you for sharing the pics.

  3. livvy30 says:

    Love the last shot! Thanks for sharing!

  4. This is really great. Thanks for sharing

  5. Great photos. If the stories are any reflection of the stories to follow than I am sure they will be very interesting to read…

  6. susielindau says:

    Such amazing photos. Each tells its own story!

  7. Carlie Chew says:

    Great pictures! They all seem to tell a story.

  8. iedarla says:

    My son spent a few weeks there on his way to Afghanistan. He said it was so beautiful he would love to go back. Thanks for sharing.

  9. great in-betweens. these photos help portray the experience and feel of the trip very well in my opinion. the two horses shot is awesome

  10. Dounia says:

    Truly beautiful photos, showing lovely scenes of life! Thanks for sharing and congrats on being freshly pressed!

  11. Amit says:

    Great photos, every photos are like telling you a story! very Nice!! especially the horse one and the kiss!!!!!!!!

  12. Thanks for capturing such beautiful scenes and sharing them. Connie

  13. Great photos! My fave is the third one, looks so lonely.

  14. The photo of the lone donkey, as well as the bride with her heavy coaton over her dress, are fantastic! You said you went to Kyrgyzstan for school—it’s a differentchoice, but great that your uni offers more off-beat locales to study in!

  15. Ryan says:

    Awesome photos! The ice rink photo is a great one!

  16. djronstar says:

    Not sure but was that a donkey in the snow?
    Being from Canada I have never seen that 😉 lol


    How To Be A DJ

  17. Good job !! I like the Kyrgyzstan ones ! Would like to go there…


  18. Amazing pictures and lovely to read a post on a different topic and on a location which is not often portrayed by the media in this light.

    Great blog and congratulations on getting FP!
    Hope to see you on mine soon!

  19. Pingback: Kyrgyzstan | Frankfurt FTMBA at Goethe Business School

  20. KW says:

    I spent two happy years in Bishkek from 1996-1998. It doesn’t look like much has changed. Thanks for sharing!

  21. Rae says:

    I was immediately drawn to the picture featured on the Freshly Pressed page, but I love them all. You have a good eye.

  22. Nice Pic Collection amazing photography.

  23. A faux nation created by Russia to separate the Kazakh people…

    I’ve met quite a few Kyrgyz here, they’re really good people, kind hearts, similar to that of Turkmen. Their traditional tents “yurts’ are REALLY cool too.

    I hope to visit all the Central Asian states one day, thanks for the share.

  24. gaycarboys says:

    amazing place. Still, the iron curtain has a lot to answer for. It’ll take 50 years for these places to revover from years of neglect. You take a wonderful photo though

  25. nella32000 says:

    Great photographs and fun. Most seem to have a back story to them that makes them fun. Could you tell me is there one to that young woman in the 4th one down. And is she sucking down a alcoholic beverage?

  26. artboy68 says:

    Spent some time in that part of the world 20 years ago,would love to go back and see it now.

  27. rrunthegun says:

    that horse photo or donkey- [not quite sure] is BEAUTIFUL. love love.

  28. plaidoak says:

    Wonderful pictures.

  29. Nice photos. I’m interested about how much religious Kyrgyzstan people are. Can you please tell me about their day to day lifes and what roles religion plays in this country? There is sadly so few first hand experience and news about this matter on the Internet.

    • Most people in Kyrgyzstan call themselves Muslim because of their cultural and family heritage but have little understanding or interest in the meaning of the Muslim faith. The Islam that is practiced is a synchronism between Islam and local superstitions.

      • That is the actual representation of Islam. Islam has been misunderstood as ‘the’ religion as practiced in Saudia or Afghanistan. Whereas the true picture is painted by countries like Malaysia, Indonesia, and Central Asian republics like the one we are talking about. Islam gives us guidelines to spend a life in accordance with the limits framed by the Lord. How we do and what we do in our lives is generally an expression of local customs as it’s in many countries of Africa. Hope I didn’t offend. Regards,

        Dr. Afaq A. Qureshi.

      • thanks for the reply guys. It makes me very sad to hear that Islam is just a cultural thing for Kyrgystanis. Anyone knows what percentage of Kyrgstanis pray 5 times a day?

    • Jasmine says:

      Well, they were under secular atheistic communist rule, so I’m not sure if they are practcing Muslims, but it’s kinda of obvious that they are not inflenced by th Wahabism,so who know, they probably practice the Islam before the influences of the Saudis.

  30. Can’t wait to see more to remind me of people and places I’ve visited in Bishkek and surrounding villages.

  31. Gonna visit Kyrgyzstan someday for sure.. 🙂

  32. Beautiful images….

  33. Can’t wait for your stories. Sounds so exciting!

  34. That EJ says:

    Amazing post! Really love the photos. Sensational!

  35. Michael Zoll says:

    Sehr sehenswerte Fotos! Werde öfter kommen 🙂

    Gruß aus Berlin,


  36. These images could give abundant inspiration for devised theatre. Mystery and physicality and story all in contrast.

  37. Sofie Marklund says:

    You have captured Kyrgyzstan! Excellent work!

  38. lajf2012 says:

    Nice picutures 🙂

  39. Its through this “In-between” moments that life gives us the sweetest and most memorable surprises….and each of your images breathes just that. Wishing you the best for 2012…

  40. asad says:

    my friend this good page…..!!!

  41. Cherie says:

    Very emotive photographs…excellent!

  42. Val says:

    Lovely colours and a lot of mystery!

  43. Open Up Life says:

    Great images. You truly captured life from the heart.

    Anxious to read about your experience.

  44. I love how you have illuminated what can be very dull winter days. These are great photos and I’ll look forward to seeing more. You should go back in the summer; Kyrygyzstan is a beautiful country and there are great possibilities for some wonderful city and countryside shots. Good luck! (on Central Asia)

  45. Mij says:

    I recently visited that part of the world, and your photographs are amazing. Will keep an eye out for the blogpost!

  46. Oh I would love to Kyrgyzstan! Thank you for capturing such lovely moments to tie me over until I can get there myself 🙂

    Beautiful work!


  47. Chaks says:

    great photos. I like this post,

  48. love the compositions and contrast. keep shooting!

  49. Yatin says:

    Lot of happy people in that frozen world during this time. Nice job freezing them into stills.

  50. Excellent Photography! Would like to see more!

  51. Lisa says:

    that last photo is incredible.

  52. Java Girl says:

    Absolutely amazing photos! I like how they “speak” all on their own. 🙂

  53. Life in a high-elevation, predominately Muslim, developing nation looks much the same as life here. I especially was touched by the newlyweds with their friend or relative.

  54. This photo trip took my breath away. Thank you for the work and love it took to put together in order to share with the WordPress family. Blessings in your future journeys.

  55. Gillmorphean says:

    Fantastic photos, really natural compositions.

  56. causnfx says:

    I love the snow photo landscape with the silhouette of an animal. Great work!

  57. hellenjc says:

    fantastic photos..

  58. Muffin says:

    GREAT Photos.

  59. Paul Heck says:

    It’s always a great reminder of our shared history when you see those beautiful Russina speaking eurasians and then read about their shared muslim culture, A mixture of the remnants of the Mongol invasions and the subsequent expansion of Islam thoughout the greater middle east, then the subsequent inclusion in the old Czarsit empire and then the now defunct USSR.
    Thanks for sharing some really great photos and storiy.

  60. Beautiful shots.

    I used to work for a travel company putting together trips in Central Asia (I would agree that not many people have heard of them or can pronounce them – but they are a beautifully kept secret!) and Kyrgyzstan was always on my wish list since that time – I might actually make the trip through Uzbekistan, through the Pamirs and into the beautiful Kyrgyz mountains at some stage in my life, fingers crossed

  61. pnwauthor says:

    Your photos are diverse and some are enchanting such as the man carrying the cotton candy and balloons on a shadowy street and the horses in the field.

  62. ClassyAudge says:

    Beautiful shots. I really love the ones of the horses in the snow. Reminds me of home, thank you for that.

  63. Love the shot of the donkey – that looks so so cold! You sure get to go some interesting places with your school, we got taken to Brighton. Kyrgyzstan is not somewhere that would appear on most people’s list of destinations to visit, or know anything about, so thanks for giving us all an insight into a fascinating country.

  64. Vida says:

    Awesome moving shots. So what’s this place? 🙂

  65. Beautiful, majestic, amazing, jaw dropping…

  66. pradeepjavedar says:

    These are amazing pictures! specially those of the donkeys.. and the portraits.. very real and very telling..

  67. Brilliant on the colors and subjects. A wonderful mix. Thanks for the exhibit.

  68. wow! i had always wondered what Kyrgyzstan was like! thanks for sharing the photos. really loved them!
    will be looking forward to the future posts.
    take care

  69. rtd14 says:

    Such beautiful pictures! Thank you for sharing!

  70. Who is the attractive girl?

  71. molls225 says:

    Thank you for giving us a window into an otherwise unknown world

  72. I love traveling and find it hard to describe any culture in a few sentences without over-generalizing. I agree with you on that photographic images speak for themselves.

    Congratulations on being FP’d! Look forward to future posts.


  73. salimhossain32 says:

    Excellent photoes!

  74. kmok1242 says:

    These are excellent photos! I was in Kyrgyzstan for almost a month while I was in the military, though I was there during June so I didn’t get to experience the snow there, but as time has it I am making up for it here in Chicago *sigh*. I loved the fact that the people there dressed everyday like they were going to a party at least that was the impression I got. Very nice people, but most of the time kept to themselves. Thanks for sharing again!


  75. transconfiguration says:

    Nice photos cant wait to read your stories!!

  76. J.C.V. says:

    Beautiful pictures!

  77. 4aadesign says:

    Great pictures! Thanks!

  78. ghostswrit says:

    Beautiful people!

  79. Aarom says:

    I absolutely love the simple nature ones. They seem to capture the serenity perfectly. Great shots bro.

  80. thetravelingbird says:

    Wow, I would love to go to Kyrgyzstan. I worked at the World Expo in Shanghai, China 2010 and got to visit the pavilion of the Kyrgyz Republic. It was small but it was a great glimpse into their culture.
    Here’s what the Kyrgyz Pavilion looked like if you want to see what they did:

  81. Julio Munar says:

    Nice photos! Job well done! =)

  82. Benjovsky says:

    Really lovely photos! Really glad I found your site!

  83. Ninay says:

    Wonderful photos.Makes me wanna go to Kyrgyzstan someday. 🙂

  84. Alex Ingram says:

    Your photos are fantastic….I’ve only recently started blogging and I’m wondering how does one ensure that the photo’s you’ve taken and placed online are not ‘stolen’ and used as someone else’s work? When I start to travel, I hope to take some awesome shots that I’d like to share online but also feel safe in the knowledge that someone else wont take credit for them.

  85. Valentina says:

    Really nice stuff. Love the unpronounceable country. Adored the lonesome donkey in the snow, would ask how much you’d sell a print for if I had any money to spend.

  86. Your photo’s speak a thousand words. You created a story with a beginning, a middle and an end. Even if you didn’t mean to, that’s some pretty impressive usage of photographs.

    Followed and liked. Would love to see more of your photo’s.


  87. I love the picture of the bride in the snow 🙂

  88. Pingback: Something to share | The World Inside My Head

  89. fermezza says:

    You’ve certainly gotten enough complements here already! I’m curious to know how you chose these images to represent your trip and this place. Sometimes it’s the choices we make in what we present or omit that make the largest difference in the feel of the body of work.

  90. sheokhanda says:

    beautiful pics…. my favorite one is where the couple are kissing…

  91. kaori says:

    Wow. Truly stunning images. I echo those that said each photo tell a story of their own. I’m looking forward to further reading!

  92. clayer says:

    Your photos are amazing! I would definitely like to follow you.

    I am chronicling the year with a photo a day — trying to find the inspiration in everything — every day!

    Would love for you to follow me in my journey too!

  93. makingmade says:

    Stunning photos! That one with the running horses kind of took my breath away. Thanks you!

  94. yeahiloveit says:

    Nice post!
    Can we use couple photos for our site ?

  95. Thanks for the incredible amount of comments, all.

    To the previous commenter, send me an e-mail at if you’d like to discuss purchasing some of my images.

  96. I spent some time there on my way to Afghanistan. The biggest thing that stood out was the different mixed races. It made me smile. I was excited to see something different. Great pics.

  97. closspimentinha says:

    I must have been an unforgettable experience!
    The photos are really beautiful, the tell a lot.

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