Ala-Kul is one of the most popular of the stunning alpine lakes located in the Terskey Alatau mountain range of the Issyk-Kul region. It lies between Altyn-Arashan and Karakol gorge at an altitude of 3520 m above the sea level. The lake is about 2.3 km long and 700 m wide making it one of the largest of the 729 lakes in the Issyk-Kul basin. Ala-Kul translates from Kyrgyz as “the Motley Lake”. The crystal clear waters of the lake are filled by glacial streams and the area is surrounded by the rocky peaks of the Terskey Ala-Too range. Ala-Kol is frozen from October until May. The color of the water can change according to the time of day, the season and the weather and you may notice violet, dark blue, or even pink colors once in a while.
The lake is situated in the Karakol gorge, on the Northeast border with Altyn-Arashan gorge and is one of the fairly remote destinations of Kyrgyzstan. Although Ala-Kul is close to the Karakol city, getting there can be tricky and exhausting for non experienced hikers.
How to get to Ala-Kul?
You can take a taxi for 70 som and tell the driver to drop you at the start of the Karakol National Park. From there you need to pay 250 som as the entrance fee per person and begin to walk towards Ala-Kul lake. The pathway starts from the entrance to the Karakol gorge and it is about 30 kilometers to the lake in total. You might experience all conditions of the weather, from the sun to the rain and thunder or even snow sometimes even during the summer period.
You can reach the lake Ala-Kul by vehicle as well, however you must get a suitable car with an experienced driver. Be aware that road is in bad condition and some bridges might be broken unexpectedly. Nevertheless, you have to still walk a quite a bit after getting off from the car.
Page last updated 12.9.2020. This page is still a stub. If you have more precise or updated information regarding this page, we would appreciate if you tell about it in the comments section. Thank you!