Oh my Osh – just a short one (5-7th Nov)

Oh my Osh – just a short one (5-7th Nov)

*pictures added*

Osh is in the Fergana valley  – a place whose geographical exclaves are quite a headache for both cartographers and non local, visa-requiring travellers! Look at the (badly edited by me) picture above…

This was Stalin’s doing – apparently he didn’t want any of the republics to become too ethnically homogeneous and therefore liable to nationalist uprisings.

Luckily the route I ended up taking meant I didn’t have to deal with this but if I had stuck to my original Pamir-free plan I would have had to pick my way through it…

Osh is around 50% Uzbek and definitely felt more Uzbek than Kyrgyz (but with more commerce and less police) and this has resulted in violent clashes in previous years (eg 2010). The city is currently safe and quite pleasant but it’s kind of not what you come to Kyrgyzstan for. It’s probably most interesting if you aren’t visiting Uzbekistan as it at least allows you to get a taste of Uzbek culture.

It’s known for its sprawling bazaar – a whole district of shipping containers, corrugated iron and tarpaulin clustered along the river.

You can find pretty much everything here, although unless you have expert local knowledge it might take some time…

Overlooking the city is Sulaiman Too, regarded as a sacred mountain. You can climb it and go inside some caves but I admit I was too lazy to bother by that point (what an intrepid explorer I am).
It competes for control of the skyline with the soviet era structures…

Osh is also where I said goodbye to P, as she was heading for Uzbekistan and I was going back to Bishkek for the last leg of the central Asian part of this trip. Hopefully I’ll catch up with her again in Hong Kong as she should be home by then and it’s where my flight back to the UK leaves from (for my cheater’s Christmas interlude).
More random Osh:


One thought on “Oh my Osh – just a short one (5-7th Nov)

  1. Good to see that “meat salad” is freely available! (got to get your 5-a-day!) (although what looks like beef might possibly turn out to be goat in those parts of the world….). (Cheater’s interlude: I’m sure melons could be arranged; goats may be more of a challenge).

    Missing out on the Sacred Mountain: what the heck – once you’ve thrown The One Ring into the flames on top of one Sacred Mountain, you’ve thrown them all….! 🙂


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