Journal Pictures Tracks Links About
Accommodations Formalities Maintenance Miscellaneous FAQ

  10.09.2006 Formalities: Kyrgyzstan
Date of Border Crossing 10.9.2006
Point of Entry

Kegen coming from Kazakhstan

Passport and Visa Passport has to be valid for at least another 6 months and you need a visa to enter Kyrgyzstan. See Additional Information on how to get a visa for Kyrgyzstan in Almaty.
We did not have a valid insurance for Kyrgyzstan. Nobody checked or seemed to care.
Drivers License Did not get checked, but I am sure that officially you are required to have one.
Motorcycle papers All you need is your 'vehicle passport' (vehicle registration papers).
License plates Own license plates are sufficient.
How it went

Kegen is a very small border crossing down a dirt road. They are not very busy here, so the process took less than 15 minutes and was totally straightforward.

No paperwork need to be filled out. They checked the passports and put an entry stamp into it.

Customs office:
We did not need to fill out any paperwork for bringing the motorcycles into the country. No papers were issued. They looked the bikes over, had a look into one of our bags and that was it.

Point of Exit Torugart Pass to China
How it went We had spent the night before the border crossing at a yurt camp at Tash Rabat. We left there early in the morning at 08:00 am, to beat the rush. From Tash Rabat it took us one hour to reach the first checkpoint, which was supposed to open at 09:00 am. There was already 6 vehicles there in front of us, a couple of trucks and some tourist buses.

Check Point:
At the checkpoint our papers were checked and they phoned ahead to let them know that we were coming. Then we were waved through.
From the Check Point it is a very dusty drive, passed a lot of struggling trucks up to the border. It took us about 90 minutes to get to the border at the base of Torugart Pass. Here the line of waiting vehicles was even longer. We passed them all and drove up to the front of the line. The soldiers manning the border asked to see passports and a fax confirming that a guide and a support vehicle form the Chinese was meeting us up at the border.
We did not have such a fax, but I had printed out the e-mail from the traveling agency through which I had organized the guide. After a lot of arguing they finally agreed to accept this and let us into the border area.

Immigration Office:
At first the Immigration officer refused to sign us out of the country, because we couldn't produce a fax stating that a guide was waiting for us on the Chinese border. More arguing, before he accepted the e-mail as proof and put an exit stamp in our passports.

Customs Office:
At the customs office they made us fill out the usual customs paper we had been filling out all over Central Asia.: two for each bike. The information gets copied into a big book, the forms get stamped and we are sent back out to Customs inspection. They weren't really interested and instead sent us on our way.
Additional Information

Getting visa for Kyrgyzstan:
We got our visa for Kyrgyzstan in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Here for those with a GPS: N43 14.358 E76 57.678
The visa was issued the same day; for an additional charge. Show up at the Kyrgyzstan embassy in the morning. Fill in the visa application form and complete it with one passport picture.
Return in the late afternoon to pick up your visa. You will have to pay the visa in US dollars. A visa issued on the same day costs you 80 USD.

Changing money:
Coming into Kyrgyzstan at Kegen:
There is nowhere to change money at this border. First place to do so is in Karakol where there is money changing offices that will change Kazakh currency and US Dollars. Luckily we had bought Kyrgyzstan Soms in Almaty, because on the way from Kegen to Karakol you go through the Issyk-Kul Biosphere Reserve. You have to pay an entrance fee of 500 som per vehicle!

Leaving Kyrgyzstan over Torugart Pass to China:
At the official Chinese border there is a lot of money changers who will change Kyrgyz currency into Chinese money. Do it here, because getting money changed in Kashgar is more complicated.

These are the details of the border crossing into this particular country. The information is correct as of the date on which the border was crossed. But, due to the stability and vagaries of the regimes involved, it is prudent that you get additional data directly from the embassy involved, preferably in your own country. Also you should keep in mind that the procedure can vary depending on exactly who is on duty. So never assume anything is a particular way, and regardless of what anyone says, the impossible is often possible if you are in the right place at the right time. Good Luck.


©2010 Khim Rojas & Fernweh AdventuresHomeTop


AccommodationsFormalitiesMaintenanceMiscellaneous FAQ