Lakes of Kyrgyzstan

Undoubtedly, Lake Issyk Kul is one of the most beautiful and the most popular lake in Kyrgyzstan mountains. However, there are 750 lakes, reservoirs and small ponds with a total area of 6836 km2, which occupy 3.4% of the republic’s territory.

The second largest after Issyk Kul Lake – Lake Song Kul. It is located at an altitude of 3016 meters above sea level in the northwestern part of the Naryn Region. This is an excellent object for eco-tourism. Travelers are attracted by virgin pastures, and of course by the preserved area. Song Kul Lake is the largest body of freshwater in the country. The lake is spread over 28 km long and 18 km wide, its water surface area is 278 sq km, and the maximum depth is 22 m.












The third largest lake – Chatyr Kul Lake. It is located between the ridges of At-Bashy and Torugart-Too, in the west of the Ak-Sai Valley. Altitude 3520 m. The area of the lake is 161.1 km2, maximum depth is 19 m. The lake length is 22.8 km, the maximum width is 10.5 km. River Kok-Aygyr and 23 small rivers and streams flow into the lake. It is closed lake, but the water mineralization is close to freshwater (2 g/l). In the past 100 years, the lake level fell by almost 4 meters. From October to April is covered with ice, which thickness reaches of 1.5 m. Fish fauna consists of small aquatic organisms. Fish are not present. During the summer here is waterfowl.  

Sary Chelek is one of the most beautiful lakes in Kyrgyzstan. It is located in the basin of Kojo-Ata, in the south-eastern slope of the Chatkal ridge. Altitude 1878 m. The area of 4.92 km2, length of 7.5 km, maximum width 2280 m, maximum depth of 234 m. According to researchers, lakeside bowl formed as a result of the landslide about 10 thousand years ago. The collapse blocked the valley of the River Sary-Chelek and upstream there was gathered a considerable amount of water. From beneath the dam the River Toskool flows. The water level has seasonal fluctuation - the highest value is reached in May, the lowest - in December. In winter, it is covered with ice. In summer, the water temperature reaches 19.8 ° C, and in winter ranges from 4°C to 0°C. The water inhabited by marinka, carp and other fish species. Around the lake there are beautiful landscapes covered with forests. Lake is rich in recreational resources. The lake is located in the protected area - in the Sary-Chelek Biosphere Reserve of world significance.

Glacier Lake Merzbacher is very interesting for its regime. It is located between glaciers Southern and Northern Inylchek. Lake is made of ice. It is annually filled with meltwater of glaciers and annually in late summer erupts under a glacier Southern Inylchek, forming a flood on the river Inylchek, 10 times the average annual water consumption. Until the summer of next year it is filled again, reaching the previous level. Breakthroughs occur in August and continued for 5-6 days, sometimes in September. The lake is located at an altitude of 3304 m, a length is about 4 km long, the width is 1 km and the area of water surface is 4.5 km2. These data changes over time, depending on the state of glaciers.