osh city

Osh city

Table of Contents


Osh City, one of the oldest cities in Central Asia, has a rich history spanning over two millennia. Here’s an overview:

Ancient Roots:

Osh’s history dates back more than 3,000 years, making it one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the region. It was a significant point along the ancient Silk Road, connecting East and West, fostering trade and cultural exchange.


The city’s most iconic landmark is Suleiman Mountain (Suleiman-Too), a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This sacred mountain has religious and historical significance, featuring caves, shrines, and petroglyphs. It’s considered a pilgrimage site and a symbol of Osh.

Cultural Crossroads:

Osh has historically been a melting pot of different cultures and civilizations due to its strategic location. Over the centuries, it has been influenced by various empires, including Persian, Mongol, Russian, and Soviet, contributing to its diverse cultural heritage.

Trade Hub:

The city’s bazaars have been central to its identity, serving as bustling trade centers for merchants and travelers along the Silk Road. Jayma Bazaar is one of the largest and most vibrant markets in the city, offering a wide array of goods and cultural experiences.

Modern Era:

In the 20th century, Osh became part of the Soviet Union and experienced significant changes. Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, Kyrgyzstan gained independence, and Osh became a part of the newly formed country.

Ethnic Diversity:

Osh is known for its diverse population, primarily consisting of Kyrgyz and Uzbek communities, among others. The city’s diversity is evident in its culture, language, and traditions.

Cultural Heritage:

The city celebrates its heritage through various festivals, showcasing traditional crafts, music, dance, and cuisine. These events offer insight into the cultural richness and historical legacy of Osh.

Osh City hosts several vibrant and culturally rich festivals throughout the year, each offering a unique glimpse into the city’s traditions and heritage. Here are a few notable festivals:


Celebrated at the beginning of spring, Nowruz is a significant festival marking the Persian New Year. It’s a joyous occasion in Osh, characterized by lively street celebrations, traditional music and dance, and the sharing of special festive dishes.

Ala-Too Square Festivities:

Various cultural events and festivals take place in Ala-Too Square, often featuring music, dance performances, and exhibitions. These events celebrate the diversity of the city and offer a platform for local artists to showcase their talents.

Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha:

The Muslim festivals of Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha are celebrated with great enthusiasm in Osh. These festivals include prayers at mosques, communal feasting, and acts of charity, strengthening community bonds.

Shyrdak Festival:

This festival celebrates the art of Shyrdak, the traditional felt rugs of Kyrgyzstan. Visitors can witness demonstrations of the craft, learn about its history, and admire the intricate designs displayed in various exhibitions.

Osh City Day:

This celebration marks the founding of the city and is observed with parades, cultural performances, and various activities across the city. It’s a time when the local community comes together to commemorate Osh’s history and progress.

These festivals serve as a platform for locals to preserve and showcase their cultural heritage, while also inviting visitors to immerse themselves in the traditions, music, dances, and culinary delights of Osh. They offer a vibrant and engaging way to experience the city’s diverse cultural fabric and foster a sense of community and celebration.

What are some popular local dishes in Osh?

Osh City offers a delightful array of local dishes that are a reflection of the region’s culinary heritage, often blending Central Asian and Middle Eastern flavors. Some popular local dishes include:


A beloved Central Asian dish, Plov is a hearty rice pilaf cooked with fragrant spices, meat (usually lamb or beef), carrots, and sometimes dried fruits and nuts. It’s often considered a celebratory dish and varies slightly in preparation across different regions.


These are steamed dumplings filled with minced meat (commonly lamb or beef) and onions, seasoned with various spices. Oromo is a staple comfort food in Osh and a popular choice among locals and visitors.


Laghman is a noodle dish with influences from Chinese cuisine. Hand-pulled noodles are served with a savory sauce made from vegetables, meat, and spices. The flavors and ingredients can vary, but it’s always a satisfying and flavorful dish.


This is a favorite street food in Osh and consists of skewered and grilled chunks of marinated meat, typically lamb, beef, or chicken. The meat is tender and succulent, flavored with spices and often served with bread or as part of a larger meal.


Samsa are savory pastries filled with meat (usually lamb), onions, and spices, baked until golden and flaky. They are a popular snack or appetizer in Osh, found in local bakeries and eateries.


These are small, dried, and tangy yogurt balls, which are a traditional snack in the region. They’re often enjoyed as a quick, nutritious nibble.

Chak Chak:

A sweet treat, Chak Chak consists of small deep-fried dough pieces, typically shaped into a mound, and drizzled with honey or syrup. It’s a delightful dessert enjoyed by many in Osh.

These dishes showcase the diverse flavors and culinary traditions of Osh, and trying these local specialties is a fantastic way to experience the authentic tastes of the region.

What’s the best time to visit?

The best time to visit Osh City largely depends on your preferences and the experiences you’re seeking. However, considering the weather and popular activities, the following times are generally recommended:

Spring (April to June):

This period offers pleasant temperatures, blooming landscapes, and ideal conditions for outdoor activities like hiking and exploring nature. The weather is typically mild, making it a great time for sightseeing without extreme heat.

Summer (July to August):

Summer brings warmer temperatures, making it a prime time for trekking, camping, and exploring the mountains around Osh. However, it can get quite hot during the day, so being prepared for that is advisable.

Autumn (September to October):

The fall season provides comfortable temperatures and beautiful foliage. It’s an excellent time for outdoor activities and sightseeing, as the weather is still pleasant before the onset of winter.

Avoiding the extreme cold of winter and the potential for heavy snowfall might be wise for travelers less accustomed to such weather. However, if you’re interested in winter sports or the unique beauty of snow-covered landscapes, visiting during the winter months can be rewarding.

Remember, certain festivals or cultural events might influence the best time to visit based on your interests. Checking for any local festivals or events you’d like to experience can also help determine the ideal timing for your visit.


Related Tours

related 2 Tour

Turkestan range

The Asian Patagonia Trek:11 Days A Thrilling Expedition in Turkestan Mountains


Peak Lenin

8 Days Lenin Peak Base Camp Trek



More places in Kyrgyzstan

No destinations were found
Open chat
Kyrgyz Holidays
Can we help you?