Bulunkul & Yashilkul Lakes

The Bulunkul and Yashilkul lakes are located approximately nearly one mile away from one another in the Southeastern province of Tajikistan. These fresh-water alpine lakes, situated over 12,000 feet above sea-level, are surrounded by dense vegetation, wetlands, sand and pebble plains.

These lakes are a very rare sight to behold in the ruggedness of the Pamir mountains. The snowcapped peaks reflected in the glass-like surface of the lakes make for breathtaking natural scenery. A whole spectrum of colors visible here awakens the senses, from the pearl-white mountain tops to the pure-blue surface of the lakes. These waters are so fresh that effervescent wildlife can be observed here. An abundance of aquatic life, along with many species of ducks and geese make their home amidst the lakes' smooth waters. They form part of the Bulunkul and Yashilkul Lakes and Mountains Important Bird Area, a destination visited by hundreds each year.

The Bulunkul and Yashilkul lakes are located approximately nearly one mile away from one another in the Southeastern province of Tajikistan. These fresh-water alpine lakes, situated over 12,000 feet above sea-level, are surrounded by dense vegetation, wetlands, sand and pebble plains.

These lakes are a very rare sight to behold in the ruggedness of the Pamir mountains. The snowcapped peaks reflected in the glass-like surface of the lakes make for breathtaking natural scenery. A whole spectrum of colors visible here awakens the senses, from the pearl-white mountain tops to the pure-blue surface of the lakes. These waters are so fresh that effervescent wildlife can be observed here. An abundance of aquatic life, along with many species of ducks and geese make their home amidst the lakes' smooth waters. They form part of the Bulunkul and Yashilkul Lakes and Mountains Important Bird Area, a destination visited by hundreds each year.

EXPERIENCES

EXPERIENCES

Bulunkul Lake

Bulunkul Lake is the smaller of the two lakes, with depths of up to 19 feet. This region has the lowest recorded temperatures in Tajikistan and waters of the lake have known to drop to below -60 degrees celsius. Stunning scenes of the icy blues of the lake against the sun-kissed peaks makes an idyllic picture.

Hot Springs of Issyk Bulak

Located near the lakes is a hot hydrogen sulphide spring that locals consider sacred. Hot streams of up to 71 degrees celsius bubble up from four geysers located at the bottom of the granite mountain. A number of ruins are present here, thought to be tombs and there is a clay pool that collects the spring water.

Important Bird Area

The lakes and surrounding wetlands, slopes and broad highland valleys are home to a huge number of diverse bird species from those who come just to breed to passing migrants. These include Saker Falcons, Himalayan Vultures and Eastern Imperial Eagles and form an impressive bird population within the lake’s dramatic landscape.

Trekking

Trekking in this region provides awe-inspiring views as well as the chance to witness the effervescent wildlife that inhabit the lakes. Hike around the lake on foot to experience the lake’s full glory or opt for a trek on horseback, where these sure-footed animals will provide a relaxing ride to enjoy the beautiful scenes that surround the lakes.

Yashikul Lake

Lake Yashilkul has clear, fresh waters which stretch to 12 miles in length. Schools of fish live in its pure, deep waters which drop down to 164 feet in some areas. The lake offers warm waters of up to 14 degrees celsius, a stark contrast against Bulunkul Lake, that are clear enough to observe aquatic life and try to catch a glimpse of ‘Tuya Suu’ - a water camel that local Kyrgyz believe lives in the lake.

tajikistan Regions

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Travelogues

Dozen Dream Destination: Wakhan Valley for the Adventure

Author
Travelogues

The Wakhan Valley is a meeting of worlds; travelers can look over into Afghanistan from Tajikistan on a road that will take them in view of China, Pakistan, and Kashmir.

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Fann Mountains: Hiking Tajikistan’s Glacial Lake Loop

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John McMahon

If you dream of hiking the Haft Kul, or Lake Loop, of the Fann Mountains for the crystal blue waters and lonely trails, this piece will get you started.

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Faces of the Wakhan Valley

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Jay Tindall

The history of the Wakhi people and the Wakhan Valley is complex, and the journey across the Pamir Highway can be unpredictable, barren, and cold. In the faces of the Wakhi people, there is warmth.

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Road Tripping the Pamir Highway from Dushanbe to Jalal-Abad

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Travelogues

A sign in the Ak-Baital Pass reminds you that you are 4,655 meters above sea level. The untouched landscapes of Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan are a driver's dream.

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Stan & Stare: Natural Wonders of Central Asia

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Remote Lands

Hidden in the yawning expanse of Central Asia that makes up the Stans are some treasures that should be on every intrepid traveler's map. These seemingly uncharted lands are full of truly mind-blowing ancient and natural wonders.

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