FROM YURT MAKING TO CARPET WEAVING
In the Tong District of Kyrgyzstan, where Bokonbaevo is located, old nomadic crafts are preserved and cultivated thoroughly. We offer various services for you, in order to learn more about them and also to bring a piece of Kyrgyz culture, like a traditional felt carpet, home!
The Yurt Makers Village
The village of Kyzyl Tuu is located about 30 km outside Bokonbaevo. It's famous across Kyrgyzstan for its tradition of yurt making. In fact, about 80% of the villagers work as yurt makers. Visitors can tour the workshops and learn how willow wood is cut, treated and bent into the various pieces that become the frame. Once covered with felt and decorated with colorful carpets, a Kyrgyz yurt serves as a well insulated home during cold nights, especially for families that live in the mountains. By the way: Did you know that the upper crown of the yurt is the symbol at the center of the Kyrgyz flag? The sun that surrounds it has 40 points which represent the 40 original tribe mothers of Kyrgyzstan who were united by the hero Manas. CBT can arrange a tour of the village and demonstrations of this important part of the country's culture and heritage.
Prices for 2018:
Demonstration of Yurt installation - 3.500som
Wood show - 1.500 som
If you enter a Kyrgyz house or a nomad's yurt you will probably set foot on a traditional felt carpet. Two varieties of these carpets exist, an "Ala-kiyiz" and a "Shyrdak." The art of creating them is not only an important part of the country's cultural heritage, but also provides a sense of identity for the women who produce them. It's not surprising that their art is considered a Intangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO. When making an Ala-kiyiz, different layers of colored felt are pressed together, but for the creation of a Shyrdak, the process is more complex and requires a special sewing technique. For hundreds of years the traditional knowledge of how to make the felt, patterns, and stitches of the carpet is passed on to the younger generation by the older women.
In Bokonbaevo it is possible to observe carpet making in three places. Visitors can enter the workshops, meet the carpet makers and then watch them work on an Ala-kiyiz or Shyrdak. For those who want to decorate their home with one of these colorful carpets, a good selection of pieces are available for sale. If there's not enough space in a suitcase, a carpet can be sent by international mail. Also, there are small purses, traditional kalpak hats, mini-felt yurts and other handmade goods that make for an excellent souvenir.
Prices for 2018:
Shyrdak show - 2.000som
Ala-Kiyiz show - 3.000som