Kyrgyzstan is located in central Asia. In the north, it borders with Kazakhstan, in the east with China, in the south with Tajikistan, and in the west with Uzbekistan. Mountain ranges are located almost throughout the small territory of the country (only 198,500 km2).
The territory of Kyrgyzstan stretches 900 km from west to east, 410 km from north to south, and lies approximately between 39 and 43 degrees north latitude. There are 2 large mountain systems in the country: Tien Shan and Pamir-Alai. They are divided among themselves by the Fergana Valley, which has a unique natural and historical value. However, only a small part of it belongs to Kyrgyzstan. Osh, the second largest city in Kyrgyzstan, is located on the southeastern edge of the Fergana Depression at the northern foot of the Kichialai Range. The capital of Kyrgyzstan, the city of Bishkek, is located in the central part of the Chuy valley at the northern foot of the Kyrgyz ridge (Tien Shan) at an altitude of 750 – 900 m.
The most elevated part of the country’s territory is located on its eastern outskirts. Here, in a mountain junction bordering with China, are the highest points of the entire Tien Shan mountain system – Pobeda Peak (7439 m) and Khan Tengri (6995 m). From here, the ridges fan out to the west and southwest, creating separate parallel chains, extending mainly in the latitudinal direction up to 300 – 400 km. On the extreme southern border of the republic with Tajikistan, the highest Chon-Alai (Zaalaysky) ridge stands out, where the second highest peak of Kyrgyzstan is located – Lenin Peak (7134 m).
The alpine lake Issyk-Kul is located inside the Tien Shan mountains, at the bottom of a huge tectonic depression, at an altitude of 1600 m above sea level. The lake is surrounded by the Teskey Ala-Too mountains in the south and Kungey Ala-Too in the north. In shape, the lake resembles a trapezoid with its base facing north. The length of the lake is 178 km, width – 60 km, area – 6236 square km, length of the coastline – 688 km, maximum depth – 669 m, average depth – 278 m. The lake is incredibly beautiful, which is why it is called the “Pearl of Kyrgyzstan”. The color of the water in Lake Issyk-Kul varies from pale blue to dark blue tones.
Kyrgyzstan is one of the largest regions in which there is a system of modern mountain glaciers, their total area occupies 8100 square km or 4.2% of the country’s territory. The Kyrgyz Republic has a huge reserve of water resources. There are more than 28,000 rivers and sources in the 7 largest river basins, 90% of which are 10 km long. Among the large rivers, the Naryn River with a length of more than 500 km should be noted.
In Kyrgyzstan, the vertical climatic zonation is clearly expressed, it affects both the climate and the flora and fauna, which is very diverse.