Rukh Ordo Cultural Center

The Rukh Ordo (spiritual centre) just outside Cholpon-Ata on the northern shore of Lake Issyk-Kul was built in 2002 and renovated in 2008, when it was dedicated to the writer Chyngyz Aytmatov (1928-2008). Aytmatov was one of the most important figures in Kyrgyz literature and among the Turkic speaking intellectuals.

The statues and monuments charting the Kyrgyz legends and history are spread out over the well-manicured gardens in the futuristic looking cultural center.

There are whole walls covered in murals of dashing young warriors on horseback and paintings of women in traditional headdress, magnificent white turbans draped over 25cm-high hats.

There is also a Buddhist, Catholic, Orthodox, Muslim and Jewish chapel to symbolize the unity of the major faiths. The complex also has a large concert hall with state-of-the-art acoustics, and a small pier with four pavilions to symbolize the four seasons.