Tashkent to Bishkek by bus - journal of Nomads

How to get from Tashkent to Bishkek by bus

 

Wondering how to get to Bishkek from Tashkent by bus? Read on to find out where to buy your bus ticket, where the Tashkent-Bishkek bus leaves from, and how long the journey will take.

 

Central-Asian countries are all very different from each other and have unique features.

 

Uzbekistan is known for its stunning Islamic architecture that you’ll find in Samarkand, Bukhara and Khiva while Kyrgyzstan is famous for its pristine mountain hikes. Both of these countries were part of the ancient trade road known as the Silk Road.

 

These two countries are so different and yet complementary that it’s almost impossible to visit one without wanting to see the other.

 

Kyrgyzstan is a country known for its stunning mountain hikes…

 

Traveling in Central Asia used to be complicated as it was hard to get a tourist visa for the different stan-countries and the lack of proper public transport connecting the main cities of the countries. This has all changed now!

 

There is now a bus line connecting Tashkent in Uzbekistan with Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan. Traveling between the two cities by bus takes about 14 hours and this bus runs at night.

 

Bus station Tashkent - Journal of Nomads

There is now a bus going from Tashkent to Bishkek…

 

In this article, I’ll tell you where to buy your bus ticket, where the bus leaves from, and details about the two border crossings that you’ll have to go through.

 

Where can you buy a bus ticket to go from Tashkent to Bishkek?

 

Long-distance buses connecting Tashkent and Bishkek leave from the bus station near the Olmazor metro station in Tashkent.

 

Here is where you’ll find the bus station Tashkent Avtovagzal:

 

It’s better to buy bus tickets directly at the bus station instead of online. The official website doesn’t always work and you still need to print your ticket at the station.

 

Tashkent to Bishkek by bus - Uzbekistan to Kyrgyzstan - Journal of Nomads

This is the bus station from which you’ll leave towards Bishkek…

 

Bus prices tend to change quite regularly depending on the day of the week and the month of the year. We bought our tickets at the end of August and it cost us 120 000 som each.

 

Tashkent bus station - ticket selling office - Journal of Nomads

This is inside Tashkent Avtovagzal…

 

To reach this bus station, you can take the metro from the city center for 1400 som or reach it by taxi.

 

Taxi drivers in Tashkent tend to overcharge foreigners. For Uzbekistan, it’s better to download the Yandex app on your phone.

 

Yandex works as a cab-hailing app meaning you won’t have to negotiate directly with the driver and you can avoid being ripped off.

 

If you take the metro you’ll have to get out of the Olmazor station on the side that has this post:

 

Olmazor metro station Tashkent - Journal of Nomads

This sign indicates that you’re on the right way to get to Tashkent Avtovagzal…

 

After you get out of the metro station, continue walking in the direction of this sign:

Tashkent metro - Olmazor metro station - Journal of Nomads

 

Looking for cool things to do and round Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan?

Here are 8 awesome day trips from Bishkek

 

What is the schedule of the Tashkent – Bishkek bus? 

 

The buses going from Tashkent to Bishkek only run at night. They leave twice from the bus station at 6 and 7 in the evening and they arrive in Bishkek the next day at nine and 10 o’clock in the morning (local time in Kyrgyzstan – Bishkek is one hour ahead of Tashkent).

 

The bus does a few stops during the night at small roadside restaurants where you can eat and go to the bathroom.

 

The bus will also do a few stops for money exchangers to come on board and offer to exchange your Uzbek soms for Kyrgyz soms.

 

The rate they offer is not extremely good but better than what most banks offer in the city centers of Tashkent or Bishkek. Make sure you know what the rate is before exchanging any money.

 

bus station Tashkent - Journal of Nomads

 

Things you need to bring on the bus

 

The aircon in the bus tends to become a bit cold during the night so I would suggest bringing a warm sweater with you.

 

It’s also important to keep your passport with you on the bus instead of leaving it in the luggage compartment underneath the vehicle.

 

If you want to buy food along the way also make sure that you have local currency with you. In the case of the road restaurants on this bus line, they are mainly in Kazakhstan so you’ll need to have some Kazakh Tenges.

 

Bus from Tashkent to Bishkek - Journal of Nomads

 

How long and where are the border crossings?

 

During this journey between Tashkent and Bishkek, you’ll have to do two border crossings.

 

First, you’ll be crossing the Uzbek-Kazakh border at Zhibek-Zholu, about one hour outside of Tashkent.

 

Once the bus arrives at the Zhibek-Zholu border, everyone needs to get out of the bus, pass their bags through security and get their passport stamped.

 

Once the passports are stamped, everyone gets back on the bus and then the whole process starts again at the Kazakh border.

 

You’ll need to check beforehand which visa you need for Kazakhstan. If you’re eligible for a free tourist visa on arrival, you don’t have to worry about anything.

 

If you need to apply for a visa in an embassy, you could also check if you can get a transfer visa for Kazakhstan. You can find more information about which visa you need here

 

Crossing this border at night with the bus usually takes around an hour.

 

The second border crossing is between Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan at the Taraz-Talas border. The bus will arrive there in the early morning and it’s usually not busy at all at that time of the day so this border crossing should also take around an hour.

 

Uzbekistan to Kyrgyzstan by bus - Journal of Nomads

 

Arriving in Bishkek

 

The bus will arrive in Bishkek at the western bus station. This is where the station is located:

 

 

Tip: To find your way around Bishkek, use the following apps:

 

Namba Taxi: This is a taxi service that is similar to Uber and Yandex. It’s very straightforward and quite popular in Kyrgyzstan.

 

Bus.kg: A great app to figure out the different marshrutka routes. Enter your starting point and destination and the app will tell you which marshrutka you need to take. Taking a marshrutka within the city costs 10 som.

 

Maps.me or 2GIS: Both apps function like Google Maps but are more accurate in this part of the world. They also tell you which bus or marshrutka you have to take to get to your destination.

 

Prepare your travels to Kyrgyzstan.

Here’s Everything you need to know before Traveling to Kyrgyzstan!

 

Where should you stay in Bishkek?

 

If you’re only transiting through Bishkek, then I’d suggest staying at the Apple Hostel. This budget-friendly hostel is only 3 minutes walking from the Western Bus Station, which is the main bus station of Bishkek.

 

If you’re planning on staying a few days in Bishkek to explore the city, then I’d suggest you stay at a hostel or guesthouse that is located near the city center. I’d recommend Compass Hostel and Centre Hostel.

 

 

 

I hope this post was very useful to you and I wish you a great and safe journey from Tashkent to Bishkek! Let me know in the comments if you have any more questions and/or how your journey went!

 


Going on an adventure to Kyrgyzstan? You might want to read these guides:

 

 

 

 

 

KYRGYZSTAN TRAVEL RESOURCES:

 

 

 

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you book your accommodation through one of the links, we get a commission at no extra costs to you! 

 

 

Follow Niko - Journal of Nomads:
I'm a vagabond and a lover of wild untouched nature. I travel around the world in pursuit of beautiful inspiring landscapes and fascinating cultures. I'm always trying to learn and master the languages of the places I visit.I've been bitten by the travel bug eleven years ago and haven't stopped traveling since.

12 Responses

  1. William
    | Reply

    Hello, thank you for this informative article! Do you have much info on the return bus from Bishkek to Tashkent?

    • Hi William, we’re currently working on an article on the bus from Bishkek to Tashkent.

      We still need to confirm some information but there should be daily buses in the evening leaving from the Western Bus station in Bishkek to Tashkent. It’s the same route.
      The price should be similar but then in Kyrgyz currency. The best thing you do is to go to the Western Bus station at least one or two days before your planned departure and get the exact time and ticket there in advance.

  2. Monish
    | Reply

    Hi very nice article. i have a doubt. its mentioned in ur post that the first border crossing would be into Kazakhstan, since im an indian passport holder i can avail 72 hours visa free access into kazak only on the condition if i fly via air. so i cannot travel by bus from tashkent to bishkek right since the bus would be entering kazhak and then proceed to bishkek?

    • Hello Monish, you’ll need a transit visa for Kazakhstan, that allows you to stay 5 days. You should have a look into this one as with this visa you could take the bus from Kazakhstan to Bishkek. Another option is to travel by train to Adijan, take a shared taxi there to the border with Osh (Kyrgyzstan) and travel from Osh to Bishkek by shared taxi (there’s no bus as it’s a mountainous road). Hope this helps!

      • Ajinkya
        | Reply

        Thank you for this information.
        I have a question, does one also need Kazakhstan transit Visa while crossing border from Kyrgyzstan to Uzbekistan or vice versa?
        Thank you in advance.

        • If you cross the Uzbekistan-Kyrgyzstan border in Osh, you don’t go into Kazakhstan so you won’t need a transit visa there

  3. Brianna
    | Reply

    120 000 som seems expensive. Is that the correct exchange?

    • Brianna
      | Reply

      I mean for the bus. It’s about $1,700 according to the exchange online.

      • Hi Brianna, I don’t know which online converter you used but that isn’t correct at all. At the current exchange rate, 120 000 Uzbekistani Som equals 12.68 US$.

  4. Yasmina
    | Reply

    Great post and blog Niko!
    Making my way through Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan and this will be handy!
    Do you think I’ll be ok buying the bus ticket in Tashkent just the day before travelling?
    TIA! Yasmina

    • Cynthia - Journal of Nomads
      | Reply

      Hi Yasmina,

      Yes, it should be ok to buy the bus ticket the day before but try to buy it in the early morning to be sure there’s a place.
      There are 2 buses that leave daily from Tashkent to Bishkek but during high-season, the tickets sell quite quickly.

      Have a great trip!

      • Yasmina
        | Reply

        Fantastic!
        Will do 🙂 Thanks!

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