Skazka (Fairytale) Canyon, Kyrgyzstan

Skazka Canyon is one of the most stunning places in Kyrgyzstan, a canyon filled with fantastical sandstone shapes that give the spot its name, which means fairytale in Russian. Over millennia of erosion, the red sandstone has taken on forms that some say resemble animals, landmarks, or characters from legends.

Located on the south shore of Lake Issyk-Kul, Skazka is on the main road from Karakol to Kaji-Sai, about 4 km (2.5 miles) from the village of Tosor. The road is marked well, so even a casual visitor can wander in and have a look around. A more dedicated traveler would do well to hire a guide, in order to hear about the legends and stories associated with Skazka Canyon, and to learn more about each formation.