Bishkek is the capital and largest city of Kyrgyzstan (Kyrgyz Republic). The city is situated at an altitude of about 800 meters, just off the northern fringe of the Kyrgyz Ala-Too range, an extension of the Tian Shan mountain range.
Karakol is 380 kilometers from the capital Bishkek. Karakol was a Russian military outpost founded on 1 July 1869. The town grew in the 19th century after explorers came to map the peaks and valleys separating Kyrgyzstan from China.