The four hour time difference (between Bishkek and Turkey) is the worst I’ve encountered so far. It’s just enough that it’s impossible to fall asleep at a reasonable time and stay asleep until dawn. Every night we wake around two, completely refreshed, as if we’ve just had a long after-dinner nap, and it’s impossible to fall asleep again until four. When the alarm goes off at eight (at which time Bishkek, which has no daily savings time, is just creeping towards dawn) it feels like we’ve been shaken out of bed in the middle of the night. Solutions? Try the overnight flights. Our original flight, before a series of cancellations and delays that kept us in Ankara an extra day, was a 10pm departure and 8 am arrival in Bishkek – we would have slept on the plane, been tired for a day, and gone to bed at a normalish time.
But – I traveled between China and the US multiple times. Somehow the 15 hour flights seemed to counteract the 11-12 hour time difference. By the time I arrived I would be exhausted, sleep for ten hours, and wake up perfectly fine on the right time schedule the next morning. The four hour time difference though takes a week to recover from.