Kolsai Lakes is one of the most beautiful places of Kazakh nature. They are also called a blue necklace of Northern Tien Shan. And it is quite understandable – such beauty cannot be found anywhere! In the Kazakh language “Kolsai” means “a lake in the valley”, indeed, all three lakes are situated in the eastern part of the picturesque Kungei Tau gorge, 300 km from Almaty.
Singing Dunes is a mountain of sand of light colors, has a length of 3 km and a height of 150 m. The dune is located in the National Park Altyn-Emel in Almaty oblast of Kazakhstan, 182 km north-east of Almaty. Singing Dunes is a phenomenon of nature, famous for the fact that when the weather is dry the sand dune emits a sound similar to the tune of organ. Also the dune is known for the beautiful views overlooking the surrounding countryside. Singing Dunes is a popular tourist attraction.
Big Almaty Lake
Big Almaty Lake is a beautiful lake located about 15 km south of Almaty, at the height of 2510 meters. The lake is not only pleasing the eyes of tourists and residents of Almaty, but also gives the city clean water from the glaciers of the Tien Shan. The lake appeared as a result of an earthquake. Big Almaty Lake has unusual for most lakes color that varies from light green to turquoise. The depth is about 40 meters, the length – 1.5 km, the width – 1 km. It is the part of the Ile-Alatau National Park.
Astana is a modern city with a favorable environment attractive for tourists and comfortable for residents and guests of the Kazakh capital to live in. Astana became the capital of new Kazakhstan in 1998 for a variety of reasons. Today Astana is not only a country’s major administrative center, located at the intersection of major development networks of the country. It is the city-leader, setting the pace in the innovative development of Kazakhstan. The city, which acts as a locomotive of the reforms in Kazakhstan of the new millennium is also a tourist attraction in the steppes.
Almaty is located in the south-east of Kazakhstan, at the foot of the northern of Tien Shan ridge - Zaili Alatau. The urban territory of Almaty, the home-town of the famous variety of apples “Almaty aport“ has more than eight thousand hectares occupied by gardens and parks, squares and boulevards. Ile-Alatau National Park, whose territory includes nature reserve and wildlife sanctuary, begins right in the Almaty vicinity. Today’s Almaty is the Kazakhstan's largest metropolis, scientific and educational, cultural and historical, economic and financial, banking and industrial center of the country.
A distinctive architectural building of Zenkov Cathedral (Ascension Cathedral) is located in a green Panfilov Park of Almaty. The historical monument is one of the main sights of the city. Bishops of Turkestan and Tashkent were the initiators of the church construction in the early 19th century. Particular feature of this wooden building is that it was erected according to a unique ancient technology, practically without any nails. This five-domed and three-aisled cathedral with a built-in bell tower has been included in the top 8 highest buildings of the world constructed entirely from wood.
Charyn Canyon is situated in the territory of the Charyn National Park which was laid out with the purpose to preserve natural and geological objects. The National park was founded on 23 February 2004. The Park territory is inhabited with a great number of rare and endangered animal species entered in the Red Book.
Issyk (or Isik- another name for the lake, translated as “a door” from Kazakh) is a picturesque, alpine lake surrounded by unusually beautiful nature of thick forests and spacious flower fields. The lake is located at an altitude of 1760 meters above sea level, in the Issyk gorge of Trans-Ili Alatau, about 70 km east of Almaty.
Altyn-Emel is a national natural park located in the Ili river valley in the Kazakhstan territory. The Park was founded on 10 April 1996 with the purpose to preserve a unique natural complex, archeological, historical and cultural monuments, rare and endangered species of animals and plants. In the Park territory of total area of 520,000ha, one can find various landscapes: mountain, sand-desert, rank and deserted ones.
Lake Kaindy («birchen» in Kazakh) is lost in a coniferous forest at the height of 2000m above sea level among the Kungei Alatau Mountains. Its name possibly originated from an artificial Birchwood, located near the lake. Lake Kaindy with the length of 400m and depth of almost 30m was formed as a result of natural disaster: a gorge was flooded with water, which formed natural gates in the very center of the lake. Its coniferous trees submersed incompletely, their dried peaks overlook proudly over the water like sunken squadron masts.
Khoja Ahmed Yasawi Mausoleum in Turkestan
Khoja Ahmed Yasawi Mausoleum in Turkestan (up to the XVI century Yasi city) in Southern Kazakhstan is unique among them. Yasi city was on the crossroads of an old caravan route – Great Silk Route branch – trade road between Desht-and Kypshak steppe and farming oasis of Central Asia – Horezm, Tashkent, Bukhara and Samarkand.
Arystan Baba mausoleum is the architectural monument of the XII-ХІV centuries, near the ruins of ancient Otyrar of Yuzhno-Kazakhstanskaya Oblast, in 150 km. from the city Shymkent. The mausoleum was built over the tomb of the famous religious mystic Arystan Baba, who lived in the ХІІ century. The legends call Arystan Baba the teacher and spiritual adviser of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi.
Tamgaly Tas, translated as “ written rocks, stones with signs”, is located in Kazakhstan, 170 kilometers to the north -west from Almaty, on the right bank of the Ili River, which is 20 km north-west from the Kapchagay dam. The natural boundary consists of huge cliffs (up to 60 m). These picturesque rocks attract many tourists! It was place, where incredibly beautiful images of Buddha and Burhans (Bodhisattvas) were found.
Aisha Bibi mausoleum of the XII century, situated in the village Aisha Bibi of Jambyl region in 18 kilometers from Taraz town is the architectural monument of the Republic significance. The foundation of the mausoleum is cubic. The massive columns are set in four corners. Small niches, small columns, arches, lancet arches, terracotta facing tile were used in decoration. In the patterns of the mausoleum the traditional kinds of ornamental art of ancient Kazakh tribes harmonize.
“Sunkar” Falcon Farm
“Sunkar” Falcon Farm South of Almaty, within close proximity to the Alatau – Eliy National Park, you will find “Sunkar” Falcon Farm. Started 25 years ago, boasting a huge number of falcons, eagles, other birds of prey and hunting dogs, this private farm is one of the rare places in Almaty where you can find falconry displays and breeding. Falconry displays and interaction is possible for a small fee and if you’re really tired, there are many fixed yurts in the compound you can rent to rest your weary feet.
The Green Bazaar
The Green Bazaar, or Zelionyj Bazar, is a place you really should visit when visiting Almaty or Alma-Ata. This market is central to the everyday life of the local people and it is so called the ‘Green Bazar, or market, because in the past it was the traditional place to buy and sell local produce like vegetables. It is by no means the only market in Almaty, but it is the most well-known, and probably, sells the widest range of goods.
The famous place and remains of USSR is Baikonur Cosmodrome with the same name is located here, and almost all the sights are connected with cosmonautics. The most popular places for tourists are the Cosmodrome History Museum, the International Space School, Gagarin's Gazebo, Alley of Cosmonauts , and the Cosmonaut Hotel, where cosmonauts stay before flying into space. Only in this city you can see the launch of a real rocket. And every street in this area has a monument in honor of scientists, cosmonauts, writers and poets.