Kazakhstan:The World’s 9th Biggest Country with Futuristic Cityscapes and Lake-Dotted Steppes

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Kazakhstan:The World’s 9th Biggest Country with Futuristic Cityscapes and Lake-Dotted Steppes

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Kazakhstan:The World’s 9th Biggest Country with Futuristic Cityscapes and Lake-Dotted Steppes

Kazakhstan is the largest landlocked country and boasts of five world heritage sightseeing sites and thirteen others on the tentative list. Kazakhstan is in Central Asia and is among the largest economic contributors of the region. Although Kazakhstan is relatively underdeveloped, the people, culture, nature, and splendor of this nation are worth sampling. This country offers much of what is in all travelers minds; from mountains, glacier lakes, forests to rocky canyons. Astana, the capital city of Kazakhstan could be the second coldest capital in the world during winter, but then it opens doors to the greatest winter sports that you can ever find.

1. Medeu Skating Rink and Ski resort (Almaty)

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Medeu Skating Rink and Ski resort is a sports complex in the capital of Kazakhstan, Almaty. The complex sits at an altitude of 1691 meters above sea level on Mount Medeu. The best time for sightseeing is in winter, for ice skating. The skating rink is only open from December to May. Summertime is also equally interesting with activities that include hiking, cycling, and skateboarding. You can also take a walk or go for a picnic as you enjoy the scenic view of the landscape and the surrounding mountains. The rink is also the host of the annual international music festival, known as the Voice of Asia.

2. Big Almaty Lake (Almaty)

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Big Almaty Lake is up on a gorge of Bolshaya Almatinka River within Eliy National park, several kilometers from Almaty. The lake was as a result of an earthquake, and currently, it is a major sightseeing spot as well as a source of hydroelectric power and a primary water source for Almaty city. The lake is surrounded by picturesque mountainous ridges and giant Tien Shan firs. The best weather season for sightseeing the lake is between September and October when the glacier has fully melted, and the surrounding is well visible. If you prefer to visit when the lake is entirely frozen, then plan your sightseeing trip either in May or June.

3. Ascension Cathedral (Almaty)

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Ascension Cathedral stands in the middle of Panfilovets' Park and is the second tallest structure in Kazakhstan. Construction of the cathedral was done in the 1900s but it was used as a museum after the Revolution. It then resumed its purpose as a Russian Orthodox Cathedral in the 1990s. The church is unique as it is built without using nails. All the four sightseeing sides are different from each other, thus a walk around the church is totally worth it. The best months for sightseeing are between June and September when the temperatures are moderate. The church is still an active holy place, so we recommend that you should observe its rituals and dress appropriately.

4. Hazret Sultan Mosque (Astana)

Islam is the dominant religion in Kazakhstan with more than half of the population being Muslims. In the capital of Kazakhstan, is the largest mosque in Central Asia, known as Hazret Sultan Mosque. This mosque can hold up to ten thousand worshippers at a time. The mosque was constructed using the lavish Islamic style and decorated using Kazakhstan ornaments, making it gorgeous both on the inside and outside. The central part of the mosque is also truly impressive, and the dome is the largest one that you will find in Kazakhstan. The mosque is open for sightseeing all the time but the viewing area for women is different from that of men. Women are supposed to wear a robe and cover their hair.

5. Park Named After Panfilov’s 28 Guardsmen (Almaty)

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Park of 28 Panfilov Guardsmen was named after Kazakhstan soldiers who died fighting Nazi invaders outside of Moscow during the World War II. The 28 soldiers were led by Ivan Panfilov, who was the commander of their division. The park has a structure representing the soldiers and has the names of the 28 heroes. In addition, there are other memorials which include a bust of Ivan Panfilov and monuments of Kazakhstan soldiers killed in the Afghan war. The park also includes other historical buildings like the Ascension Cathedral, Museum of Folk Musical Instruments and Kazakhstan Officers Club. Spring and Autumn are favorable weather seasons for sightseeing the park as the weather is usually cool and mild.

6. Kok-Tobe Hill (Almaty)

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Kok-Tobe Hill is a popular recreation and sightseeing area on top of a mountain in Almaty, Kazakhstan. The hill is about 1100 meters above the sea level and is connected to the downtown Almaty by a cable car. At the hill, there is also a TV Tower, made purely of steel and can be seen from any point in Almaty. There is also a kid's playing ground, climbing wall, an art gallery, restaurants and a coaster ride. In the evenings, the park is an excellent place to have a lit up panoramic view of the city. It is also an ideal park for a family day out or a romantic walk.

7. The Baiterek Tower (Astana)

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Baiterek Tower can be said to be the centerpiece of Kazakhstan and one of the most popular tourists sightseeing attractions. Baiterek is a Kazakhstan name that means tall, poplar and beyond human reach. The tower is 97 meters tall, representing 1997, the year that Astana was named as the capital of Kazakhstan. It has a golden sphere at the top, which is a symbol of an egg nestled among tree branches of the sacred tree of life. The top observation deck is accessible to visitors who would like to have an expansive view of the charming Astana city. May, June and September are the peak sightseeing seasons at the tower due to favorable weather, but the place can be a bit crowded. If you do not like it bustling with activity, we suggest that you go sightseeing early in the morning or late afternoon.

8. Kolsai Lakes (Almaty)

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Kolsai Lakes is considered a pearl of the natural beauty of Kazakhstan. Kolsai is a group of three lakes that originate from river Kolsay. The lakes are surrounded by a mountain landscape with three natural zones that have a rare variety of flora and fauna. The three lakes can be explored by horseriding in one day or by trekking, which may take 2 to 3 days. It is a difficult hike to the lakes but there are camping grounds and guest houses along the way. The most favorable season to plan your sightseeing trip to the lakes is between May and October, and also, that is when most tour operators organize trips to the area.

9. First President's Park (Almaty)

First President's Urban Park was constructed in honor of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev, the first president of Kazakhstan. The park covers an area of about 73 hectares and has an observatory deck that is about 12 meters in height. Notable structures at the park include a monumental sculpture commemorating the 20th anniversary of the independence of Kazakhstan and a multistage fountain with light and music. The park is an ideal place for relaxing, biking or a family day out. The park is also often used for wedding photography, so it is not surprising to find brides and bridal parties at the park, especially in summer.

10. Palace of Peace and Reconciliation (Astana)

Photo by Ken and Nyetta

The Palace of Peace and Reconciliation in Astana symbolizes an independent Kazakhstan that embraces people from all nations and religions. The palace is an iconic pyramid that is 62m tall with a base of 62 square meters. The palace has pictures of doves representing all the nationalities living in Kazakhstan. The palace houses a 1500-capacity opera house, Kazakhstan National Museum of Culture, educational facilities and various centers for Kazakhstan geographical and ethnic groups. It is open for sightseeing throughout the year as from 10 am to 6 pm every day.

◎ Closing

Kazakhstan is a country of few people, towns, and cities, thus paving way for a safe haven for wildlife and a remarkable sightseeing scenery. Kazakhstan is therefore, that uncrowded outdoor sightseeing country that most travelers yearn for. The people of Kazakhstan are inviting, and do not be surprised when you get several invites and gifts from total strangers. For all these reasons, we are convinced that your trip to Kazakhstan will be a memorable one.




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