City break as a type of cultural recreation is only gaining popularity in Kazakhstan. But Kazakhstan’s cities are becoming a frequent place for tourists to visit: there are many museums, exhibitions, parks, and modern entertainment centers.In this article, we will tell you about the five most interesting and most visited cities in Kazakhstan.
The capital of Kazakhstan is not only a center of politics, culture, history and cutting-edge technologies. It is also the city of the First President, as well as one of the coldest capitals in the world: only Reykjavik and Ulaanbaatar are ahead of it. The local architecture is futuristic, and the streets are filled with millions of lanterns, statues, glowing figures and flowers. Wide squares, spacious embankments of the Ishim river, incredible laser shows, walks along the Water-green Boulevard with its wonderful fountains and bronze statues attract both local residents and visitors to the city. Here are the places that are definitely worth visiting during the city break:
Khan Shatyr. An unusual shopping center with a real garden and a lake is among the top 10 most eco-friendly buildings in the world. The beach with Maldivian sand and tropical plants stretches right under the transparent dome of the shopping center, and it calls to soak up the sun after shopping by the water in any season.
The Museum of energy of the future “Noor-Alem”. The famous building in the form of a ball with a diameter of 80 meters, is on Autonomous electricity supply-this is helped by photovoltaic panels and wind generators. The only one in the world like the building has eight floors, each of which represents a single scientific concept of energy from water to energy space. This amazing Museum remained in Astana after the world exhibition EXPO-2017.
Oceanarium “Duman”. More than 100 different types of sea inhabitants, interesting Souvenirs and a great atmosphere of the underwater Kingdom in one room. And another record: the capital’s aquarium is the most remote from the sea in the world.
Modern art museum. The work of contemporary artists is guaranteed to be a fresh experience for those who are tired of visiting historical and local history museums. Original works of Kazakhstani and foreign artists will definitely interest you.
Nur-Sultan restaurants are able to impress fans of gastronomy with their diversity: there are pompous establishments with high Asian and European cuisine, cozy and atmospheric cafes with cuisine that combines several directions at once, steakhouses and sushi bars. You will definitely not stay hungry in the capital.
Pyramid, or Palace of Peace and Harmony. On the sixth floor of this building is the center for contemporary art “Kulanshi”, where you can see with your own eyes the original lithographs of Dali, Picasso and Chagall.
“Baiterek”. A real Astana classic on the left Bank of the Ishim river. It is worth climbing to the 100-meter height of this monument to appreciate the beautiful view of the city.
“Astana Opera”. A very beautiful building, luxurious interior, modern repertoire, great sound – fans of live music should definitely get a ticket to one of the performances in this theater.
Of course, during your vacation in Nur-Sultan, you can visit many more wonderful, interesting places and locations-rely on the advice of local residents and your own taste.
You need to know: it is most convenient to travel around the city by bus, but, please note, non-cash payment (transport card can be taken at the terminal) – 90 tenge, and cash will have to pay as much as 180, in the Express bus-250 tenge. The cost of a taxi is from 700 tenge and higher. The CityPass travel card will help you save time and money: this way you can buy tickets to visit various attractions of the city with savings of up to 50 percent. The card will be delivered directly to your hotel or any place you specify. We offer to live in a clean apartment or a hotel room – both options will cost you about 7000 tenge per day.
Almaty and Nur-Sultan differ not only in their climate, but also in their atmosphere. Almaty, it would seem, is also a bustling metropolis, but it seems more soulful and warmer than the Northern cities. Quiet cozy streets, parks, squares and avenues, a sea of various shops and shopping centers, museums, cinemas and theaters, coffee shops, eateries, sculptures and murals – Almaty falls in love once and for all. According to many, this city is the best choice for a city break.
Start with such iconic places as the Botanical garden, the 28 Panfilov guards Park, the Green Bazaar, and the zoo. Take a ride on the cable car to the top of Kok-Tobe mountain, see the city from “Shymbulak”, go on a date to the alley of Love, the bridge of Love or the fountain “Nedelka”.
Do you like cultural events? Performances in Gatoba-the Abai state academic Opera and ballet theater-will impress you not only with the incredible interior of the building, but also with truly beautiful Opera and ballet productions. Do you prefer night life to day life? Bars, discos, clubs and parties with bands and DJs will keep you awake. You can also have a snack in between impressions in restaurants of Chinese, Korean, Uighur, Georgian, Armenian, Russian and many other cuisines of the world. Go-karts, paintball, Billiards, bowling, quest rooms and karaoke will not let you get bored.
Medeu high-altitude ice rink and Shymbulak ski resort are mandatory places to visit. In winter, you can rent skates on Medeu (you are unlikely to travel with them) and enjoy a ride on perfect ice, contemplating the majestic mountains that surround the rink like a ring. For extreme athletes, there is a road to “Shymbulak”, there is everything to become a snowboarder or skier, even if you have never been one before. From the observation platforms here you can enjoy a breathtakingly beautiful view of the mountains and the valley, overgrown with tall Tien Shan firs. You can get a hot coffee and a snack in a fast food cafe, or sit in a luxurious restaurant with taste-everything is at your discretion.
You need to know: Almaty has absolutely everything for any type of holiday – as Almaty residents joke, except for the sea. Get ready for frequent traffic jams and dashing drivers – there are a lot of cars here. Buses travel quickly and conveniently, and with electronic cards or a phone number, the fare is about 80 tenge, and in cash-150 tenge. Prices for good housing remain approximately at the level of the capital: they start from 7,000-8,000 tenge and higher, depending on the level of comfort.
Shymkent is a city that you can literally “burn” and fall in love with. It’s hot, busy, Sunny, and never lonely. The number of historical and sacred tourist sites, architectural monuments and Turkic heritage in Shymkent is off the scale. At the same time, you will find modern buildings, huge high-rises, alleys and squares in the city. Shymkent is a city where perfect spacious roads, brand-new shopping centers, numerous restaurants, clubs, solid museums and blooming parks breathe prosperity.
Arboretum, independence Park and Abay Park are the three main of the seven major parks in Shymkent. Here you can meet various animals, touch the nature that is noticeably different from the capital or Almaty.
If you are a fan of shopping, branded stores and General recreation in huge shopping and entertainment centers, then you are here: stylish “Shymkent Plaza”, “Mega Shymkent” and TSUM.
Shopaholics who are crazy about Oriental flavor with spicy notes will be delighted with real Oriental bazaars. Here you can feel like a participant in the trade during the great silk road – everywhere is a fuss, the counters are full of all sorts of things, here you will find a huge selection of goods that you have not seen before. Sweets, spices, dried fruits are best bought in the Upper market. Bekzhan Bazaar will delight you with clothes and fabrics for every taste and color. Gold, silver, bronze, modern and antique, as well as stylized antique jewelry look at Samal Bazaar. Both bazaars are worth haggling over.
A variety of cafes and restaurants will please any gourmet: there are hundreds of places where you can eat delicious food, and the prices are so pleasant and democratic that every day for Breakfast, lunch and dinner you can go to different places, trying to taste as many truly Shymkent and Eastern dishes as possible.
As a result, Shymkent is a great place for both family and just relaxing with friends. Here you can profitably make a lot of purchases, try a lot of Goodies, admire nature and cultural monuments, visit various entertainment venues and go home completely happy.
You need to know: many things in Shymkent are much cheaper than in Almaty and Nur-Sultan. Bus fare is around 80 tenge, rent an apartment or hotel room will cost from 5000 tenge per day and above. Eating in cafes and restaurants is almost as profitable as buying food in stores. You will remember your vacation in Shymkent as a very tasty, very warm adventure, and you will definitely want to return.
Aktau is the only and most important port of the country and at the same time a wonderful city. The rather harsh sharply continental climate is influenced by the desert climate zone. There are very hot summers (but the water temperature in July reaches +26 degrees!), a long swimming season (from may to October) and cold winters.
Aktau has existed for only 50 years, but during this time the city has become one of the largest regional centers of the country with a lot of attractions, unusual architecture, developed industry and infrastructure. Thousands of tourists come here every year, although officially no one will call this coastal city a resort. But there is always something to see and do.
Start with a visit to the seaport-so you will feel the atmosphere of the city. Huge super-heavy cargo ships, barges, tankers, oil tankers are an extremely impressive sight. Among the true sea attractions here is the lighthouse, which is located in the neighborhood number 4 on the roof of an ordinary residential building.
Aktau city Park considers its hallmark a lot of blooming greenery, various sculptures, as well as smaller copies of the railway and the Eiffel tower. Nearby is a majestic mosque, whose snow-white color and blue domes are illuminated by hundreds of lights-it is worth seeing in the evening, when the building is surrounded by lights. On the way to the mosque, you will meet such interesting buildings as The Central wedding Palace in the form of a spire.
A hot geothermal spring with mineral water, located on the territory of a local recreation center, is worth visiting for those who appreciate relaxation and take care of their health. The rest of the recreation centers are also very good, and the rooms in them are designed for every taste and budget. Numerous travel agencies of Aktau can arrange for you excellent and non-boring tours to historical and natural attractions near the city: Tamshaly canyon, underground mosques, the valley of Balls, mount Sherkala, lake Saura, Ustyurt plateau and much more.
You need to know: the cost of transport in Aktau makes tourists the best offer – bus travel costs only 50 tenge. Rent an apartment or a room in a good hotel is slightly more expensive-from 8000 tenge. Be careful: it is extremely hot in summer, so carry a bottle of water with you. Addresses in Aktau are almost entirely made up of numbers, so you won’t get lost here.
Uralsk is a historical city almost 500 years old, full of attractions, parks, museums and wonderful architecture. Many significant historical events took place here and many outstanding personalities were born. In the period after the great Patriotic war, the city received the status of a major industrial and economic center and still holds it. But in Uralsk, the charm of time has been perfectly preserved, and there are many things that remind you of the old Yaitsky town. Despite the destruction of the 1920s and 30s, when cathedrals and churches were massively destroyed everywhere, the authorities and restorers were able to preserve this city as a true monument of architecture and art.
Kureni district, located at the confluence of the Ural and Chagan rivers. Historical and just a very beautiful place, where stands the Cathedral of St. Michael the Archangel, which is already 278 years old and the hut of Yemelyan Pugachev-such as it was several hundred years ago.
Regional Museum of local history. One of the oldest museums in Kazakhstan offers tourists hundreds of interesting exhibits depicting the rich history of the region.
The regional Philharmonic society of a name Kurmangaliyeva. The Philharmonic hall of the early twentieth century was perfectly restored, and the same can be said about the interior. Well, great music – everything that true connoisseurs of classical music need.
Cathedral Of Christ The Saviour. The outstanding architecture of the building is recognized as the hallmark of Uralsk.
The Museum “Old Oral”. Another place that demonstrates the medieval life and life of the yaitsk Cossacks 300-400 years ago. All history lovers are recommended.
The Museum of nature and ecology, the Red mosque, the Pokrovsky convent, the Pushkin Museum, the Church of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker – here are a few more must-visit attractions in Uralsk.
You need to know: cozy cafes, restaurants, pubs and bars where you will be well fed and watered are just as good as cultural locations, and shopaholics will find some great shopping centers. Travel around the city is cheap – a bus ticket costs 80 tenge, plus you can do without a card. Walking will also leave a lot of pleasant impressions. You can rent an apartment or a nice hotel room for the amount from 3500-6000 tenge per day. Minimum expenses, maximum pleasure-you will definitely remember your vacation in Uralsk.
Any of the cities we mentioned is a great option for a city break. The main thing is to make a plan of action in advance and visit the places that you like, then your vacation will be on top.