Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan Flag




Why visit Kazakhstan?
Hugely underdeveloped destination offers experienced travelers ancient mausoleums, architecture, art, biking, birdwatching, desert landscapes, fishing, hiking, historical sites, horseback riding, hunting, mountain climbing, museums, mountain climbing, sailing, skiing, and wildlife.



Nur-Sultan (Formerly Astana), Kazakhstan. Photo Credit: Акимхан Бозтай/Pixabay 



At a Glance
  • Souvenirs to Buy: Coats, folk instruments, hats, leather goods, luxury designer brands, and wool goods.
  • Local Cuisine to Try: Baursaks (fried dough). Beshbarmak (boiled horse meat). Manti (dumpling). Shuzhuk (horse meat sausages). Quwyrdaq (stewed meat). Shelpek  (flatbread). Tandyr Nan (bread). Tokash (bread). Zhal (horse neck meat).


Big Almaty Lake (Reservoir), Kazakhstan. Photo Credit: Tom/Pixabay 



Fun Facts
  • By 2010, the Aral Sea dried up.
  • Lake Markakol is fed by small rivers and streams.
  • World's largest landlocked country. 
  • Has the second largest reserves in chromium, lead, uranium, and zinc.
  • Large exporter of diamonds. 
  • Home to the second coldest capital city (Nursultan) in the world. 
  • Claimed origin of the apple tree.


Almaty, Kazakhstan. Photo Credit: Konevi/Pixabay 



Special Holidays/Occasions
  • Annual Events: (March) Navroz Festival, (May) Alakol Wings Festival, Kokmaisa Festival, (June) Koshpendiler alemi Festival, Spirit of Tengri Festival, (July) Uba Chants Ethnic Folk Festival, (August) Burabike Fest, Chabana Festival, FourЭ Festival, Kazakhstan Golf Open, Khan Tengri Mountain Festival, Zhezkik Festival, (September) Apple Fest, Astana International Contest of Kazakh Song, Okunkol Fishing Fest, (October) Toikazan Festival, and (December) Kansonar Fest.
  • Holidays: New Year's Day, Eastern Orthodox Christmas, International Women's Day, Nauryz Meyramy, Kazakhstan People's Unity Day, Defender of the Fatherland Day, Great Patriotic War Against Fascism Victory Day, Capital City Day, Constitution Day, Qurban Ayt, First President Day, and Independence Day.


Ak Orda Presidential Palace, Nur-SultanKazakhstan. Photo Credit: Lena1964/Pixabay 



Good to Know
  • Consider seeing the Sharyn Canyon and Tien Shan by air (helicopter).
  • Skiing is best on Great Almaty Peak and Kazakh Altai Mountains.
  • The ancient route of the Silk Road offers holy places and mausoleums.
  • Beket-ata and Sholpan-ata are said to have healing powers.
  • Kazakh or Russian are spoken. English not widely spoken.
  • Visiting near the China border and select cities requires Kazakhstani government permission.
  • Healthcare providers and hospitals often require cash payment before rendering services.
  • Road conditions are commonly poor, lack signage and adequate lighting.
  • ATM skimming is prevalent.
  • Avoid public transportation.
  • Rural businesses are known to only accept cash.
  • You must carry your passport with you at all times.
  • U.S. currency for exchange the dollars must be from 2000 or newer with the large portrait. 
  • Importing religious literature is restricted.
  • Persons with HIV/AIDS entry restrictions apply.
  • Police impersonators are known to occur.

This international destination requires:
  • A valid passport with three months of validity upon return.
  • Tourist VISA not required for visits under 90 days.
  • Currency Restrictions for Entry/Exit: $10,000USD.

Prone to earthquakes.

  • Best Time to Visit: April - June & September - October
  • Coolest Months: November - March
  • Hottest Months: May - August
  • Peak Season: July - August


Charyn Canyon (Charyn National Park), Kazakhstan. Photo Credit: Анна Филипова/Pixabay 



Your Must-See & Do
  • UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi, Petroglyphs within the Archaeological Landscape of Tamgaly, Saryarka – Steppe and Lakes of Northern Kazakhstan, Silk Roads: the Routes Network of Chang'an-Tianshan Corridor, and Western Tien-Shan.


Almaty, Kazakhstan. Photo Credit: Alexander Serzhantov/Unsplash 



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                                         All information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Subject to change without notice. 

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