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Kazakhstan is the ninth largest country on the planet and was under Russian control until 1993 when it became an independent state. Kazakhstan now has developed its own good relationships with both the east and west and also adapted its culture to suite both the old and the new. The Republic of Kazakhstan, situated at the heart of Eurasia, appeared on the geopolitical map in 1991. The name Kazakh, of Turkic origin, is thought to mean “free man” – which is appropriate in a land historically populated by freedom-loving nomads.
For thousands of years, these nomads tended vast cattle herds, pasture lands and the fertile soils of the region’s foothills and river valleys. Both the historic Silk Road and Sable Route, along which expensive furs were transported, passed through the region. This made Kazakhstan an important cultural, trade and economic bridge between Asia and Europe.
Almaty, is the largest city in Kazakhstan with about 9% of the countries population located in one city, it is certainly a hustling and bustling place to be. It also used to be the former capital of the country, until 1997 when it moved to Astana.
Almaty literally means ‘city of apple trees’, and, because of its relatively mild climate, it has a wide range of apple trees. The Almaty area is said to be the genetic home for many varieties of apples.
Nur-Sultan, known as Astana before March 2019, is the capital city of Kazakhstan. It is located in the north-central part of the country, along the Ishim River, at the junction of the Trans-Kazakhstan and South Siberian railways. Branding aside, the Kazakh capital is scheduled to go on rising and spreading into a city of over one million people by 2030. Its skyline grows more fantastical by the year as landmark buildings, many of them by leading international architects, sprout along the wide boulevards in a variety of Asian, Western, Soviet and wacky futuristic styles. Several spectacular structures are open to visitors and it’s hard not be impressed by the very concept of this ‘Singapore of the steppe’.
Shymkent is a city in the south of Kazakhstan, one of the three cities in the country that have the status of republican importance. Shymkent is the third largest city in Kazakhstan and the first city in Kazakhstan, one of its largest industrial, commercial and cultural centers. Until June 19, 2018 – the administrative center of the former South-Kazakhstan (now Turkestan) region. The city has a large number of tourist attractions and objects of historical and cultural heritage. Shymkent is an interesting place to visit, given its unique culture, history and character. To explore Shymkent, set aside 1 to 2 number of your days. You’ll be coming back for more!
Aktau is a city in Kazakhstan, located on the Eastern shore of the Caspian Sea. Its current name means “white mountain” in Kazakh, which may be due to its cliffs that overlook the Caspian.
Balkhash is a city in Kazakhstan, located on the northern shore of the Lake Balkhash, on the Bay Bertys, and in south of Kazakh Uplands.