Kazakhstan-Central Asian Giant

Kazakhstan-Central Asian Giant, Kazakhstan tours 

Title of tour: Kazakhstan-Central Asian Giant

Sites to visit: Almaty, Taraz, Sairam, Shymkent, Otrar Settlement, Turkestan, Aksu-Zhabagly Reserve, Khoja Ahmed Yasavi Mausoleum, Issyk Gorge

Day 1: Almaty
Your driver and guide will meet you at the Almaty International Airport. Transfer to Almaty and embark into city tour. In the Museum of Almaty, you will learn interesting facts about the southern capital of Kazakhstan. Next will be the oldest park for the honor of 28 Panfilov Guardsmen during the World War II. The park divided into several parts, central part has amazing wooden building of Zenkov Cathedral. Then take a short walk to Green Bazaar, which is the popular place of residents for shopping.  After having lunch at local restaurant, take a short tour to famous Medeo Gorge. It is well known with high mountain skating rind and dam protecting from flood and cascading. After exploring the site, continue to a nice ski resort of Shymbulak. You will take cable car, where the is magnificent view of the landscape. Come back from Medeo and drive to Kok Tobe hill in the city. On this green hill, there are many things of interest, small zoo and observation deck of the city. O  the way back, ride a cable way to the center. Have a night train Almaty-Taraz. .  Train #379T 20:16 - 08:11(This is subject to change.)

Day 2: Almaty - Taraz - Sairam - Shymkent
Today, you will arrive to Taraz in the morning. Taraz will offer sightseeing of History Museum, Karakhan and Dautbek Mausoleum, Tekturmas Historical Complex, Akyrtas ancient palace complex. The remains underneath of the current city Taraz shows that its history goes back to ancient time. After exploring, drive to Sairam (one district of Shymkent), which was one of the significant points called Ispidzhab on the Silk Road. Sairam will open you doors of Ibrahim-Ata Mausoleum, Karashash-Ana Mausoleum, and medieval minaret. Moreover, Sairam is also a motherland of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi, who was the outstanding enlightener. There mausoleums of his parents named Ibrahim- Ata and Karashash-Ana. Continue to Shymkent and check in to a hotel.

Day 3: Shymkent - Otrar Settlement - Turkestan - Shymkent
Today is dedicated to discover surrounding of Shymkent. First drive to Otrar settlement (220 km). Here you will visit the Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi's teacher Arystan Bab. In addition, explore the archeological sites. Go on to Turkestan, where you will discover historical and architectural complex of "Azret-Sultan", Khoja Ahmed Yasawi Mausoleum that includes Necropolis, Hilvet underground mosque. The town Turkestan was established during 500 AD on the intersection of old trade routes connecting with Samarkand, Khiva and Bukhara. During the XVI-XVIII centuries, Turkestan was popular as spiritual and political center for Turkic World. Furthermore, it was the capital of Kazakh Khanate. Drive back to Shymkent and night in a hotel.

Day 4: Shymkent - Aksu-Zhabagly Reserve - Shymkent
Entire day in be in the Aksu-Zhabagly Reserve. It is a place with stunning view of mountains. It is located about 120 km from Shymkent and the oldest natural reserve of Kazakhstan. It is found on the Western Tien-Shan Mountain Range. The elevation vary from 1000m to 4280m above sea level. The landscape differs according to the altitude: starting from semi-deserts to alpine lush meadow. You will enjoy the beauty of evergreen Tien Shan spruce and flesh smell of junipers. Especially in summer, there are different colored flowers make a carpet on the ground. Furthermore, there are representative of endemic and rare animals. They are argali and ibex, deer and roe deer, lynx and snow leopards, wolves, foxes, bears, porcupines and ermines, bearded vultures, griffons and golden eagles. Drive back to Shymkent. Overnight in a hotel.

Day 5: Shymkent
Finally time to explore Shymkent. It is situated in a geographically good location, which makes it the center of Kazakhstan. Even in ancient time, one of the route of Great Silk Road crossed the city. The city tour will present you an excursion to Walk of Fame (Park named after Sh. Kaldayakov), Monument "Jer Ana", Ordabasy Square, Park "20th Anniversary of Independence of the Republic of Kazakhstan", Obelisk of Glory, Eternal Fire to the Fallen in WWII. You will conclude the tour, by visiting the regional historical museum and remains of ancient citadel of Shymkent. In the evening, have a walk on "Arbat" street. Rest in a hotel.

Day 6: Shymkent - Almaty - Issyk - Almaty
The morning flight will take you to Almaty. After arrival, drive to visit Issyk Lake. It is located in one of the Trans-Ili Alatau Range. The beautiful gorge will offer you nice leisure time in the nature. It lies in the place where thousand years ago caravans has passed through. En route, stop over the State Historical and Cultural Museum-Reserve "ISSYK". Here you can see permanent exhibition of  Scythian history and culture. There is a copy of the Golden Man, which is the important historical finding in Central Asia. You will drive up to 1756 meters above sea level to reach the lake. This amazing mountain lake will charm its beauty and peace. The history of the lake goes back to 10 000 year ago. There are some dams were built protecting from cascading. Have a picnic with the view of the lake and drive back to Almaty.

Day 7: Flight
After breakfast, transfer to airport according to flight schedule.

02 pax - Sedan
04 pax - Minivan
06-10 pax - Sprinter in Almaty / Toyota Hiace in Shymkent

Cost per person:
02 pax - 1 200 $
04 pax - 885 $
06 pax - 675 $
08 pax - 670 $
10 pax - 585 $
Single - 80 $

Half board - 150 $ per person
Full board - 270 $ per person

English speaking guide - 830 $ per group

Train Almaty - Taraz (4 berths per compartment) - from 40 $ per person

Flight Shymkent - Almaty - from 75 $ per person

Accommodation in Almaty in Day1 (if required):
Standard Double/Twin room - 30 $ per person
Standard Single room - 50 $

Tour price includes:
- Transport
- Accommodation:
Almaty - "Kazakhstan" Hotel 3*
Shymkent - "Shymkent" Hotel 3*
- Entrances to all museums
- Mineral water during the tour

Tour price does not include:
- Full board
- Single rooms
- Early check-in
- Travel insurance
- Visa and visa support
- English speaking guide
- Accommodation in Almaty in Day1
- Domestic flight Shymkent - Almaty
- Domestic train ticket: Almaty - Taraz