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Almaty – National Park Altyn-Emel – Kolsay Lakes
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Almaty – National Park Altyn-Emel – Kolsay Lakes

from deserts to cool mountains

Almaty is a rather unique city. He was able to adapt to the rapid changes in the improving life. The city has many parks, gardens with fountains, streets decorated with flower beds, as well as a large number of gardens on the outskirts of the city. Almaty stretches out along the foothills of Zailiyskiy Alatau. Almost every corner of the city offers stunning views of the mountains. At the same time, the city has a business side. A distinctive feature is the frequent holding of various international events. This is due to the convenient location, progressive infrastructure, and the city reserves the right to be a leader in the cultural and industrial sphere.

Almaty – National Park Altyn-Emel – Kolsay Lakes

Day 1

Arrival in Almaty. Meeting at the airport, transfer to hotel. Hotel Accommodation. Recreation.

City tour of Almaty.

  • Visiting the Park 28 guards — Panfilov, named in honor of the heroes of the Great Patriotic War;
  • Cathedral — a wooden structure built without a nail;
  • Green market — the old central market called «green» bazaar, because here the first green traded from time immemorial, the rich gifts of nature the Trans.
  • Republic Square — the main square in Almaty is the largest and most beautiful park in the city with its magnificent ensemble of modern architecture, location, holiday parades, festivals, sporting events, parades, folk festivals;
  • Lunch
  • Kok-Tobe — On a hilltop-viewing platform is located, which is visible from the beautiful panorama of the city of Almaty, as well as the endless horizon of the steppe area.
  • Medeo, where the high-roller, known around the world.
  • Mudflow dam «Meteo» is located 25 km from Almaty. The construction has three successive levels of height. By the dam is a concrete staircase, consisting of 842 steps.
  • Ski Resort «Shymbulak.» The resort situated in a picturesque valley Trans-Ili Alatau at a height of 2200 m above sea level. It is an amazing place where dizzy from the clear air; the eyes diverge from the surrounding beauty

Almaty – National Park Altyn-Emel – Kolsay Lakes

Day 2

  • Transfer to the National park Altyn Emel, 290 km in a way.

The park organized on April 10, 1996. The purpose of creation of park — preservation of a unique natural complex, archaeological and historical and cultural monuments, rare and endangered species of plants and animals, development of ecological tourism. Besshatyr burial mounds — is the main sightseeing of the Altyn Emel National Park. Besshatyr» is translate as «five tents»: probably because of the five biggest burial mounds on this territory, the archaeologists in the middle of the past century have excavated part of which. Besshatyr necropolis is consider the shrine of ancient Saks lived on territory of modern Kazakhstan in the 6th century BC. Altogether 18 royal burial mounds, having diameter from 8 to 70 meters and height from 2 to 20 meters, are concentrated at the territory of 2 sq.km.

  • During a way visit Singing dune.

Singing Dune, reaching a height of 120 meters and a length of about 3 km, located in one of the corners of the Altyn-Emel National Park, a few kilometers from the Ili river between the mountains of Big and Small Kalkan. This sandy hill consists of very fine pure sand, which starts to «sing» in windy weather and its sound reminds the organ music. Before a sandy storm, the dune sounds like a drum. From the top of the Dune, you can observe the grand panorama of the surroundings.

In the south — thin strip of the Ili River is visible as well as purple mountains of Sogety and Boguty, looking out from the white peaks of the Ketmen ridge. On the west, the steep slope of the Big Kalkan, and the Small Kalkan – from the east, obstructs the horizon. In the north — violet-blue ridge of Djungarian Alatau mountains, Chulak Mountain, Matai and Altyn-Emel are visible. If the weather is dry and windy, the sand dune will «sing» you its song, which could be heard as far as several kilometers…

Almaty – National Park Altyn-Emel – Kolsay Lakes

Day 3

Continued movement of the reserve. Inspection of the mountains of Aktau and Katutau, 90 km by steppe from guesthouse.

This magnificent chalk hills. These lifeless, blue («moon landscape»), red, white, pink, green slopes, intricately dissected by erosion, so unusual, that you can not take your eyes off. The reason for such a bizarre landscape of the mountains was that the mountains rose up from the seabed. Age of mountains more than four hundred million years, the length of thirty kilometers.

Overnight in a guesthouse.

Almaty – National Park Altyn-Emel – Kolsay Lakes

Day 4

  • Transfer to Kolsay Lake, 326 km from Altyn-Emel. Accommodation in guesthouse.

Kolsay Lakes — «Pearls of the Northern Tien-Shan» — represent a cascade of three lakes. The largest lake is accessible for all visitors. It is the most beautiful lake, having a lack of civilization and the abundance of mushrooms. Horse lovers can order horseback tour to this place. The highest lake is small. It is located on the border of fir-wood and the alpine meadows and amazes by its harsh alpine beauty, as well as the rich flora and fauna. Vertical drop between the three lakes is about 700 meters.

The lowest lake can reached by car. However, you should walk few kilometers along mountain trails to see the second and the third lake. Without doubts, the tourists are expect to have a wonderful vacation in these places — berries, mushrooms and fishing. The water in the lakes is cold and clean and is home for the rainbow trout — a fish that lives only in the running or spring water. In the around mountains you can see Marals, mountain goats, wolves and even bears.

On the shores of the lakes, there are small guest houses, which are always ready to accept those, who wish to have a rest at lakes, which have crystal-clear water reflecting unapproachable mountain tops and slopes. From windows of guest houses you can enjoy the view to extraordinary beautiful landscape of lake, and the evenings spent at a fireplace will be remembered to you for a long time.

Almaty – National Park Altyn-Emel – Kolsay Lakes

Day 5

  • Walking around. Excursion to second Kolsay Lake.

Vicinities of Kolsay Lakes are very good for camping, trekking, horse riding and mountain bicycles. The nearest village is Saty, which is in 320 km from Almaty.

The first lake, which is located at the height of 1818 metres, has the length of 1 km, and width about 300 metres.

The middle lake is located at the height of 2552 metres, 5 km higher from the first lake. It is big and extraordinary picturesque, and looks like a bowl from turquoise crystal in palms of mountains. Top Kolsay Lake is 4 km further and 600 metres higher than the middle lake. Behind it, 6 km further, there is a border with Kyrgyzstan through pass Sary-Bulak (3278м) from which you can enjoy the view to a blue Issyk Kul.

  • Free time. Overnight.

Almaty – National Park Altyn-Emel – Kolsay Lakes

Day 6

  • Early departure to Charyn canyon, 110 km.

Charyn Canyon, which compared to the beauty of the Grand Canyon in Colorado, located east of Almaty. Unique forms of erosion and weathering of the relief will take you to the fantastic, surreal world of whimsical sculptures of sandstone «Castle Valley,» «Witches Gulch,» and others. The height of the steep slopes, columns and arches up to 150-300 meters. The canyon stretches for 154 km northeast to south-west, along the Charyn River, which is ideal for rafting. It remained rare representative of the vegetation of the globe — Sogdian ash, a survivor of the epoch of glaciation.

  • Back in Almaty, 200 km from Charyn Canyon. Transfer to the hotel. Rest.

Almaty – National Park Altyn-Emel – Kolsay Lakes

Day 7

  • Transfer to the airport. Flight at home.
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