Short and wonderful time in Almaty

Almaty Travel Blog

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Typical shopping mall scene

Our stay in Almaty was wonderful. Many Thanks to our lovely hosts Gulym and Zaure, who helped us so much and made us feel very welcomed whole time we were in Almaty.

I find Almaty is amazingly beautiful. With its friendly people, tasteful food, rich of cultures, stunning mountain sights.. we did not want to leave so soon.

But with transit visa it allows us to stay only 5 days.

Park
Government's rule,all foreigners who which to stay longer than 5 days in the country must register officially. (or get visa in advance, invitation letter was necessary in my case, as I happen to come from “Third-world country” which is not in their “civilized countries” list.

Anyway, we had great time. Almaty is luxury to me in the way that it has so much green, nearly everything is hidden behind big trees. Good eateries everywhere. And even grand shopping mall has an icy-top mountain as backdrop. That looks almost unreal.

People don't speak much of English here. Only Russian, which we have no basics whatsoever. But we did get by with just sign-language. (sometimes it was rather hilarious. If I was a third person looking at us trying to gesture "I want a taxi or mini-van to the border tomorrow morning" I think I'd laugh my ass-off too.

Short trip to the mountain by ski cable


We visited State Museum which is quite impressive, they have some nice collections of clothes, silverwares, etc. And of-course replica of the "Golden Man"

After 4 days we had to leave the country. Timing was terrible as the very night that we packed our stuff ready to go next morning. We recieved SMS from Bert's family in Belgium that it was a riot going on in Urumqi and some news sources said it was really as bad since Tian-An-Men (Not sure if that was a bit too much, But that time we did not know for sure)

Fear that the Chinese might close down the borders, and we would never be able to leave Kazakhstan and that means we will be overstay. That is definitely what we want it to happen. We have to make some gamble... Just go to the border anyway.

Taxi (shared, 2 of us and one Chinese man) cost 70 USD (just for two of us) If we arrive at the border and it's closed. Well, too bad. We will have to head back to Almaty and lets pray that the Goverment will not fine us too much or give us some trouble. And of course we will waste 70 USD on taxi aswell.

But we have to choice. Have to go.

Galym wrote a note for us in Russian in case we need to ask the officer on the border to "send us back" to the city, that this is not our fault. We are here at the border but we can't cross. What we can do, is hope for luck.

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Typical shopping mall scene
Typical shopping mall scene
Park
Park
Short trip to the mountain by ski …
Short trip to the mountain by ski…
What a view
What a view
Yum !!
Yum !!
Almaty
photo by: Alfiya