Almaty Travel Guide

  • View from my apartment
    View from my apartment
    by aah_stone
  • kurmanghazy
    kurmanghazy
    by iio
  • A mosque
    A mosque
    by marsistanbul

Almaty Highlights

  • Pro
    johnsakura profile photo

    johnsakura says…

     very relaxed city in the bottom of the mountains 

  • Con
    angelochka profile photo

    angelochka says…

     kazakhs being nomads didnt left that many historical monuments 

  • In a nutshell
    WorldPassenger profile photo

    WorldPassenger says…

     I enjoyed my brief stay in Almaty and would visit again 

Almaty Things to Do

  • A walk in the park - Panfilov Park

    The park is located in central-east Almaty and it encircles the Zenkov Cathedral. The park has been dedicated to the Panfilov Heroes. The memorial that has been erected in the park is to the memory of 28 soldiers from an Almaty infantry unit who fought and died whilst fighting the Nazis outside of Moscow. Ivan Panfilov was the name of the General...

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  • Zenkov Cathedral

    The Cathedral was built in 1904, and it survived the 1911 earthquake! The Cathedral is located in Panfilov Park.The structure is wooden, and is constructed without the use of nails. It is the second largest wooden structure in the world, and it is probably the only wooden Cathedral!It was well attended when I visited and sadly I was not brave...

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  • A walk in the park - Astana Square

    I took a post breakfast walk and came across the park and square. It was peaceful and even at 0800am it was quite busy, mostly with workers crossing the park.There was a police presence near the memorial and his box had the words "Police" nothing in Kazakh nor Russian.There was an almost clear view of the snow capped mountains.

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Almaty Hotels

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Almaty Restaurants

  • Coffee at Mega

    This is one of a chain, although I do not seem to be able to locate the actual details for this branch.Good selection of drinks and great service. Coffee and Cake

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  • Breakfast and Dinner

    The café is located in the hotel Voyage and acts as both a coffee shop and the hotel breakfast room. The staff are good and attentive - the menu is reasonable as is the pricing.It shuts at 23:00 and there is limited additional food in the hotel. The rooms do not have tea or coffee, but they do have a mini bar.

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  • A lunch and night out venue

    This is the nearest restaurant to our Almaty offices - they have two restaurant areas. We ate twice in the business lunch restaurant. the service was good and the menu changes each day. excellent starters and main courses!

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Almaty Nightlife

See all 22 Nightlife in Almaty
  • Soho Night Club in Almaty stinks!

    Soho Night Club in Almaty is stinky and dangerous place. Lot of criminal activitiy is going on there. Tables are dirty, food is not fresh. I would never go again to this place and I don't recommend this nightclub to anyboody.

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  • Almaty Short Changers

    The Petroleum bar is awful. Haunted by wealthy men of dissolute or promiscuous habits and equally rakish women. The music is dreadful and the bar tender charged me an arm and a leg for a beer and bowl of plasticized stringy 'cheese' which was almost inedible. That was after having paid for entry. Paid for entry - unbelievable ! Then I had to search...

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  • Good English Style Pub

    A friendly pub with great food that caters for both Ex-pats and Locals, there is a good balance of nationalities. Food is basically International with a strong English section in the menu and Curries (which of course have now been adopted as English !!!). As in English pubs there is a good sized area for standing and sitting at the bar, it has...

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Almaty Transportation

  • Flying to Almaty (direct or indirect)

    It was a first visit, and I was unsure what airline to take. However I discovered that British Airways (BA) flies direct to Almaty from London a number of times weekly. There are other flights but these are indirect and have quite lengthy transit waits in each of the few locations used (eg Kiev and Istanbul)

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  • By Plane

    We arrived here by plane, with aeroflot company. The plane was small and moved a loooooot, but we had a nice flight anyway.

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  • From and To the airport by taxi

    A lot of scam taxis are waiting for you when you arrive at Almaty Airport as well as other cities in CIS countries. You would be better to ask transport company which shows sign or ads card of transport service to the city. There are some transport company's counter at waiting area and "555-333" taxi is one of secure company. It was 2300KTZ with...

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Almaty Shopping

See all 13 Shopping in Almaty
  • A mall a very large mall!

    " MEGA Alma-Ata, the biggest shopping and entertainment mall in Kazakhstan, was opened in 2006 in Almaty. At the moment the mall is the favourite place of both residents of the city and visitors for shopping and relaxation. On a weekday MEGA Alma-Ata mall is visited by 30,000 people on average. On weekends that number is double. There is a food...

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  • 24 hours open large supermarket

    "Dacmapxah" would be Russian or Kazakh name and name of the supermarket in Almaty. I found this supermarket on the way to TuSM. It is located on Gogol Street between Abylay Street and Pantilov Street, it is close to TsUM, just one block south side.It is convenient supermarket with large selection of foods, drinks and consumer products, and it is 24...

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  • TsUM, cosmetics to mobile phone,...

    TsUM is located on the corner of Zhibek Zholy Street and Abylay Khan Street street, and every post-Soviet city has this department store and every resident of Almaty knows TuSM. TsUM composed of dozens of small shops with identical little counters selling mobile phones and electronic goods on the backside of the first floor, and cosmetics are found...

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Almaty Local Customs

  • dont believe "Borat"-no multiple kisses...

    i've found kazakh people very welcoming, warm and nice which surely makes you feel comfortable and relaxed. before my travel to Almaty i contacted some of my clients and was surprisingly pleased the way they cared about my comfort and wellbeing-they suggested not to forget warm clothes if i'm ever planning to go to Chimbulak, organized...

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  • We mostly speak Russian, not Kazakh

    According to the CIA world factbook, 64% of the population speak Kazakh, 95% speak Russian (2001 est.), but it seems to me that even less people speak Kazakh, at least fluently. Anyway, if you use a Russian phrase-book, you are much more likely to be understood than if you use Kazakh. Chances of meeting an English speaking person in most...

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  • Don't buy "VITA" brand water

    Don't believe me if you choose, but if you buy VITA brand bottled water then you are showing support for the current corrupt president, since this company has close ties with the pres. Ask around - it's what I was told while I was rehydrating, thinking I was doing no harm.

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Almaty Warnings and Dangers

  • Scams Taxi at Almaty Airport

    A lot of scam taxis are waiting for you when you arrive at Almaty Airport as well as other cities in CIS countries. You would be better to ask transport company which shows sign or ads card of transport service to the city. There are some transport company's counter at waiting area and "555-333" taxi is one of secure company. It was 2300KTZ with...

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  • Banks and Currency Exchange

    Currency:The national currency of Kazakhstan is the tenge.Notes currently in circulation are T5000,2000,1000,500,200,and 100;coins are T1,5,10,20,and 50.Changing money:Foreign currency can be exchanged for tenge and vice versa at any bank or official exchange office.All such transactions must be recorded on the customs declaration form you received...

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  • Customs

    Upon entering Kazakhstan you must fill in two copies of the customs declaration form.One copy must be handed to the customs official and the other kept until your departure.Foreigners generally experience more problems when leaving Kazakhstan than when arriving.It is prohibited to import or export arms,ammunition,drugs and pornography,and to export...

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Almaty Tourist Traps

  • Taxi from Airport

    When you are exiting from the arrival hall, some ladies will meet you at the exit gate asking if you need a taxi. Do not take the taxi they offer. This is an airport taxi and charge you double of nominal price. There is no taximeter in Kazakh taxis. The best thing is to go out of the arrival hall and negotiate with the other guys offering you a...

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  • dont forget warm clothes when going to...

    if you are going from Almaty up in the mountains you will need some warm clothes, even if it's summer and it's +30 down. We were driving to Medeo and after more up to Chimbulak after working day and didnt have enough time to drop by the hotel..but there is a solution to every problem:) near cashier desks before taking cable car you can always find...

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  • 890 steps up to the top of the hill!

    890 steps up to the top of the hill! if you decide to walk up to the top of the hill on your way to shymbulak or the valley with the fresh water river. you have several stages of steps. so after a few hundreds you can stop and rest. some people sell juices and water on the way up. go slowly and keep the rythem. if you keep you breath controled and...

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Almaty What to Pack

  • PROPER FOOT WEAR

    Almaty is a slushy mess - even in January. You need waterproof boots or simialr with very good traction. And you need to pack flip-flops for showers. They really do not seem to sell them here. I have looked for hours.

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  • General Information

    Currency - Tenge. What you bring in spend it (or declare it) all as it is a real hassle to bring out more money than you declare (when coming in) Voltage - Same as United States (2 pin 220V) - bring an adaptor for you cameras, phones etc

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  • Russian phrase book.

    Most people in Almaty do not speak English so it is best to come prepared with a good Russian phrase book. Part of my excitement when I learned I would be going to Almaty was I was eager to practice my Russian that I had taken in college. But that was 7 years earlier and I needed a quick and handy refresher so I bought RUSSIAN AT A GLANCE, by...

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Almaty Off The Beaten Path

  • Theatres..

    Abai State Theatre of Opera and BalletKabanbai batyra 110,at PanfilovaAuezov Kazkh State Drama TheatreAbaya 105,east of Zhandosova,across from the circusChinese-Uighur Theatre of Musical ComedyNauryzbai batyra 83,at Karasai batyraDeutsches Schauspiel Theatre(German Theatre)Satpayeva 64d,at RozybakievaLermontov State Academic Russian Drama...

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  • Museums..

    Museums;Archeological MuseumDostyk 44,at zhambyt,behind the statue of Zhambytabove the iskra cinemaph;61-86-63Auezov House MuseumTulebayeva 185ph;62-92-74Book MuseumKabanbai batyra 94,at Kunayevaph;62-22-13Geological museumDostyk 85,between Kurmangazy and Abaya,in the Kazakh Business centreph;63-52-83Central State MuseumFurmanova 44,south of...

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  • Musical Instruments Museum: Don't Miss...

    This museum was a very pleasant surprise. It's located in a rustic building in Panikov park near the city center. Inside is an incredible collection of musical instruments from Kazakhstan and virtually every other country in central Asia. Unfortunately there is no information in English, but the exhibits are fascinating nonetheless. The most...

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Almaty Sports & Outdoors

  • Medeo Ice Rink

    The stadium was built in 1949 and has hosted a number of international events. They continue to do so, and the next major event is the 2017 Winter Universiade. The rink is open to the public, and it is in fact the highest ice rink in the world - some 1690m above sea level. There is some 10,500 sqm of ice.

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  • Patinage à Médéo

    Au pied de la chaîne de Zailiyskiy Alatau, à environ 15 km d'Almaty, à 1 500 m d'altitude, patinez sur la plus grande patinoire artificielle de vitesse au monde (la patinoire de Médéo). A 500 m en amont, montez à Tchimboulak, l'un des sites de ski de l'Asie centrale (la période estivale pour ce sport s'étend de novembre à avril). To the foot of the...

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  • Skiing in Almaty

    Snow cover at Chimbulak varies greatly from one season to the next. During the 2007/2008 winter there was quite a lot of snow, while there was hardly any at all for parts of the season before that. The problem is that while it is more than cold enough for snow it is often quite dry in this part of Kazakhstan and therefore the snow cover is usually...

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Almaty Favorites

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  • Young People

    Where we in Europe are getting used to the fact, that the majority of the population are old people, it is impressive to see all those children and young people in the streets of Almaty. Almaty has many universities and students. The average family has about 5 children.

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  • The City's History

    To my great surprise I found, that Almaty area used to be part of Chinese territory but came under Russian control in the middle of the 19th century. Almaty was founded by Siberian Cossacks in 1854. Its first name was Vernyj. In 1921, the name Alma-Ata ("father-apple") was created by the Bolsheviks. In a devastating earthquake in 1911, almost the...

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  • Tour Efeil

    Une réplique de la Tour Eiffel trône devant un ensemble d'immeubles de bureaux, dans le quartier des affaires...A retort of the Eiffel Tower sits owing a set of office buildings, in the district of the business...

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