Astana – Residents of the capital appreciate winter for many reasons, including the opportunity to experience a wide range of outdoor activities.
The city has plenty of spots for skiing, ice skating, and ice slides, but once outside the city, residents have a change of scenery and a chance to reconnect with nature. Astana Times has shared some exciting destinations from their Tengritravel list.
For ski lovers
BalQaragai recreation area in Akkayn village has steep slopes perfect for skiing, snowboarding, sledding and snow tubing. Go snowmobiling, sledding with horses and huskies, or go night skiing on the 20-meter-high slopes.
For hunting and shooting enthusiasts
In addition to the usual snow entertainment, the Golden Pheasant Recreation Area has a shooting range with crossbows and guns. There is also hunting for pheasants, hares, wild boars and geese. Visitors can ride ponies, horses and camels.
Video credit: Varkalagai Recreation Area
For those who love fishing
The Stolichnie Raki (city crayfish) recreation center is just a 30-minute drive from the capital. For good fishing, you have to come to the river bank early in the morning with your fishing gear.
For hiking enthusiasts
Lake Imantau is a perfect place for those who like to climb mountains but don’t want to go to Almaty. From the capital he is located 400 kilometers away and offers beautiful views all year round.
Pine and birch trees, mountains and rocks surround the frozen lake. The maximum height of the rock is 660 meters above sea level.
Bring warm clothes and comfortable shoes to enjoy the picturesque places that can only be reached on foot, such as Kotelok Hill, Uglobai Hill, Rakhelsky Cave, Buyan Gorge and Kazachy Island.
Another attraction is Lake Zelenda, surrounded by rocky mountains and coniferous forests. This place is in demand even in winter, but experts recommend climbing the rock only with special equipment and advance preparation.
Amateurs can enjoy sightseeing tours, skiing, snow tubing and winter forest walks. The program of some tours includes a visit to Kazakhstan’s only butterfly museum.
Nearby recreational areas, Zelenda Park and Aurora Gardens, offer accommodation, dining, and saunas, and Zelen Recreation Center offers wellness care.