Surrounded by two giants, China and Russia, the territory of Kazakhstan, the country of the steppe par excellence, is the ninth largest in the world. Its inhabitants, traditionally nomads, were forced to remain sedentary under Soviet rule, which had the effect of profoundly changing the appearance of the Kazakh countryside and cities, offering today to the traveller a multiple and contrasted face. Alongside the Kazakhs and the majority Russians, it is indeed a real mosaic of peoples who thrive between mountains and steppes, between deserts and coasts: Uighurs, Dungans, Tatars, Ukrainians, Germans, Koreans... It is not yet quite Asia, but it is already no longer Russia... The Kazakhstan tourist guide offers some useful guidelines for getting to the heart of this immense region. We will probably start the trip with Astana, a futuristic capital with exuberant architecture in the middle of the steppe, which seems to be the only one, with Almaty, the old capital, really looking like a city. It is at the cost of hundreds of kilometres of travel that we will reach Kazakhstan's other key points: from the timid architecture of Turkestan to the desolate visions of Aralsk, the ancient port on the Aral Sea, or, on the other side of the country, the wild and preserved landscapes of the Altai mountains. In Aktau, Semey, Karaganda we will discover the "Russian-style" beaches of the Caspian Sea, the ancient gulags, the houses of the great Russian authors exiled in the steppe... Қазақстанға қош келдіңіздер !

What to visit Kazakhstan?

When to go to Kazakhstan?

When to go to Kazakhstan? The best climatic conditions are found in summer, especially if you plan to go up in the mountains, especially in the Altai. In the far south of the country, the heat can be overwhelming in summer, so spring and autumn are the best times. It should be noted here that, in general, the climatic conditions of the Kazakh steppe are difficult in winter. Astana's climate is particularly harsh, and it is no coincidence that the city was called "white tomb" at one point in its history. Winters are very long and cold: temperatures generally flirt with -20°C, made even more difficult by the strong winds that sweep across the steppe during this period. In summer, the city is crushed by heat, and not a single tree shades the streets of this capital, built in the middle of the steppes. In short, it is better to aim for the off-seasons to explore the streets of Astana, when to go to Kazakhstan? Provided you avoid the extreme south of the country, the best time to travel to Kazakhstan is certainly in summer.

How to go to Kazakhstan? Our advice & tips

  • Organised trips
  • Going alone
  • Moving around

Tour operators are still relatively rare to offer tours developed in Kazakhstan. Nevertheless, many of them have many contacts in the neighbouring republics, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, where tourism is more developed, and can tailor an itinerary for you according to your wishes and budget.

Discover our selection of travel agencies for this destination

Astana or Almaty can be reached directly by plane, but be aware that from Western Europe there are trains to Moscow. The most classic route then connects Moscow to Astana or Almaty in 2 days. The train remains an economical and romantic way to travel, encounters are assured and the atmosphere is often warm. Remember to bring some provisions. Regarding accommodation, it is advisable to book your room in advance in both major Kazakh cities.

If you can afford it, flying is a good option to hurry up because of the long distances to travel and the poor road or rail service to some localities (Air Astana). The bus network is particularly dense in Kazakhstan, and almost all cities and towns are served. Although slow, they always arrive at their destination safely. Trains are a little cheaper than buses, but not much faster. Adventurers of the highway code will opt for the car.

Prepare for your trip Kazakhstan

Transportation
  • Book a ferry
  • Car Rental
  • Taxi
Accommodations
  • Find a hotel
  • Holiday rental
Stays
  • Tailor-made trip
Services / On site
  • Book a table
  • Activities & visits

Kazakhstan travel inspiration

Pictures Kazakhstan

Discover Kazakhstan

Practical information
When to travel?

When to go to Kazakhstan? The best climatic conditions are found in summer, especially if you plan to go up in the mo...
Read more about it

Weather forecast

While Kazakhstan's weather is subject to a continental climate, there are major differences between north and south....
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Budget

The national currency is the tenge. The immediate effect of the devaluation and continued decline of the Kazakh curre...
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Formalities

The French and Swiss are exempt from the visa requirement for stays of less than two weeks and with only one e...
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Health

Sanitary conditions are rather good compared to the rest of Central Asia. Good, well-trained doctors can be fo...
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How to travel by yourself?

Astana or Almaty can be reached directly by plane, but be aware that from Western Europe there are trains to Moscow....
Read more about it

How to get organized?

Tour operators are still relatively rare to offer tours developed in Kazakhstan. Nevertheless, many of them have many...
Read more about it

Getting around

If you can afford it, flying is a good option to hurry up because of the long distances to travel and the poor road o...
Read more about it