Jun 20, 2019 - Jun 21, 2019
2 guests - 1 room
Where to stay in Almaty
Although no longer the nation's capital, Almaty is Kazakhstan's largest metropolitan area and remains the country's trading and cultural hub.
Also known as "the city of gardens", Almaty is a vibrant city of many colors. One of the architectural highlights is Ascension Cathedral, while other landmarks include Almaty City Central Mosque, the Central State Museum, displaying thousands of historic Kazakh artefacts, and Panfilov Park, home to the bright-yellow towers of Zenkov Cathedral, a Russian Orthodox church.
Just 15 km from this modern city are mountains and ski resorts, which is probably the furthest you will need to travel by public transport as getting around central Almaty can be done mainly on foot. A fairly new metro is available, while buses are also on hand to travel around the city.
The distinctive and luxurious five-star Ritz Carlton can be found at the foot of the Alatau Mountains and boasts a Six Senses Spa, an indoor swimming pool and a fitness center. The hotel's location is in the heart of the city and convenient for both the Presidential Palace and Almaty's Central Stadium. The hotel's Laurent Tourondel restaurant boasts its open kitchen and meat specialties, while guests can also enjoy a relaxing drink at the Sky Lobby and Lounge.
The Astana International Hotel is a less expensive option for visitors to Almaty and is located just five minutes from Republic Square and is next to Almaty Central Stadium. As well as the stylish Sulu restaurant offering daily American-style breakfast and French and Kazakh cuisine, guests can also enjoy ten-pin bowling, snooker, sauna and massage facilities while complimentary Wi-Fi is available throughout. To see more of the city, a tram stop is conveniently located outside the hotel's front door.
The Golden Palace Hotel is a budget hotel that places you in the heart of Almaty, convenient for both Almaty Central Stadium and the Almaty Opera House. The Almaty Train Station is a ten-minute drive away, while the Baykonur Metro Station is just a kilometer from the hotel. The rooms are bright and feature modern amenities, private bathrooms and complimentary Wi-Fi.
This information is correct as of January 2018
Much more European than I had expected. Definitely feels less adventuresome than the rest of Central Asia... but a good place to kick back and indulge in familiar things from home. Nice parks, Soviet-style monuments, cafes and mountain views.
After living in Almaty for three years, I can honestly say there is no place like it. The mix of Russian and Kazakh culture provides both a western and eastern experience, and the surrounding landscape is absolutely beautiful. Head up to Chimbuluk in the winter for skiing and snowboarding, check out Gorky park for some old-fashioned amusement rides, and sample some of Kazakhstan's unique dishes - plof and shashlik are a personal favorite.
Former capital of Soviet Kazakhstan, home of famed Modeo winter sports complex, crossroads of cultures (and religions) and my home for a year, Almaty may no longer be the heart of KAZ, but it remains the soul. The streets are wide and lined with trees, the Tien Shan mountains loom over the city and the climate mimics Utah with sun in the city and snow in the mountains year-round. There is plenty of history and culture here and easy plane, train and bus access to the famed Silk Road and Great Game cities of Central Asia to the south.