Astana Kazakhstan – Jonathan Furman’s Trip

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Imagine a huge country,

For instance, the ninth largest in the world as the size of all Western Europe!

With friendly locals, diverse landscapes, rare animals (like the snow leopard),

Futuristic cities and fascinating history!

In addition, imagine an anti-extremist Muslim state,

Secular and tolerant and multi-minority!

The president is careful to respect all religions and minorities in the country

And it seems that the Jewish community also lives here with confidence

and goodness.

This country reads: Kazakhstan!

Get a hot recommendation and some detailed “eating head”

About Kazakhstan’s new and designed capital:


In fact, this is a thriving futuristic city brimming with luxury towers,
Parks and Shopping Centers!
A relatively new discovery of oil and gas reservoirs has created an
incredible, uninterrupted construction momentum.
Astana has become a declining Soviet town, surrounded by thousands of
square kilometers of desolate steppes
To a glittering modern city, lush with wide avenues, luxury hotels,
Blooming parks, luxury towers and bustling shopping centers!
Although Estana is located in the heart of Asia, it is heavily influenced by
Europe and has been nicknamed
“The Star of Euro-Asia”,
And this is the only capital city in the world, meaning “capital” in Kazakh.
Some claim that the city was not given a specific name, to allow it to be named
in due time after the president.
Today Astana is an administrative, socio-economic and political center
of Kazakhstan.
A few days’ visit to the new capital turns out to be a fascinating but
very confusing experience.
It takes at least two days to get out of the shock of what you see there.

Most important and recommended sites in the city:

* Kazakhstan National Avenue – (Nurzhol Boulevard) –

It is a magical avenue located in the heart of the city,  and it is for pedestrians


* The Baiterek Tower – the symbol of the city! This is a 97 meter

high observation tower,

Symbolizing Kazakhstan’s cultural past, and seen from every corner of the city.

At the top of the tower is a large glass crown with a gold ball symbolizing

Samarok, the mythical bird that cast a golden egg.

You can take a quick elevator into the panoramic hall for spectacular city views

The yellow windows can prevent proper photography, inside the tower there is

also an art gallery and restaurant.

* Aqorda Presidential Palace – Kazakh Presidential Palace,

Designed similar to the White House and incorporates colors from the

state’s national flag.

The huge complex, which surrounds the presidential palace, is located:

Houses of Parliament, Supreme Court,

The National Library, whose building looks like a blue-eyed eye,

Gold towers, open plazas and beautiful flower gardens (in summer).

*Hazret Sultan Mosque – the largest and most beautiful mosque in Central


It is a huge palace, considered the most beautiful site of Astana.

* Palace of Peace and Reconciliation – special structure,

Built in the shape of a colored glass pyramid, which many believe is an

“eighth world wonder”.

The pyramid aims to symbolize peace and the way to unity of peoples

and religions in the world,

It includes a concert and opera hall, a conference hall, art galleries,

exhibitions, and more.

* National Museum of Kazakhstan –

The museum deals with the history and culture of Kazakhstan from

ancient times to the present day.

The museum’s halls include interactive displays and art displays.

The museum also has a rich collection of objects related to the

nomadic culture of Kazakhstan and a collection of breathtaking gold jewelry.

* Independence Square – a huge and impressive square

With so many amazing buildings in one place.

The square is located close to the pyramid, the mosque and the

National Museum.

Other sites you can visit:

Kazakhstan’s first presidential museum – one of Astana’s main attractions.

The museum presents unique archival documents, scientific material,

and books written by Nazarev, the first President of Kazakhstan.

The museum also has many gift collections, prizes and items.

Atkman – a huge complex (spread over 2 dunams),

showcasing its historical and cultural wealth

Of Kazakhstan using miniatures.

Miniatures Park – contains over 200 different cities and sites from all

over Kazakhstan.

* If there is enough time, it is highly recommended to leave the city for

a few days to the nature reserves and / or take a plane flight to Almaty

The largest city in Kazakhstan, and the country’s capital in the past.


Astana offers quite a few shopping malls, fashion boutiques,

souvenir shops, and unique stores, and all at attractive prices.

The highlight and the first place to stop for shopping in Astana is

the Khan Shatyr Center!

It is a huge indoor center (127,000 square meters) for entertainment

and shopping,

Spread over three floors of brand shops, cafes, restaurants, playgrounds,

movie theaters

And even an artificial beach with an aquatic park that maintains a constant

35 degree tropical climate

And original sand from the Maldives! The complex is covered all seasons,

And serves as an entertainment and shopping center even as temperatures

drop below zero during Astana winters.

Address: 25 Abay Avenue, Almaty, Kazakhstan

The center is considered the largest tent in the world!

pictue from the internet:


In Astana you can taste traditional Russian and Kazakh cuisine,

Alongside American, Japanese, Indian and European cuisine.

Thanks to the import of chefs from all over the world, these chefs now run

the best restaurants in Astana,

And the menus vary with the seasons and the personal preferences of

each chef.

The food is excellent and cheap, the menus are usually written only in Russian.

Astana at night

Night life:

The city’s club scene is booming, with new and hot places opening all the time.

Astana’s clubs attract Dj’s international and young audience.

The first thing to know about Astana nightlife,

The one who usually comes to the club late fashionable.

The clubs are empty until midnight, and most of them stay open until

four in the morning.

The second thing to know is that the entry policy is very tough,

So make sure you get dressed nicely and respectfully to enter the club.


There are dozens of hotels in Astana,

When the fancy and expensive hotels are in the new part of town.

I highly recommend the Best Western Plus Hotel (click on the hotel-name)

The hotel is located in the heart of the city and (relatively) close to all 

major and recommended sites of the city.

How to get to Astana?

There are no direct flights from Israel to Kazakhstan,

So the most likely options for reaching Astana International Airport (TSE) are:

With Turkish Airlines via Istanbul (IST), or with Airplot via Moscow (SVO).

* It is highly recommended to check the flight hours (take-off and landing)

and the duration of the connection.

* Another option is to integrate Moscow at the end or beginning of the trip,

(Take a long concoction in Moscow and take a walk around the city).


The local currency is called Tanga (KZT)

One dollar is worth about 330 tanga.

One shekel is worth about 92 tanga.

Transportation from the airport to the city:

You can reach the city center by convenient and efficient buses,

Or order a taxi from a taxi station located within the airport at a cost

of 2500 tanga (about NIS 30).

Public transportation and city traffic:

You can travel by bus and / or get there by taxi.

About Taxi Travel:

It should be noted that the same side of the river should not cost

more than 500 tanga (about NIS 5),

And a trip across the river should cost about 700 tanga (about NIS 8).

A few more things to know:

* The recommended period for visiting Astana is from May to October.

November to April are the coldest months in the country that manifest in

harsh winters with extreme temperatures.

* Power outlets like in Israel.

* Languages spoken: Residents are fluent in Russian, and few speak English.

* Israelis are not required to issue a visa.

Astana is ahead of the Israeli clock in three hours.

*** Possibility to go to Moscow city ***

After landing at SVO Airport, continue towards Passport Audit,

There they indicate that they are in a long concourse and want to go around

the city for a bit.

Go towards the Harrox Express Train (there is a Train to Moscow signage),

Purchase a round-trip ticket by train through the machine or through a

manned checkout

– Ticket cost 1000 rubles (about 60 NIS).

The train leaves every half hour to the city, and the journey takes

about 35 minutes.

Get off at the last station called Belorusskaya,

Get out of the station, turn left or ask a young friend who knows some English,

And arrive at the Belarsky Metro Station on Line 2, which is green in the

direction of Teatralnaya Station

– The third stop from Belaroski.

Exit the metro station and go up the stairs.

We recommend staying close to the metro station, most of the important

attractions are there.

(The information on the Moscow connection is taken from

Hila Mor Alon’s post on “This Abroad Here” on Facebook)


In my opinion, it’s only a matter of time before Kazakhstan re-enters the

world map,

And anyone who visits it – will come back with a taste of more!

Just don’t try jokes about Borat, it doesn’t really work with them..


May, 2018

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