Ever since I found out that I would be moving to Atyrau, well really since I applied to work in Kazakhstan, I have wanted to visit the Caspian Sea. I mistakenly believed that Atyrau was on the sea, well it certainly looks like it is from google maps, when in fact it is about 30kms away from the "sea" which at the northern tip is marshland. Ah well, we finally had a long weekend with warm weather so we made the hour long flight down to Aktau to see the sea.
It was beautiful! The air was that perfect sea salty freshness, with a cool breeze coming off the sea. It is exactly what you'd expect from a Kazakh Seaside town. Wide streets, interesting statues, parks everywhere, a lovely boardwalk along the seaside. Truly truly beautiful.
Plus there is a lot to do outside of the city! Tons of cool things to see, like mosques built into the caves, canyons, depressions and much more! We went with a tour company, because you are literally driving through the steppe to find these places, I would highly recommend them, their contact information is at the bottom of the page.
There is also a hot spring! Now, I guarantee that this is unlike any other hot spring that you will experience, just look at the photos to see! But, it is incredibly relaxing, it was nice to see many locals out and about enjoying the spring.
All in all a great weekend!
|Sheep's head on the grave of Sultan Ahmed|
|Mosque built into the Cliff Side|
|Valley of Stone Balls|