AKTAU TOUR 8 days

See Incredible Canyons of Mangystau Province on 8-day tour, and experience the desert’s wildest places. Visit the glittering chalk mountains; take in views from the camping. Capture rugged desert vistas on a scenic drive to the Aktau Mountains, Zhygylgan canyon, Sherkala and Tuzbair Mountains and the magnificent West Rim of the canyon, then get a glimpse of the thundering waves of the Caspian Sea.  Aktau is located in the western part of Kazakhstan, on the Mangyshlak peninsula and is administrative center of Mangystau. In Kazakh language, Aktau means “White Mountain”.

 

It is the most popular slot canyons in western Kazakhstan, which were formed by rushing rain and floodwater, which carried sand, slicing through a mesa and carving the mystical sandstone walls. Aktau- are Chalk Mountains that are more than 400 million years old. The mountains are white, but there are also blue, pink and green slopes. Only a bird's eye view or detailed tracking reveals the extraordinary beauty of the place. Also Aktau is called the "Moon" because of its unusual colour.

 

Useful information

Season: June - September

Duration: 7 nights / 8 days

Type of tour: Cultural tours

Height: 2500 m

Accommodation: Hotel/GH/Tents/

Visa: Visa is not required for UK citizens.

Visa information: www.mfa.kz 

Air carrier: TK, KC

Currency: Tenge (KZT)

Time difference: GMT / UTC +4

 

ITINERARY:

 

Day 1 ARRIVAL DAY. AKTAU AIRPORT.

Meet the group at Aktau airport, arriving from Almaty. Transfer

to hotel.

Day 2 AKTAU – ZHYGYLGAN CAVITY – KAPAMSAY CANYON

Breakfast at the hotel. Departure for a tour in the

rural area with the comfortable jeeps and with a local Russian

speaking guide. Zhygylgan Cavity - the tour includes visiting of a

huge Zhygylgan Cavity in the form of large circle of a diameter

up to 10 km one edge of which goes into the sea, formed as a

result of the serious soil slips. Canyon Kapamsay – moving on to

chalk canyon called Kapamsay, where you will listen to the legend

about Kapam batyr and you will see the narrow Chalk Canyon that

is formidable with its steep walls reaching heights 70 m. Meals -

lunch (lunch box) and dinner are organized as a picnic. Overnight in tents.

Day 3 KAPAMSAY - SHAKPAK-ATA– KUMAKAPY CANYON - mountain SHERKALA - «KOGEZ»

Shakpak ata underground mosque - it used to be the Sun Temple

in ancient times, and now it is one of the most beautiful mosques

of Mangystau. It is the historical and cultural monument of the

Х century. Gloomy, bite the thick walls, painted with figures and

characters, spaces hidden from the sanctuary of heaven and

earth, of human voices.

Kumakapy Canyon – moving into the canyon Kapi, where you will

walk among the thickets of tamarisk. The valley of spherical stone

concretions Torysh - during this tour you will also visit the Torysh

valley, enveloped in the attention of scientists, archaeologists,

even the ufologists and, of course, the tourists.

Mountain Sherkala - rest at the root of a mountain Sherkala,

unique creation of nature, steeped in human legends. Sherkala

mountain is a natural object which one viewing point looks like a

giant yurt. Walking tour around the mountain.

Overnight in national yurts in “Kogez”.

Day 4 «KOGEZ» - AIRAKTY-ŠHOMANAY VALLEY - «KOGEZ»

Airakty and Shomanay, as they are known amongst the locals,

system of small mountains. Shomanay Mountains look like

fairytale castles with steeples, towers, colonnades and walls.

A winding path, trodden by semi-wild horses, a top one of the

mountains ends onto a platform offering a panoramic view of

distant Aktau Mountains and all of the Airakty Castles. Carved

drawings, called by one of the researchers “Desert Symphonies”,

are seen on the chalk rock fragments along the sides of Airakty.

Breakfast and dinner in ethnographic village «Kogez», Lunch in field

conditions, prepared by a professional chef. Overnight in national

yurts in “Kogez”.

Day 5 «KOGEZ» - KARATAU MOUNTAINS - TUZBAIR

Further departure to the area of Karatau Mountains (black

mountains). Arrival in the canyons of colored clay, where you

have an opportunity to walk through the Colored Canyon, where

every turn offers a new kind of colored rocks with amazing shapes

and colors. Walking through the picturesque canyons.

Tuzbair – Tuzbair is a majestic creation of natural elements. Here,

the Ustyurt Cliff steeply breaks by a cascade of clay – limestone

and chalk steps, at the bottom of which lies a vast salt marsh,

called in this region, Sor. Chalk Cliffs are scoured and riddled with

deep channels forming innumerable ranges of fantastic columns.

Lunch and dinner in field conditions, overnight in tents in Tuzbair.

Day 6 TUZBAIR - BOZZHIRA

Bozzhira - is a side part of Ustyurt Plateau where Mother Nature has

freed her imagination creating an unearthly landscape in white.

The small valley of Bozzhira is surrounded by an amphitheater

of natural oddities on three sides. Everything there is white in

colour; canyons, peaks, mountain towers, mountain castles, and

mountain yurts. Bozzhira relict mountains, like chameleons,

change their appearance as you walk between them. These

relicts, like silent guards, peer into the hazy distance guarding

the peace of the majestic symbol of Mangystau – the giant stone

yurt. The true master of the yurt is the lonely wind mournfully

singing the steppe songs to the endless skies.

Meals in field conditions, overnight in tents in Bozzhira.

Day 7 BOZZHIRA – BEKET-ATA – TUESU SAND – AKTAU C.

After breakfast, drive to Aktau city through the Beket-Ata and

Tuesu sand. Breakfast and lunch in field conditions. Dinner at

local restaurant in Aktau. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 8 CITY TOUR «MARINE GATES OF KAZAKHSTAN».

DEPARTURE DAY

After breakfast, have a guided city tour in Aktau «Marine gates of

Kazakhstan». The excursion program includes Aktau sightseeing

tour at the most interesting and memorable places of the city,

a short walk along the promenade, familiarity with the history,

culture and memorial monuments of the city. After lunch transfer

to Aktau airport for flight to Almaty for home flight.

After all formalities, see the group off.