This is a scenic man-made lake surrounded by mountains and adorned by an artificial waterfall.
Chilik River is gaining strength between the Ile Alatau and Kungey Alatau Mountains. This area is home to the most breathtaking natural wonders of the Almaty Province – < a href=https://kazakhstan.travel/tourist-spot/en/35/kolsaiskie-ozera target=_blank>Kolsay Lakes and Lake Kaindy. But people decided that Mother Nature hadn’t given them enough lakes and created one more – Bartogay Reservoir.
Bartogay Reservoir was constructed on the Chilik River in 1986. This massive irrigation facility was the last major project of Soviet Kazakhstan. The lake stretches from north to south for 6 km (3.7 mi), the width is 3 km (1.9 mi), and the average depth is 25 m (82 ft). The lake is popular among fishers as it is inhabited by European carp, crucian carp, and trout.
Bartogay Reservoir is a great example of how human intervention can create places of great beauty. What also draws travelers to the lake is a huge spillway about 100 meters (328 ft) high that is in no way inferior to a real waterfall.
Useful tips for 2021-2022
How to get there
It is best to go to Bartogay during the warm season, from May to September. The reservoir is situated 192 km (119 mi) away from Almaty. The nearest settlement is the village of Asysaga (10 km – 6 mi). To get there follow the Kuldjinsky Tract, then turn right after you pass the village of Baiseit, or drive further and turn right onto the dirt road when leaving the Sogety Valley after the Kokpek Pass.
On your way to the Bartogay Reservoir stop by on the Asy Plateau and marvel at its observatory and breathtaking landscapes. Be sure to also visit the Charyn Canyon located just 60 km (37 mi) east of the reservoir.
Food and accommodation
Getting to the lake can take a lot of time so bring enough food and water with you. The Kuljinsky Tract is dotted with small shops so you can buy some supplies there if you forget something. There are no accommodation options near the reservoir, but you can spend the night in a tent. The nearest hotel is in the village of Baiseit, 30 km (19 mi) away from the lake. Near the spillway, you’ll find some comfortable gazebos and barbecue facilities.