Sights of Nur-Sultan (Astana)

Named as the ‘Singapore of the steppes’ by Lonely Planet, Nur-Sultan is the first introduction to Kazakhstan for many travelers. The world’s youngest capital, formerly known as Astana, it has already reinvented itself as one of the most innovative cities.

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Nur-Sultan is constantly changing and rapidly expanding: new buildings appear every year and every time you visit, the city may seem quite different from what you remember from the last time.

From futurism to classic

New center of Nur-Sultan, with wide avenues and unusual buildings, wasbuilt from scratch on the left bank of the Ishim River (also known as Esil River); whereas the right bank of the river, with its calm and cozy atmosphere, still preserves the memory of the past.

On the left bank are located such world famous sights of Nur-Sultan (Astana) as:

  • Bayterek Tower, with a viewing platform at 97 meters. The building embodies a legend about a mythical tree of life and a magic bird Samruk.
  • Khan Shatyr, the largest tent-shaped building in the world, is a shopping mall, with restaurants, entertainment, and even an indoor beach.
  • Nur Alem Museum of Future Energy in the form of a sphere, each floor of which demonstrates different sources of energy.

The other part of the city contrasts quite noticeably with the left bank: oldbuildings and sights of the XIX century and Soviet period seem to take you intothe past; however there is also a new district with the same unusual views and wide streets as on the left bank. Some of the sights worth seeing are:

  • Saken Seifullin Museum (the oldest building in the city), First Muslim School (today the building of a bank), trading house of merchant Matvey Kubrin (today Astana shop), merchant Vasily Kubrin’s house (State Archive), merchant Moiseev’s house (a hospital), etc., which were all built more than 100 years ago.
  • Old Square on the right bank, and Beibitshilik Avenue for a taste of the Soviet history.
  • The snow-white Hazrat Sultan Mosque, the largest mosque in Central Asia, or the Palace of Peace and Reconciliation in the form of a sparkling pyramid.

We would also recommend to visit Astana Opera and the Astana Ballet theatres, multi-genre repertoires of which are constantly enriched with masterpieces of world classics and modern performances.

This is only a few of the activities that the capital of Kazakhstan has prepared for you. We definitely recommend staying here for longer in order to discover more.

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