Virtual Tours Kazakhstan
The ninth biggest country in the world has just about everything you could wish to visit - provided you have a couple of months free!
The amazing website http://virtualtour.kz allows you to take a tour of the many places in Kazakhstan. As well as showing you round the two capitals, they can take you to Aktau, Atyrau, Bukhtarma, Gorno Ulbinka, Kapchagai, Oskemen, Ridder, Shemonaikha and Taldykorgan.
Perhaps for some people this would be the only way to get to know some of the wonders of Kazakhstan, but if you're thinking of coming over, why not use it to plan your own trip round this amazing country?
The website is user-friendly and fascinating. The home page allows you to choose the location you want to go to, and then by selecting the city, from the above, you are taken to a page with dozens of virtual tours, grouped by the following topics; museums, parks, education, monuments, government, business entertainment, stores, theatres, and other.
In Almaty for example, you can take an online trip round most of the city, including some of the most popular tourist attractions. No traveller would consider this as enjoyable as actually being there, but getting a flavour of a place is certainly better than nothing, and with the excellent quality film at virtualtour.kz , why not spend time getting to know the country even better? The site uses about a thousand high-quality panoramas, an intuitive interface, a map, and to top it off, filters that hide unnecessary objects from view.
Featured on the site, among many other things, is the emblematic Beitirek tower in Astana in the shape a poplar tree holding a golden egg. This idea comes from a famous Turkic legend in which a bird of happiness is said to have laid its egg in the branches.
virtualtour.kz captures all the magic of the 105m tall structure with its gold-mirrored 22m-diameter sphere at the top. The base contains a ticket booth and exhibition space, with two lifts rising within the shaft to the observation deck within the 'egg' itself.
The observation deck is 97m above ground level which is significant because 1997 was the year that Astana became the capital.
The views across one of the world's newest capital cities are amazing, and you can see sights such as the Presidential Palace, the Khan Shatyr Shopping and Entertainment Complex, and the Kazakh Media Centre.
Coming back south, in Almaty, one of the most popular afternoon trips is Kok-Tobe, the hillside park, accessible via mini-bus and cable car. It is the highest point in the city and is situated at 1,100 metres above sea level. The views are amazing, especially at night when the city is illuminated by multicoloured lights. You can see all this in detail at virtualtour.kz
There's just time to include one other feature here, the Medeu ice skating rink. This is located at an altitude of 1,691 metres above sea level and since it opened in 1972 more than 120 world records have been broken by leading sports stars.
Medeu is very popular among local people as its 10.5 thousand sq.m of ice permit many hundreds of people to skate or take part in hockey and other ice sports.
So even if you don't get chance to go to these places yourself, and many others, stop by at virtualtour.kz and see why more and more people simply love every day they get to spend over here.