Almaty is the largest metropolis in Kazakhstan, and is set in the foothills of the Trans-Ili Alatau mountains. It was formerly the capital, but lost it’s title to Astana.
A while ago, I was in search of place to spend Christmas and Almaty seemed the place to be. Where modern Almaty is located, it has a history of more than 3 000 years. In the X century BC, Saka tribes appeared here. The first evidence of their existence were the burial mounds of the VI-III centuries BC, most of which today are hidden under the residential areas of the city.
In 1918, Soviet power was proclaimed in the city, and on February 5, 1921 the city was renamed to Alma-Ata (translated from the Kazakh “Father of apples”). Eight years after, in May 1929, Alma-Ata was declared the capital of the Kazakh ASSR, and from December 1936 of Kazakh SSR.
The Ascension Cathedral (also known as Zenkov Cathedral) is a Russian Orthodox cathedral located in Panfilov Park in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Completed in 1907, the cathedral is made out of wood but without nails. Its height is 56 meters tall, and it’s claimed to be the second tallest wooden building in the world.
We went to visit a ski area, not very far from the centre. It was a beautiful frosty and frozen day. I don’t think I was prepared for the weather. The Medeu, is an outdoor speed skating and bandy rink. It is located in a mountain valley on the south-eastern outskirts of Almaty, Kazakhstan. Medeu sits 1,691 metres above sea level. When you take the cable car up the mountains you have a beautiful view of the Ile-Alatau National Park valley.
On the top of the hill there is a nice cafe where we stayed for a little while. I don’t really like skiing, but it was fun seeing all the snow.
Christmas time in Almaty was so much fun. I enjoyed all the lights, decorations and the snow.
I want to wish everybody a fantastic Christmas. I hope you have a nice time, that all the joy and beauty of the festive season be with you!