Big Almaty Lake is located 28.5km south of Almaty up a gorge of the Bolshaya Almatinka River, 2,511m above sea level. The lake is within the Alatau – Eliy National park and both the Gorge and the lake are an attraction for visitors using Almaty as their base. The lake is used for both hydro electric power, and the water supply for the city, but this does not detract from the magnificent mountain scenery.
The mountains, Sovetov to the southeast, Ozyorny to the south and Turist to the southwest form a backdrop on all sides tothe lake, producing some spectacular reflections, changing colour throughout the seasons. All three mountains are around the 4,000 metres high, with a glacial water running down towards the lake.
The lake itself is about 1km wide and 1.6 km long, with a depth of about 40mtrs. It can be accessed by road or by foot, although a bus ride to the beginning of the assent, places you directly into the scenic area.
The Big Almaty lake was formed as a result of movement by an ancient glacier. Thanks to its location in the mountains, the water in the lake is always cool – even in July, the water temperature does not exceed 10 degrees. The lake is a source of potable water for Almaty city, which is why the access of tourists to the lake is limited. The tour route continues further up the Big Almaty Lake to the altitude of 3300 meters above sea level, where scientific premises for astronomical and space researches have settled. Here, you can enjoy a fascinating panorama of mountains and the Big Almaty Lake, surrounded by the picturesque mountain peaks covered with Tian-Shan fir-tree, aspen and juniper.
On the way back to the town you will visit the Falcon Farm, where you will enjoy a spectacular show with specially trained hawks – hunting with them is one of the unique features of the Kazakh way of life.
I saw so many places in the world but big Almaty Lake was special for me because it is located in Kazakhstan. One week ago, I moved there because I would like to show this place for all the people who wants to visit Almaty.