Big Almaty Lake (BAO) - a real miracle of nature! One of the most beautiful places in Almaty region. BAO located not far from Almaty, that’s why Big Almaty Lake is the most visited attraction among the guests of the southern capital of Kazakhstan.
At an altitude of more than 2500 m above sea level, among the majestic Tien Shan mountains, the clear surface of the Big Almaty Lake glistens under the rays of the sun. Many millions of years ago, the mountains, once again shuddering from the powerful aftershocks of the earthquake, "gave up the slack," and a beautiful lake appeared in the cracked hollow.
There are four ways to get to the Big Almaty Lake:
The first way: Book a Big Almaty Lake Tour
This method is the most convenient, because during the tour you can learn about the history of the Big Almaty Lake. During the tour your guide will tell you about the traditions and customs of the Kazakh people and show all the most beautiful places for photography. You do not have to look for transport, worry for a while. All what you need is book Big Almaty Lake Tour online and your guide will waiting for you at the hotel at a convenient time for you. Also, having booked a tour to Big Almaty Lake, you can visit the meteorological station.
The second way: By car
Getting from Almaty to Big Almaty Lake by car is very easy. A good asphalt road, along which are located a lot of cafes and restaurants, will quickly lead you to this realm of beauty and grandeur of nature. In addition, there is only one road, and it is simply impossible to get lost. But to go in bad weather, or sit behind the wheel of an inexperienced driver is not recommended: to the Big Almaty Lake is not a smooth road, and streamers with a lot of sharp turns, narrow sections and places where able to finish rockfall.
Big Almaty Lake is located 15 km from Almaty. Leaving the city is most convenient along the street Dulati. From the intersection of st. Saina and Dulati follow the 9.4 km towards the mountains, then slowly rotate the fork left and go down the road another 14.3 km. Before reaching the tube, turn left onto the Passage gorge (according to the sign "Hotel Alpine Rose") and drive another 1.1 km. In total, the road takes no more than an hour and a half.
On the way there will be an eco-post - an environmental fee should be paid there (447 tenge).
The third way: Bus
Directly to the lake drive a bus will not work. But if you are not afraid of long walks, you can try this option. On Navoi Street, at the bus stop by the First President's Park, take the bus (route no. 28) and go to the final stop. There you have to go through the turnstile of the eco-post (the territory of the Ile-Alatau National Park begins after it). At the fork between the gorges of Bolshoy Almatinsky and Almarasan, you need to turn left and walk along the road for about 8 km (2-2.5 hours), and then 1.5-2 hours along the pipe (turn right before a steep climb near the power plant).
In total, the length of the pedestrian part of the route is about 10-11 km, while it will have to go almost all the time up the hill. Therefore it is necessary to soberly assess their strength and physical fitness. If you decide to still go on foot, for the courage you will be more than rewarded: species that accompany the way to the lake itself, worthy of the brush of the great painters! You can also go on the road - this path is longer (15-16 km), but technically easier.
Fourth way: Taxi
From the ring of Navoi and Al-Farabi, you can take a taxi or private trader and get to the fork in the pipe. Then go up (the road will take about 2 hours). The rise at the beginning is quite steep, then - flat, and at the final stage - “moderate steepness”. You can walk along the pipe itself, but only if it is dry, your shoes are not slippery, and the rise in this place is not too steep. The road to the BAO is one - so get lost will not work. The Alpine Rose Hotel will be a pointer to the lake, about 3 km away.
Coming back, you can take a taxi from the fork (where the bus terminus is).