This tour takes place in Mangistau region located in the Western part of Kazakhstan, on the shore of Caspian sea. Mangistau region – is a land of ancient civilization, open-air museum, where 11 thousand historical monuments are placed under state protection.
Archaeological finds indicate that this region 1 billion years ago used to be the bottom of Tethys ocean and while driving with us through this tour, you might find ancient seashells of the legendary ocean. We can assure you that you will be amazed seeing 1) a Valley of huge round fossils of unusual nature, 2) ancient underground Sufi mosques and your breath will be taken away while standing on top of a rock with panorama of Bozhira Valley.
Day 1. Aktau city
Arrival from Astana to Aktau at 12.35 am. Flight schedule might be subject to change. On arrival transfer to the hotel. After leaving luggage at the hotel, starts sightseeing in Aktau city. Visiting: City Museum, Mosque, Orthodox Church, Republic Square, the Main city promenade, Monument (symbol) of the city. Transfer back to the hotel. Overnight
Day 2. Aktau – Shakpak Ata – Torysh valley – Tuzbair
Departure from Aktau to Shakpak Ata (approx.122 km) at 8:30 am. Visit Shakpak Ata Underground mosque.
The Necropolis of Shakpak-Ata (10th-13th cc.) and its underground mosque are located on the Tupkargan peninsula. Design of the mosque is unique in Kazakhstan and has similarities with some early Persian mosques and with mausoleum-mosque of Shir-Kabir in Dehistan (Turkmenistan) also dated of approximately the same time.
Visit canyons: Shakpak Ata-say and Kapam-say. Visit a valley of huge globular concretions called Torysh.
Torysh starts with infinite fields and ridges of unusual spherical stone formations with a size of about 3 – 4 m in diameter. Time of formation of these unique stones started 180 – 120 million years ago and has several versions of how they appeared.
Lunch in a small village.
In the afternoon depart to Tuzbair Salty lake (Tuzbair literally translates as Salty Land) with a stopover at Sherkala Mountain.
Sherkala, which literally from Kazakh language translates as Lion’s city, has the same importance for local people as Eiffel Tower for Paris or the Statue of Liberty for New York. This giant, yurt shape mountain is a Symbol and a Landmark of Mangistau region, photos of which you will find on every website dedicated to Mangistau or Aktau city.
Upon arrival to Tuzbair, we will walk on a Salty bottom of lake and might also take amazing photos of the lake at sunset.
Dinner prepared by our guide. Overnight in a tent camp.
Day 3. Tuzbair – Beket Ata – Boszhira
Tuzbair is a hardly noticeable place. Although, it is located at a few kilometers from the highway in the vicinity of Manat rise. From afar it draws the eye only by two residual table mountains, adjacent to the main massif of the plateau.
Today after breakfast, we will climb on one of the rocks, in order to see an amazing panorama that is opening on Tuzbair lake and allows us to take photos of blue – white salty lake. After trekking on various rocks, in order to find the most astonishing view on opening landscape, we will start preparation for departure to Beket ata underground mosque.
Underground mosque of Beket-Ata (18th century) is a spiritual, historical and architectural monument. Throughout the year pilgrims around the world visit the mosque which was built by holy Suffi – Beket Ata, who is remembered of local Kazakhs as a predictor and prophet like figure, and person who was familiar with the laws of physics, mathematics and astronomy. Scientists have put forward a bold hypothesis that the mosque Beket-ata used to be an observatory, in which the Saint was watching movements of stars. And indeed you feel that takes time and perseverance to climb all these stairs to order to reach the entrance of the mosque which was built on the top of rocks.
After lunch we will move to Boszhira valley, where we trek to the first panoramic platform, descend to the second and then reach the third view point. Trust us, it is worth hiking because the top view is breathtaking reminding us of Martian surface, but we know that is a bottom of the former Tethys ocean. Boszhira valley – one of the site of Ustyurt plateau covers a huge area and takes more than one day to explore all of it.
Dinner prepared by our guide. Overnight in a tent camp.
Day 4. Boszhira – Bokty – Zhanaozen – Aktau
After breakfast we will depart to Bokty mountain
Bokty Mountain is located on a table-flat clay, called shatt. The red colour of the chalk is what truly makes this Mount stand out. Our guide will show you strategic high spots from where you can see Bokty Mount from all angles.
After lunch we will also visit Karagiya depression which is at approximately 132 metres below sea level is the lowest points in Kazakhstan and one of the lowest in whole Central Asia. Karagiye Depression is 40 km long stretching close to the Caspian sea.
Dinner prepared by our guide.
Departure to Aktau and transfer to the airport to catch a night flight either to Almaty or to Astana. Flight to Almaty (Astana) takes approximately 3 hours.
Private tour price for one individual is 1271 USD
Tour price in a group of 2 or more people: 665 USD per person
- Shuttle service (from and to airport)
- Double accommodation in 3 * hotel in Aktau (1 night)
- 3 hours sightseeing tour around Aktau city (provided that a flight to Aktau is from Astana. If a flight to Aktau is from Almaty, sightseeing is not included, because of the late evening arrival from Almaty;
- 3-day Jeep tour in a group (max 3 people in one car)
- Tour will be conducted by professional English speaking Guide-Driver or Guide driver with English interpreter
- Meals: Full board during the Jeep tour starting from Day 2
- Accommodation in a tent
- All environmental and admission fees during the tour
- Drinking water 1L per person per day
- Domestic flight tickets
- Meals not indicated in the program and/or not included into the tour price
- Single accommodation supplement (26 USD)
- Visa support and registration on the territory of Kazakhstan, if required
- All personal and other expenses
Note: The tour route might be changed to the weather condition. The accommodation can be changed to 4* or 5* upon the guests preference for additional charge.