Two days of Birdwatching from Astana

Two days of Birdwatching from Astana

Visit the steppe and wetlands from Astana

Camping in the steppe

Highlights of this two-day, intensive program from Astana:
– experience the vast steppe of Central-Kazakhstan
– get to know the birds and other mammals in the steppe and lake area

Korgalzhyn State Nature reserve is the biggest reserve of Kazakhstan, included in the UNESCO World heritage list. It is situated 130 km to the south-west from Astana city and comprises huge steppes and lakes. Korgalzhyn is a real paradise for bird-fanciers.

On the territory of the Korgalzhyn nature reserve the unique sites of wetlands, providing home for the biggest and the most northern population of greater flamingo, are protected (flamingos inhabit this area from mid-April to September). In this period you can also watch “skillful fish hunters”: dalmatian pelicans and cormorants, graceful common herons and egrets as well as demoiselle cranes.

The best time for visiting the nature reserve is from mid-April to mid-June. Beginning of May is considered the most interesting period, since it is the time when Shrenk’s tulips begin to bloom and all steppe is covered with bright tints of these wonderful and rare flowers, included into Red book.

You will cover about 500 kms by car on this trip, in two days.

Day 1

Central Kazakhstan – steppe

Leaving Astana at 10 a.m. Journey from Astana to Korgalzhyn village (135 km, 1,5-2 hours). Arriving in the village. Visiting the visitors center, where tourists can learn all the information about the unique natural object – Korgalzhyn nature reserve (1 hour). Accommodation in the guest-houses. Lunch (13.00-14.30).

Journey from Korgalzhyn village to Sholak lake (30 km, 40 min). Birdwatching: Whooper Swan, Great Egret, Gray and Purple Herons, Red-billed Shelduck, cormorants and other interesting water fowl species. Visiting the fishermen, boat trip and swimming. If you want, you can try freshly cooked fish soup or fried fish. Journey from Sholak lake to Korgalzhyn village (30 km, 40 min). Dinner.

Day 2

Looking for birds and saiga

Early wakening. Breakfast (8 a.m.). Excursion to lake Maliy Tengiz. Journey from Korgalzhyn village to lake Maliy Tengiz (70 km, 1 hour). Excursion to the northern shore of lake Maliy Tengiz. Watching Greater Flamingos, photo session. Journey from lake Maliy Tengiz to the Karazhar cordon (25 km, 30 min).

Dinner alone with nature in the Karazhar cordon. If desired: walking tour or trip by car to the observation station “Hide” (1,5 km, 20 min), where you can come closer to the birds and watch them nearer without disturbing them. Way back from the Karazhar to Korgalzhyn village (50 km, 50 min), followed by journey to Astana city (135 km, 1,5-2 hours). Approximate arrival time- 20.00

The cost of this program at four persons is €275 p.p. and at two persons €425 p.p. For other group sizes please write to us.
The above mentioned prices include:
– all the transfers by a 4WD minibus according to the program of the tour
– services of a driver and an English-speaking guide-interpreter
– accommodation in a guesthouse in the village of Korgalzhyn (triple- and double rooms available)
– three meals a day
– local ranger escort

The above mentioned prices do not include: visa expenses and consular fees, insurance, the price of getting to the starting- and finishing point of the route (Astana city).
Finally we withhold €15 per booking for the Dutch GGTO Travel Guarantee Fund.



Astana, Korgalzhyn Reserve


mid-April to September


from €275 p.p.


2 days