Two days of Birdwatching from Astana

Two days of Birdwatching from Astana

Visit the steppe and wetlands from Astana

Camping in the Kazakh steppe

Camping in the steppe

Highlights of this two-day tour birdwatching in Kazakhstan:
– 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.

A visa is not necessary for a visit of up to 30 days to Kazakhstan for most countries.

You can read more about highlights and practical advise on travelling in Kazakhstan here.

Day 1

Central Kazakhstani steppe

Central Kazakhstan – steppe

You will be leaving Astana at 10 a.m for the journey from Astana to Korgalzhyn village. This is some 135 kms and takes 1,5-2 hours. Arriving in the village. Then, visiting the visitors center, where yous can learn all about the unique natural site that you will visit, Korgalzhyn nature reserve.

Accommodation is in a guest-house and lunch will be offered from 13.00-14.30 hours.

Transfer from Korgalzhyn village to Sholak lake (30 km, 40 min). And the birdwatching can start! You may spot: Whooper Swan, Great Egret, Gray and Purple Herons, Red-billed Shelduck, cormorants and other interesting water fowl species. Then, you’ll be visiting the fishermen, enjoy a boat trip and can swim. If you want, you can try freshly cooked fish soup or fried fish.

Transfer from Sholak lake to Korgalzhyn village (30 km, 40 min). Dinner.

Day 2

Exploring the Kazakh steppe

Looking for birds and saiga

Early wakening. Breakfast (8 a.m.). You start with an excursion to lake Maliy Tengiz. We make the journey from Korgalzhyn village to lake Maliy Tengiz (70 km, 1 hour). Followed by an excursion to the northern shore of lake Maliy Tengiz. Here we can watch Greater Flamingos and have a photo session. Then, onwards from lake Maliy Tengiz to the Karazhar cordon (25 km, 30 min).

Dinner in nature in the Karazhar cordon. If desired you can opt for a walking tour, or a trip by car to the observation station “Hide” (1,5 km, 20 min). From there you can come closer to the birds and watch them nearer without disturbing them. Return 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 two-day tour birdwatching in Kazakhstan from Astana at four persons is per indication €300 p.p. and at two persons €465 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


    indication from €300 p.p.


    2 days

    Tour Route in Kazakhstan