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Ancient Tour of Ulytau District

The eternal steppe was a cradle of civilization with stories of nomadic settlers and the practice of metallurgy.

Early peoples are integral to the historical lineage and budding ethnic tourism industry of Northern Kazakstan. Take a tour of cultural traditions by following the mythical Silk Road East and West. Handicrafts and folk crafts are essential to preserving the history and traditions early nomads left behind. There is a magical connection to the earth as you traverse in the footsteps of the original metallurgists.

Ancient rock carvings from early nomads
Ancient rock carvings from early nomads

During the Bronze age, craftspeople from the Eurasian steppe would work the iron ore beneath their feet and create a world of metal. On the open expanse of blue rivers and lakes, nomads would work in the serenity of melodic hammers under open skies. Saryarka's bounty lay in the foundational rock, complex ore, manganese ore, copper ore, and iron. Aluminum ores (bauxites), nickel, tungsten, molybdenum, and gold, were all prized on the Northern Kazak Steppe.
Gold nomadic horseman
Gold nomadic horseman

Legends say three great clans joined together to achieve unity as one, drawn together to benefit copper mines that would bring the dawn of metallurgy. Just south of the Korgalzhyn and Naurzum State Nature Reserve lies the Ulytau District. The beating heart would glow with smelting furnaces. Ancient sites throughout the region play an integral role in Kazakhstan's history.
Modern day iron ore still being processed in Kazakhstan
Modern day iron ore still being processed in Kazakhstan

Many World Heritage sites are temporarily closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Please check official websites for more information.

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Ancient Tour of Ulytau District