So, I spent a week in Astana, capital of Kazakhstan in the late january and here are the pictures with some of my travel notes.

Astana is an interesting city. The capital of Kazakhstan was relocated from Almaty (city I live in) to Astana in 1997. It was a very small city before that and suddenly it started to grow, so currently Astana has all sorts of weird and interesting arhitecture.

In most tourist locations you have to patiently wait for crowds of tourists and locals to move out of the picture, and then photoshop the rest out. In Astana the situation is the opposite. During winter, you have to wait for someone (anyone!) to appear. Because you know, architecture is interesting and all, but adding a person to the frame makes it definitely better.By the way, I just learnt that Astana is the second coldest capital in the world, lol =D First one is Ulaanbaatar of Mongolia =)

Bayterek Tower located in the centre of the business district (also the centre of the city, everything is close in Astana =) During strong winds the tower actually moves slightly from one side to another. Which is probably invisible if you looks from down below, but as I heard very much noticeable if you are up in the tower.

So the alien ship looking building in the middle is the shopping centre in Astana – Khan Shatyr. Despite being almost in the centre on the new city, it is at the same time at the very edge of it. So from one side of Khan Shatyr you have all those fancy modern glass buildings, but should you look from the other side, you will find a very different picture.

Here is the local version of Arc de Triomphe.

Talking about familiar structures – Astana’s very own pyramid.

Independence square by night

Khan Shatyr by night. Silhouette hunting mission accomplished! 

A silhouette of a statue of couple in love located in Astana gained insane popularity last spring, when one very concerned citizen raised the question that the girl in the statue is inappropriately dressed. Or rather undressed. Her dress is sort of see through. So one night that concerned citizen took a large scarf and sort of covered the girl with it, making her another dress. You can probably imagine public response and mocking of the situation. The statue suddenly became scandalous, moral issues were raised, lots of internet jokes. The statue is still there, I put a well lit close picture next, for all you curious ones out there.

Beijing Palace by night

Beijing Palace by day. Imagination begs me to photoshop in some dragons in the empty sky and on the roof of the tower 

One more unconventional Khan Shatyr view

Nur-Astana Mosque

Ok, this picture is not overexposed or I messed up with my camera, this is blizzard visibility, the time when you don’t want to walk outside 

And one more city at night shot