A stroll and a weekend fair on the Arbat boulevard, Almaty

Nazerke Makhanova | Live the World

November 23, 2022

Every city in the world has one characteristic busy street: most probably you heard of the famous La Rambla in Barcelona, Spain, or the Arbat in Moscow, Russia. When you plan your visit to Kazakhstan, particularly to Almaty, you will definitely be suggested to have a walk on the famous Arbat boulevard. It is the busiest and most commercial street in the biggest city of Kazakhstan. Officially it is called Zhibek Zholy street, which in the Kazakh language means 'Silk Road.' But, due to its similarity in style and designation with the Arbat street of Moscow and Chisinau, it is unofficially called the "Arbat of Almaty." Note that the Silk Road takes an important place in world history as a popular trading route from Europe to Asia: no wonder why Kazakhstan is labeled as the heart of Eurasia. Try not to miss out on the unique weekend fair in Arbat, which is located right in the heart of Almaty's old city center

© Wikipedia / Aleksei Tarakanov

Arbat boulevard

The Arbat boulevard crosses about five streets and is known as a commercial and entertaining place. The boulevard is rich with history from the Soviet time, and you will witness historically significant buildings while having a walk. In the Arbat, you will be surrounded by the popular Tsum shopping mall, the Lumiera cinema, many street food booths, cafes, etc. Some local painters sell their works in the Arbat, where apart from purchasing interesting paintings, you can also make an order to have your portrait done on the spot. Arbat is a place where you have the opportunity to rest and have fun, while listening to live music, checking out some graffiti works, enjoying local youngsters dancing, and appreciating the lovely sunset. At night the place lightens up with fountains and romance

© Wikipedia / Aleksei Tarakanov

How to get there & sightseeing options not to be missed

You will always find someone who knows where Arbat is. It is placed in the old city center of Almaty among lively places in the city. Sparing some time to visit Arbat will definitely be an asset to your travel plan, as it is comfortably located close to other interesting places, such as the Park of 28 Panfilov guardsmen, the second tallest wooden cathedral in the world - Voznesenskyi Sobor, the museum of national folk musical instruments and the local market Kok Bazar, where you can go for some shopping. Be careful with pickpockets once you decide to go to the local market. All in all, enjoy the city and its best moments!

© iStock / venakr

Weekend fair

Arbat is not only known as the most popular walking street of Almaty but also for its fair on weekends. Local producers of goods place their stalls there for two days, Saturday and Sunday, to promote their items. Most of them do not have any offices or shops but only appear on fairs. So, it is a great chance to get something unique yet intriguing and interesting while walking on Arbat at weekends. Keep in mind that if you face any troubles with your phone or any other gadget, be sure that on Arbat you will find many repair shops. 

© iStock / venakr

What else to see around

Arbat crosses another boulevard, which is located on the Panfilov street. So, if you turn there on the way, you will also find many interesting things to see. This boulevard ends when you see one of the most famous opera and ballet theaters in Kazakhstan, which is called GATOB. This abbreviation from the Russian language stands for "Kazakh State Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet," named after Abay Kunanbayev. For your information, if you are willing to enjoy local plays there, you are welcome on their official website, where you can purchase tickets in English.

© iStock / Diego Fiore

The Arbat is the most favorite place of all locals and definitely precious to visitors. It is a place full of harmony, joy, fun, food, art, music, and, most importantly, it appears to be the place where you can experience life as a local citizen. Apart from that, visiting the great weekend fair, on the famous Arbat boulevard in Almaty, is a memorable moment! 

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