Kazakhstan (Қазақстан in Kazakh, Казахстан in Russian), officially designated as the Republic of Kazakhstan, is situated in Central Asia with a small part of the territory in Europe, on the other side of Ural River. It is the world’s largest landlocked country, although it borders the Caspian Sea (an enclosed body of water) and has plenty of lakes, such as Balkhash, and rivers, as the Charyn River. The country’s territory is characterised by diverse landscapes, from plains to mountains, such as the Altay Mountains, and forests, as well as a rich wildlife.
This former Soviet Republic is officially a bilingual country: Kazakh is the official state language, while Russian, which is spoken by the majority of Kazakhstanis, is used in business and government. The country’s population is divided into 131 ethnicities, with around 63% being Kazakhs.
Besides a thriving economy, due to fossil fuel and mineral resources, the country enjoys a growing tourism sector, with lake resorts, nature, and modern cities standing out, as Almaty and the capital Astana.
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Population: almost 18 million
Other major cities: Almaty, Karaganda, Shymkent, Aktobe, Taraz
Religion: Muslim (70%)
Climate: sharply continental with hot summers and cold winters, due to the influence of Arctic masses
Main attractions: Almaty and Bayterek towers, Khan Shatyr Entertainment Center, Ascension Cathedral, Golden Warrior Monument, Monument of Independence, Central State Museum of Kazakhstan, Tien-Shan Astronomical Observatory, Palace of Peace and Reconciliation, Nur-Astana Mosque, Khazret Sultan Mosque, The Sphere - Museum of The Future, Astana bridge, Shymbulak Ski Resort, First President Park, Akyrtas Palace Complex, Sharyn Canyon National Park, Ile-Alatau