The Kapshagay reservoir is one of the largest in Kazakhstan, its length is 100 km with the width of 25 km and depth of 42. Nowadays, it is regarded as the most visited place in Almaty region during summer vacation, where you can swim and sunbathe on the beach. The remarkable place was formed in 1970, by closing the Ili River.
The Ili River flows through a wide valley lying between the two main mountain ranges of the Seven Rivers, the Dzhungar and Zailiysky Alatau. The name of the river is of Mongolian origin and means - "sparkling", or "flickering". The river glittering brilliantly in the sun among the burning sands. Its length is 1380 km. It begins with the merger of two rivers Tekes and Kunges. The Ili valley in the distant past was the center of the Usun possessions. Usuns were very warlike people. Here they bred sheep, camels and horses. The banks of the Ili River are very picturesque, past that yellow hills, covered with rare bushes of white saxaul, or quaint groves of turangi.
Twenty kilometers from the Kapshagay dam on the right bank will meet the tall brown rocks Tamgalytas, on which ancient artists left many of their drawings. The stones depict animals that once lived in these places, scenes of hunting wild animals. One of the most interesting drawings - the image of a sitting Buddha, it is executed, apparently, in the era of Sogdians, which is associated with the spread of Buddhism in the Semirechie.
Below, along the course of the river there are tugai jungs. The trees here are intertwined with lianas so thickly that in some places it is impossible to go ashore. But the forest is replaced by vast green meadows, and sometimes the desert approaches the shore. In the Ili River, there are many fish, and any tourist will easily catch a bream, carp or asp. In the steppe, you can search for mushrooms: here you can often find mushrooms and white steppe mushrooms. In the tugai, near the river, a blackberry grows. Traveling along the Ili River, especially near the village of Bakanas and below, is complicated by the fact that there are a lot of various channels and sleeves, shoals and ruts, there are "toplikes" - trees and shrubs hidden by a layer of water. A lot of whirlpools and funnels.
For the first time the ship was launched here in the summer of 1854. The sailing vessel "Saint Nicholas" was built, where the merchant Kuznetsov undertook the supply of provisions for the Kazakhs living in the city of Verny (current Almaty). The way on a sailing vessel from Balkhash lake to the village of Ilyisk took 72 days. And back to the mouth of the Ili River - 17 days.
Increasing importance in the development of recreation in the southern capital of Kazakhstan is the man-made Kapshagay sea, which has become one of the largest artificial reservoirs for irrigation amongst the Commonwealth of Independent States. The reservoir has also become an important fishing pool. Tourists got a wonderful solarium - in terms of the number of cloudless days and the intensity of solar radiation, the Kapchagai seaside can compete with all other places of rest that the capital has quite a lot. The flood zone includes the bed of the Ili River and the left-bank side of its floodplain in the area from the Kapchagai Gorge to the mouth of the Charyn River. On the left side of the reservoir flow inflows of the river Ili, Charyn, Chilik, Turgen, Talgar, Issyk and Kaskelen.
The right bank is indigenous, the left is floodplain. The fairway passes along the right bank of the river, where the depth is greatest. On the right bank from Kapchagaya to Bakter there are local recreation areas. On Bakhter there is a recreation area "Golden Sands", then the sanatorium-preventorium "Metallurg", and further, opposite the island Barsuchiy, there are Almaty recreation zones.
Then there is the station "Kerbulak", then up to 80 km the former state farm "Kapshagay". From 80 km to 157 km there is the Ili-Alatau National Park; the left bank is floodplain, overgrown with low bushes and trees. Of the major settlements can be listed: Nurly, Kulikovka, Kare-Zhute, Chilik.
This place seems very large, with a barely discernible opposite shore, it looks like a large lake. Here a gentle breeze blows, small waves roll on the bank shafts, built of small gravel. On the shores of the reservoir here and there are young shrubbery. It has been about 30 years since the filling of the reservoir, but the coast line from the trees has not formed, this is hampered by fluctuations in the water level: it has come, filling the vegetation that has begun to take root, it has decreased, exposing it and condemning it to drying out.
Over the shoreline fly silver gulls. In the gorges of Terekti there are gazelles, saigas. A few years after the filling of the reservoir on the deserted coasts, tamariski, low willows, reeds and grasses grew. On the shores of the lake, coastal whiskers, swallows-coasters, wagtails have multiplied.
On the coast of Kapshagay artificial reservoir, there are more than 150 recreational bases. With the advent of the spring sowing campaign, the number of residents in Kapshagay usually triples. These places and their offerings vary according to the desire and the position of the tourists.
The fact that the Kapshagai artificial reservoir has not been put into private business is really a pleasure for the holiday makers. The work done by the city authorities has shown good results. There are special transport facilities, Kazakh-style houses, and a lot of playgrounds for children. While the location and amenities of private recreational areas are good, the prices are thought to be high. With regard to the recreation areas, where ordinary people can afford, the quality of their prices is not good enough, and they are just a little sparse.
Let's compare "MoreLux" recreation center with 45,000 tenge per day for one family with other leisure facilities. The beach features a sandy beach with a 1-minute walk, a swimming pool, an outdoor swimming pool and a Finnish sauna, loungers, billiards and table tennis. The hotel rooms are equipped with air conditioning, free Wi-Fi and satellite TV. According to the visitor of Bayanbai Tolegen, the cleanliness of the hotel, the polite attitude of the staff, the delicacy of the restaurant's restaurant are worth the hotel service.
The cost of entry into the "Alex" recreation area is 500 tenge per person. Visitors come to the place where they can go and relax. But excessive sun exposure may have a negative impact on health. With a large amount of covered enclosures, leases from five to twenty thousand tenge. Transportation is not allowed in the recreation area. When it comes to the cleanliness of the recreation area and the cleanliness of the water, in most cases, the quality is not critical. The services provided to the guests are limited to entering the visitors in the recreation area.
One of the visitors to the resort said that he was not happy with the activities of the region. The reason for this is that when visitors enter the region, they also get money for hiring people. Nevertheless, the situation of yurts is not unpleasant. The condition of the guests who want to relax for a moment in the city is not correct. Here is the outcome: the higher the price of the hotel, the better the service will be. But obviously, no one can afford it. No one can guarantee that our compatriots who consider the holiday in Burabay to be too expensive to spend abroad will no longer protest Kapshagay's vacation prices. It should be noted that regardless of the price and quality of the resort, which is popular among the city's residents and guests, the number of visitors has not decreased.
Over the past few years, the authorities have been putting efforts to improve the situation in the Kapshagay reservoir and to improve the quality of its services. We would like to look at the quality of the service in all the places of our country in the future. In the future, it is planned to build a large tourist center and entertainment town on the territory of Kapshagay town, which is called "Zhana Ile".