Bayterek Tower

The Bayterek Tower is no doubt the most representative landmark in Nursultan. Bayterek, also known as the tree of life, means a “tall poplar” in Kazakh. The design of the tower is based on a Kazakh legend that talks about Samruk, the sacred bird of happiness. Every year, Samruk will lay an egg between the two branches of the white poplar, the tree of life. The body and branches of the tower symbolise the trunk and branches of the tree of life. The ball-shaped observation deck, which symbolises the egg of Samrulk, is on the very top.

The observation deck, having a height of 97m, is a symbolisation of the year of the move of the capital to Nursultan by Nursultan Nazarbayev, Kazakhstan’s first President. On the deck, not only you can look at the beautiful city from a bird's eye view, but you can also pray for happiness by placing your hand on the palm impression of Nazarbaev, accompanied by the national anthem of Kazakhstan. The aquarium and art gallery inside the tower are good places to visit afterwards. At night, you can watch the light show of the tower from the plaza beside, and witness the beautiful crossover of different marine animals, paintings and lights.

Palace of Peace and Reconciliation

If you want to learn about the inclusiveness of Kazakhstan, then the pyramid will be your choice. The pyramid, referring to the Palace of Peace and Reconciliation, was built for the Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, in which peaceful coexistence is advocated. This pyramid is not only a convention and exhibition centre, but also a theatre and even a greenhouse, symbolising the harmony between culture, human and nature.

On the glass ceiling of the greenhouse on the top floor, you can find 131 different pigeons which epitomise 131 ethnicities living and working together peacefully in Kazakhstan. Looking at the view of the city through the window is like watching the pigeons flying freely in the sky and promoting peace.

Khan Shatyr Entertainment Centre

If you would like to go on a shopping binge or a playing binge, Khan Shatyr Entertainment Centre is definitely somewhere you cannot miss. In the Northern side of the city’s central axis, there is, to our surprise, a cool shopping mall with an indoor playground, covered just by a plain white tent. The mall resembles a small city under the tent, in which there are a variety of facilities. You can fully enjoy shopping, see exhibitions, watch movies, and even go on a play binge of the amusement rides there.

The mind-boggling thing is that there is an indoor turbo drop, through which you can experience instant excitement. You can witness the change of lights in the tent, from the white tent in the daytime to a colourful one in the evening. Bringing your beloved one to the Park of Lovers nearby, and taking photos in front of the “I ♥ Astana” sign with the tent as the background will certainly make your night romantic.

Museum of the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan

The official residence of the president in the past is a worth-visiting spot for you now. The Museum of the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, which was the official residence of Nursultan Nazarbaev, exhibits a lot of artefacts and rich collections related to the first president. Since 2005, the president has been opening his past residence and presidential library to the public. In the museum, you will get to see the items Nazarbaev used when he was growing up, and also the presents given by the leaders from different countries. There you can learn about his daily life and psychological journey - simply his life.

Hazrat Sultan Mosque

There must be a spectacular mosque in every Islamic country. Hazrat Sultan Mosque is the national mosque of Kazakhstan. Hazrat Sultan, meaning “sacred Sultan”, is the honourific of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi, the poet who introduced Islam to Kazakhstan. The president, therefore, built this mosque in honour of this great person in history.

Just like most of the mosques, Hazrat Sultan Mosque was built in classic Islamic style. Its interior, however, was decorated with traditional Kazakh ornaments, making the mosque unique. The marble flooring, pattern-rich carpets, the dome’s patterns, and chandeliers add rich colours to the pure white mosque.

Apart from taking photos near the fountain outside the mosque, you can also enter the mosque. There is no need for women to be worried as ropes and shawls are available for the public to borrow. In such a magnificent mosque, everyone can enjoy the elegance of the classic Islamic and Kazakh art.