PANAM-SUR 2012
Eastern Kazakhstan
17.8.2012- Border to Semey 008
Welcome to Kazakhstan, the world 9th biggest country!

Welcome to Kazakhstan, the world 9th biggest country!
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Finally on the road!

Finally on the road!
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Arriving in Semey, our first city in Kazakhstan

Arriving in Semey, our first city in Kazakhstan
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The city center with several squares and government buildings

The city center with several squares and government buildings
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The national bard Abay Kunanbaev (1845-1904) who invented Kazakh written literature

The national bard Abay Kunanbaev (1845-1904) who invented Kazakh written literature
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The former KGB, now OVIR building where we had to do the mandatory registration, a Soviet relic that allows officials to keep tabs on you

The former KGB, now OVIR building where we had to do the mandatory registration, a Soviet relic that allows officials to keep tabs on you
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The historic fire station

The historic fire station
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Our first real supermarket in along time

Our first real supermarket in along time
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Memorial Park with the impressive 'Stronger than Death' monument

Memorial Park with the impressive 'Stronger than Death' monument
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Semey is sadly better known as Semipalatinsk...

Semey is sadly better known as Semipalatinsk...
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...where between 1949 and 1989 the Soviet military...

...where between 1949 and 1989 the Soviet military...
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... exploded more than 460 nuclear bombs in the steppe west of the city

... exploded more than 460 nuclear bombs in the steppe west of the city
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Typical Kazkh yurts on display, to rember the nomadic heritage

Typical Kazkh yurts on display, to rember the nomadic heritage
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The industrial part of the city on the Irtysh river

The industrial part of the city on the Irtysh river
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The road to Öskemen

The road to Öskemen
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The outskirts of Öskemen, formerly Ust-Kamenogorsk

The outskirts of Öskemen, formerly Ust-Kamenogorsk
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Riverwalkway to the Strelka...

Riverwalkway to the Strelka...
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... where the Irtysh and Ulba rivers meet

... where the Irtysh and Ulba rivers meet
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The 'Heroes of the Soviet Union' memorial

The 'Heroes of the Soviet Union' memorial
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The Afghan War Monument

The Afghan War Monument
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The city center

The city center
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The newly built mosque

The newly built mosque
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Lunch break on the road to the 5 Sibinski Lakes

Lunch break on the road to the 5 Sibinski Lakes
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Lake #1

Lake #1
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Vacation cabins

Vacation cabins
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Lake #2

Lake #2
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Lake #3 where we stayed for a few days and had fun spending time with another overland couple from Germany

Lake #3 where we stayed for a few days and had fun spending time with another overland couple from Germany
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Back on the road

Back on the road
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Chinese tractor

Chinese tractor
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Deserted apartment complex...

Deserted apartment complex...
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...now home to these guys...

...now home to these guys...
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...who are looking for shade and a cool place to stay

...who are looking for shade and a cool place to stay
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Going south, temperatures are reaching 40 degrees celsius

Going south, temperatures are reaching 40 degrees celsius
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The ever present President Nazarbaev who rules Kazakhstan since 1989

The ever present President Nazarbaev who rules Kazakhstan since 1989
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Land of the most colorful and artistic bus stations

Land of the most colorful and artistic bus stations
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And land of the vast, endless and hottest steppe

And land of the vast, endless and hottest steppe
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Selling fish anlong the road

Selling fish anlong the road
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Shade seekers

Shade seekers
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The Zhongar Alatau mountains and the border to China

The Zhongar Alatau mountains and the border to China
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Cemetery

Cemetery
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Trying to find a cool spot for the night

Trying to find a cool spot for the night
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Vacation home on Lake Kapshagay

Vacation home on Lake Kapshagay
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A dirt road leads us to the Tamgaly Tas Petroglyphs

A dirt road leads us to the Tamgaly Tas Petroglyphs
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The highest rock formations in the Ile valley

The highest rock formations in the Ile valley
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With several mysterious Buddhist Petroglyphs from the 16th century

With several mysterious Buddhist Petroglyphs from the 16th century
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The Ile river

The Ile river
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Our hottest day so far on the whole trip with over 40 degrees celsius

Our hottest day so far on the whole trip with over 40 degrees celsius
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It's not cooling off much at night

It's not cooling off much at night
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Kapshagay, from here it is only 90km to Alamaty, the former capital of Kazakhstan

Kapshagay, from here it is only 90km to Alamaty, the former capital of Kazakhstan