European Wilderness Academy Dayst

Wilderness and tourism in Altai Mountains

Wilderness quality of Altai Mountains can become an important asset of effort to develop tourism as a part of sustainable development in this magic corner of Kazakhstan.

Our partners Svetlana Belova and Jozef Bednar from Machaon International, Slovakia are sharing their commitment and work in this wild corner part of the Altai Mountain Range.

The Magic Altai is an undiscovered golden treasure with a potential to become a new destination brand name for Kazakhstan’s part of the Altai Mountain Range. The name was coined by participants of an international expedition of experts travelling to the area in the summer of 2014 as part of efforts to help local people develop sustainable and locally suited ecotourism,” said Svetlana Belova, coordinator of this project from Machaon International.

Endless expanses of wilderness. People are enthralled by the unique aura and the area seems to emanate and left charged with a great deal of positive energy. Altai, which means ‘golden mountains’ in Mongolic and Turkic languages surprised the expedition participants by the seemingly endless expanses of wilderness such as old-growth forest, clean meandering rivers and streams, lakes repleted with fish and last, but not least, the peace and tranquillity of an area not disrupted by traffic noise or mass tourism – things most of Europe lost a long time ago.

Potential Unesco World Heritage Site. This maze of rugged peaks, mountain forests and lush valleys is a remarkable area of high ecological, cultural and historical value. Two large nature reserves and Katon-Karagai National Park (sites proposed for inscription onto the Unesco World Heritage list) underline the area’s uniqueness and are evidence of its high potential for tourism and recreation, which are so far under-developed. In contrast to the neighboring parts of Altai in Russia and China, which are visited by several millions tourists, only a few thousand find their way to the Kazakh part each year, mostly to a few spas and recreation sites near lakes. More can be read here: Magic Altai

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About Author

Vlado Vancura is the Deputy Chairman and Director of wilderness of the European Wilderness Society and is based in Liptovsky Hradok, Slovakia.

2 Comments

  1. Alexander Zinke on

    I much support to expand EWS’s attention and cooperation to Central Asian regions. There are a lot of unique nature areas in need of better protection and sustainable development.

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