According to GETZIPCODES, Shymkent is the administrative center of the South Kazakhstan region. It is officially believed that the city is about 800 years old, but it is archaeologically proven that people lived in these places as early as the 5th century AD. In ancient times, the northern branch of the Great Silk Road passed through Shymkent, and in the middle of the 19th century it was an important transit point connecting the European part of Russia and Western Siberia with Central Asia.
In the city itself, the remains of a medieval citadel, the Ethnographic Museum, a zoo and an arboretum can be distinguished from the sights. The most interesting are the environs of Shymkent. Sairam village is located 12 km east of Shymkent., on the site of which in the Middle Ages one of the largest centers of the Great Silk Road – Ispidzhab was located. It is first mentioned in Chinese manuscripts under the year 629. In the 13th century it acquired a new name – Sairam. Remains of buildings from the 13th-19th centuries have been preserved in the village. However, Sairam is not only famous for this, it is also known as the birthplace of the great poet and mystic of the 12th century – Khoja Ahmed Yassawi. Here are the mausoleums of the father and mother of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi: the mausoleum of Ibrahim-ata and the mausoleum of Karashash-ana.
To the east of Shymkent, in the northern spurs of the Western Tien Shan, on an area of 150 thousand hectares, the Sairam-Ugam State National Natural Park is located.. There are seven natural zones in the park: from mountain-steppe to high-mountain. 59 species of mammals live here, including Menzbir’s marmot, endemic to the Western Tien Shan, and about 300 species of birds. The diverse flora and fauna of the park is complemented by unique mountain landscapes, rivers, waterfalls and mountain lakes.
Nearby is the Aksu-Dzhabagly State Nature Reserve. The reserve was established in 1926, its area is 74.4 thousand hectares. The name of the reserve comes from two rivers flowing in these places: Aksu and Dzhabagly. It is on the Aksu River that one of the most famous natural attractions of Kazakhstan is located – the Aksu Canyon.. The depth of the canyon is 1800 m, it is one of the deepest canyons in Central Asia, which is often compared with the Grand Canyon in the USA. In addition to its beauty, this gorge is famous for ancient petroglyphs. There are 1737 plant species in the Aksu-Dzhabagly Reserve, among them is the emblem of the reserve – a huge Greig’s tulip, the size of which reaches 15 cm. porcupine, tolai hare and muskrat. Sometimes there are rare snow leopard, western Tien Shan marmot Menzbir and argali. The reserve is home to 267 species of birds, and the rivers are home to marinka and naked osman.
South of Shymkent on the border with Uzbekistan is one of the most famous balneological resorts in Kazakhstan – Saryagash. Local sources of mineral waters were discovered in 1949 while searching for oil deposits. Saryagash mineral waters belong to the hydrocarbonate-sodium type and help in the treatment of diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. In 1995, a mineral plant was built here and now Saryagash mineral water can be seen on sale throughout the country. Many sanatoriums have been built in Saryagash, and most of them have a developed infrastructure and are distinguished by a high level of service.
From Shymkent you can also go to the ancient cities of Kazakhstan – Taraz and Turkestan.