Kostanay Region is located in the north of the country and borders Russia in the northwest. The natural landscapes include forest steppes, steppes, semi-deserts, and deserts.

As of 2022, the region's population amounted to 864,550 people. Approximately 250 thousand of them live in the city of Kostanay, the region's administrative center.

A bit of history

Kostanay Region has seen many significant historical events. There Kenesary Khan led the national liberation uprising against the Russian Empire. In 1916, Amangeldy Imanov and Keiki Batyr actively fought against tsarism. During the October Revolution, bloody events unfolded in the city. The country descended into civil war after the Russian monarchy was overthrown. In 1919, the White Army officers carried out mass executions of Bolsheviks in Kostanay. There you can still see the Execution Wall, where communists were executed.

Why is the Kostanay Region worth visiting?

The region boasts about 5 thousand lakes, which is one-third of all lakes in Kazakhstan. Many of them are located in the Naurzum Nature Reserve, which is included in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List. The reserve is a safe haven for migratory birds such as pink flamingos, Siberian cranes, white-tailed eagles, Dalmatian pelicans, and many others.

In 2007, the Kostanay Region made international headlines when Torgai geoglyphs (huge human-made geometric patterns on the ground) were discovered there. Since they can only be seen from a great height, geoglyphs went unnoticed for a long time until one enthusiast noticed them on Google Earth. These giant «drawings», which are similar to the famous Nazca Lines in Peru, are one of the most sensational discoveries in the history of Kazakhstan.

There are many more interesting places and significant historical sights in the Kostanay Region. If you're into outdoor activities, then you can go hunting, fishing, or rafting on the Tobol River.

updated: 16 january 2023

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