Welcome to Merki, a beautiful administrative center located in the Merki region of the Jambyl Region in the south of Kazakhstan. This charming city is situated near the mountains that serve as a border between Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, offering breathtaking views and a unique cultural experience. With an estimated population of roughly 35,900, Merki is a small but vibrant city that is rich in history and tradition.

One of the main attractions of Merki is its location at the Kyrgyz Ala-Too mountain range, which serves as a border with the Kyrgyz Republic. The international highway M39 crosses Merki and connects three big cities in Central Asia: Almaty, Bishkek, and Tashkent. Historically, Merki was located close to the Great Silk Road, making it an important hub for trade and commerce.

The population of Merki consists of various ethnicities, with Kazakhs constituting the main ethnic group. Among other groups are Iranian Azeris that were forced to migrate there by Bolsheviks in 1938. This diverse mix of cultures has created a unique blend of traditions and customs that can be seen throughout the city.

For those interested in exploring the city’s history and culture, there are several museums and historical sites to visit. The Merki Regional Museum of Local Lore is a must-see, offering a fascinating glimpse into the city’s past. The museum features exhibits on the history of the Great Silk Road, as well as displays on the local flora and fauna.

Another popular attraction in Merki is the Korgalzhyn State Nature Reserve, which is located just a short distance from the city. This beautiful reserve is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including rare and endangered species such as the pink flamingo and the Siberian crane. Visitors can take guided tours of the reserve and enjoy hiking, birdwatching, and other outdoor activities.

For those looking to experience the local cuisine, Merki offers a wide variety of traditional Kazakh dishes. Some of the most popular dishes include beshbarmak, a hearty meat and noodle dish, and kuyrdak, a savory stew made with lamb or beef. Visitors can also sample local delicacies such as kurt, a type of dried cheese, and shubat, a fermented camel milk drink.

Overall, Merki is a hidden gem that offers a unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty. Whether you’re interested in exploring the city’s museums and historical sites, or simply taking in the stunning mountain views, Merki is a destination that should not be missed. So why not book your trip today and discover all that this charming city has to offer?

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