Welcome to Arkalyk, a city located in the northern region of Kazakhstan. Established in 1956, Arkalyk was once a center for the Soviet space program, with cosmonauts landing on the vast Kazakh steppe before heading to Baikonur, the Soviet Union’s premier space city. Today, Arkalyk is a city of miners, regional administrators, and people excited to live in a regional center. Despite its past glory, the city has faced economic challenges in recent years, with a high level of unemployment and a virtually non-existent industry. However, Arkalyk still has much to offer visitors, from its unique history to its natural wealth. Let’s explore this hidden gem of Kazakhstan.
One of the most fascinating aspects of Arkalyk is its history. Founded in 1956 as a settlement of geologists and builders, the city was established to open up deposits of bauxite, a raw material for aluminum production. In the 1960s, Arkalyk was declared the All-Union shock Komsomol building, attracting young people from all over the USSR. The city received its official status in 1965 and became the center of the newly created Torgay area in 1971. In the 1980s, Arkalyk reached its peak, producing meat, poultry, dairy, and other goods. However, the region’s large agricultural sector, which accounted for 90% of the economy, meant that Torgay constantly demanded subsidies from the national budget. In 1988, the region was dissolved and its territory was divided between Kostanai and Aqmola areas. In 1990, Torgay was re-established, and Arkalyk became the regional center again. However, the city faced economic challenges in the 1990s, with production falling into decay and migration to other regions of Kazakhstan, Russia, and Germany. Today, Arkalyk is included in the list of depressed cities of Kazakhstan due to a very high level of unemployment.
Despite its economic challenges, Arkalyk still has much to offer visitors. One of the city’s main attractions is its natural wealth. The area is a hilly terrain with absolute marks 320–360 meters north of the city up to 390 m (1,280 ft). The radius of 6 km (4 mi) from the city are extensive mining (related to mining bauxite ore), the depth of 20–50 m. Near the town of Arkalyk is 6 bauxite for the aluminum industry. This Arkalyk, Lower Ashut, Ushtobe, Northern, Upper Ashut and Aktas. These same deposits associated classes of refractory clay. In addition, the bauxite, the associated component is gallium, stocks of which is formed by 761 kilograms. At the distance of 5 km (3 mi) from the city there is another lead field Jana-Arkalyk under exploration. Among the associated components of the ore we can find yttrium, gold, silver, tin, and others. The reserves of Jana-Arkalyk deposit are estimated at 6 million tons of lead. In the same area there are 37 fields common minerals including 28-brick commodity, 4-building stone, construction sand 5. 100 km (62 mi) from the city there is Akzhal deposit of nephritis, which was mined in 1997 for extraction purposes of decorative facing stone. Within the radius of 70–100 km away from the city there are deposits with an estimated volume of 3-6 million cubic metres of White Akbulak Marble and deposits of Agirjal black marble with reserves of about 8 million cubic metres.
Another attraction of Arkalyk is its educational institutions. The city is home to the Arkalyk pedagogical Institute named I. Altynsarin, Torghay humanities college, Torghay Agro-Technical College, Arkalyk Medical College, and Arkalyk College of Economics and Law Kazpotrebsoyuz. The city also has a Kazakh-Turkish High School.
Arkalyk’s climate is cold and temperate, with more rainfall in winter than in summer. The Köppen-Geiger climate classification is Dfa. The average annual temperature in Arkalyk is 4.5 °C (40.1 °F), and about 246 mm (9.69 in) of precipitation falls annually.
In conclusion, Arkalyk may not be the most well-known destination in Kazakhstan, but it has a unique history, natural wealth, and educational institutions that make it worth a visit. Despite its economic challenges, the city has much to offer visitors, from its mining industry to its natural resources. So why not add Arkalyk to your travel bucket list and discover this hidden gem of Kazakhstan?