Table of contents:
- A bit of history
- Akkem lake
- Akkem wall
- Altai "Stonehenge"
- Blue lakes
- How to get to the reservoirs
- Majestic Mount Belukha
- Sights of Aktash
- What else to visit?
Gorny Altai is one of the farthest corners of Russia. Tourists from all over the world come here every year to see the most picturesque places, feel the special atmosphere, enjoy the beautiful natural views, and also look at the man-made sights of the Altai Mountains.
A bit of history
Today there are not many places on the planet that can compare with the Republic of Gorny Altai. This territory of Russia is located in the central part of Asia. Interestingly, the republic borders on several countries at once, including China, Mongolia and Kazakhstan.
There were many important events in the history of Altai, we will briefly mention only the most significant of them.
Firstly, it is worth noting that in the Russian Federation there are two Altai at once: the republic, as well as the region. Previously, they were one territory, but after the collapse of the USSR, as a result of transformations, they were disintegrated and at the moment they are completely different administrative units.
Also,the following fact should be noted: Altai is translated from the Turkic language as "golden mountains". This is what attracts so many tourists from all over the world. After all, here are the highest peaks in the Siberian expanses. By the way, the highest point is Mount Belukha. We will talk about it in detail below.
The first settlements on this territory arose many centuries ago. The culture of nomads was born here, and the Turkic language also appeared. Once upon a time, the Huns and Dzungars lived in the Altai mountains. Photos of the sights of Gorny Altai with a description will be presented later in the article.
This is perhaps one of the most visited places in the Altai Mountains. Akkemskoye Lake is located near Mount Belukha in the Ust-Koksinsky district.
The mountain is majestically reflected in this body of water. By the way, glaciers were once located here, which constantly shifted and pulled ridges of huge boulders.
Almost all year round the water has a cloudy whitish tint due to the specificity of the rocks. As for the dark time of the day, the lake at this time acquire a bluish tint. By the way, due to the fact that this reservoir has a very high concentration of microscopic particles, fish and other living organisms cannot exist in it.
It is located next to the lake of the same name. At the end of the 20th century, a large accumulation of multi-year ice was discovered on the territory of Altai, which is called the Akkem wall, it stretches for almost sixkilometers.
These glaciers among climbers are considered a very attractive landmark of the Altai Mountains. Many people like to climb the Akkem Wall.
As you can see in the photo, this monument is really very similar to the original English version. Due to its name, this place is very attractive for tourists. Altai "Stonehenge" stands out from all other monuments, because here are stones that were brought from various places.
In addition, there are many interesting archaeological sites of the Paleolithic era, as well as the Bronze and Iron Ages near this attraction.
Many people still cannot understand why this ancient sight of the Altai Mountains is located in this place. There is a scientific version that says that shamans used to perform various rituals here, and these stones had something to do with it.
This photo shows a landmark of the Altai Mountains, called "Blue Lakes". They are bodies of water formed many, many years ago.
The lakes are called blue because they have a very peculiar hue. On sunny days, these reservoirs amaze with a bright azure color. It is interesting that the lakes are not permanent, they are formed seasonally in the channel of the Katun River during its floods, and then disappear.
Cognitive fact: giventhe attraction of the Altai Mountains does not freeze at all in winter, since the water temperature in the lakes does not drop below nine degrees Celsius. The water does not freeze for only one simple reason: the springs at the bottom are amazingly powerful. Many may think that they are hot, but they are not. However, their strength is so great that even the most severe frosts cannot freeze the water in the Blue Lakes.
How to get to the reservoirs
Getting to the Blue Lakes is quite easy if you follow the recommendations of travelers who have been there very carefully.
There are several ways to get to the reservoirs. Firstly, you can, of course, use the bus, and secondly, private vehicles.
You need to start your journey from the city of Biysk, since it is through it that all roads to the Blue Lakes pass. And the route itself is as follows: Biysk - Srostki - Mayma - Manzherok - Ust-Sema - Blue Lakes.
Majestic Mount Belukha
We are talking about the highest three-headed point, located in the Republic of Gorny Altai, in the heart of the Eurasian continent. Many tourists and climbers dream of conquering its summit.
Belukha Mountain is located on the border of two states: Russia and Kazakhstan.
She got her name not by chance. Since the top of the ridge is constantly covered in snow, locals almost always see it like this. Thus, the name of Mount Belukha comes from the word "white".
The earliest written mention of thisnatural sights of the region date back to the end of the 18th century. However, scientific exploration of the area began only in the 19th century.
In 1904, Samuel Terne tried to conquer Belukha Mountain, unfortunately, he did not succeed. But the Tronov brothers managed to climb to its top in 1914.
It is also worth noting that the climate in the area of Mount Belukha is quite severe, and the winter is very cold and long, but the summer is always short and very rainy. The air temperature in January can reach below forty degrees.
If you decide to conquer the summit, it is best to do it in late July or early August.
Sights of Aktash
Many begin their journey through the Altai Mountains from this amazing place. Aktash is located on the border with Mongolia. This place is considered a transit point for those who want to see the Pazyryk burial mounds on the Ulagan plateau.
The village of Aktash is quite young, since it appeared only in the middle of the 20th century. Now about three thousand people live in this place. In addition, people here are very different, they all belong to 25 nationalities.
Once Aktash was considered a very popular place for mercury mining. Since the village is very young, the very first inhabitants still live in it. They have worked here all their lives in the galleries.
As for the extraction of mercury, the mine was closed back in the mid-90s. It was then that people completely lost their permanent jobs.
From the main attractions of Aktash in Gorny Altai, you canhighlight the monument to the participants of the Great Patriotic War. This memorial is inscribed with the names of participants born in the area.
In addition, there are two museums. And one of them was created by border guards. But to visit it, you need to agree in advance. There is also a temple of the Holy Martyr Yevgeny Melitinsky in Aktash.
As for the second museum, it was organized by local residents. Basically, its exposition presents exhibits made by Sergey Tanyshevich, who is professionally engaged in woodcarving.
It should also be mentioned that there is a lake Cheybekkel (Dead Lake) on the territory of the village. The reservoir is fed by precipitation, as well as groundwater and melt water. Due to the fact that the lake is located at a fairly high altitude, ice remains on it until the beginning of summer. The reservoir is called dead because there are no fish and vegetation here at all.
What else to visit?
Answering the questions: "Where to go in the Altai Mountains? What sights are better to see there?" Experienced travelers advise visiting Mount Belukha. However, there are many other wonderful places in the republic. For example:
- rock Devil's finger near Lake Aya;
- Church of St. John the Evangelist on the island of Patmos, near the village of Chemal;
- Chechkysh, a waterfall located near the village of Elanda;
- Seminsky pass, located at an altitude of about 2 km;
- Kalbak-Tash tract, where the oldest rock paintings in Altai have been preserved.
So, where to go in the Altai Mountains, photos of the sights of which are presented in the article? Each traveler decides for himself this question. Based on the information above, you can create a trip itinerary, taking into account what interests you in the first place: acquaintance with natural or historical attractions.