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Almaty, Kazakhstan

May, 2019

Best Daytrip: 4,500-year-old rock carvings at Tamgaly (2.5 hour drive)

  • You hail a cab as normal, but anyone can pull up to get you.
  • No ATM fees!
  • Grocery stores produce section are small with low-quality
    fruits and vegetables.
  • Cars not only stop for pedestrians, they’ll slam on the breaks
    to let pedestrians go first.
  • Huge cafe scene, sometimes three cafe’s next to each other.
  • Shisha seems like the national pastime. Everywhere sells
    shisha and you can (mostly) smoke it indoors. Smoking
    e-cigarettes seems to be legal indoors, too.
  • All the girls have perfectly painted nails
  • Smoking indoors was outlawed only recently. However,
    many places have smoking rooms and shisha or e-cigarettes
    are smoked indoors like regular.
  • Many walking streets, green spaces, parks, etc.
  • For a city of 1.5 million, it feels more like a small city vibe with
    minimal street or foot traffic.
  • When ordering water at any cafe or restaurant, it always comes in a glass bottle for 3x the cost...annoying.
  • They have a Navy even though they’re a landlocked country.
    Indeed, it was the even less intuitively named Coast
    Guard pre ~2006.
  • Some cars have steering wheels on the right side and others
    on the left.
Known For: Horse meat/Shuzhuk, fermented horse milk, wild apple forests
...

CITY IMPRESSIONS

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I choose the items below as they’re generally available everywhere. Thus, easy for comparison. The prices reflect the cheapest option given my standard. In any estination you can find slightly cheaper prices if you wanted to sacrifice convenience (ie going to local market or out-of-town grocery store).
ITEM
  • Airbnb Nightly Rate
  • Coworking Day Pass
  • 1-Hour Massage
  • 1-Month Gym
  • Beard Trim
  • 16.9oz water bottle
  • 2KG Wash+Fold
  • Americano (small)
  • Expresso
  • Salmon
  • Ribeye/Tenderloin
  • Chicken Breast
  • Almonds
  • Asparagus
  • Avocado
  • Banana
  • Brocolli
  • Carrot
  • Cucumber
  • Kiwi
  • Pineapple
  • Watermelon
  • Red Wine
KAZAKHSTANI TENGE (KZT)
  • 21,627
  • 3,000
  • 12,000
  • 6,000-10,000
  • 2,500–3,500
  • 115
  • 12,000
  • 550–770
  • 450–600
  • 3,500–9,200/KG
  • 3,990-6,000/KG
  • 1,900–2,500/KG
  • 4,790/KG
  • -/KG
  • 6,250/KG
  • 700/KG
  • 1,370/KG
  • 170/KG
  • 369/KG
  • 1,590/KG
  • 650/KG
  • 875
US DOLLARS ($)
  • 50
  • 6.94
  • 28
  • 14 – 23
  • 5.78 – 8.09
  • 0.27
  • 28
  • 1.27 – 1.78
  • 1.04 – 1.39
  • 4 – 10/LB
  • 4.19 – 6.30/LB
  • 2.00 – 2.63/LB
  • 5.03/LB
  • -/LB
  • 6.57/LB
  • 0.74/LB
  • 1.44/LB
  • 0.18/LB
  • 0.39/LB
  • 1.67/LB
  • 0.68/LB
  • 2.02
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