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Friday, 4 October 2013

DAY 6, ALMATY (REST DAY) (30KM)

27th May 2013
Even though today is my rest day, I woke up early, at 7.30am. At 9.30am, I rode DREAM to the OVIR office. OVIR means immigration, and every visitor to Kazakhstan is compulsory to register with OVIR within 5 days stay in Kazakh. It’s not very difficult to find the office and the friendly officer attended to my form immediately. Through my research, I found out that registration took all day, but in my case, it was done in 20 minutes. Then, I headed to Tajikistan Embassy in Almaty. They were closed for lunch, so I have to wait. In the beginning, the officer refused to stamp the Gorno Badakshan permit on my passport. He asked me why the Tajikistan Embassy in Tashkent (the place where I got my Tajik visa) didn’t stamp the permit for me? I said that I have no idea. He told me to go back to Tashkent. I appealed, and showed him the support letter from Malaysian Embassy in Tashkent. Once he read the letter, without a word, he stamped the permit on my passport. I felt so relieved. Without this permit, I am not allowed to enter ¾ of my scheduled route in Tajikistan which will definitely affect my itinerary.
The GBAO permit...notice the round shape logo?

OVIR form..failure to register shall result in a fine of USD150
My two major tasks in Almaty were done, so now it’s time for some sightseeing. I took a bus to the Green Bazaar and walked my way to Panfilov Park. There were many people at the park even though it was Monday. The park was filled with beautiful roses and there were lots of pigeons in its square. There was a beautiful yellow cathedral with colourful domes.
 
Panfilov Park


 
Zenkov Cathedral


After seeing enough, I walked back to the bazaar to buy some small souvenirs and then proceeded to the Central Mosque. The mosque was beautifully marbled and the Imam was reciting Quran the moment I peeped inside. He has a beautiful voice.
Green Market

Central Mosque
 
Then, I walked to the metro station and took a metro back to the hostel. However, a local whom I asked, directed me wrongly, resulting in I missed the correct station. However, its not hard to return and I reached the hostel before sunset. That night was filled with chatting with the other guests.
 

The metro station
p/s: A more detailed story about my journey will be told in my upcoming book. More beautiful pics of course. STAY TUNED.....

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NASTIA

Band: NASTIA, Title: ANGGUR (taken from EP 'EKSPRESI')
HAK CIPTA ANITA YUSOF