While touring Almaty, you will certainly notice how close the city is to the mountains. To tell the truth, the mountains of the Zailiiski Alatau Mountain Ridge ARE now a part of the city as it expands and grows in all directions. The proximity to mountains is a valuable source of recreation and pleasure for locals and guests of Almaty.
Medeo Skating Rink, Almaty
It is then quite natural that the tours around Almaty usually include the visit to its prominent nature and mountain resorts, such as the Medeo Skating Rink and the Chymbulak (or Shymbulak) ski resort.
Just 15 minutes' drive from city center and you will find yourself in the mountains, with crystal-clear air and spectacular pine-trees.
In the middle of the mountain valley, there is a huge sport complex (construction started in 1949). It was very popular among athletes because the altitude of the place contributed to better sportive results.
Since 1951, over 200 world records were made here. The locals call their Medeo Rink a "Factory of Records".
Currently, the rink is used to host various local and international competitions and events. It is very popular among locals who are fond of ice-hockey, figure skating, and other winter sports. The structure itself is a record: it is over 1600 m above the sea level (the world's highest rink), its ice surface exceeds 10,000 square meters.