You are here

Home » Mangistau region nature. Aktau town Travels-Tours to Mangyshlak.

Shakpakatasay canyon.

Walking Tours in Mangyshlak.

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime” 

Mark Twain.

Small Group Hiking Trips on Mangyshlak.

The Shakpaktysay (Shakpakty) canyon is located in the northwestern part of the Tyub-Karagan peninsula in the western part of the Kaushe mountains, in the eastern part of the Kapam canyon, 5 kilometers southwest of the Ungoza mountain in the Tyupkaragan district of the Mangistau region.
The northern coast of the Tyub-Karagan Peninsula is cut by numerous canyons, one of which is Shakpaktysay. Millions of years ago, mighty ocean surfs washed away the soft limestone edge of the chalk plateau rising from the depths, creating unusual gorges and dry channels.
Shakpaktysay canyon is the most extensive, the length of the canyon from north to south is 9.5 kilometers, the greatest width in the central part of the canyon is 4.7 kilometers. The western part of the canyon is cut off by steep ledges, the southern part is indented by small ravines of the meridional direction.
The southwestern part of the canyon is called Zholbart. The southeastern part of the canyon is bordered by the Kaushe Mountains, which have a dominant mark of an unnamed mountain 234.1 meters above sea level.
In the northeast, the border of the canyon is Mount Ungoza, 199.2 meters above sea level, and Ungoza Vostochnaya, 196.5 meters above sea level. In the southern side of the canyon, at its very beginning, there is a necropolis and an underground mosque Shakpak ata, one of the unique sacred places of Mangistau further in 4.7 kilometers lies the southern coast of the Sarytash Bay.
4.4 kilometers to the west, the grandiose Kapamsay canyon stretches. In the north, the gently sloping part of the canyon is closed by the Caspian Sea with a mosque on the flat terrain and a spring. Several million years ago, the giant surf streams of the ancient Sarmatian Sea washed away the edges of the vast Tupkaragan plateau, creating a series of canyons.
Shakpaktysay has a series of branched headwaters and a narrow winding mouth, facing the Sartash Bay. The sights of this place are panoramas of a vast valley formed by the canyon sides. Like the crests of mythical dragons, white and yellow remnant mountains rise here, fancifully eaten by wind and rain.
The chalk cliffs of the canyon look like impregnable walls of castles and fortresses, fortified by watchtowers. Sometimes, the fog approaching from the sea gives the canyon a gloomy mystery. Shakpaktysay is full of mysteries.
Here lies the history of the ancient inhabitants of the Tupkaragan peninsula. During the archaeological exploration on the sides of the canyon, workshops and settlements of the Stone Age, burial grounds and tombs of early nomads, two fortresses-refuge of the medieval era were discovered.
At the end of the mouth of the canyon there is a rocky mosque Shakpak ata, the beginning of the construction of which, according to archaeologists, dates back to the XIV century. At the bottom of the valley there is a functioning well Zhelbard, which gives vital moisture to a small aul of local shepherds.
Geographical coordinates of the Shakpaktysay canyon: N44 ° 24'28.34 "E51 ° 08'19.31"

Shakpaktysay canyon on Mangyshlak.Shakpaktysay canyon on Mangyshlak.Shakpaktysay canyon on Mangyshlak.Shakpaktysay canyon on Mangyshlak.Shakpaktysay canyon on Mangyshlak.Shakpaktysay canyon on Mangyshlak.Shakpaktysay canyon on Mangyshlak.

Andrey Astafyev, town of Aktau. Alexander Petrov.

Photos by
Alexander Petrov.