Last updated: 24 Nov 2023



There is no shortage of things to do and see in Kazakhstan. From history to art to culture to the outdoors, Kazakhstan's attractions are plentiful.

It is a charming country with lots to offer visitors, including the ancient Kazakhstani historical monuments, the renaissance beauty and fashionable metropolitan cities. The mountain scenery is breath-taking and outdoor activities include rafting, canoeing and swimming.
Capital:  Astana (TSE) 
Currency:  Kazakh Tenge (KZT)
Language:  Kazakh and Russian. English is spoken in the major tourist regions.  
Dialling code from SA:  + 7
Time Zones: GMT / UTC +5 to +6 (3 or 4 hours ahead of South Africa)
Public Holidays 2022: 

Jan 1-4, 7; Mar 5, 7-8, 21-23; May 1-2, 7, 9; Jul 6, 10; Aug 27, 29-30; Dec 1, 16-17, 19

Side of the Road: Right
Best Time to Go: March – June and September - November
Best for: Archaeological Sites, Eco Tourism, Great Silk Road
Plugs: 220 volts AC, 50Hz. Round two-pin continental plugs are standard
Drinking Water: All water should be regarded as being potentially contaminated. Bottled water is available.
Health: The standard of medical facilities has declined in recent years. Blood is not adequately screened before blood transfusions, equipment may not be properly sterilised and the expertise of doctors is difficult to establish. It is advisable to carry basic medical supplies.  Comprehensive health insurance is recommended and it should include emergency air evacuation coverage. If you require any medication on your travels it is best to bring it with you, in the original packaging, with a signed and dated letter from your doctor detailing exactly what it is and why you need it. 
Customs: Kazakh’s are conservative in dress and behaviour. Women should keep their arms, legs and head covered when visiting mosques. Men should wear long pants. Formal dress should be worn to the theatre and dinner parties. 
Local Offences / Laws: Possession and use of illegal drugs can lead to long prison sentences.  
Duty Free: The following goods may be imported into Kazakhstan by travellers over 18 years of age without incurring customs duty:
• 200 cigarettes, 50 cigars or 200g of tobacco products
• 3L of alcoholic beverages
• A reasonable quantity of perfume for personal use
• Goods up to the value of €1,500 for personal use only

On entering the country, you must complete a customs declaration form, which you must retain until departure. This allows the import of articles intended for personal use, including currency and valuables, which you must register on the declaration form. You must export these at the end of the stay. Customs inspection can be long and detailed. It is advisable to keep receipts for items bought in Kazakhstan in order to avoid difficulties at customs on departure.
Prohibited Imports: Photographs and printed matter directed against Kazakhstan, military arms and ammunition, narcotics and live animals. Food must be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate.
Prohibited Exports: Arms and ammunition, precious metals and stones, and furs. Antiquities and art objects require an export permit.

Issuing Authorities

Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan
226 Aries Street, Waterkloof Ridge, 0181
Tel: 012 460 0086

Visa Requirements

SA Passport holders do require a visa.

Visa applications must be submitted (in person or by a representative - they may NOT be emailed) to the Consular Section.


  • One completed visa application form (one per person) - all fields must be completed. 
  • A Cover Letter from the applicant regarding details and purpose of the trip as well as places pax intends to visit and contact in Kazakhstan. The letter must be addressed to the Consular Section of the Embassy of Kazakhstan (see sample cover letter below)
  • Two colour photos (35mmX45mm). The photo's are to be stamped at the back indicating the date when photo's were taken. They may not be older than 6 months. One should be stapled to the marked space in the upper right-hand corner of the application form
  • Original passport and a photocopy of bio page. Passport valid min six months from the date of visa expiry. Ensure there are at least two blank pages.
  • Proof of payment
  • Copy of invitation letter from the hosting tourist company in Kazakhstan, licensed for visa support purposes, and confirming arrangements made, hotel reservation confirmation, approved by Immigration services of Ministry of Internal Affairs of Kazakhstan.
  • Minors: in addition to the above, a copy of the parents passport and a copy of the child`s Unabridged birth certificate. If travelling with one parent: a letter stating non-objection to the child's other parent taking him or her to Kazakhstan
  • Business: in addition to the above, (i)A covering letter from the applicant or applicant’s company; (ii) A copy of an invitation letter from a host company in Kazakhstan, the original of which has been submitted to the Department of Consular Services of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan. The invitation must clearly indicate the following: name of applicant; name of inviting company; exact dates of the visit to Kazakhstan. The inviting company should provide the confirmation (visa support) number for your trip; the number for the confirmation is usually given in advance and written on the letter of invitation.
  • Transit visa: A covering letter from the applicant, a visa to the country of destination and copies of your ticket or itinerary. Transit visa is valid only for five days (included).

NOTE: All foreign citizens must register at the local office of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan or at the hotel (where available) within 72 hours upon arrival to Kazakhstan. Otherwise they will be fined by the Immigration Service.

Sample of a COVER LETTER
To: Consular Section of the Embassy of Republic of Kazakhstan to the Republic of South Africa
From: Name, Last name
Address: (indicate full residence address, postal code)
Phone number:
Re: Visa for visiting Kazakhstan
Dear Consul,
I would like to obtain a (please indicate type of visa and number of entries) visa for the period of (please indicate the validity of requested visa, e.g. 30 days, 90 days, one year).
The purpose of my visit to Kazakhstan is (please give detailed information about your trip).
While in Kazakhstan I will be staying at (indicate the hotel name and its address, or address and name of the person where you will be living at).
Date and signature: (please sign)


Visa Processing Time

Approximately 5 working days from the time when all proper requirements have been met.

Visa Validity

Tourist visa (category B12) is issued with a single entry for a period of up to 90 days and the right to stay in the Republic of Kazakhstan no more than 30 days.

Visa Cost

The fee for visa processing is not refundable. Visa fees are subject to change at any time without prior notice.

Single entry up to 30 days USD60
Multiple entry up to 90 days USD90

Single entry USD20
Multiple entry USD90

Single entry USD80
Multiple entry USD200


SA Representative

SA High Commission
7th Floor, Presidential Plaza Building, 62A Kosmonavtov Street, Astana City
Tel: +7 7172 925326/7/8

Accredited to Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan & Turkmenistan

Travel Health

Compulsory:  Yellow Fever (Dependant on Country of Origin/Stopover)
Recommended Travel Vaccines:  Hepatitis A & B, Rabies, Typhoid, Tetanus, Polio