"...We saw "Green Lake" (Dzhasyl -kul)at our feet, it had the most pure and clear, deeply blue-green color of transbaikalian beryl... We saw the wonderful sight of mountain giants, sunlit against a background of cloudless sky above, and black clouds with lightning over the "Green Lake" below, it would never efface from my memory."
Semen-Tyan-Shanskiy, famous traveler and researcher, was one of the first European explorers who have reached Trans-Ili region; only on the second trip in 1857 he was able to get to the lake famous among locals for its beauty. The path turned out to be very difficult, it climbed up to the natural dam of the alpine basin, which blocked Issyk gorge since an antediluvian times.
Enthusiasts of stylish recreation of the Verniy, the capital of Semirechye in pre-Soviet times, visited the empyrean lake, but also not without incidents. Despite this, a hundred years ago, the surface of Dzhasyl-kul was already violated by pleasure boats that were delivered from the foot. However, this place was not for some carefree fun - the lower part of the valley was one of those places where you could shoot a tiger (if you are lucky), or become a tiger prey (if luck turns away).
"Issyk Lake and surrounding neighborhood is the most beautiful nook of Trans-Ili Alatau. Until recently, the walking path from the foothills to the plateau was very difficult. The wide asphalt road was laid to the lake in 1958"- it is from the Soviet guide.
After the road was laid, vacation on Issyk became really popular. The Lake was competing in popularity with Medeo until the 1963.
"On the shores of the lake were built hotel with 100 rooms, restaurant, koumiss stand, yurt-cafe, boat station, piers... A regular bus service is organized between the city and the lake Issyk on weekends; bus goes from the bus station (corner of Gorkiy and Proletarskaya streets) from 7 am to 20 pm."
Bus service to Alma -Ata, large-scale (by austere standards of that time) infrastructure (beer and shashlyk stands), boating, hiking trails of the weekend days and All-Union tourist center, where inhabitants of the Baltic States and the Far East aspired to get, - all of this attracted many tourists to the lake.
"On the north side of the lake there is a tourist center of the All-Union Central Council of Trade Unions. If you start at boat Station of tourist center you can detour around the entire lake on the boat for two - two and a half hours."
Among the guests, you could meet not only mere mortals, but also - astronauts, national artists, noble foreign guests. It is known that between the visits of Tselina, Nikita Khrushchev loved to visit this place. There is the rumor that he has been here at the day of the terrible mudflow, but it is very unlikely.
We can say that the catastrophic mudflow of 1963 destroyed the most favorite and the most popular vacation spot of Almaty citizens. You can verify that this statement is not just bare words by looking through the family archives of anyone who lived in Almaty before the early 60's. You will definitely find a photo of an ancestor with Issyk Lake on the background.