People don’t necessarily think of Kazakhstan as one of the top tourist destinations in the world, but that’s exactly what it might turn into if the Kazakhs win their bid to host the 2022 winter Olympics.
Almaty, Kazakhstan and Beijing, China are the two remaining contestants to host the Games after Oslo, Norway withdrew its bid on Wednesday amid disagreements between the country’s political parties.
Oslo joins Stockholm, Sweden, Krakow, Poland and Lviv, Ukraine as cities that have withdrawn their bids.
With a population of almost 1.5 million, Almaty is Kazakhstan’s most populous city. It was the nation’s capital until 1997, when the capital and the presidential palace (pictured above) moved to Astana.
The host city will be chosen on July 31, 2015.