Road trip guide: Conquering the A27 road

A27 is a major route in Kazakhstan. It’s an epic road trip linking the Russian border to Aktobe.


The road is mostly paved but varies in quality. It’s 905 km (562 miles) long and connects Kotyaevka (a small village situated on the right bank of the Kigash River in the Kurmangazy District of Atyrau Region on the Russian border) and Aktobe (a city on the Ilek River in the Aktobe Region). The road is usually in very bad state with deep potholes as well as deep tracks from the trucks. Major sections of the asphalt surface (around 70%) are missing with deep potholes; the majority of the road is unlit. Ordinary passenger cars cannot move faster than about 20 km/hour, and many vehicles divert off the road and travel on parallel dirt paths. The landscape is very beautiful though.

The road is in dreadful condition. The road is difficult and it’s a nightmare in the wet or dark (or both). Potholes are common, and are often dangerously deep. Do not travel this pass in severe weather conditions. Special caution should be taken if driving at night. It’s especially treacherous at night or during poor weather. The road is heavily used as it is the shortest link between the port city of Atyrau and the city of Aktobe.
Pic: Nurbolat Aktayev