Lonely Planet review
This broad, Soviet-created ceremonial square provides a panoramic view of the snowcapped mountains on a clear morning. Its focus is the tall Independence Monument . The stone column is surmounted with a replica Golden Man standing on a winged snow leopard. Around its base are statues of a Kazakh family; behind is a semicircular wall of low-relief bronze sculptures depicting scenes from Kazakhstan’s history, from Golden Man times at the left end to Nazarbaev at the right.
Overlooking the square from the south is the neoclassical-style Maslikhat building. Southeast of here, opposite the Central State Museum, is a large official Presidential Residence . At the top of Zheltoksan, the striking Dawn of Freedom Monument honours those killed and injured on Respublika alany on 17 December 1986 during the Zheltoksan (December) protests, the first unrest unleashed in Central Asia by the Gorbachev era of glasnost. Possibly as many as 250 people were killed when police opened fire on rioters protesting against the appointment of a Russian, Gennady Kolbin, as head of the Kazakhstan Communist Party.
You can reach Respublika alany on bus 2, 63, 73 or 86 up Furmanov to the corner of Satpaev.