Semey is a city of regional significance in Kazakhstan, in the East Kazakhstan region, located on both banks of the Irtysh River.

Population: 324,043.

The Semipalatinsk fortress was founded by the tsar’s voivode and his detachment in 1718, 18 km down the Irtysh River from the present location of the city in connection with the Decree of Peter the Great.


Ust-Kamenogorsk is the largest city in the east of Kazakhstan, the administrative center of the East Kazakhstan region.

Population: 333,113.

During the reign of Peter 1, the search for gold and silver ores was vigorously pursued. He learned about the abundance of gold, supposedly located near the Dzungar town Erketi. On August 20, 1720, a military detachment of the Russian army arrived at the confluence of the Irtysh and Ulba rivers, where the construction of a fortress began. It is considered to be the day of the foundation of the city.