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Customs & Traditions in Kazakhstan

Updated: May 5, 2021

Home> Countries> Asia> Kazakhstan> Customs & Traditions

General Etiquette

  • Kazakhs are always respected and highly valued for their national customs and traditions.

  • They are generally modest and hospitable.

  • They respect the elderly, Younger generations value and respect their elders, who often live with their children or grandchildren.

  • Kazakhs will politely offer tea or meal firstly to the older people. Usually, the elder members of the family are firstly seated and then the rest will be seated cross-legged or on knees around the table. The best meat is served to the elderly.

  • The Kazakhs believe that Tuesdays and Fridays are unlucky and they will not go out these days.

  • They pay great attention to odd numbers, especially 7 and 9. The number 7 is the most respected number in their opinion. For example, Kazakhs hold cradle and naming ceremonies on the 7th day after the baby is born. Intermarriage is forbidden within 7 generations, while two families who are connected by marriage should be 7 rivers apart from each other.

  • As an Islamic Society pork should not be consumed and alcohol is forbidden for Muslims

  • For highly honored guests or relatives that haven’t met for years, mutton and horse are brought out.

  • Before eating, the host will firstly bring water, kettle, and washbasin for the guest to wash their hands, and then serve the plate with sheep head, rear leg, and rib meat in front of the guest.

  • The guest should firstly cut out and eat a piece of meat from the sheep cheek and then the left ear, and give the sheep head to the host.

  • Then everyone can start eating together.

  • As in all social situations avoid sensitive conversation topics, such as politics, finances, religion, and business unless initiated by your local counterpart.

  • Also try to avoid being loud, rude, showing off wealth, or getting too public.


  • The average family in Kazakhstan has two children.

  • Fathers are the primary income earners, but most mothers also work outside the home as well as perform the bulk of child care and domestic tasks.

  • Extended family ties are highly valued.

  • Grandparents and grandchildren often develop especially close bonds.

  • Members of the extended family network support and rely on one another. Relocation within Kazakhstan is uncommon. Young adults usually attend local universities or schools, although some go abroad for more opportunities.

  • Newlyweds often live with their parents until they can afford an apartment of their own.