Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

Kamchatka was discovered more than three centuries ago by Russian Cossacks, but for most residents of Russia it remains a mysterious and inaccessible land to this day.

At first, the journey from the European part of Russia to the peninsula took about a year. Few people dared to travel such a long distance. Now, thanks to regular flights, the situation has become much better. Only 9 hours separate a Moscow resident from dormant volcanoes, geysers and untouched Kamchatka nature.

It is interesting that on the vast territory of the Kamchatka Peninsula there are only three cities, three urban-type settlements and about a hundred rural settlements. The total population of the Kamchatka Territory is slightly more than 320 thousand people.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

The Kamchatka Peninsula is famous throughout the world for its volcanoes. The highest of them is Klyuchevskaya Sopka (on the map). The height of the active giant reaches 4750 meters. Its peak is the highest point of Kamchatka and Trans-Urals.

Klyuchevskaya Sopka Volcano is an ideal truncated cone with a base diameter of 15 kilometers. A light haze always curls over the main crater, and its top is crowned with an ice “blanket” that never melts.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

It is best to climb the volcano in late summer or early autumn, but this should only be done with an experienced guide or as part of a special group. Despite the fact that the route to climb the volcano is assigned category 2A (a route of simple difficulty that requires minimal climbing equipment),

Klyuchevskaya Sopka is fraught with a number of additional dangers: ash emissions, rockfalls and the possibility of an immediate eruption.

The cost of climbing the most famous volcano in Kamchatka starts from 63 thousand rubles. And the hike itself will take you about two and a half weeks.

Klyuchevskaya Sopka is located 360 kilometers from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, but this is as the crow flies. In reality, the journey will take about 550 kilometers: first you need to get to the village of Klyuchi or Kozyrevsk, and from there it’s a stone’s throw to the volcano – a day and a half on foot.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

Just 38 kilometers from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky are the so-called Blue Lakes (on the map),

which got their name because of the bluish, green and even purple tint of the water. The bottom of the reservoirs is formed by blocks of ice that reflect the rays of the sun, so during the day the crystal clear water changes its color.

The cascade of lakes is located in a mountain basin at an altitude of about 800 meters above sea level. Each lake is connected to another by streams. The Polovinka River flows from the last lake, which, falling from the cliffs, forms small waterfalls.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

The Aquarium tract is a real monument of pristine nature, which is under state protection (on the map). It is located 70 kilometers from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and stretches along the small and quiet river Levaya Avacha. Tourists come here to fish, enjoy the beauty of wildlife and admire several volcanoes. Among them are Koryaksky, Arik and Aag.

The tract received its name because of a tectonic fault in the river bed, which has a characteristic shape, framed by bizarre rocks, moss and flowers. The river really resembles an aquarium in which various fish swim: salmon, coho salmon, char and many others.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

Khalaktyrsky beach, located near Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky (on the map),

would be the envy of any seaside resort. Its length is 30 kilometers, and the shore is covered with black sand, which is due to the high concentration of metal impurities.

The beach has long become a favorite vacation spot for local residents. True, plunging into the ocean is not so easy; even in summer, the water temperature here does not exceed 14-16 °C. It is also worth considering that the current in these places is quite strong and you need to be careful, but you can run from the waves and sunbathe to your heart’s content.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

When visiting Kamchatka, you should definitely see the Vilyuchinsky waterfall (on the map). It is located 39 kilometers from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and begins in glaciers located on a volcanic peak. In the warm season, glaciers melt, the small stream flowing from them gradually expands, and by the time it reaches the cliff it becomes a river that falls down from a height of 40 meters.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

The small town of Elizovo, located just 25 kilometers from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, is famous for the fact that nearby is the Nalychevsky Natural Park, which is included in the UNESCO list (on the map).

The uniqueness of the park lies in two features. Firstly, rare species of animals live here. Tourists can meet brown bear, reindeer, lynx and even wolverine. Secondly, there are numerous healing thermal springs in the park. Routes have been developed especially for guests of the natural park: some may choose a simple one-day hike, while others, who are more prepared, will be interested in a multi-day hike. A trip through the park will allow you to see active and already extinct volcanoes and springs, and you will also be able to observe animals in their natural habitat.

When planning a visit to Nalychevo Park, it is worth remembering that this is a protected natural area, and entry for tourists is limited, so you should sign up for an excursion in advance.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

The largest biosphere reserve in Kamchatka is Kronotsky. Here is the amazing Valley of Geysers – the only geyser field on the entire Eurasian continent (on the map). The valley is included in the Seven Wonders of Russia. Over an area of ​​more than 3 square kilometers there are over 200 thermal springs, 80 of which are geysers.

Despite its stunning beauty, the Valley is dangerous for unwary tourists. An inexperienced traveler can get burned by the steam coming out of the ground. Therefore, it is best to admire the mesmerizing natural “special effects” from afar, and move only along specially laid tourist trails.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

Despite the fact that Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky is not a very large city, and approximately 180 thousand people live in it, tourists should take a closer look at its history. To do this, you can look into the Kamchatka Regional United Museum (on the map),

where the ethnographic collection dedicated to the small indigenous peoples of the North and Far East is kept.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

In the city there is a cozy Seroglazka bay (on the map),

from where there is a stunning view of the Vilyuchinsky volcano. There is a beautiful legend about the origin of the name of the bay. In 1854, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky was attacked by a joint Anglo-French fleet. At that time, the Crimean War was going on, the echoes of which reached Kamchatka. A young nurse with gray eyes took part in the defense of the city, caring for the wounded with incredible trepidation and care. It was they who nicknamed her Grey-Eyes. Over time, this bay and even part of the city began to be called that.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

The Military Historical Museum of the Kamchatka Flotilla (on the map) is of interest to tourists in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. This is the only large military museum in the northeastern part of our country. It was opened back in 1959. Currently, more than 17 thousand unique exhibits related to the fleet and troops stationed on the Kamchatka Peninsula are stored here. On the park grounds of the museum there is an exhibition of samples of military equipment.

Distant and mysterious Kamchatka

The Kamchatka Peninsula is a unique region of our country: wild nature, active volcanoes and the Pacific coast. Getting there is not so easy, but this adventure will remain in your memory for a long time.

As we already wrote, the fastest way to get to Kamchatka is by air. Airplanes of various airlines make regular flights from Moscow to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky.

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