Oryol oblast overview
Oryol oblast (Orlovskaya) is a federal subject of Russia located in the south-west of the European part of the country, part of the Central Federal District. Oryol is the capital city of the region.
The population of Oryol oblast is about 760,000 (2015), the area - 24,652 sq. km.
Oryol region history
The territory of the present Oryol region was settled in the late Palaeolithic. In the chronicles of the 12th century, the towns of Mtsensk, Novosil, Kromy were mentioned. At that time, the area was part of the Chernigov principality.
About 400 years later, the town-fortresses of Bolkhov, Oryol, Livny were founded. In the 16th-17th centuries, this region was the borderland of the Russian state. It was a place where more than once battles against the nomads took place, dramatic events of the Time of Troubles occurred here too.
As the threat from the nomads reduced, agricultural colonization of the area began. Oryol became a large grain-producing town. Standing on the Oka River, it became a large bread market, which provided Moscow with crops and flour.
More historical facts…
Oryol guberniya (province) was established by the decree of Catherine II in 1778. It included a considerable part of the present Bryansk and Lipetsk regions.
From the second half of the 19th century, railways and highways connected Oryol with Moscow and Ukraine, Baltic and Volga regions. The city became a large transport hub. Before 1917, Oryol had a cadet school, theological seminary, several gymnasiums (P.A.Stolypin, Prime Minister of the Russian Empire in 1906-1911, finished one of them).
In autumn 1919, bloody battles between the White Army and the Red Army took place near Oryol and Kromy. Oryol oblast was formed on September 27, 1937. In 1944, Bryansk oblast was separated from Oryol oblast. In 1954, nine eastern districts were separated from Oryol oblast with the formation of Lipetsk oblast.
This region became a place of severe battles during the Second World War - the front line passed through the region over 20 months. When Oryol was liberated, the first fireworks during the war was fired in Moscow on August 5, 1943.
Classic Russian landscapes in Oryol oblast
On the shore of a small lake in Orel oblast
Oryol oblast features
Oryol oblast is located in the forest-steppe zone. The length of the territory from north to south is over 150 km, from west to east - more than 200 km. The climate is temperate continental. The average temperature in January is minus 6.7 degrees Celsius, in July - plus 20.5 degrees Celsius. The largest cities are Oryol (320,000), Livny (48,000) and Mtsensk (38,700).
The Oka River, one of the largest rivers in Europe, originates in the south of the region. There are deposits of iron ore, lignite, phosphate, limestone, clay, sand, peat, chalk. Uranium ore deposits are found in the south-east.
The local economy has a strong industrial and agricultural character. The main industries are machine-building, food and production of construction materials. Agriculture is concentrated on raising dairy and meat cattle, pigs, poultry and horses.
The main highways passing through the territory of the Oryol region: M2 “Crimea”, R119 Oryol - Tambov, R120 Oryol - Vitebsk, R92 Oryol - Kaluga. The main railway is Moscow - Kharkov - Simferopol line. Public transport in Oryol is presented by trams, trolleybuses and buses.
The wonderful nature of central Russia, rich cultural traditions were the foundation on which a number of famous Russian gifted persons were nurtured. Oryol province was the birthplace of I.S.Turgenev, N.S.Leskov, L.N.Andreyev, A.N.Apukhtin, A.A.Fet, philosophers S.N.Bulgakov, M.M.Bakhtin, historian T.N.Granovsky. The lives of F.I.Tyutchev, I.A.Bunin, M.M.Prishvin are connected with this region.
Oryol region scenery
Winter in the Oryol region
Paved road in Oryol oblast
Hilly landscape in Oryol oblast
Places of interest in the Oryol region
Oryol oblast is compact and very convenient to travel by car. The distance from Oryol to Moscow is about 360 km. Several ancient Russian towns are located on the territory of the region: Mtsensk (1146), Novosil (1155), Livny (1177 and 1586), Bolkhov (1196).
The State Memorial and Natural Reserve Museum of Ivan Turgenev “Spasskoye-Lutovinovo” - a complex of manor buildings with a magnificent park, located 60 kilometers from Oryol and 12 km from Mtsensk. This is the most popular attraction of the Oryol region.
The National Park “Orlovskoye Polesie” - recreational areas located on the territory of Hotynetsky and Znamensky districts, a place with unique nature, rich historical and cultural heritage. This is the largest woodland in the Oryol region (33,000 hectares).
Bolkhov is considered the most beautiful town in the region. In this small town with a population of about 11,000 people, there are 12 churches and one monastery. Bolkhov stands on hills on the high bank of the Nugr River. From almost anywhere you can enjoy wonderful views of the town and surrounding area.
Holidays and festivals in Oryol oblast
- Last Saturday of May - Fet’s poetry festival held annually in the village of Kleymonovo;
- June - “Troitsky roundelays in Orlovskoye Polesie” - an international folklore festival in the village of Zhudryo, the festival of chamber and solo performances “LUDI” and Turgenev holiday in Oryol;
- August 5 - Day of Oryol city;
- The first weekend of September - Oryol regional festival of author’s song held annually in the national park “Orlovskoye Polesie”.