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May/24

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Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky – the City of Volcanoes

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky is a city in Russia, the administrative center of Kamchatka Krai. It is located on the southeastern coast of the Kamchatka Peninsula, on the shores of Avacha Bay of the Pacific Ocean. The distance to Moscow in a straight line is almost 6,800 km.

The population of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky is about 163 thousand people, slightly more than half of the total population of the region. The elevation difference in the city is 513.6 meters from sea level (Avacha Bay) to the top of Mount Rakova. Photos by: Slava Stepanov.

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia, photo 1

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky lies south of Moscow and on the same latitude as Samara, Penza, Bryansk, as well as Manchester (England) and Dublin (Ireland). However, the city’s climate is noticeably harsher than at similar latitudes in Western Europe, and cooler than in the European part of Russia.

There are several volcanoes near Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. Major eruptions are rare, but ash and smoke are occasionally released. The coast of Kamchatka, Japan and the Kuril Islands is the most seismically active place on the planet.

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia, photo 2

Near Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky there are two active volcanoes: Koryaksky and Avachinsky. The third peak is the extinct Kozelsky volcano. Picturesque volcanoes have become one of the main attractions of the city and all of Kamchatka.

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia, photo 3

Koryaksky volcano (3,456 meters) – the highest active volcano near Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky.

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Earthquakes often occur in the Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky area, usually at a distance of 30-150 kilometers from the eastern coast of Kamchatka. Several thousand earthquakes occur a year, but most of them are weak.

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia, photo 5

The historical center of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky is located between Mishennaya, Petrovskaya and Nikolskaya hills. Here is also Lake Kultuchnoye, which is separated from Avacha Bay by a narrow isthmus.

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia, photo 6

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky is one of the oldest cities in the Russian Far East. The Cossacks were the first to arrive here from the Russian kingdom in 1697. They built warehouses for storing yasak – furs, which were collected as a tax from the peoples of Siberia and the Far East.

In 1740, participants of the Second Kamchatka Expedition arrived here. The task of the expedition was to find a way to North America and the nearby islands of the Pacific Ocean. The Peter and Paul fort (today’s Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky) received its name from the names of the ships “St. Apostle Peter” and “St. Apostle Paul”, which took part in the Second Kamchatka Expedition.

During the 19th century, its population was about 1 thousand people. After 1917, it began to grow rapidly. In 1930, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky had about 6 thousand residents, and in 1962 – 100 thousand.

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Kamchatka Naval Cathedral (consecrated in 2023).

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Lenin Square, the monument-stele “The City of Military Glory” and The Central Beach.

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Government of Kamchatka Krai.

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Kamchatka Regional Museum. The exhibitions are dedicated to history, nature, and the defense of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky from the Anglo-French squadron during the Crimean War in 1854.

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia, photo 11-2

Drama and Comedy Theater.

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Kamchatka Regional Court.

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Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia, photo 15

Spartak Stadium.

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Today, tourism is actively developing in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. People come here to see the volcanoes, walk along the volcanic sand beach, and visit the valley of geysers. There are helicopter excursions, horseback riding, boat trips, river rafting, and fishing.

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia, photo 19

Welcome to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky!

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia, photo 20

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