Kamchatka: a place for the strong ones

6:15 AM / Posted by Linda McGregory /

A peninsula which enters New Year first of all in Russia, which you can't reach by train... How many people can boast that they've been there? The majority of people do not even suspect that it is worth visiting Kamchatka at least one time in life।There are few cities there (Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Yelizovo, Vilyuchensk, Klyuchi) and lots of places where no foot may tread। If to take risks and go deep into the vast expanses, you can easily come across with bears, foxes, badgers, sables and even kalans, which are registered in Red Data Book (endangered species list).
On the whole, all the travellers who come to Kamchatka can be divided in two categories. Foreigners - particularly, Americans, the Germans, the French - come here to see exotic things. They are delighted with wild nature and enjoy discovering virgin places. It is the rich and politics who come to Kamchatka from Moscow. They are also enchanted with exotic looks of the peninsula, with freshness and primitiveness of this region. And the opportunity to ski down the real volcano appeals to even the VIPs.

For those who have strong nerves

When you come to Kamchatka first time, you must be ready for surprises of nature. This region may be both severe and wonderful. When forming an elementary habit to feel calm about earthquakes, you'll stop noticing them. Earthquakes are a usual thing for Kamchatka, because there is a high seismic activity. That is why there are almost no multi-storey houses there. For example, there are only 2 such houses in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky - 16 and 9-storey, both monolithic).

South-Eastern coast of Kamchatka is subjected to tsunami. People, living there, are ready for an alarm signal. Radio is switched on in every house for them to leave the house and to hide in a knoll at the earliest convenience. Unfortunately, tragedy is there all over. For example, in 1952 Severo-Kurilsk was wiped off the face of the earth.

Of course, volcano eruptions are not rare in this region. Such volcanoes as Shiveluch, Klyuchevskaya Sopka, Bezymyannaya Sopka, Karymsky volcano erupt sometimes and it is a wonderful performance for tourists. But if Koryaksky volcano 30 km from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky is going to erupt, it will be a real catastrophe, equal to a horror film.

Is there a travel industry?

Unfortunately, no. Though there is everything in Kamchatka to become a paradise for tourists, infrastructure is badly developed. A lack of investment, a lack of attention.
The majority of tourists come here in summer, because it is the most wonderful season here. One of the most famous national holidays is The Chavycha holiday (chavycha is a kind of red fish, living in Kamchatka), which is celebrated in June। The Koryaks fish, cook chavycha in the open air and treat all the passers-by. On this day there are lots of people walking around, they are dancing, enjoying summer weather and a haul. People believe that this tradition brings happiness. Boating routes - there are more than 700 there - are popular among adventurers। Helicopter tourism is very popular in Kamchatka. First of all, tourists are helicoptered to the famous Geyser valley - a miracle of nature, discovered in 1941 by the geologist Tatyana Ustinova. The flight to the Geyser valley lasts about 5 hours and costs like a ticket from Moscow to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. The flights to the ancient volcano Uzon are also popular. Around its crater there are weird plants, water is boiling, there are berries here even in winter. The lakes in the craters are coloured in a weird way: in black (Bolshoy Semyachik volcano), bright-green (Maly Semyachik volcano), purple, emerald, light-blue - it depends on the level of acidity and chemical composition. It's gorgeous!

Fishing is mainly popular among foreigners, who enjoy the process. As soon as the fish is caught, they take photos of it and let it go - they are not interested with the fish itself and its caviar. One of the most famous sea routes is a journey along the Avachinskaya bay and going out to the open Pacific ocean. The cruise lasts about 10-12 hours. During the journey you may fish, sunbathe and try an exotic food. Meal is consisted of unusual sea products, so you can see a sea-urchin on your plate. There are also 10-days cruises, including the coast of Kamchatka, the Komandorskye Islands, on which the Biospheric reserve UNESCO is located and protecting enormous number of sea mammals and birds. Thermal waters Paratunka in Kamchatka are world-famous. Lately it was wild basins. Now they are equipped with necessary facilities, there are hotels, bars, cafes there. Besides, there are lots of health centres with low prices.

In winter Kamchatka is turned into skiing resort, but unfortunately there are not so many skiers here like in Austria or Italy. The most popular skiing routes are Avachinskaya Sopka and Vilyuchensky volcano.
In spring and autumn Kamchatka is especially beautiful, but exactly in these seasons the number of tourists come down in comparison with summer. The only entertainment here is hunting, especially for bears.
There are really lots of bears here, they can be met near the rivers, in the forests. The bears living in Kamchatka are the biggest in Russia, they can weight 700 kg. Of course, hunting for bears in interesting for inveterate hunters.



Comment by pay per head on 5:16 PM, May 01, 2012

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