KAmchatkA – КАмчаткА

Kamchatka is one of Russia's most beautiful regions. It is not accessible by car as there are no regular roads leading there from the neighboring Magadan Oblast and Chukotka. There are no seasonal winter roads as well. Apart from rare pleasure cruises calling at the peninsula, travelers arrive by air via Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. Airplanes land at Yelizovo airport (PKC).

KAMCHATKA.  Russia begins here.

The central square.

The governor's office.

The drama theatre.

Architecture wise Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky is not very interesting.

The newly built Trinity Church.

The Naval Cathedral.

Lenin stands amid stunning scenery.

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky was founded in 1740 by Vitus Bering, the Danish-born Russian captain. The monument commemorating the event was erected in 1826 and is still standing.

The grave of English captain Charles Clerke. Clerke was in command of HMS Discovery on James Cook third expedition. When Cook was killed by Hawaiians in February 1779, Clerke took command of the expedition. In April 1779 the expedition called at Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky where it was given a hearty reception.  The obelisk marking the grave was erected in 1913.

The obelisk carries the following inscriptions: Sacred to the memory of Captain Charles Clerke who died August 22nd 1779 aged 38 years and whose body is interred beneath this stone. This officer served under the command of Captain Cook, the world renowned navigator, in his several voyages of discovery, and recovered his remains after he had been killed by savages. His death occurred at sea after a gallant but unsuccessful attempt to penetrate the ice beyond the Behring Strait. He was a man of sterling worth and intrepid courage. Faithful to his leader and unswervingly devoted to duty.

The French navigator Jean Francois de La Perouse and his expedition visited Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky in September 1787.

The inscription in Russian reads: In memory of La Perouse 1787.

In August 1854 the allied British-French naval squadron with a battalion of marines on board attacked Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. The attackers were defeated and suffered heavy losses in personnel. The following monument was erected in 1954 to mark the 100th anniversary of the event.

This chapel was built over the mass grave.  French and British casualties were buried left of the chapel.

Russian casualties were buried right of the chapel.

Vasily Zavoiko the governor of Kamchatka in 1854 organized and headed the defense.

This monument is dedicated to the landing of Red Army units on Kuril islands in August 1945.


Volcanoes are the main attraction of Kamchatka. Three volcanoes: Koryaksky, Avachinsky and Kozelsky are called domestic volcanoes due to their proximity to the city. About 35 km by road.

Koryaksky Volcano = 3,456 m. As seen from the apron of  Yelizovo airport.

An unattended seismic station.

A closeup of Koryaksky summit.

Avachinsky Volcano = 2,741 m.

A smaller formation located between Koryaksky and Avachinsky Volcanoes is called Camel.

Koryaksky Volcano as seen from Avacha Bay.

Volcanoes located on the other side of Avacha Bay are within a day trip from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky.

Vilyuchinsky Volcano = 2,173 m.

Mutnovsky Volcano = 2,322 m.

Steaming, hissing and bubbling colorful slopes of Mutnovsky.

The caldera of Gorely Volcano = 1,829 m.

Vilyuchinsky Volcano as seen from Gorely.

Vilyuchinsky Volcano as seen from Avacha Bay.

The caldera of Maly Semyachik Volcano as seen from a helicopter enroute to the Valley of Geysers.

A short video: the steaming crater of Karymskaya Sopka Volcano as seen from a helicopter enroute to the Valley of Geysers:

Valley of geysErS - долина гейзеров

The Valley of Geysers is another major sight of interest in Kamchatka. The Valley was discovered in 1941 and is considered to be the last significant geographic discovery on the territory of Russia. The Valley is located in the midst of wild undeveloped area 200 km north of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. The access for travelers is in organized groups by helicopter only. In 2018 the tour cost 40,000 rubles, in 2023 56,000 rubles. The tour includes landings in Uzon Caldera, the remains of a 40,000-year volcano that now looks as a huge flat crater with colourful and steaming lakes, and at hot springs where visitors are treated to lunch in the open air and have time to soak in thermal waters.

On the way to the Valley.

The Valley of Geysers.

A brown bear grazing amidst geysers.

A short video of a geyser eruption:

A short video of a geyser eruption:

Uzon Caldera.

avacha bay - авчинский залив

Once you get to Kamchatka take a boat tour of Avacha Bay to see rock formations and wildlife.

Killer whales.

Sea lions.


The black sand Khalaktyrsky beach on the Pacific coast.

Vachkazhets - вачкажец

The scenic Vachkazhets mountain range 100 km from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky is nice place for a 5-6-hour trek.

esso - эссо

The village of Esso is located approximately in the very middle of the Kamchatka peninsula 530 km from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. Half of the way is a gravel road good enough for any vehicle. Car rental companies are readily available in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and in Yelizovo. Esso sits in a valley between taiga-grown mountains. The village is partially populated by the Evens

Welcome to Esso.

WWII memorial.

The Paramushir Tur Hotel. The hotel in Esso.

The hotel has a pool fed by hot springs. Guest enjoy swimming all the year round.

In the village there is a spacious public pool of thermal water.

Locals say it is almost impossible not to encounter a brown bear when driving to Esso.

A short video of a bear family: