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Russian rivers, Kamchatka coasts

Russians are increasingly choosing to travel and rest their native spaces

Russian rivers, Kamchatka coasts

Having traveled half the world in search of overseas exoticism, our compatriots are slowly beginning to return to their roots. Foreign travelers also turn their eyes to endless Russia. Kamchatka in this sense has a huge, virtually inexhaustible potential. The government has a plan for the next few years - to tighten the recreational infrastructure to the European level and ensure at least a double influx of tourists.

The unique, unexplored nature of the Kamchatka region has always attracted travelers from all over the world. In the first three foreign tourists - Americans, Japanese and Germans. Quite a lot of foreigners get to the peninsula on a cruise or charter program. So, in 2014, the meeting of 19 ships with more than 7 thousand guests on board (total) is planned. According to the forecasts of the Kamchatka Agency for Tourism and External Relations, about a thousand tourists from Japan and the United States will arrive directly to Kamchatka, both charter flights and regular seasonal flights.

Kamchatka is a tourist destination, popular among Russian travelers. Only for the first half of 2014, 11 thousand residents of other regions of our country moved here. In the second half of the year, the flow is expected to increase: the main "summer" season falls on the period from July to the end of September, when weather and temperature conditions allow long excursions to nature with overnight stays.

In the coming years, given the reduction in the number of compatriots leaving abroad and the possible complication of their entry into visa countries, it is possible to predict an early redistribution of tourist flows. The trend does not necessarily indicate that the number of vacationers in Kamchatka will increase - perhaps the interest of Russian citizens will shift over time towards foreign Asia (for example, South Korea this year canceled visas for Russians entering the country for up to 30 days). The more interesting is the task of making the Kamchatka Krai an attractive destination for different audiences.

A great interest of our compatriots to Kamchatka is noted by the owner of the local hostel "Hostel 24" Maxim Lavrinenko, indicating the influx of Muscovites, as well as residents of St. Petersburg, the cities of Siberia and Primorye. "Last year there was a large flow of Ukrainian tourists - now, of course, it has significantly decreased. As for foreign tourists, most of them, as always, are Americans, Germans and Britons, "adds Lavrinenko. The owner of the new hotel "Chief of Kamchatka" Anton Staritsyn is satisfied - there is enough work. "Despite the fact that we opened only in April, almost the entire hotel is packed. Most of our guests are Russian. A lot of tourists from Moscow and Irkutsk, "- he says.

And yet the tourism industry in Kamchatka is developing slowly: high prices for tickets, the lack of an established sea and air communication, information vacuum are interfering. "For such money you can live in a comfortable hotel somewhere in Europe, not denying yourself anything," - this is the reason about tourists who prefer to vacation abroad. The cost of tours frightens not only our, but also foreign travelers. At the same time, travel agents say that clients returning from Kamchatka often leave unflattering reviews about their vacation. "The almost complete lack of infrastructure and low level of service - these are the main complaints of the guests of the peninsula," says Natalia Ivanova, a multi-specialist local travel agency.

The problems are known, the ways of their solution are outlined in the state program "Development of internal and incoming tourism in the Kamchatka Territory for 2014-2018 years". Only in 2014, 14,137 million rubles were allocated for the creation and development of the infrastructure of the Kamchatka Territory, including subsidies to municipal entities for the development of tourism infrastructure. "At present, about 50 thousand tourists come to Kamchatka every year," says Gevorg Shkhiyan, head of the Kamchatka Agency for Tourism and External Relations. "It's already a lot, but we want more." Our goal is to increase their number to 100 thousand and turn Kamchatka into a regional center for tourism and physical development. "

It is likely that these plans will be implemented in the short term. Kamchatka actively attracts investors interested in the development of tourism infrastructure. The officials are considering a number of incentives to attract more investments to the region in key long-term projects: introduction of tax incentives, granting subsidies to investors and setting rules that guarantee protection of investors' rights. The "Corporation for the Development of the Kamchatka Territory" was established in the region.

This is a specialized organization that is engaged in the creation of investment sites with the necessary infrastructure, acts as a universal body that serves investors who want to get detailed information about regional projects or investment.

One of the advantages of the Kamchatka Territory is a promising mountain ski cluster from the point of view of tourism. Despite the moderate climate, the mountains and volcanoes of Kamchatka remain covered with snow almost all summer. "You can ski here almost all year round," said Deputy Minister of Economic Development, Entrepreneurship and Trade Oksana Gerasimova. "In fact, we offer a unique experience - active tourism, including heli-skiing on active volcanoes." Last entertainment, indeed, has already become the visiting card of the region: local helicopters deliver skiers to the peaks of remote mountains and volcanoes, from where lovers of sharp impressions descend, enjoying the scenic landscapes.

The development of the "alpine skiing" of the Government is a priority. Thus, the Ministry of Sport and Youth Policy is negotiating with Chinese, Korean, Italian and Bulgarian companies wishing to invest in a universal year-round resort in the Elizova area - the second largest city in Kamchatka. According to the head of the ministry Andrei Ivanov, Kamchatka has every chance to become the world capital of winter sports. As the official admits, success largely depends on whether it will be possible to create a world class training complex before the 2018 Winter Olympics: "If Russian athletes deserve to compete in South Korea, the importance of training in Kamchatka will be recognized. The opinion of professionals is necessary here. Experts will see that our peninsula is a great place for training with excellent conditions and that we are open to all athletes who want to train here. "

Another concept for the development of the ski cluster was offered to Kamchatka by the Canadian company Ecosign, which developed a plan to create a resort on the basis of four sites: the Petrovskaya volcano, the Avachinsky volcano, the Moroznaya and Topolov mountain ranges. It is planned that the complex will be built step by step, and each point will be able to work both autonomously and in conjunction with other resorts. In the Paratun Valley region, known for its healing springs, it is also planned to create a modern rehabilitation complex where tourists and residents of Kamchatka will be able to undergo wellness procedures using the balneological possibilities of the region - mineral and thermal waters, therapeutic muds.

The most exciting discovery of this year was a new recreation area on the Pacific coast - the tourist visit-center "Halaktyrsky beach". The territory of the beach was landscaped, equipped with wooden decking for walking, along them were set up benches, urns and information signs, toilets, and built a cafe. For sports fans, a football and volleyball court have been established. Soon the information center will open here, which will serve tourist groups, sell souvenirs and organize photo exhibitions.

Are transformed and become more hospitable territory and more distant attractions. For example, on one of the most popular routes among the guests of the region - from the village Termalny to the volcanoes Mutnovsky and Gorely - there were recreation areas. Travelers traveling along this route can now stop near the Zaikinsky key to relax and collect spring water, sit on the benches and read cognitive information from the stands at the same time. The same recreation area appeared at the end point of the route - on the Upper Paratunsky springs, where travelers relieve fatigue after walking along mountain paths and basking in thermal water. The path to the sources, once narrow and leading through the forest wilderness, is now equipped with steps and rope railings.

Another interesting innovation awaits residents and guests of the Kamchatka capital: on the historical monuments and buildings of the city will establish the plates with QR-codes, which will act as text and audio guides. The online application will work on the basis of the tourist information portal, the modernization of which is planned for the near future.

Interesting may be cooperation with South Korean entrepreneurs - a delegation from this country became interested in the project to create a port-hub in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. In the future, there is a serious modernization of the existing port infrastructure. The port with deep water berths will serve as a base not only for commercial sea vessels, but also for cruise liners, and in conditions of increasing passableness of the Arctic Ocean this project will become a prerequisite for the flourishing of cruise tourism. As Gevorg Shkhiyan explains, "when opening the Northern Sea Route linking Europe and Asia through the Arctic, Kamchatka will become a key destination for cruise ship operators."

Kamchatka is called a natural open-air museum. Turbulent rivers and boiling geysers, healing springs, snow-covered volcanoes and bubbling lava flows — all this attracts thousands of tourists to the peninsula.

The priority of development of tourism and recreational infrastructure for regional authorities, as well as the significant interest and feedback from foreign investors, allow us to hope that soon Kamchatka will be able to respond to the increased tourist demand and become one of the most popular recreational centers in Russia.

Top 3 traditional entertainment in Kamchatka

1. Fishing

Thousands of visitors each year come to Kamchatka specifically to fish in the waters of the Pacific Ocean. Rainbow trout, wild Pacific salmon and Asian grayling are often caught here, often reaching unheard of proportions. Salmon weighing up to 20 kg are a common phenomenon here, but you can only catch this fish under a license.

2. Hunting

In the territory of the region not only commercial but also sporting, amateur hunting for wild animals and birds is allowed in the time and place prescribed by law. A certificate for hunting rights is a hunting ticket, a license and a permit. Without a license (but with a voucher), you can hunt for a fox, American mink, squirrel, wolverine, ermine, lynx. The most successful periods for hunting are spring (from late April to late May) and autumn (from late August to early September).

3. Dog sledding

Sled dogs once were the main vehicle in Kamchatka, but today they are used as transport only in the northern regions. For those who want to try themselves as canurs, special canine nurseries, organizing tours on sleds along picturesque plains and forests, to the footsteps of volcanoes surrounding Petropavlovsk operate. During the walk you can see the habitats of wild animals.

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