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Travel to Salekhard

If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to live on the polar circle, the best way to find out would be to visit the Russian town of Salekhard. This frosty administrative center not only serves the surrounding region but is a relatively interesting tourist destination due to its unique location – even if visitors don’t usually stay too long. Salekhard in Russia is believed to be the only town in the world that is located on the Polar circle.

You’ll most likely arrive at this unusual destination via the Salekhard Airport. A short trip around the town will tell you a little about the town’s history which stretches back to 1595 when a settlement called Obdorsk was built here by Russian settlers. Due to the extremely remote nature of the settlement, it later came to be used as a place of exile by both the Czars and the Soviets. During this time many noteworthy people, such as Peter Vasilevich Verigin, were sent here. In 1930 the Obdorsk region came to be seen in a new light and it was determined that the settlement should serves as the new administrative center of the newly created Yamal (Nenets) National Okrug. Three years later Obdorsk was renamed Salekhard, and the settlement was eventually granted town status in 1938.

Today Salekhard is a relatively wealthy town due to the discovery of natural gas resources nearby. However, most foreign visitors do not come here to engage in commerce. Of far more interest is the remote location in the far-flung corners of Russia. It is interesting to note the history of the city, the way that people live and the rich culture that can be found here. There are a lot of great wooden buildings which make for interesting sightseeing, and sometimes travellers may be fortunate enough to meet the local Nentsy people. This semi-nomadic group of people continue to follow in the steps of their forefathers and engage in reindeer herding. Twice a year they will pack up their belongings and their homes into reindeer sleds and make their way to greener pastures. If you would like to meet them your best chances are during the winter months when they stay a short distance from Salekhard.

Salekhard in Russia is an unusual choice for a holiday destination. It does, however, have plenty to offer and visitors to the country may feel that a short trip here is time well spent.


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