Sverdlovsk Oblast, Russia

The Sverdlovsk region is a subject of the Russian Federation, which is the second largest in the number of cities in Russia (after the Moscow region). It is part of the Ural Federal District and is part of the Ural Economic Region. The administrative center is the city of Yekaterinburg. In the west, the region borders with the Perm Territory, in the north with the Komi Republic, in the northeast with the Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous Okrug - Ugra, in the east with the Tyumen region, in the southeast with Kurgan, in the south with the Chelyabinsk region, and in the south- west with the Republic of Bashkortostan. In the Russian Empire, the territory of the modern region was part of the Siberian province, the Perm governorate, and then the Perm province. Historically, the region was preceded by the Ekaterinburg province, which existed in 1919-1923. The Sverdlovsk region was formed as part of the RSFSR on January 17, 1934, when the Ural region was divided; the region has existed within its current borders since 1938 after the Perm region was separated from its composition. On April 18, 2023, the insignia “Labor Valor of the Urals” was established in the region.




Ganina Yama


Kholat Syakhl


Nizhny Tagil






The geographical border "Europe - Asia" is the border of parts of the world, marked on the ground with memorial signs.
The Alapaevskaya narrow-gauge railway, a forest-passenger railway, is the longest in Russia.
Merry Mountains - a picturesque mountain range of the Middle Urals
Nizhne-Sinyachikha Museum-Reserve of Wooden Architecture, Nizhnyaya Sinyachikha village, Alapaevsky district (travel from the Alapaevsk bus station by bus No. 103).
Chusovaya River National Park.
Oleniy Ruchi. Natural park in the southwest of the Sverdlovsk region.
Visimsky reserve. Biosphere reserve near the city of Kirovgrad, virgin forests of the Middle Urals, completely untouched by man. The reserve is open for ecotourism.
Reserve "Rezhevskaya" (near the town of Rezh). Natural and mineralogical reserve on the "Gem Strip" of the Urals, an object of geological and ecological tourism. The objects of excursions are natural monuments, mineral mines and archaeological sites. The reserve houses one of the largest mineral museums in the region.
Natural park "Bazhovskie places". Located in the valley of the Sysert River, often mentioned in the tales of the Ural writer P.P. Bazhov. The park is distinguished by a large number of lakes, but there are also plenty of other geomorphological and historical attractions for tourists: rocks, an abandoned asbestos mine and flooded quarries, overgrown dumps. 6 tourist routes have been developed.



With the exception of the Ural Baroque, which occupies a natural thematic and geographical niche between the Vyatka and Siberian Baroque, the Urals did not give the world original architectural styles. Nevertheless, they were good at adapting and rethinking the architecture borrowed from the European part of Russia, and in some - albeit rare - cases they managed to forget about current architectural traditions, on the contrary, and then the result was something completely unusual.

The first Ural buildings were, of course, wooden. Probably the oldest surviving monuments are the museum huts in Nizhnyaya Sinyachikha and Koptelovo, near Alapaevsk. Both date from the 17th century. The first stone buildings date back to the beginning of the 18th century: this is the wonderful Trinity Cathedral in Verkhoturye and the much more modest, but also baroque Trinity Cathedral of Alapaevsk. Both of these buildings set the vector for Ural church architecture of the 18th century: a confident orientation towards the Baroque, which by the end of the century gave such masterpieces as the temple in Severouralsk and the cathedral in Nizhnyaya Sinyachikha, which gravitated towards the Siberian tradition. Civil buildings of this period have been preserved much worse: judging by the ruins of the hammer shop in Alapaevsk, their architecture is not far removed from the traditional Russian chambers, which are similar to the food warehouses in Nizhny Tagil - the oldest building in this city. Finally, there was one anomaly in the Ural architecture of the 18th century: the Nevyansk Tower, built for the Demidov residence and representing an original monument outside of time and style.

At the beginning of the 19th century, classicism came into fashion, and the Urals took this fashion literally: everything was built in the style of classicism - from churches and estates to factory offices and even workshops. In principle, Ural classicism differs little from some St. Petersburg, so one can admire the size of the factory administration in Nizhny Tagil or the cathedral in Nevyansk, but these buildings cannot be called original. Perhaps the most interesting thing is the adaptation of classicism to purely industrial architecture, when the buildings of workshops and warehouses were decorated with porticoes. Many Ural factories contain monuments from the first half of the 19th century, but access to them is difficult, and their condition is unknown. A simple traveler will only be able to see the workshop in Polevsky (Severskaya Blast Furnace Museum), and even look beyond the fence of the Verkh-Isetsky plant in Yekaterinburg.

In the second half of the 19th century, the architecture of the Mountain Urals switched from classicism to eclecticism. Monuments of this period have been preserved in almost every city, so there is no need to look for them: they will find you themselves. Irbit is deservedly considered the best ensemble of the merchant city of the late 19th century; there are more old wooden houses in Verkhoturye; there are many interesting pre-revolutionary houses in Yekaterinburg. Although the Sverdlovsk region has never been a center of wood carving, in many cities there will be an exceptionally beautiful carved wooden house, and often it will be a private building somewhere on the outskirts. The first years of the 20th century were not the most successful for the Mountain Urals, so Art Nouveau, pseudo-Russian style and other trends of that period bypassed the region.

The post-revolutionary period turned out to be more productive. Already in the 1920s, a new round of industrial development in the Urals began, but now, unlike the 18th century, with a focus on large factories rather than local production. Yekaterinburg is rightfully considered the capital of Soviet constructivism, so if you are interested in architecture, plan a special walk - there are more than a hundred buildings of this style in the city! — and even those who are indifferent to architecture will be curious to look at the avant-garde work of Soviet architects: a house in the shape of a hammer and sickle, a tractor house, and so on. Monuments of the Stalinist style, especially post-war ones, in the Sverdlovsk region are much poorer than constructivism. Although there are buildings of this time in every industrial city (Ekaterinburg, Nizhny Tagil, Serov, Krasnoturinsk), there are few masterpieces among them.



Unfortunately, the preservation and popularization of historical heritage has never been the strong point of Ural factories. Despite the huge number of industries dating back to the 18th century, there is almost nowhere to see old devices and mechanisms. The best and the only one of its kind is the Severskaya Blast Furnace Museum in the city of Polevskoy. Another museum-factory is located in Nizhny Tagil, but there you will be offered a walk through the ruins rather than a real museum. However, it is there that a good collection of industrial products of the 19th century is collected, up to the first Russian steam locomotive - the Cherepanov steam locomotive, built precisely at the Tagil factories. There are also private initiatives to preserve and popularize industrial heritage: for example, you will find a very interesting industrial museum in the unknown village of Verkhnyaya Sinyachikha near Alapaevsk, the gold mining museum is located in Berezovsky, a suburb of Yekaterinburg. Perhaps there is something similar in other Ural villages. The Ekaterinburg Museum of Local Lore is also very interesting.

Another aspect of the Ural industry is its infrastructure. Three centuries of mining have left a tangible mark on the area. The Vysokogorsky quarry in Nizhny Tagil, the talc quarry near Rezh - all these are monuments of the Ural industry and at the same time very beautiful objects in natural terms. Once upon a time, the Sverdlovsk region was penetrated by a network of narrow-gauge railways, used for communication between factories and logging, because a hundred years ago many factories ran on charcoal. Unfortunately, almost all of the Ural narrow-gauge railways were closed and dismantled. The Alapaevskaya Railway is still in operation: it is perhaps the only narrow-gauge railway in Russia with regular passenger service, and by a wide margin the longest - a special world of villages lost in the forests, where there are no roads, and the train is the only connection with the outside world.

Volchansk, with a population of 10 thousand, is apparently the smallest city in Russia with its own tram system. It consists of one line 7.6 km long.



Despite all its industry, the Urals have always been an important agricultural region. Thanks to the efforts of local historians, local museums contain wonderful collections of household items and even buildings from past centuries. The already mentioned 17th-century huts in the museums of wooden architecture near Alapaevsk are perhaps the oldest in Russia, although besides them there is something to see there. For example, Ural wood painting is very interesting - it is a whole tradition, different from the more fabulous northern paintings, but no less bright and original.

In the 18th century, Old Believers actively settled in the Urals. Now you can no longer find either completely Old Believer villages or Old Believer churches, but the Old Believer traditions of icon painting have been preserved. The Nevyansk icon became a well-known style that still exists today. You can see it in the museums of Yekaterinburg and, to a lesser extent, in Nevyansk itself, as well as in the village of Byngi, which in the past was one of the centers of the Ural Old Believers. Speaking about icons, it is impossible not to mention that in the Sverdlovsk region there are distinct traditions of local decoration of churches: faience iconostases, cast iron frames, and so on. This compensates for the not so rich temple architecture.

There were once traditional crafts in almost every Ural city. Not all have survived, but those that have survived are developing and promoting themselves in every possible way. In Tagil you will find painted trays, in Nevyansk - ceramics, in Kamensk-Uralsky - bells, in Yekaterinburg stone-cutting is developed, and in Sysert they make good porcelain. Each of these crafts has its own museum, and sometimes more than one, and it’s interesting to go there.



The Ural ridge stretches from south to north in the western part of the Sverdlovsk region. Almost any part of it is suitable for hiking, and if in the south of the region you will find peaks up to 700-800 m high, then beyond Serov the Northern Urals begin with characteristic heights of over 1000 m. The tops of the mountains here are bare, forest grows only on the slopes, and because Due to the lack of roads and transport, any ascent turns into an overnight hike, requiring minimal preparation from the participants. The most famous are the Denezhkin Kamen (1482 m) and Konzhakovsky Kamen (1569 m) massifs. To the east the mountains disappear and plains begin. The breath of the Urals is felt here only in the rocky banks of the rivers, which are very picturesque in themselves. For example, the Neiva River flows through a fairly populated area and is excellent for water trips. Along the way you will come across not only rocks, but also pisanitsa - ancient rock carvings. There are especially many of them in the vicinity of Rezh and Alapaevsk.

Another interesting aspect of the Ural nature is the stones and minerals. Of course, they are not lying around under your feet, although if you wander through the old quarries, you will probably find something interesting. For those who like to just look at stones, there is a museum in Yekaterinburg and a wonderful mineralogical museum in the village of Murzinka, famous for its gems.

The border between Europe and Asia passes through the west of the Sverdlovsk region from north to south: Chusovaya flows into the Kama, and its basin is in Europe, and Iset, Pyshma, Tura and Tavda are in Asia. Fans will even be able to find signs marking the boundaries of parts of the world.


What to do

Forest hiking routes to remarkable mountains and rocks are popular in the region. All the rocks can be reached on foot from the Nizhny Tagil railway stations. However, in all cases you will have to walk several kilometers through the forest, so a GPS navigator or an experienced guide is welcome. Main hiking objects:

Devil's Settlement is a natural monument, bizarre rock outcrops. You can get there from Yekaterinburg by electric train to the station. Iset.
Seven Brothers is a natural monument, a complex of rocky outcrops of unusual shape. The nearest settlement is Novouralsk - a closed city, which cannot be entered without special permission. You can get there from Yekaterinburg by electric train to the station. Verkh-Neyvinsk.
Kyrman Rocks and Mare's Head are a more accessible, but for some reason less popular route. They are located near the railway station. Ayat.
Rocks of Peter Gronsky (aka Petrogrom) - 3 km from the railway station. Iset
Mount Bear-Kamen - on the banks of the Tagil River, 18 km north of Nizhny Tagil.


Ski holidays

Alpine skiing is developed in the region. The most popular ski resorts are located in the Vesyolye Mountains - Mount Belaya and Mount Ezhovaya. In addition, you can go skiing on the mountains Volchikha, Pilnaya, Teplaya, Medvezhka, Flux (Pervouralsk), Hanging Stone (Novouralsk), Kachkanar (Kachkanar), Listvennaya (Ekaterinburg), Voronino (Mikhailovsk), Stozhok (Tavatuy), in the complexes Nizhnye Sergi and Iset. There are small ski resorts directly in Yekaterinburg (Uktus) and in Nizhny Tagil (Aist).


Resort and sanatorium treatment

Sanatorium holidays in the Sverdlovsk region are typical for the Urals - mud and mineral waters, quiet, remote from cities and expensive sanatoriums on the banks of lakes and rivers. Popular sanatoriums - Talitsa (in the city of the same name), Cape Verde (Novouralsk), Nizhniye Sergi (in the city of the same name), Obukhovsky (the main mineral waters of the region, Kamyshlov district), Rush, Lenevka (Nizhny Tagil), Kuryi (Sukhoi Log), Bely Stone (Asbestos).



To develop regional tourism, the regional government has opened an information portal.



In addition to regular commuter trains, there are two high-speed electric trains with 7000 numbering - Yekaterinburg - Nizhny Tagil (runs an hour faster than a regular electric train, with stops in Verkh-Neyvinsk and Nevyansk) and Yekaterinburg - Kamensk-Uralsky. Tickets must be purchased with seat specification.

You can get from Yekaterinburg to the cities of the region by road along the following routes:
P352 Serovsky tract - leads to the north of the region to the cities of Nevyansk, Nizhny Tagil, Serov, Verkhoturye, Krasnoturinsk, Kachkanar. Along the same route they get to the Merry Mountains.
P242 Perm-Ekaterinburg - you can use it to get to Olenyi Ruchyi Park and Krasnoufimsk
P354 Ekaterinburg-Kurgan - road to Kamensk-Uralsky
P351 Ekaterinburg-Tyumen - road to Bogdanovich

There is a local road to Irbit and Tavda, through Rezh, Alapaevsk and Artyomovsky. As a rule, roads are laid radially from Yekaterinburg. There are several auxiliary routes that allow you to get there directly - for example, from Nizhny Tagil to Alapaevsk.



The territory of the region has been inhabited since ancient times. Numerous ancient human sites dating from the Paleolithic to the Iron Age have been found on the lands of the region. The Upper Paleolithic includes the Garinskaya site on the right bank of the Sosva near the village of Gari (Gari, a site in the Shaitansky Grotto, a site in the Bezymyanny Grotto (10th millennium BC). In 1890, in the vicinity of Kalata, the Shigir idol, 11 thousand years old, was found. years to the present (Mesolithic).

As a result of the administrative reforms of 1780 and 1796, the Ekaterinburg, Verkhoturye, Krasnoufimsky, Kamyshlovsky and Irbitsky districts of the Perm province and the Turin district of the Tobolsk province were formed on the territory of the modern Sverdlovsk region.

The administrative unit - the Sverdlovsk region - was separated from the Ural region on January 17, 1934. Moreover, its territory included the current Perm region and part of Udmurtia.

On October 3, 1938, by decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, the Perm region was separated from part of the western regions, and 5 districts of the Chelyabinsk region and one district of the Omsk (now Tyumen) region were transferred to the Sverdlovsk region. In 1942, the Kamensky and Pokrovsky districts, previously belonging to the Chelyabinsk region, were returned to the Sverdlovsk region.

During the first five-year plans, along with the reconstruction of old enterprises, such industry giants as Uralmashzavod, Uralelectrotyazhmash, tool and ball bearing plants in Sverdlovsk, Uralvagonzavod and the Nizhny Tagil Metallurgical Plant in Nizhny Tagil, pipe plants in Pervouralsk and Kamensk-Uralsky were built , Krasnouralsk and Sredneuralsk copper smelters, the Ural aluminum smelter in Kamensk-Uralsky and many other large industrial facilities.

During the Great Patriotic War, more than 200 enterprises were evacuated to the Sverdlovsk region from other regions of the country and continued their work.

The region was twice awarded the Order of Lenin, the highest order of the USSR: in 1959 “For the successes achieved in raising livestock production, exceeding the plan for state purchases of meat” and in 1970 “For the great successes achieved by the workers of the region in fulfilling the tasks of the five-year plan for the development of the national economy.” .