Provideniya, Russia Cruise Port
When a famous U.S. politician claimed a few years back that she could see Russia from her Alaskan home, she may very well have meant the cruise port of Provideniya, Russia. Located on the Komsomolskaya Bay, this town of just under 2,000 residents is on a fjord right across the Bering Strait from Alaska. Discovered around 1660 (although the Yupik people were already settled here), the area soon became known for fishing and whaling, and as an excellent transport route for trade ships. Its location has also earned it the nickname "Doorway to the Arctic," with tourists from the neighboring United States visiting with some frequency since the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Naturally, Provideniya has an Arctic climate, although winters are milder thanks to the waters of the Bering Sea and its more southern placement. Listed below are a handful of our favorite experiences when cruising to Provideniya, Russia:
For history and culture of the area, visit the quaint Provideniya Museum. Along with artefacts leftover from the days where indigenous people roamed the land, there are also paintings and photographs from more current times.
Birdwatchers will want to visit Emma Bay, known for its diversity. The peninsula itself contains more than 170 species overall. Keep an eye out for king eiders, Arctic loons, northern wheatears, and many others.
Many cruise lines offer excursions to view the wildlife. Here are opportunities for whale watching, along with looking for walrus and seals.
Taking a turn around the settlement known as Novoe Chaplino - home to about 500 indigenous people - will bring you to a place with great historical value and enormous natural beauty. The Yupik Eskimos who live here were forced from their previous home in Cape Chaplin in 1958 and are now seated next to a deep fjord.