The Valley of Geysers in Kamchatka

Russia will invest $ 3 billion in tourism. As part of these efforts, it can open for tourists Nature Reserve, where the most active volcanoes in Eurasia and geysers.

Distant Valley of Geysers since its opening in 1941 saw very few. It was completely closed to the public under the Soviet laws that ensure the safety of most impressive of reserved seats for there research. Since 1991, this valley is 6 kilometers, where 90 active geysers and a large number of thermal mineral springs, is available to the public unless accompanied by a guide, and then only for a few.
Russia is investing in the tourism industry $ 3 billion to attract tourists. It has allocated $ 82 million for its 200 nature reserves, many of which are unique wonder of nature, even closed for the Russian public, not to mention foreign tourists.

"If we invest in national parks and nature reserves, we’ll see how that money back into the budget," — said last week by Minister of Natural Resources Yuri Trutnev, noting that the national parks in the United States each year yielding about 14.5 billion.

Hoping to take advantage of this new attitude of the authorities, leaders Kronotsk State Nature Biosphere Reserve, located on the Kamchatka Peninsula in the far Pacific, asking Moscow to change its status and name to "National Park" to be able to attract more tourists. This week, they posted a virtual tour to the Valley of Geysers, where the largest in Eurasia, the number of active volcanoes and geysers.

"There are tremendous opportunities for the development of eco-tourism — said the director of the reserve Arkady Tishkov. — Over the past two decades, Kamchatka depopulated because people are leaving. They could stay, whether it is a well-organized tourism ".

However, he notes that even though the Valley of Geysers and can be opened for guided tours with guides, the other part of the reserve, such as the highest active volcano in Eurasia as well as the natural habitat of the world’s largest Kamchatka brown bear should be closed to visits.

"Unlimited access is the biggest threat [to the fragile ecology], — he says. — Valley of Geysers be able to take a lot more tourists, if they are properly organized, but the rest of the reserve should be only for scientists. "

The Valley of Geysers is one of the 10 Russian natural areas with limited access. It is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Russian government is thinking today about the development of these areas with the aim of turning them into centers of tourism.

The list also includes the Siberian Lake Baikal, which contains — oh my! — 20 per cent of global freshwater resources, the latter in Europe untouched mountainous terrain in the west of the Caucasus Mountains, as well as Europe’s largest array of ancient virgin forests in the Komi Republic in northern Russia.

"In Russia there are amazing places, literally untouched by human activity, — said Andrei Petrov, head of the project" World Heritage "in the Russian department" Greenpeace ". — It is very good if they are planning to make them more open, so people can see them. But it is also alarming. These places are unique and irreplaceable, and it is important to preserve them for future generations. "

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