Federal district: Siberian • Capital: Abakan • Population: 534,079 inhabitants • Area: 61,900 km2 (23,900 sq mi)
Khakasia is situated in the south-west part of Eastern Siberia on the territories of Sayano-Altai plateau and Khakas-Minusinsk basin. Its length from the north to the south is 460 km, from the west to the east (in the widest part) is 200 km. The republic’s geographical position is advantageous, as it links Khakasia with Irkutsk district, Kuzbass, central Krasnoyarsk region and the north. In the east and in the north it borders with Krasnoyarsk region, in the south – with Tuva Republic, in the south-west with Altai Republic and in the west with Kemerovo district.
Khakasia occupies a territory of 61,900 square kilometers.
The administrative centre is the city of Abakan. The population of the republic is 537 000, 80,3% of them are Russians.
The climate is sharply continental with dry and hot summer and cold winter with little snow. Temperature change and precipitation also differ very much from season to season. Sometimes the climate is different in different regions of Khakasia, that is defined by the landscape of the republic.
The animal world of Khakasia includes 76 species of mammals, 317 species of birds.
The nature of the republic strikes you by its amazing relief and colors. Khakasia is one of the rarest phenomena, as its landscapes are formed by archaeological monuments. Steppe sceneries are mixed with burial hills and menhirs (single stone steles), many of mountain peaks and rock ridges still have the prints of human activity. Historical monuments and fascinating nature attracts hundreds of tourists from all over the world.
In the west and in the south Sayan mountains are situated, some parts of them reach the height of 2000 m. Sayan mountains occupy two thirds of the whole territory. The rest of the territory is taken by steppes and taiga, rivers and lakes. There are approximately 500 lakes here, 110 of them are salty. The most famous are lakes Shira, Itkul, Bele, Tus, Hankul. The main rivers are Abakan, Askiz, Tom, White Iyus, Black Iyus and Yenisei.
The water of Yenisei is used to produce electricity (Sayano-Shushenskaya hydroelectric power station and Mainskaya hydroelectric power station). Hydroelectric energy is connected with aluminum production. There are Sayanogorsk and Khakasian aluminum plants situated on the territory of the republic. Khakasia is one of the most developed agricultural regions of the Western Siberia. The base of cattle-breeding (sheep and dairy products) is vast territories occupied by pastures and hayfields. Horse breeding also plays an important role. Plant cultivation includes wheat, barley, millet and oat. Technical crops include sunflower and sugar-beet.
The majority of the forests are birch forests. In some place you can meet larch and pine forests. Trees are the main natural resource of Khakasia. The republic possesses more than 4000 hectares. This country is rich in mineral resources such as jasper, granite, zeolite, iron, gold, coal, molybdenum, mineral and radon water. Khakasia is one of the oldest mining places of Russia.
There are two national nature reserves here (The national nature reserve “Khakassian” and the nature reserve-museum “Kazanovka”). You can see more than 100 nature monuments in Khakasia, each of them is interesting for travelers.
The main transport centre of the republic is its capital – Abakan city. Abakan is situated in the centre of Asia, almost on the same parallel with Magnitogorsk, Minsk and Hamburg. The city’s history is long and rich. In 1675 a stockade town was built on the bank of the river Abakan. It gave the start to the Minusinsk basin development. In 1780 there appeared Ust-Abakan village, in 1925 – a village Khakassk. In 1931 this village turned into a city Abakan. It is an industrial, cultural and scientific centre of Khakasia. You can get to the city traveling by plane, by train or by bus.
- Krasnoyarsk region
- Republic of Khakassia
- Republic of Tuva