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Altaisky Krai

Altaisky <b>Krai</b>The Altai territory is located in the south of West Siberia in the basin of the Bia and Katun rivers. The average extent of the territory from the north to the south is 360 kilometers, from the west to the east - 585 kilometers. Altai territory borders in the south and southeast upon Kazakhstan, in the southwest - upon the Altai Republic, in the west and northwest - upon the Kemerovskaya oblast, in the north - upon the Novosibirskaya oblast.

The most part of the territory is located within the limits of West Siberian plain, in the south - Altai highlands. The main rivers are Ob with its tributaries; in the south - Teletskoe lake. The climate is sharp continental; the average temperature of January is 19 C below zero, the average temperature of July is 19 C above zero; amount of precipitations is from 150 mm per year (in valleys) up to 3000 mm per year (in mountains). In this territory chernozem soils prevail, in mountains - mountain-ashed soils. Vegetation: the steppes in the north have mostly been ploughed up. About 1/3 of the territory is occupied by forests (pine forests, birch groves).

The South-Siberian railway (Pavlodar-Barnaul-Novokuznetsk-Abakan), the Srednesibirskaya (Kustanai-Kamen-on-Ob-Barnaul) and the Turkestano-Siberian railroad (Novosibirsk-Barnaul-Semipalatinsk) pass through the Altai territory; the Chuisky Tract goes from Biysk to Mongolian People`s Republic. Navigation is at the Ob river.

The Altai territory population is 2672 thousand people. 1.3 millions of them live in cities. City of Barnaul is the capital of the Altai territory.

The light and textile industries, mechanical engineering and metal working, food and processing industry, industry of building materials, power industry, wood and timber industry, metallurgy, instrument making, the chemical and petrochemical industry are presented on the Altai territory.

Also there are agriculture, plant cultivation, and cattle cultivation: meat and milk, meat and wool, poultry farming, the Siberian deer breeding, beekeeping.

The Altai territory is one of the most attractive for tourists territories of Russia. For last three years tourists from 60 countries have visited the territory. Many of them have been attracted by architectural and cultural monuments of historical cities, such as Barnaul, Biysk, and Kamen-on-Ob.

The combination of mountains and plains, beauty of the Ob river and variety of picturesque landscapes characterize the Altai territory. Here there are all opportunities for development of nonconventional forms of tourism. On the territory there is a set of archeological and ethnological monuments, such as burial mounds and earth burial grounds, ancient settlements, cave parking of the Stone Age, excavation of copper and gold.

It's a fine place for climbers, tourists, and mountain skiers. Hunting for bear, maral, lamb, fox, wild boar, wood goose is another fascinating leisure. On the Altai territory there are some resorts, which use therapeutic springs with radon waters and mineral therapeutic mud. Belokurikha is the most known large resort in Russia, which have astonishing radon-silicate springs.

Tourism is one of the most perspective sectors of economy of the territory with great potential for the fast development.

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