Novaya Zemlya is a large 83,000-km2 island in Arkhangelsk Oblast, in extreme northern Russia. Its landmass is narrowly separated by the Matochkin Strait into two vast pieces of land, called simply Severny (northern) and Yuzhny (southern) islands.
- 1 Belushya Guba - largest settlement in Novaya Zemlya, a few miles south of Rogachovo
- 2 Faktoriya Litke - 3- or 4-building settlement near a strait on the east coast of Yuzhny Island
- 3 Krasino - several buildings and dirt tracks in the far south of Yuzhny Island
- 4 Mys Men'shikov - group of buildings at the southeastern end of the island, with a lighthouse
- 5 Mys Zhelaniya - collection of huts (probably abandoned) at the northern tip of Severny Island
- 6 Rogachovo - second largest settlement in Novaya Zemlya, a few miles from Belushya Guba
- 7 Stolbovoy - a scattered collection of a few buildings situated near the strait between the Severny and Yuzhny Islands
As a mountainous archipelago in the Arctic Ocean, Novaya Zemlya is a remote and inhospitable place with harsh weather. Due to its strategic position, it also has a history of use by the Russian (and Soviet) military, including being 1 the site of the 1961 detonation of the Tsar Bomba, which resulted in the most powerful nuclear blast ever produced by humankind.
About 80 percent of the population lives in the main town, Belushya Guba.
There are two weekly flights between Arkhangelsk and 1 Rogachevo Airport, a military airport (as of October 2020, prices start at 20,930 руб). However, as there is restricted access to Novaya Zemlya, special permission from the Russian government (and perhaps the military itself) would be needed to visit.
The temperature is below freezing for much of the year, so travel by boat would of course be impossible, except if you can use an icebreaker. However, from June to September, it is warm enough for ice to melt temporarily, and boating would probably be possible once the ice has melted.
However, practically all of the population in Novaya Zemlya lives in two towns: about 80 percent of it lives in Belushya Guba, and approximately the other 20 percent lives in nearby Rogachovo. There is a five-mile road which connects these two towns, so getting around does not pose a major problem unless you want to go outside of this region.
See and do
- 1 Russian Arctic National Park (New Earth). The northern part of Novaya Zemlya is a part of the Russian Arctic National Park. Franz Josef Land is also part of the national parkland.
- Numerous lighthouses. There are numerous lighthouses scattered across numerous settlements in Novaya Zemlya.
- 2 Cape Flissingsky (Мыс Флиссингский Mys Flissingskiy) (about 30 km / 20 mi as the crow flies south-southeast of Mys Zhelaniya, the nearest settlement of any kind). The cape is considered the easternmost point of Europe.
Eat and drink
The is a cafeteria in Belushya Guba.
- 1 Fregat, Yuzhnyy Pereulok.
Even farther north of Novaya Zemlya is Franz Josef Land. Other islands in the world's Arctic north include Svalbard (administered by Norway) and Ellesmere Island (administered by Canada), and for an even higher latitude, one can visit the North Pole.