Here are some facts about the Volga River.
- The Volga River is the longest river in Europe, at 2,294 miles. It has its source in the Valdai Hills about 200 miles from St. Petersburg, and flows into the Caspian Sea.
- The drainage basin of the Volga includes most of Western Russia, an area that is home to 11 of the 20 largest cities in Russia.
- One of the most fascinating destinations along the river is the city of Yaroslavl, founded in the 11th century. The city is famous for its several cathedrals and beautiful frescoes.
- In places the Volga is so wide that you cannot see the other side. Some of the world’s largest reservoirs can be found along the banks of the river.
- The Volga River is navigable for almost all of its length, and has long been used to transport goods across this part of Russia. The river is often frozen for several months of the year.
- The Volga delta is the largest estuary in Europe, with several hundred smaller rivers and streams. It is also the only place in Russia where flamingos and pelicans be found.
- One of the deadliest battles in World War 2 was fought on the banks of the Volga River. The Battle of Stalingrad took place in Volgograd, a city located on a bend of the river.
- Huge sturgeon fish can be found in the Volga River. One of the most famous Russian delicacies, caviar comes from sturgeon.
- Pollution has affected the Volga River, and especially the caviar industry. Several thousand factories dump 10 billion cubic yards of waste into the river every year.
What next? Check out our river resources page and discover more facts about famous rivers.