Volga River, located in the Caucasus region of southwestern Russia, with a total length of 3,531 kilometers, is the longest river in Europe and the longest and largest inland river in the world. The source of the Volga River is located in the Valdai Hills of Tver Oblast (about 400 kilometers northwest of Moscow), ending in Astrakhan Oblast (southern Russia). It flows north to south of Russia and finally into the Caspian Sea.
The Volga River has near 200 tributaries. The river flows entirely through Russia, including four of the country's ten largest cities, comprising 15 cities. The entire basin occupies one-third of the European part of Russia's territory. The Volga River is 40 km wide at its widest point near Samara.
The Volga River plays a very important role in Russia's national economy and people's life. Therefore, the Russians call the Volga River "the mother river." Ilya Yefimovich Repin also painted the worldwide famous painting " Tracker on the Volga." This Post shares more interesting facts about the Volga River.
Volga River Introduction
The Volga River Basin is one of the country's symbols and an important channel for water transportation and tourism. The Volga canal system is connected to the Caspian Sea, the White Sea, and the Sea of Azov and is connected to Moscow and Petersburg, the largest cities in Russia. The boat tour from Moscow to St. Petersburg is very popular with tourists, and people can stop in the scenic cities of Yaroslavl, Kostroma, Meshkino, and Uglich along the scenic Volga River.
The Volga River covers much of the Volga region and stretches 3,531 kilometers (2,194 miles) from its source in the Valdai Hills to the mouth of the Caspian Sea, the world's largest inland water body.
The Volga River is also Europe's largest river by drainage basin and discharge. Its drainage basin, located almost entirely in Russia, stretches 1.36 million square kilometers (the world's 15th largest drainage basin). The Volga discharges an average of 8,060 cubic meters of water per second, about 250 cubic kilometers per year. The Volga River flows through four major terrestrial ecosystems: marshy forest, forest-steppe, steppe, and semi-desert lowlands.
Climate And Hydrology
The climate of the Volga River basin exhibits variation along its course from north to south. The river's northern reaches have a temperate climate defined by cold, snow-covered winters and warm, humid summers. Meanwhile, the lower parts of the river basin have hot, dry summers and cold winters. Precipitation levels gradually drop from north to south.
More than half of the Volga's water comes from snowmelt, another third from groundwater, and only 10 percent from rainfall. The Volga used to flood during the spring. Several dams and artificial lakes are called reservoirs to store water and prevent floods.
The Volga River Basin covers almost two-fifth of European Russia and hosts about half of Russia's population. Its historical, cultural, and economic importance makes it one of the world's greatest rivers. Historically, the Volga River was the meeting point of the Eurasian Civilization. It also hosts some of the world's largest reservoirs and is a major source of livelihood for millions of people directly and indirectly. However, it can not deny that human activities have taken their toll on the ecosystem of the river basin. The pollution of river waters has greatly dilapidated the aquatic flora and fauna of the river. How to protect the Volga has become a topic of discussion among the Russians.