Travel Guide Europe Russia Far Eastern Russia Yuzhno-Kurilsk



Yuzhno-Kurilsk is an urban locality and the administrative center of Yuzhno-Kurilsky District of Sakhalin Oblast, Russia, with a population of about 6,000. It is the largest settlement on the Kunashir Island of the Kuril Islands.




Yuzhno-Kurilsk has a borderline humid continental climate (Köppen Dfb) that is almost cold enough in the warmest months to be a subarctic climate. Precipitation, however, is much heavier than most climates of its type owing to the presence of strong onshore winds from the Pacific Ocean. These, however, make the whole archipelago extremely cloudy, especially in the summer when fog from the Oyashio Current produces near-saturation humidity and extremely high cloudiness. However, Yuzhno-Kurilsk itself is less affected than places to the north because it is somewhat shielded from fog by the Shiretoko and Nemuro Peninsulas and actually receives more sunshine than Wakkanai and only marginally less than Sapporo.

Maritime influences are also reflected in summer temperatures being much lower than in comparable latitudes in the interior of Asia; for example, the warmest month at Yuzhno-Kurilsk is 5 °C cooler than at Vladivostok and 9 °C cooler than in Harbin. Due to its less cold winters, these differences even out during the course of the year, but Yuzhno-Kurilsk has a 10 °C colder climate annually than Genoa, Italy on the exact latitude.

The climate in this part of the world is at a huge anomaly in respect to latitude, with an exceptionally cold climate for a marine area nearer the tropics than the polar zone.



Getting There

SAT airlines operates flights to and from Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk 3 times per week, out of Mendeleyevo Airport (ICAO: UHSM), located 20 kilometers outside Yuzhno-Kurilsk. One or two times every month in summer, there is a ferry service connecting to Korsakov on Sakhalin island.



Keep Connected


Russia is a huge country, and excess to the internet varies a lot. The main cities and tourist places have (free) wifi excess at lots of places, like restaurants and cafes (McDonald's is always a safe bet). Internet cafes are present in larger places as well. Rural areas and especially if you venture into remote and/or mountainous areas have little excess at all. Most travellers will find connections though when using their phone or tablet.


See also: International Telephone Calls

The emergency number is 112. The country code for Russia is 7. Russian phone numbers have an area code with three, four or five digits (according to their province), followed by an individual number with, respectively, 7, 6 or 5 digits, always yielding 10 digits in total. The three digit code 800 is used for toll-free calls. Mobile phones always have three-digit "area" codes and seven-digit numbers. Calls within any one area code may omit the area code (except in Moscow). Inter-area code calls within Russia: 8 (wait for tone) full Russian number including area code. The international access code for dialling outwith Russia is the sequence of 8 (wait for secondary tone and then) 10. International calls to Russia, as always, replace the plus sign (+) in the international phone format with the local international access code for the country you're calling from, followed by Russia's country code of 7 followed by the individual Russian phone number including area code.

You will require a SIM-unlocked GSM 900 / 1800 compatible international cell phone when buying a Russian SIM card. If you do not have your own international cell phone, it's best to buy a cheap cell phone with some value on the card. Foreigners can purchase a local SIM card by showing your passport. BeeLine is considered to be the best in terms of reliability and connections quality. However Megafon's services can be a bit cheaper.


Russian Post is the national postal service of Russia. It's English version is currently under construction, but mainly involves the track&trace system. The domestic post is reasonably reliable, and sending international mail is fairly reliable but slow, taking at least a few weeks to European countries, longer to the USA or Australia for example. The delivery of mail sent from abroad to Russia is highly unreliable, and people or companies tend to use foreign adresses, from where a private carrier sends it to Russia. Alternatives like poste restante are non-existent with Russian Post. Most cities and large towns in Russia have a Central Post Office (Glavpochtamt), which also sells stamps and envelopes, and usually has fax services and Internet availability, though the latter mostly not in smaller places. Also, many hotels have postal services, including mail boxes. Post offices tend to keep long hours, usually from 8:00am or 9:00am until 8:00pm or 9:00pm Monday to Friday, and closing earlier during weekends. The main central post offices in the biggest cities keep even longer hours. For sending parcels, you can also try services by DHL Russia and FedEx Russia. For all mail you can use the regular alphabet, though maybe include the country's name in Cyrillic. For sending post to Russia (or trying to receive it) note that addresses should be in reverse order: Russia, postal code, city, street address, name.


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This is version 1. Last edited at 12:16 on Apr 24, 17 by Utrecht. 1 article links to this page.

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