"Border District" Sverdlovs'k by hunterV

Sverdlovs'k Travel Guide: 68 reviews and 220 photos

City of Coalminers

The city of Sverdlovsk is located 83 km/51.6 miles to the southeast of Luhansk, the regional center, in the area known for its coal reserves.
The city itself occupies the area of 84 sq.km (32 sq.mi), which is three times smaller than that of Luhansk.
Sverdlovsk used to be the center of the district with the total area of more than 1,300 sq.km (500 sq.mi).
More than 114,000 inhabitants live in the towns and villages of Sverdlovsk District, among them about 100,000 inhabitants live in the city itself.
Unlike other counties of Luhansk region, Sverdlovsk District is not an administrative unit, but a part of the city of Sverdlovsk.
Sverdlovsk District existed until 1988 as a separate district of Luhansk region, but was cancelled in the course of an administrative reform and was subjected to Sverdlovsk, thus making the city the biggest one in Luhansk region as to its area.
Sverdlovsk has long been famous for its coal-mining and aluminum industries and for Provalye Steppe state reserve located nearby on the border with Russia.
The city does not have a long history. Its history is connected with the development of the coal-mining industry in the area.
The first settlements were founded on two rivers: the River Dolzhik and the River Sharapka.
The territory of the present city belonged to Taganrog County of Russian Don Cossacks Area until the twenties.
In the twenties the local coalmine was renamed after the first Soviet Prime Minister Jacob Sverdlov (1885-1919).
The settlement of Sverdlov coalmine developed and turned into a bigger settlement soon.
It incorporated a number of neighboring villages and settlements:
- the settlement of Sharapkino;
- the railway station of Dolzhanskaya
- and a number of neighboring villages.
They were all attached to the settlement of Sverdlov coalmine.
The new extended settlement got municipal rights in 1938.
The Communist authorities decided to name the town Sverdlovsk in honor of the first Soviet Prime Minister Yakov Sverdlov (1885-1919).
On May 29, 2009 a proposal of a resolution on renaming Sverdlovsk into Dolzhansk was sumitted to the Ukrainian Parliament.
The proposal promotes the idea of naming the city after the River Dolzhik on which it stands.
Let’s hope the city will soon be called after the river and the name of Jacob Sverdlov will vanish from the map of Ukraine once and for good.
I keep my finger crossed.

You can also see the map of Sverdlovsk County and find more information (in Russian) if you visit these links:
City Council
City soccer club
Photo albums
Unofficial city portal
Luhansk Traveller Program (Luhansk TV)
Driving in Sverdlovsk

State Reserve

The city and the district are famous for the unique nature of Provalye Steppe State Reserve located in about 25 km to the east of the city at the height of 325 meters (1,066 feet) above sea level.
Seven rivers flow on the district territory. All the rivers are parts of the system of the Velyka Kamyanka (the Great Stone River) that is a right tributary of the Seversky Donets - the biggest river of the region, the left tributary of the River Don that flows into the Sea of Azov.
There are a great number of ponds here: fifty-seven all in all, several of them are located in the city itself, which makes it look very special as compared to other cities of Luhansk region.
The biggest pond is located on the territory of the state reserve in Pear Gorge and is 40 square hectares.
Provalye Steppe state reserve is known for its rich flora and fauna and dozens of kinds of minerals.
According to the data of the city museum of local lore, this state reserve with its area of 588 hectares (2.27 sq.mi) includes nine huge ravines that add attraction to the scenery like nowhere else in the region. The maximum depth of the ravine is about 70 meters (230 feet) at King's Rocks.
King's Rocks are one of the attractions of the district. They are located at the left bank of the River Provalye and are 1.5 km (0.93 mi) long.
You can also see the Provalye Oak that is 20 meters high (65 feet) and is said to be about 300 years old. By the way, it is not easy to find it, even though it is quite big. You have to know the place.
If you have luck, you can see wild boars, roe deer, foxes and weasels on the territory of the state reserve. Among the 680 kinds of plants there are dozens of endangered ones that are listed in the Red Book of Ukraine, among them many kinds of feather grass that is, by the way, is represented on the city coat-of-arms.


City Symbols

The city has its own coat-of-arms adopted in 2002 and the flag adopted in 2003 by the city council.
The coat-of-arms is a French shield with the image of the Cossack symbols of power in the middle - the hetman's mace and the colonel's warder. These symbols remind us of the legendary past and the foundation of the first Cossack settlement here.
The free Cossacks (the word cossack means free man in Turks languages and quickly became a Russian and Ukrainian word, too) settled here in the 17th century and began to explore the lands.
The symbols of the Cossacks power divide the coat-of-arms into four parts.
In its upper part you can see two crossed black mining hammers, symbols of the coal-mining Donets Basin. They are represented on a silver background that stands for the aluminum industry of the city. You can see the rising sun on the black background in the lower part of the coat-of-arms. The rising sun represents the city's eastern position in Ukraine. It is depicted on a black background representing coal - the black gold of the district.
There is an agricultural instrument on the left as a symbol of the rich agricultural lands and an image of feather grass on the right as a symbol of the state reserve located on the territory of the district.
The city flag is yellow-and-green with a black triangle in the upper part and a white stripe.
These are the traditional colors of the city:

green that stands for land,
black - for coal,
white - for noble perspective,
yellow - for wheat.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Lots of things to see in the city and surrounding district, a splendid state reserve outside the city
  • Cons:Muddy streets in wet weather, air pollution, poor quality of roads and pavements
  • In a nutshell:Industrial City of the Donets Basin
  • Last visit to Sverdlovs'k: Sep 2009
  • Intro Updated Oct 14, 2013
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Reviews (69)

Comments (25)

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    Jul 31, 2011 at 12:23 PM

    The Kings Rocks and restaurants are some interesting places to see and eat at. Nice presentation of the city

  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo
    May 6, 2011 at 8:59 AM

    Great updatings since January of 2010! A very interesting page about a city which certainly deserves another name in my opinion. It's amazing one can reach Russian Sverdlovs'k from Ukrainian Sverdlovs'k by train, haha!

  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Jan 3, 2011 at 1:01 PM

    What wonderful architecture, museums, statues, and such a great selection of restaurants. Very helpful warning tips too. You always pack in so many wonderful information and details in your tips. Much appreciated. Excellent page!

  • HORSCHECK's Profile Photo
    Jun 28, 2010 at 10:11 AM

    Victor, fabulous page with great info about Sverdlovsk. It seems to be well worth a sidetrip from Luhansk. I would love to attend a football match of Shakhtar Sverdlovsk.

  • Basaic's Profile Photo
    Nov 17, 2009 at 9:35 AM

    You have been very busy my friend. So many update pages for me to look through.

  • csordila's Profile Photo
    Jul 31, 2009 at 3:40 PM

    Since you named your page as Border District, I have thought of Sverdlovsk locating betwen Asia and Europe in the Ural mountain. But your link to the Map of the District has helped me. Great to hear you always donate the local Cathedral. Best. L.

  • hopang's Profile Photo
    Jul 31, 2009 at 8:34 AM

    Superb Sverdlovs'k page with lots of wonderful photographs! This interesting tourist destination certainly has many wonderful attractions Thanks also for visitng our Portugal and Turkey pages. ~ho & pang

  • jumpingnorman's Profile Photo
    Mar 15, 2009 at 11:06 AM

    A very poignant tribute to Jacob - very well-written Victor! And I'd love to see that Eneolitic stone although I don't like snakes...

  • globetrott's Profile Photo
    Jan 11, 2009 at 2:58 AM

    An interesting page, Viktor,thanks for sharing ! Interesting to know they even have some kind of Disney-park !

  • Onedragon's Profile Photo
    Jan 11, 2009 at 1:20 AM

    Victor ..How much do the train tickets cost ??

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