World Heritage Russian sites of WH

Golden Mountains of Altai

Golden Mountains of Altai  
Status of component parts: State Biosphere Nature Reserve, Nature Park

Area: 1.51 million ha

Situation: Included into the World Heritage List in 1998

Criteria: (x)


Mount Belukha (4506 m)  The Katun River

Valley of the Chulishman River  The Ukok plateau


A striking originality is characteristic of the nature of this mountain Altai territory situated on the border of the Central Asia and the Siberia. In the basin of the Teletskoye Lake Altai cedar forests still remain. Here we also can find very large for Siberian mountains alpine and subalpine grasslands. The vegetation of the Southern Altai where semi-deserts, steppes and tundra easily coexist is also amazing.

Different landscape types facilitated creation and conservation of Altai endemic organisms. This area is the home of 60 mammal species, including ounce or snow leopard, 11 amphibia and reptile species and 20 fish species.

Terrain forms are very unusual here. Mount Belukha, the Siberia's highest mountain (4,506 m above the sea level), is very impressive in its grandeur. The Teletskoye Lake is the true pearl of the Altai. People call the lake a second Baikal because of its clearest waters, beautiful mountains surrounding it and the richest wildlife of the lake.