World Heritage Russian sites of WH

Great Watershed of Valdai


Status of component parts: National Park, State Biosphere Nature Reserve, Nature Preserve

Area: 0.183 million ha

Situation: The possibility of inscription on the Russian Tentative List is being examined


Great Watershed of Valdai  Great Watershed of Valdai

Great Watershed of Valdai  Great Watershed of Valdai


The territory is situated on the Valdai upland and has a very complicated and picturesque terrain that formed during the last glaciation period. Here lies the great water divide of the Baltic, Caspian and Black Seas, the sources of rivers: Volga, Dnieper, Zapadnaya Dvina. There are a lot of large lakes including Lake Ilmen. Part of the lakes is of karst and glacial origin. Many of the lakes are interconnected and have a very intricate shore line. For this reason they are of extreme interest for tourism.

The borders of southern taiga and coniferous-broadleaf forests run through the park area. Undisturbed natural forest ecosystems are most valuable.

The Valdai Upland has a rich cultural heritage. Over 250 artifacts dating back to the Neolith (7-10 thousand years BC) to the height of the Novgorod Princedom (XI-XV centuries AD) were discovered within the borders of the park.