The region of Kaliningrad is located on the former northern territory of East Prussia
, (German: Nord-Ostpreussen), which was a German enclave between the First and the Second World Wars.
In 1945, the territory of East Prussia was annexed by the Soviet Union according to the Treaty of Potsdam.
The region became apart of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic. Most of its German population had fled to the German "mainland" during the war, and those remaing were expelled follwoing the war, from 1945 to 1950. Russians were resettled in the region, and the population has been Russian ever since.
The oblast's capital and largest city is Kaliningrad
(formerly known as Königsberg
, the historical capital of the German province of East Prussia). The city was partitioned following the Second World War between the USSR and Poland, and renamed after the Soviet Head of State Mikhail Kalinin.
Many important figures, such as Immanuel Kant and E. T. A. Hoffmann, have their origins in this region.
The cities of Kaliningrad Oblast, despite being heavily damaged during World War II and thereafter, still contain some typical German architecture, showcasing the rich German history and cultural importance of the area.
Kaliningrad Oblast's economy is positively influenced by several factors, such as ice-free ports, the world's largest amber deposits and proximity to European countries.
The region also has a developed tourist infrastructure, unique museums and monuments, and tourist attractions such as the famous Curonian Spit
Kaliningrad Oblast possesses more than 90% of the world's amber deposits.Most of the mined amber is processed outside of the region, in Russia and in other countries.
Fishing is one of the important regional industries, with big fishing ports in Kaliningrad and Pionersky (formerly Neukuhren) and lesser ones in Svetly and Rybachy.
Russian name German name
This is a list of German names for the most inhabited localities in Kaliningrad Oblast
Chernyshevskoye Eydtkau [Eydtkuhnen]
Zinyavino GroßHubnicken (beiPalmnicken)
The Kaliningrad region is Russia's westernmost area situated on the southeast of the Baltic Sea. It is completely detached from Russia by the land and sea frontiers of the foreign states surrounding the region. On the north and the east, the region borders on Lithuania, on the south it neighbours on Poland, on the west the region is outlined by a 140 km long coastline of the Baltic sea, out of which 100 km are sandy beaches. The total area of the Kaliningrad region is 15.100 sq. km, that is 0.1% of Russia's main land territory. From west to east, the maximum length of our region comprises 195 km; from north to south, it extends up to 100 km.
The waters of the Baltic Sea form two gulfs: the Curonian Gulf (1.600 sq. km) and the Kalinin-grad (Vistula) Gulf (500 sq. km). The narrow stripes of land - the Curonian spit, 48 km of which belong to the Kaliningrad region, and the Baltic spit (65 km) - separate the gulfs from the sea. The Curonian and the Baltic spits with their moveable white sand dunes towering at some points at a height of 70 m and boasting their relict pine-tree woods are unique natural sanctuaries.
The climate of Kaliningrad is quite mild. In summer time, air temperature fluctuates from +22C to +25C and occasionally rises up to +30C and higher. Sea temperature varies from +19C to +22C. Vegetation period lasts for 180-200 days. Bathing season starts in June and continues until the mid of September.
The Kaliningrad region was formed on April 6, 1946. However, the territory occupied by the Ka-liningrad region has been known in Europe since early Middle Ages. The 13th century was marked by the invasion of the Teutonic knights, who conquered the pagan Prussian tribes, de-stroyed their stronghold Tvangste and on its place founded a military and religious state with a fortress of Koenigsberg (stands for "King's mount" in German) as a center of the Teutonic Order in the East. Here, the Marshal's residence was erected, and in 1457 the office and court of the Grand Master - Head of the Teutonic Order - was transferred to Koenigsberg. Later, the Teutonic Order was reorganized into the Prussian dukedom, which in the beginning of the 17th century joined the Prussian kingdom. In 1772, part of the Prussian territory received a title of East Prussia and Koenigsberg was nominated its capital. East Prussia lasted until the end of the WWII and was denounced by the decision of the Potsdam Conference in 1945. Two thirds of it’s territory were annexed to Poland and the remaining part adjoining Koenigsberg, i.e. one third of the former East Prussia, in 1946 was converted into the Kaliningrad region as part of the Russian Federation, the former USSR. On July 4, 1946, the city of Koenigsberg was renamed into Kaliningrad after M.I. Kalinin, a Soviet statesman and one of Stalin's party bosses.
Historical, cultural and architectural monuments
Up to date, the architectural masterpieces of East Prussia speak vividly of the centuries-old history of this mysterious land keeping memories of the great Prussian commanders and talented kings, philosophers and poets, political leaders and masters of art, industrialists and mariners. The living eye-witnesses of the bygone victories and defeats are the old Koenigsberg's city gates: Rosgarten Gates, Zakhaim Gates, King's Gates, Brandenburg Gates, Fridland Gates, gates of fortress Fridrichsburg, strongholds and bulwarks constructed in the 14th-17th centuries.
For many centuries, the center of the spiritual and religious life of Koenigsberg was the Dome (1333), which in 1989 was included in the list of the World's historical monuments by the UN-ESCO. A prominent German philosopher Immanuel Kant was buried by the Dome's wall.
The Teutonic fastnesses, the oldest German church Juditten are the masterpieces of the early German gothic architectural style. The house of the Koenigsberg Stock Exchange built in the style of Floretine Renaissance and once a member of the Hanseatic League is now a symbol of the golden age of Koenigsberg's trade with the four continents, i.e. Europe, Asia, Africa, and America. Churches of St. Queen Luisa and the Holy Family, these and many other places of the region's cultural and historical heritage attract tourists from all over the world.