The Republic of Khakassia

Khakassia is a small territory in the southern part of Siberia on the western shore of the Yenisei river. Khakassia borders on the Kemerovo region, the Krasnoyarsk Territory, the Republic of Tyva and the Altay Republic. The three regions (Tyva, Khakassia and the Krasnoyarsk Territory) are commonly called «the Yenisei Siberia».

The Republic of Khakassia is located in South Siberia on the western part of the Yenisei river basin, in the Sayan Altay highlands and the Khakas Minusinsk Basin.

The Republic extends for 460 kilometers from north to south and for 200 kilometers from east to west (in its widest part). The area of Khakassia is 61569 kilometers which makes up only 0,36 per cent of the total area of Russia.

The steppes, the mountains and the taiga occupy a predominant part of the territory. The Sayan and Kuznetsk Alatau mountains cover two-thirds of the republic’s territory. The largest rivers are Yenisey, Abakan, Chulym and Tom. There are more than 500 lakes and 330 big and small rivers in Khakassia.

Located in the middle of the Eastern hemisphere, Khakassia is crossed by the ninetieth meridian. Geographical coordinates of the Republic are 53.7 north latitude and 91.4 east longitude.

Southern Siberia is a territory of ancient history, rich culture and beautiful nature. The central plain steppes of Khakassia are surrounded by the mountain taiga, creating the unique climate and pleasant living conditions. Khakassia is a developed agroindustrial region with steadily growing economy. The leading industries of the republic include hydropower industry, metallurgy and mining. The leading branch of agriculture is livestock breeding. The service sector and the tourist infrastructure are well-developed.


The total population of the Republic is 534000 people, the native Khakas constitute 12 percent of the total population. The capital town is Abakan with a population of 18 thousand people. The official languages are Russian and Khakas (the latter belongs to the East-Turkic language family).

Political order

The Republic of Khakassia refers to the Siberian Federal district and is divided into 8 districts: Ordzhonikidzevsky, Shirinsky, Bogradsky, Ust-Abakansky, Altaysky, Beysky, Askizsky and Tashtypsky districts. There are 5 cities: the capital city is Abakan, Chernogorsk, Sayanogorsk, Sorsk, and Abaza.

The native population

The native population of the Khakassia is represented by the Khakas, a turkic-speaking people who have lived nearby the Sayan mountains and the steppes of the Middle Yenisey river for centuries. The history of the native people dates back to the Tashtyk archaeological culture of 1-5th centuries AD and the Yenisey Kyrgyz people of 9-12th centuries AD.

The development of the Republic

The concept of the local government appeared before the Revolution, but only in 1930 the Khakas Autonomous Oblast was created within the Russian SFSR. On 3rd July 1991 the Khakas Autonomous region was reorganized as a republic and named The Khakas SSR. In May 1992 the region was finally named The Republic of Khakassia.

How to get there

Khakassia is located in Southern Siberia on the crossing of important highways, which is why transport is quite simple and you can use all means of transport. Tourists often visit two neighbouring regions on the same trip – the Republic of Tyva and the Krasnoyarsk Territory, in which case the journey should take at least ten days. Considering schedules, you can always ask the specialists of the Tourist information centre of Khakassia at +7(3902) 32-32-50, 322-550.


Moscow-Abakan, 4200 km
Plane: Siberia Airlines, Aeroflot airlines,
On schedule; flight time: five hours
Train: 068Y, 078Y, daily, Yaroslavsky railway station, travel time: three days
Novosibirsk-Abakan, 1210 km
Plane: Siberia Airlines, daily, two hours
Train: 068Y, 078Y, daily; travel time: 24 hours
Car: Road R-255 to Achinsk, Achinsk-Shira, Shira-Abakan
Tomsk-Abakan, 820 km
Plane: SiLa Airlines, Mon, Wed, Fri; flight time: two hours
Train: from Taiga station, 068Y, odd dates; travel time: 20 hours
Krasnoyarsk-Abakan, 410 km
Plane: KrasAvia Airlines, Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat; flight time: one hour
Train: 124Y, daily; travel time: 12 hours
Bus: daily; travel time: eight hours
Car: Road R-257 «Enisey»

* The changes are possible in the schedule


Touristic sights

Guests usually prefer to go to the warm lakes of the Shira district – Lake Shira, Lake Tus, Lake Belyo, Lake Itkul and others. The lakes are quite warm during a sunny summer. Due to the highly mineralized water of the lakes containing the healing mud you can have pleasant and revitalizing vacation. There are many entertaining courts surrounding the resort areas and summer camps, but you can also find quite places. There are also a lot of famous places of interest around the Shira lakes: the Tuim chasm, Borodinskaya cave, the mountain range Sunduki, the Ancestor’s path, ancient menhires and petroglyphs.

There are well-preserved ancient relics nearby the capital town Abakan – the burial mounds of the Scythian kings, rock drawings of the Tagar and Okunev epochs, ancient hillforts and sites. In addition to the city sightseeing tour, we also advise guests to visit the Oglakhty eco-tourist complex with its eco-trail steps leading to ancient petroglyphs. Not far from Abakan there is also an open-air museum called «Ancient burial mounds of the Salbyk steppe» with the ruins of Great Salbyk mound. This monument was built 2500 years ago for a Siberian Scythian warrior leader and it is 30 metres high.

Khakassia will totally amaze you! The legends of ancient warriors and heroes, power places, sacral shaman practice, old traditions and rites, everyday wisdom and vibrant culture attract tourists to the Askizsky and Tashtypsky districts.

The ethnography of the Khakas people is extraordinary. The ethnic culture is vitally represented in the Museums of Kazanovka, Ulug Khurtuyah Tas, Ust-Sos and others. Try your best to visit one of the national festivals, where you will see vibrant samples of the Khakas culture. In 2016 and 2018 Khakassia was recognized as one of the best places for ethnic tourism by the National geographic traveler awards contest.

Come to Khakassia, the land of five forces of nature, and remember that wonders are closer than they appear
Irina Derusheva
Director of the tourist information centre of Khakassia