Baltic Fund for Nature

History of the area

Ancient settlements
to our days
Fig. 6

  • Staraja Ladoga. The first settlement occupied the area over a thousand years ago. In the VII century a fortress was built of earth the southern part of which survived until today under the name of Zemlyanoje gorodishche (Earth hillfort). In 1114 construction of the stone fortress started. In the same period St. George's Church - one of the best examples of the XII cent. Russian church architecture, was built in the stone fortress.

  • Olonets. Already in XIII-th century the Olonets pogost (orthodox settlement) existed in this area, while the Olonets isthmus itself started to be inhabited about 7-8 thousand years ago. Primitive hunters and fishermen probably arrived from the Ural area or more southern areas. After Olonets was built to become the military administrative centre of the land in the mid XVII century, Karelia became the Olonets vojevodstvo (military province).

  • Novaja (New) Ladoga. The town lies on the left bank of the river Volkhov where it empties into Lake Ladoga. The land used to be occupied by the Nikolo-Medvedovsky monastery, organized in the XII-XIV cent. Later, Peter the Great, who was inspecting the area around the monastery in 1703, found it convenient for a new town. Economic development of the town was connected to the construction of the Ladoga canals and the port.

  • Petrokrepost. The river Neva is split into two branches by the Orekhovy island situated in its headwater. All of the island territory is occupied by the now half-destroyed Schlisselburg fortress. The fortress was founded by the Moscow prince Yury Danilovich in 1323, upon his return from the luckless Vyborg campaign.

  • Priozersk (Korela). The town is located three kilometers from Lake Ladoga in the Vuoksa river estuary. The town was initially designed as a fortress by the north-western border of the Russian state to protect it from attacks from the north.

  • Sortavala (Serdobol). This town founded in 1617 is located in the innermost part of one of the largest bays in northern Ladoga, in the place where the Serdobolsky pogost used to be since the XII century.

  • Table 6.1.1. Distribution of the population density among municipalities around Lake Ladoga


    Population density
    (ind. per 1 km2)

    Priozersky district


    Vsevolozhsky district


    Kirovsky district


    Volkhovsky district


    town of Volkhov


    Lodejnopolsky district


    Mean population density in the municipalities around Lake Ladoga in the Leningrad region


    Lahdenpohsky distict


    Pitkarantsky district


    Olonetsky district




    Mean population density in the municipalities around Lake Ladoga in Republic of Karelia


    Humans lived in the Ladoga area back in the Mesolithic and Neolithic. This is evidenced by the findings of flint tools and bones of wild animals on the southern shore of Lake Ladoga. Later, the land was populated by Slavonic and Finno-Ugrian tribes.

    One of the most interesting areas in terms of it's historical and cultural values is the Karelian Priladozhje, including the territory from Karelian isthmus in the south to the town of Suojarvi in the north, from the Mikkeli lakes area (Finland) in the west to the vil. Salmi (Karelia) in the east. In this territory where people had lived since the Stone Age, the nation of ancient Karelians (or Karelians proper from the linguistic point of view) formed. The complicated process of the culture formation involved local Balto-Fennic and West Finnish inhabitants, as well as those coming from the south-east of the Lake Ladoga area. Impressively rich information about the history of the land can be found in west European and Russian written sources, linguistic and toponymic materials, archaeological monuments.

    At present the lake shores in general are little populated (Table 6.1.1, Fig. 6). Other settlements (about 90) are also small in size, populated mostly by loggers, fishermen and inland waterways workers.

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    About project
  • Background
  • Purpose and Objectives
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  • Legislative basis
  • Legislation
  • Lake Ladoga drainage area as a management object

  • Environment
  • Geomorphology and landscapes
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  • Water - Land Border Zone
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