Korsakov is a fishing port town with a population of 35,000, situated at the southern end of Sakhalin Island, just east of the Asian mainland.
Korsakov is an anchorage port. Transportation from ship to shore is via the ship's tender service. At times ships also will dock here. You will arrive in the center of town.
Founded in 1853 as Sakhalin's first Russian military post, Korsakov would later serve as a penal colony. Ruled by Japan between 1905 and 1945, and later reclaimed by the Soviet Union, Korsakov is the place where Japan and Korea left imprint of their sojourn here on Russian culture. Though its tumultuous history includes power struggles and forced labor, the town is the perfect picture of tranquility today.
Due to Sakhalin's significant natural resources the city is surging with prosperity. Here, you can see a fascinating mix of modern buildings, museums and executive offices sitting comfortably with Russian and Japanese structures.
There is very little in the way of sights in Korsakov. But there is a great view over the harbor, along with a monument, on the hill just behind the sea terminal. The main street, Sovetskaya street is lined with small street stalls during spring and summer months, selling fresh fruits and vegetables.
According to the Russian Federation law, cruise or ferry passengers are the only category of tourists visiting Russia who are allowed to stay on the territory of the Russian Federation without visa for up to 72 hours.
However, cruise passengers can stay in Russia for 72 hours without visas only if they have booked tours through the companies officially licensed by the Russian government. Such companies will supply you with a tour ticket, which is called a blanket visa or booking confirmation, and let you pass the customs/immigration offices without any other documents except your valid passport and migration card that you will be given onboard. To get a tour ticket you need to order a tour program with the help of our company and give us a photo copy of your passport. The tour ticket will be sent to you electronically and you should have it while passing the port customs.
Forty-two kilometers north by minibus is the city and airport of Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, with a population of 175,000, where the majority of people on Sakhalin live. This is an attractive modern city, growth fuelled by investment from oil companies mining natural gas. In summer expect mild temperatures and foggy weather.
The official currency of Russia is the ruble, which is divided into one hundred kopeks. It is illegal to pay in foreign currency. ATM's are many.
Most upscale establishments will accept credit cards.
Russian is the official language, English only spoken in upscale places and by the younger educated.
The Post Office on Lenin Square has two computers with Internet access.
Emergency numbers Police 02; Ambulance 03; Fire 01
Most shops open Mon-Sat 10am-7pm or later.
Public holidays are: Jan 1; Jan 6/7 (Orthodox Christmas); March 8 (Women's Day); May 1 and 2; May 9 (Victory Day); June 12; Nov 7. Russians also celebrate the unofficial Old New Year on 13/14 January - according to the Julian calendar.
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