Svir River
Svir is a river in the north-east of Leningrad Oblast
Leningrad Oblast
Leningrad Oblast is a federal subject of Russia . It was established on August 1, 1927, although it was not until 1946 that the oblast's borders had been mostly settled in their present position...

, Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

. It flows from Lake Onega
Lake Onega
Lake Onega is a lake in the north-west European part of Russia, located on the territory of Republic of Karelia, Leningrad Oblast and Vologda Oblast. It belongs to the basin of Baltic Sea, Atlantic Ocean, and is the second largest lake in Europe after Lake Ladoga...

 west to Lake Ladoga
Lake Ladoga
Lake Ladoga is a freshwater lake located in the Republic of Karelia and Leningrad Oblast in northwestern Russia, not far from Saint Petersburg. It is the largest lake in Europe, and the 14th largest lake by area in the world.-Geography:...

, thus connecting the two largest lakes of Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

. It is the largest river flowing into Lake Ladoga.

After Peter the Great connected the Svir with the Neva River
Neva River
The Neva is a river in northwestern Russia flowing from Lake Ladoga through the western part of Leningrad Oblast to the Neva Bay of the Gulf of Finland. Despite its modest length , it is the third largest river in Europe in terms of average discharge .The Neva is the only river flowing from Lake...

 by the Ladoga Canal
Ladoga Canal
Ladoga Canal is a historical water transport route, now situated in Leningrad Oblast, linking the Neva and the Svir River so as to bypass the stormy waters of Lake Ladoga which lies immediately to the north...

, the river has been part of the Volga-Baltic Waterway
Volga-Baltic Waterway
The Volga–Baltic Waterway, formerly known as the Mariinsk Canal System , is a series of canals and rivers in Russia which link the Volga River with the Baltic Sea...

. There are two hydroelectric power plants on the Svir.

The river flows past the Alexander-Svirsky Monastery
Alexander-Svirsky Monastery
Alexander-Svirsky Monastery is a Russian Orthodox monastery situated deep in the woods of the Leningrad Oblast, just south from its border with the Republic of Karelia...

, which used to house Svirlag
Svirlag, SvirLAG was a Soviet forced labour camp run by NKVD's GULAG Directorate...

 (one of the most infamous gulag
The Gulag was the government agency that administered the main Soviet forced labor camp systems. While the camps housed a wide range of convicts, from petty criminals to political prisoners, large numbers were convicted by simplified procedures, such as NKVD troikas and other instruments of...

s). The area around the river saw heavy fighting during the Continuation War
Continuation War
The Continuation War was the second of two wars fought between Finland and the Soviet Union during World War II.At the time of the war, the Finnish side used the name to make clear its perceived relationship to the preceding Winter War...


The right bank of the lower Svir is occupied by the Nizhnesvirsky Nature Reserve
Nizhnesvirsky Nature Reserve
The Nizhnesvirsky Nature Reserve is a 416 km² zapovednik in Leningrad Oblast, Russia, established in 1980. It occupies lowlands on the right bank of the lower Svir River, including a portion of the eastern shore of Lake Ladoga and its waters. The zapovednik's northern border coincides with the...

, established in 1980.

There are two dam
A dam is a barrier that impounds water or underground streams. Dams generally serve the primary purpose of retaining water, while other structures such as floodgates or levees are used to manage or prevent water flow into specific land regions. Hydropower and pumped-storage hydroelectricity are...

s with hydroelectric power plants on the river. The Nizhne-Svirskaya HPP sits 81 km from the
river's mouth while the Verkhne-Svirskaya HPP is 128 km away.

Main tributaries

  • Vazhinka (right)
  • Oyat
    Oyat River
    Oyat is a river in Vologda Oblast and Leningrad Oblast of Russia, a left tributary of the Svir River ....

  • Pasha
    Pasha River
    Pashá is a river in the eastern part of Leningrad Oblast of Russia, a left tributary of the Svir River . It is the largest and the most downstream of Svir's tributaries. It joins the Svir just 8 km away from Svir's mouth. Its largest tributary is the Kapsha River....


Cities and towns along the Svir

  • Podporozhye
    Podporozhye is a town in Leningrad Oblast, Russia, located on the Svir River northeast of St. Petersburg. Population: In the early 18th century, Peter the Great ordered the resettlement of peasants from the Msta River to the current location of Podporozhye to organize navigation along the...

     (60°54′N 34°11′E)
  • Lodeynoye Pole
    Lodeynoye Pole
    Lodeynoye Pole is a town in Leningrad Oblast, Russia, located on the left bank of the Svir River northeast of St. Petersburg. Population: 21,400 ....

    (60°43′N 33°33′E)
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