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Provideniya is an urban locality and the administrative center of Providensky District of Chukotka Autonomous Okrug, Russia, located on Komsomolskaya Bay in the northeastern part of the autonomous okrug, across the Bering Strait from Alaska, and very close to the International Date Line. Population: 1,970 ; 2,723 ; 5,432.


Provideniya is a former Soviet military port, sited on a fjord sheltered from the Bering Sea. The largest inhabited locality east of Anadyr, it was established as a port to serve the eastern end of the Northern Sea Route. The port is found in Komsomolskaya Bay (named after the Soviet Komsomol youth organization), a part of the much larger Provideniya Bay, providing a suitable deep water harbor for Russian ships, close to the southern limits of the winter ice fields.


After discovery in 1660 of Providence Bay by the Russian expedition led by Kurbata Ivanov, the surrounding waters became a regular site for wintering fishing, whaling, and merchant ships. In the early 20th century, with the beginning of the development of the Northern Sea Route along the coast of the bay, a coal depot was constructed for refueling ships heading west back across the Arctic and in 1933 the first buildings of the future seaport were constructed in what would later become the settlement of Provideniya. In 1937, with the arrival of a convoy with building materials for the construction company Providenstroy, active construction of the port and the settlement began. On May 10, 1946, the settlement of Provideniya was officially established by the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Russian SFSR. The settlement continued to grow quickly and military units began to be deployed here. On April 25, 1957, it was granted work settlement status. In 1975, it was planned to grow the settlement into a town with a population of twelve thousand and to rename it "Dezhnyov". However, social and economic upheavals in the post-Soviet period left these plans unfulfilled and in the period from 1994 to 2002 no construction was undertaken at all.

Administrative and municipal status

Within the framework of administrative divisions, Provideniya serves as the administrative center of Providensky District, to which it is directly subordinated. As a municipal division, the urban-type settlement of Provideniya is incorporated within Providensky Municipal District as Provideniya Urban Settlement.

Economy and infrastructure

There is a technical school, one functioning movie theater, a post office, a museum of Chukotka history and culture, one of the only two ski slopes in Chukotka, a bakery complex, and port facilities.


The settlement is served by the Provideniya Bay Airport, the closest Russian airport to the United States.

Provideniya is sometimes referred to as the Doorway to the Arctic, and since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, tourism from nearby Alaska has given the local economy a significant boost. Bering Air, an Alaskan airline, offers charter services to the Provideniya Bay Airport from both Nome and Anchorage. Alaska Airlines made a Friendship Flight to Provideniya in July 1988. Chukotavia provides flights to Anadyr.

High-sprung transports connect the settlement's concrete slabbed main street with outlying destinations along the fjord and coast.


A significant proportion of the settlement's current residents are Yupik, reflecting the high percentage of indigenous peoples in both Providensky and Chukotsky Districts. The settlement and the surrounding area struggle from alcoholism (which is especially high in indigenous areas), causing a high death rate, a low birth rate, and the population decline since 1990.


Provideniya has an Arctic climate, although winters are not as severe due to the coastal location and colorful flowers help bring the tundra to life during the summer. Winter temperatures are significantly higher than at other places within Chukotka such as Uelen and Ushakovskoye, because it is a more southerly settlement with greater maritime influence from the Bering Sea, as is the case with nearby Nome in the US, which has similar winter conditions. Summers are generally cool and the settlement receives heavy rainfall, especially when low pressure systems move northwards from the Pacific Ocean.


An evangelical church run by the local Moldovan community and missionaries is located in Provideniya. A Russian Orthodox church also operates.

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