Rafting on the Zhizdra river in the Kaluga region; the best adventure for the whole family

Travel guide: Cossack town of Balakleya

Balakleya is one of the oldest cities in the Kharkiv region, located not far from Zmiev. It was visited by Peter the Great, there was a Cossack fortress and a military department.

Balakleya gave us many famous natives. Here was born "Ukrainian nightingale", as she is affectionately called for her beautiful voice, People's Artist, Oksana Petrusenko.

We invite you to get acquainted with the history and modernity of Balakleya.

Briefly about the history of Balakliya

Balakleya, Kharkiv region

According to the archaeological expeditions of the V.N.Karazin Kharkiv State University, the Balakleya lands were first inhabited 40 thousand years ago.

Remnants of the Sarmatian and Saltov cultures were found here. It is interesting that it was on these lands in 1185 that Prince Igor's campaign ended tragically. Later, the troops of the Tatar-Mongols invade the territory of modern Balakliya. Local settlers abandoned their homes, fleeing the raids of the barbarians, which led to the formation of the "Wild Field".

The first mentions in the history of the present Balakliya date back to 1571. The name "Balakleya" appeared due to the Balakleyka river, "fish river", in Turkic. During the existence of the Kharkov province, the Donetsk volost was located here. In 1663, the Cossack ataman Yakov Chernigovets came to the territory of present-day Balakleia, who, together with the settlers, founded Balakleia as a city. The fortresses of Andreyev Lozy, Savintsy and Byshkin were built.

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Emperor Peter the First himself visited these lands in 1709. He stopped near the walls of the Balakley fortress. At the beginning of the 20th century, a railway began to operate on the territory of Balakliya. In 1915-1917, Georgy Konstantinovich Zhukov, the future Marshal of the Soviet Union, came to Balakleya for military service. Alexander Sergeevich Griboyedov also served here earlier.

Balakleya, Kharkiv region

In 1918, Soviet power was proclaimed in Balakleya. Inhabitants of Balakliya endured drought, terror, famine. In the 1920s-1940s, a poultry farm, a creamery, various workshops, a bakery, and an industrial plant appeared. In 1931, a local newspaper began to be published.

Balakleya received the status of the city in 1938. During World War II, Balakleya was under German occupation until December 10, 1941. After the war, in 1950, the restoration of the national economy of Balakleya was completed. They began to build the Balakley cement plant, launched production at the Savinsky sugar plant. A sewing factory was also opened, and a poultry farm began to work.

Summer is coming to an end. As the song says: "Summer is a small life ...". Precisely, this summer we will never forget. Especially the most important, our most exciting adventure - rafting on the Zhizdra River, organized by the travel company "Safari".

Last summer we rafted down the Zusha River in the Oryol region. And this year we decided to go to the Kaluga region, the Ugra national park, to get acquainted with Zhizdra, one of the most picturesque rivers in central Russia.

It is with great pleasure that we share our impressions of the rafting. And we hope that our review will be useful to all doubters who have not yet decided on such a water adventure! Further - about everything in order.


So, let's take a backpack. We put there a raincoat, a flashlight, a knife, sunglasses, sunscreen, a sheet and personal hygiene products. We put on comfortable sportswear, shoes. We only tune in to POSITIVE. And go ahead! You are ready to raft. Welcome!

All other sports equipment is provided by the organizers and will be waiting for tourists at one of the forest sites of the Ugra National Park (parkugra. u).

Safari Travel Company provides:

  • two-seater plastic kayaks "Pamlico 135T", two-three-seater kayaks "Taimen", three-seater frame-inflatable kayaks "Khatanga", catamarans "Irkut-6";
  • two-three-person tents with a vestibule "TRAMP";
  • camping mats, sleeping bags, life jackets, hermetic bags;
  • campfire equipment, collective awning;
  • a camp bath with a stove;
  • pots, mugs, spoons, forks, plates, tables, benches and other attributes of tourist life.

A detailed list of things on the official website of the tour operator - Information sheet for rafting on the Zhizdra river.

This is a bivouac organized for the participants of the rafting at the starting point.

It's great when you don't have to worry about anything, when you are accompanied on a hike by professional tourism instructors, luminaries of their craft, who can tell so much interesting and, most importantly, teach everything!

We go through a safety briefing, put on life jackets, put things in hermetic bags and go! An exciting adventure awaits us - rafting down the Zhizdra River.

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