Lighthouses of Russia: Southern Khabarovsk Region

This page covers lighthouses of the southern half of Khabarovsk Krai, a huge province on Russia's far eastern coast. The northern coastline of the province faces the Sea of Okhotsk. This page includes lighthouses of the Ulchsky, Vaninsky, and Sovetsko-Gavansky Districts, all of which face the Tartar Gulf, the northern arm of the Sea of Japan. The gulf separates the mainland from the large island of Sakhalin. The major ports in this area are Vaninio and Sovetskaya Gavan' (Soviet Harbor), the terminus of the Baikal-Amur Mainline Railroad.

The region is named for Yerofey Khabarov, who explored the area for Russia in 1649-50. However, the region was also claimed by China, and in the 1689 Treaty of Nerchinsk Russia gave up its claim to the heart of the territory, the Amur Basin. The situation was reversed in the 19th century as Russians occupied the area, and in the 1858 Treaty of Aigun Russian sovereignty was established.

The Krasnyy Partizan (St. Nicholas Point) lighthouse shown at right dates from the very late 1800s, but nearly all the other lighthouses in the region were built by the Soviet Union (1917-1991). During the Soviet period, few foreigners were able to visit Russia's Pacific ports, and even today tourism in the Russian far east is not well developed. As a result, no photos are available for many of the lighthouses. If you have or can locate additional photos, please let me know.

Russian lighthouses are owned and operated by the Russian Navy, although some of them have civilian keepers. The Russian word for a lighthouse is mayak (маяк); mys is a cape, bukhta is a bay, zaliv is a larger bay or gulf, gavan' is a harbor, and ostrov is an island.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. Admiralty numbers are from volume M of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 112.

General Sources
World of Lighthouses - Russia Far East
Photos by various photographers available from Lightphotos.net.
Krasnyy Partizan Light
Krasnyy Partizan Light, Sovetskaya Gavan', February 2012
Panoramio photo copyright dsem61; permission requested

Ulchsky District Lighthouses

De-Kastri Area Lighthouses
Note: De-Kastri is a protected harbor on Chikhachev Bay in the lee of Mys Orlova. In 2003-06 a large terminal was built here for oil exports. The lighthouses of the area were presumably built during that period.
Mys Davydova (Mys Davidova, Mys Nepimetnyy)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 158 m (518 ft); one long white flash every 5 s. 8 m (26 ft) round concrete tower. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located atop a vertical cliff on the cape on the north side of the entrance to Chikhachev Bay. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7675; NGA 15761.3.
Ostrov Observatorii
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 27 m (89 ft); quick-flashing white light. 8 m (26 ft) octagonal concrete tower, painted with red and white horizontal bands. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on the east end of an island in the harbor of De-Kastri. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7676.5; NGA 15761.35.
* Mys Klykova Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); red flash every 3 s. 10 m (33 ft) octagonal concrete tower with gallery, painted white with a black vertical stripe on the range line. Lightphotos.net has a photo by Sergey Orlov, Vyatcheslav Kozlov has a view from the frozen sea, and Google has a satellite view. Located on a promontory on the north side of the harbor of De-Kastri. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M7677; NGA 15761.
* Mys Klykova Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 42 m (138 ft); continuous red light. 10 m (33 ft) tower with gallery. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on the north side of the harbor of De-Kastri, about 800 m (1/2 mi) west of the front light. Accessible by road. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M7677.1; NGA 15761.1.
* Mys Innokentiya Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 29 m (95 ft); green flash every 3 s. 11 m (36 ft) octagonal concrete tower with gallery, painted white. A closeup photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. Located on a headland on the south side of the entrance to Chikhachev Bay. Accessible by road. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M7677.5; NGA 15761.2.
Mys Innokentiya Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 42 m (138 ft); green flash every 3 s. 9 m (30 ft) tower, probably skeletal. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located about 600 m (0.4 mi) west southwest of the front light. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7677.51; NGA 15761.21.
Orlova (Mys Orlova) (Castries Bay, Klosterkamp Point) (1?)
Date uncertain (station established 1861). Inactive. Approx. 7 m (23 ft) square tower attached to a 1-story keeper's house. Bambizo also has a photo of the ruins, and Google has a satellite view. These are either remains of the original lighthouse, which had a focal plane of 80 m (262 ft), or of the second, which had a focal plane of 75 m (242 ft); it was damaged, perhaps destroyed, in a battle between Red and White forces in early 1920. We need more information on the history of this historic station. Located on the extreme point of the cape.
Orlova (Mys Orlova) (Castries Bay, Klosterkamp Point) (3?)
1920s? (station established 1861). Active; focal plane 84 m (276 ft); three long (2 s) white flashes every 20 s. 16 m (52 ft) octagonal cylindrical tower with lantern and gallery, attached to the front of a 1-story keeper's house. Lighthouse painted white, lantern black. Alex Bambizo's photo is at right, Alex Fyodorov has a distant winter 2010 view, an even more distant view is available, and Google has a satellite view. Located on an island off the point of the cape on the south side of the entrance to De Kastri. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. ARLHS ASR-050; Admiralty M7678; NGA 15760.
Mys Orlova Light
Mys Orlova Light, De Kastri, 2006
photo copyright Alex Bambizo; used by permission

Vaninsky District Lighthouses

Northern Tartar Gulf Lighthouses
Note: The Tartar Gulf (also called the Tatar Strait, Strait of Tartary, or Gulf of Tartary) is a funnel-shaped arm of the Sea of Japan that separates the mainland from the southern portion of Sakhalin. The Nevel'skoy Strait is at the tip of the funnel.
Syurkum (Mys Syurkum) (4?)
Date unknown (station established 1934). Active; focal plane 75 m (246 ft); white flash every 8 s. 14 m (46 ft) round concrete tower, painted with red and white horizontal bands. Andrew Ni has a view from the sea, and Google has only a very fuzzy satellite view. This station has a complex history, and it appears that there are three lighthouses surviving at the station, two of them detriorating into ruins. Ni's photo shows what is probably the original lighthouse in fog above the current station. Located on a very prominent cape jutting into the Tartar Strait about 125 km (75 mi) north of Sovetskaya Gavan' and 15 km (10 mi) southeast of Syurkum. Site status unknown. ARLHS ASR-067; Admiralty M7674; NGA 15768.
Syurkum (Mys Syurkum) (1?)
1934(?). Inactive. Square light tower centered on a square 1-story wood keeper's house. In Andrew Ni's view, this lighthouse is visible in the fog behind the current lighthouse. Site status unknown.
Syurkum (Mys Syurkum) (2?)
1934(?). Inactive. Approx. 6 m (20 ft) square cylindrical wood tower attached to the front of a 1-story wood keeper's house. In Andrew Ni's view, this lighthouse is in front of the current lighthouse. A closeup 1976 photo (no longer available online) showed this lighthouse, but the light was then on a post with gallery rising from a 1-story equipment room behind the house. The current tower has replaced this post. Site status unknown.
Mys Bychiy
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 134 m (440 ft); white flash every 3 s. 8 m (26 ft) octagonal white concrete tower. No photo available, and a view of the cape from the sea does not reveal the tower, but Bing has a distant satellite view. Located on a prominent cape about 100 km (60 mi) north of Sovetskaya Gavan'. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7673.

Vanino Area Lighthouses
Note: Vanino is an important port about 20 km (13 mi) north of Sovetskaya Gavan'. It is the mainland terminal for passenger and rail ferries to Khomsk, Sakhalin, and it ships goods to other Russian cities of the far east such as Magadan and Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky.
Mys Datta (2?)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 85 m (279 ft); white light, 3 s on, 4.5 s off. 12 m (39 ft) round concrete tower, painted with black and white horizontal bands. Square 1-story keeper's house. A distant view from the sea is available (click in the photo for enlargement), and Google has a satellite view of the station. The satellite image suggests that an earlier light may have been centered on a square keeper's house. Located on a prominent cape about 25 km (15 mi) northeast of Vanino. Site status unknown. ARLHS ASR-025; Admiralty M7670; NGA 15776.
Mushke (Muchkye)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 17 m (56 ft); white flash every 5 s. 5 m (17 ft) octagonal white concrete tower. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a promontory about 4 km (2.5 mi) northeast of Mys Khoy. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7660; NGA 15796.
Mys Khoy
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 30 m (98 ft); red flash every 5 s. 5 m (17 ft) octagonal white concrete tower. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a promontory marking the north side of the entrance to Vanino. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7651; NGA 15788.
* Vanino Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 50 m (164 ft); red light occulting once every 3 s. 14 m (46 ft) octagonal masonry tower with gallery, mounted on a square masonry base. Lighthouse painted white with a broad red vertical stripe on the range line. Nadezhda Kuznetsova's photo is at right, Maxim Lavrov has a photo, a good closeup, a 2007 photo, and a 2008 photo are available, and Google has a good satellite view. This lighthouse is located in a roundabout in the intersection of two major streets near the waterfront of Vanino; one of the streets is a boulevard that is aligned with the range. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS ASR-159; Admiralty M7653; NGA 15792.
* Vanino Range Middle
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 68 m (223 ft); continuous red light. 9 m (30 ft) octagonal masonry tower with gallery, mounted on a square masonry base. A closeup photo is available, and there is a Google satellite view. Located in the median of the same boulevard as the front light (previous entry) about 330 m (360 yd) west of the front light. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M7653.1; NGA 15792.2.
* Vanino Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 91 m (299 ft); continuous red light. Light mounted on the roof of the Vanino city hall. The building is seen in a photo, a second photo, and a Google satellite view. Located at the west end of the boulevard aligned with the range. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M7653.2; NGA 15792.4.
Vanino Range Front Light
Vanino Range Front Light, Vanino, June 2010
Panoramio photo copyright Nadezhda Kuznetsova
used by permission
Mys Yuzhnyy
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 21 m (69 ft); red flash every 5 s. 5 m (17 ft) octagonal white concrete tower. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a promontory marking the south side of the entrance to Vanino. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7652; NGA 15790.

Sovetsko-Gavansky District Lighthouses

Sovetskaya Gavan' (Sovgavan) Area Lighthouses
Note: Founded in 1941, Sovetskaya Gavan' ("Soviet Harbor") is the western terminus of the Baikal-Amur Mainline (BAM). The BAM is a rail line built as a strategic alternative to the Trans-Siberian Railway; it is farther from the Chinese border and much shorter than the route of the Trans-Siberian. The BAM was the last great public works project of the Soviet Union, finally finished in 1991, just before the union came apart. Since then Sovetskaya Gavan' has developed rapidly as an important port. Russians often abbreviate its name as Sovgavan.
Milyutina (Mys Milyutina)
1915. Active; focal plane 24 m (79 ft); red light, 3 s on, 4.5 s off. 8 m (26 ft) octagonal cylindrical tower with lantern and gallery, painted white; lantern dome is green. A view is at right, a good closeup photo is available, and there is a Google satellite view of the station. Located on the north side of the harbor entrance at Sovetskaya Gavan'. Site status unknown. ARLHS ASR-046; Admiralty M7643; NGA 15784.
Mys Alexandra
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 30 m (98 ft); red flash every 5 s. 5 m (17 ft) octagonal white concrete tower. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a promontory marking the east side of the entrance to the northern lobes of the bay. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7642.5.
Mys Gavrilova
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 16 m (52 ft); white flash every 4 s. 5 m (17 ft) octagonal white concrete tower. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a promontory due north of Mys Sharypova that separates the northeastern and northwestern arms of the bay. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7642.4.
Mys Sharypova
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 17 m (56 ft); red flash every 4 s. 5 m (17 ft) octagonal white concrete tower. In a view of the north side of the Sovetskaya Gavan Bay, the light is on the promontory at left; it is visible at highest magnification. Google has a satellite view. Located on a promontory marking the west side of the entrance to the northern lobes of the bay. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7642.3.
Mys Milyutina Light
Mys Milyutina Light, Sovetskaya Gavan'
Sovetsko-Gavansky District photo
Mys Marii (Zaliv Sovetskaya Gavan') Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 51 m (167 ft); red, white or green light, depending on direction, occulting once every 3 s. 16 m (52 ft) octagonal white concrete tower with lantern, gallery, and a black vertical stripe on the range line. No photo available, but Google has a good satellite view. Both range lights are still listed by international lists, but a local correspondent reports that the front light has been converted to a directional light and the rear light is deactivated. Located at the head of Sovetskaya Gavan Bay. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7639.
Mys Marii (Zaliv Sovetskaya Gavan') Range Rear
Date unknown. Inactive. 10 m (33 ft) octagonal white concrete tower with lantern, gallery, and a black vertical stripe on the range line. No photo available, but Google has a good satellite view. Located 800 m (1/2 mi) southwest of the front light. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7639.1.
Mys Marii
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 16 m (52 ft); white flash every 5 s. 5 m (17 ft) octagonal white concrete tower. This is probably a twin of the Sovgavanskiy lighthouse. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a cape on the west side of the entrance to the inner harbor of Sovetskaya Gavan', opposite the Sovgavanskiy light. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7638.5.
* Sovgavanskiy
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); green flash every 5 s. 5 m (17 ft) octagonal cylindrical white concrete tower with gallery. A 2007 closeup photo shows five young Russians crowded atop the lighthouse, and Google has a satellite view. Located in Sovetskaya Gavan', on the east side of the entrance to the inner harbor. Site open, and apparently it's possible to climb the tower. Admiralty M7638.
Bukhta Mayachnaya
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 10 m (33 ft); continuous green light. 5 m (17 ft) post mounted at one end of a square 1-story equipment room. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a pier in Lososina, a harbor on the east side of Sovetskaya Gavan. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7641.
Mys Putyatina
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 21 m (69 ft); white light occulting once every 3 s. 7 m (23 ft) octagonal concrete tower, painted white with one red horizontal band. Aleksander Maslak has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located on the cape at the south side of the entrance to Sovetskaya Gavan. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7642; NGA 15798.
* Krasnyy Partizan (Mys Krasnyy Partizan, St. Nicholas Point)
1897. Active; focal plane 85 m (279 ft); two white flashes every 30 s. 16 m (52 ft) octagonal cylindrical stone tower with lantern and gallery, attached to the front of a 1-story keeper's house. Lighthouse painted white. Fog horn (one long and one short blast every 30 s). Original French Fresnel lens still in use. A photo appears at the top of this page, another photo and a view from the sea are available, and Google has a good satellite view. Blogger Ivan Parus has a page with photos of the 1895 fog bell still mounted next to the lighthouse. According to one of the city's tourist sites, this lighthouse is on the standard city tour. This is the only 19th century lighthouse of Khabarovsk Krai. The keepers here were killed by an invading White (anti-Communist) army in 1919. Perhaps in their honor the cape was renamed "Red Partisan." Located on a prominent cape jutting into the Tartar Strait on the east side of Sovetskaya Gavan, about 6 km (3.5 mi) southeast of the harbor entrance. Site open, tower status unknown. ARLHS ASR-034; Admiralty M7640; NGA 15812.

Sea of Japan Lighthouses
Note: The sea between Japan, Korea, Sakhalin, and the southern Russian mainland is called the Sea of Japan in Japan and in most western countries. However, Koreans object to the name "Sea of Japan" and call the sea the East Sea or Korea East Sea. The Directory uses the name East Sea on its pages for Korea. The Russian name, Yaponskoye More, means "Japanese Sea."
Mys Innokent'yevskiy (1?)
Date unknown. Inactive. Light tower (?) mounted on a 1-story keeper's house. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. We need information on the history of this station. Mikhail Svistunov has a photo of the current light (focal plane 20 m (66 ft); green flash every 3 s), which is on a 5 m (17 ft) octagonal masonry tower, painted white. Google also has a satellite view of that light, located about 500 m (0.3 mi) north of the historic structure. Located on a promontory about 50 km (30 mi) south southwest of Sovetskaya Gavan'. Site status unknown, but apparently accessible by road with local knowledge. Admiralty M7637.
Peschanyy (Mys Peschanyy)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 27 m (89 ft); white light, 1.5 s on, 4.5 s off. 24 m (79 ft) octagonal cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery. Lighthouse painted white, lantern black. 1-story keeper's house and other light station buildings. A view from the sea is at right, a closeup photo and another view from the sea are available, but Google has only a fuzzy satellite view of the cape. It appears that the keeper's house may have had a lantern originally. The name of the lighthouse means "sandy cape." Located on a sandy barrier beach about 100 km (60 mi) south of Sovetskaya Gavan', at a point where the coastline changes from northeast-southwest to more north-south. Site status unknown. ARLHS ASR-054; Admiralty M7636; NGA 15820.
Mys Krestovozhvizhenskiy
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 27 m (89 ft); white light, 3 s on, 4.5 s off. 11 m (36 ft) round metal (?) tower attached to a 1-story equipment building. There is also a large rectangular daymark, apparently painted white with a red border, mounted billboard-style in front of the tower. Pavel Biktashev has a 2010 photo, and Bing has a satellite view. Located on a promontory about 70 km (45 mi) south southwest of Mys Peschanyy. Admiralty M7634; NGA 15824.
Mys Peschanyy Light
Mys Peschanyy Light, Sea of Japan, August 2010
Panoramio photo copyright Moneron; used by permission
Mys Bezymyanny (Bukhta Nelma)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 80 m (262 ft); white light, 4.5 s on, 7.5 s off. 8 m (26 ft) round metal tower, painted white. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on a promontory at Nel'ma, about 240 km (150 mi) south southwest of Sovetskaya Gavan. Site status unknown. Admiralty M7630; NGA 15828.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Northern Khabarovsk Krai | East: Sakhalin | South: Eastern Primorsky Krai

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Posted May 19, 2006. Checked and revised January 13, 2014. Lighthouses: 34. Site copyright 2014 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.