The Sakhalin Regional Museum (Сахалинский областной краеведческий музей)

The Sakhalin Regional Museum is among the leading cultural and scientific and research complexes in the Russian Far East. There is a collection of more than 200 thousand exhibits of the history, flora, and fauna of the Kuril Islands, life, and culture of the aborigines of the Far East, the past of the island as a forced-labor camp.

Sakhalin Regional Museum,

The Sakhalin Regional Museum is housed in one the most beautiful buildings of Sakhalin built by a Japanese architect, Yoshio Kaizuka, in 1937. The building is built in the Imperial Crown style which is traditional for medieval Japanese architecture.  Building facades are decorated with bas-reliefs with floral motif; ornamental window guards made of copper and brass catch the eye.  Curved porticoes and roof give the building authentic orient look. The entrance to the building is guarded by Komainus – creatures that have features of both dog and lion that ward off evil spirits. Together with the park that surrounds the building, the entire complex forms the unified landscape ensemble in Japanese style.

Right after museum`s construction, Karafuto Governorate’s Museum was located here that was nationalized after the end of the World War II. In 1953 the first Sakhalin museum collections were moved to the museum from Alexandrovsky station. That museum was founded in 1896 by the administration of a local forced-labor camp and local clerisy.  Since then museum funds have been expanding and were replenished acquiring greater cultural and historical significance.

The collection dedicated to the aborigines of the Kuriles: Orok, Giliak, and Ainu, which is represented by household items and shamanic attributes are of particular interest. There are interesting exhibits in the museum collection telling about the development of the region from the ancient times till nowadays which is represented by the pieces from the Palaeolithic age. There are exhibitions of historical geology, fauna of the Far Eastern seas, flora, and fauna of the islands in the halls of the Museum.

Prison exhibition shows the life of convicts that were sent to this region since 1869.

There is a military exhibition with artillery weapons in the courtyard of the museum complex. Also, the pavilion of traditional Japanese school is preserved here, and the houses of aborigines and convicts were recreated.

Open hours and price

Tuesday – Friday, Sunday from 10 to 18

Saturday from 10 to 20

Ticket office

Tuesday – Friday, Sunday from 10 to 17.30

Saturday from 10 to 19.30

Day off – Monday

Ticket price 100 rubles

How to get to the Sakhalin Regional Museum

29, Kommunisticheskiy Prospekt, Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk

In the Russian language – Южно-Сахалинск, Коммунистический проспект, 29


The Sakhalin Regional Museum website in the Russian, English, and Japanese languages

PHOTO depositphotos.com

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