Duration - 7 - 10 days
Visiting most of the famous Ural deposits of precious and semi-precious stones.
Program of Tour:
Day 1 - Excursion program in the city Ekaterinburg
Day 2 – “Berezovsk’s gold mines - the first gold of Russia”
Day 3 – “Semiprecious mining-works in the area of the river Adui”
Day 4 – “Murzinka’s mining-works - a bright casket of Ural”
Day 5 – “Demidov’s Land “ or “Tagil’s Malachite”
Day 6 – “Ural emerald mining-works in the area of the river Tokovaya”
Day 7 - Excursion program in the city Ekaterinburg
Day 1 Excursion program in the city Ekaterinburg
1. Overview of the excursion in the historical centre of Ekaterinburg.
2. Visit of one of the mineralogical-geological museums:
Ural Geological Museum
The Ural Geology Museum was founded in 1937 as an exhibition of mineral treasures of the Urals organized for the 17th session of the International Geological Congress. In 1938 it was transferred to the Ural Geological Institute.
Nowadays the museum is the state “treasure-house” of the Urals and the cultural centre carrying out large tutorial, scientific and educational work. Its main aim is accumulation, investigation, systematization of rocks and minerals of the Ural region and their preservation for the next generations. In the museum are more than 40 thousand exhibits (rocks, minerals, crystals, fossils and others), reflecting the mineral riches and geology of the Urals.
It is housed in a four-story building not far from the city centre.
The exposition of the museum is subdivided conveniently into 4 main departments:
· Crystallography and Mineralogy
· General and Historical Geology
· Petrography and Lithology
Museum of the History of Jeweler and Lapidary Arts
It was founded in 1992 as a branch of study at the local lore museum of Sverdlovsk district.
It is located in one of the historical-architectural monuments of Ekaterinburg from the 19th century – a former factory drugstore.
The collections contained in the museum are based upon: handicrafts from the Ekaterinburg lapidary factory, modern jewelers and masters of lapidary and people’s private handicrafts from the Ural region.
The exposition is subdivided into several halls, among them: the hall of the Ekaterinburg lapidary factory, the malachite hall, the hall of the Uralian jasper, the hall of Russian jewelry from the end of the 18th to the beginning of the 20th century, the hall of the history of gold and platinum industry, and also exhibitions of sacred monuments and modern jewelry from the Urals.
Ural Mineralogical Museum
This - the first private Russian mineralogical museum was founded in the year 2000. In the museum is a unique collection of minerals (about 10 thousand samples) and handicrafts from stone and bone.
Also it is possible to visit a stonemason’s workshop, where items are manufactured from different Uralian stones (selenite, jasper, malachite and others).
Day 2 “Berezovsk’s gold mines - the first gold of Russia”
1. Place of discovery of the first gold in Russia and the monument to discoverer of gold - Erofei Markov.
2. Visiting the museum “Gold and platinum in the Urals” in the settlement Berezovsky.
3. Visiting the mountain “Uspenskaya” (Colored mine), where some minerals (for example crocoite, vauquelenite) were discovered. In the tailings it is possible to pick up fine samples of crocoite, vauquelenite and pyromorphite.
4. Visiting the quartz vein "puff vein" where you can pick up samples of rock crystals, including of dark green tourmaline.
5. Visiting the mountain “Gold hill”. Tourists can descend into the mine (depth up to 8 m) and look at processes of extraction of rock crystal. From the tailings it is possible to pick up samples of rock crystals of various morphology, including carbonates, fuchsite, green tourmaline, manganite, pyrolusite, goethite.
6. Visiting the “Galena vein”, where you can look at interesting paragenesis with azurite and malachite. Here it is possible to collect samples of minerals (dolomite, magnetite, goethite).
7. Visiting the “Chalcedonic vein” where it is possible to collect samples of multi-colored chalcedonies.
According to a prearranged plan it is possible to visit a gold mine in the settlement Berezovsk.
Day 3 “Semi-precious stone mining-works in the area of the river Adui”
1. Amethyst mine "Pokhmelnaya". Picking up samples of amethyst.
2. The mining works “Tsitrinoivaya”. Picking up samples of the crystal citrine.
3. Amethyst mining works near the village Kutikha. Picking up samples of amethyst and multi-colored chalcedonies with zonal coloring.
4. “Chumakovskaya Vein”. Here it is possible to see interesting sceptre-shaped, clavate and obelisk-shaped crystals of smoky crystal.
5. “Semeninskaya mine”, where was extracted amethyst, heliodor, smoky crystal and feldspar. In 1899-1900 in this mine was extracted more than 560 kg of jewellery beryl and more than 100 kg of high-quality jewellery aquamarine.
6. The mining works “Adui’s Dalnyaya” - mining works of green beryl.
7. “Mining works of “Mescherskii” - mining works of topaz, quartz, feldspar, columbite, and beryl.
Day 4 “Murzinka Semi-precious Stone Band – Mineralogical Casket of the Urals”
Visit the mineralogical museum by A. Fersman in the village Murzinka. Visit old-time and modern mining-works of semi-precious stones - beryls, topazes, amethysts and others.
1. The mining works “Taliyan” - one of the oldest deposits in the area of the village Murzinka, which has been developed since 1768. It has become famous for the fine amethyst of lilac color with a blood-red shade. Picking up samples of amethyst (sceptre-shaped crystals), crystal and green mica.
2. The mine “Vatikha” is the largest and most famous deposit of amethyst in the Urals. From here was extracted a lot of fine jewellery raw material and unique druses on beautiful sceptre-shaped amethyst rock crystals.
3. The mining works “Mokrusha”, discovered in 1875 and became famous throughout the whole world because of the delightful celestial-blue topazes (called "heavyweights" by Uralian prospectors). “Mokrusha” became famous from the end of 19th century in the Urals, when fine samples of cleavelandite, smoke crystal, garnet, “roses” of mica, needles and sheaves of tourmaline and fine blue topazes were extracted. Samples of these minerals the tourists can be found amongst the tailings.
4. The mining works “Golodnaya” (Hungry) is a very well known deposit and is famous for the large smoky crystals with mirror sides, fine topazes, yellowish-green beryl, green tourmaline and fine smoky quartz with inclusions of black tourmaline.
5. The quarry “Mogol” with pegmatite vein, where tourists can find samples of crystal, smoky quartz, cleavelandite, mica, heliodor and topazes.
6. The mine “Kazennitsa”, from where were extracted fine druses - morion, feldspar, cleavelandite, garnet, mica, topaz and aquamarine. In 1992/93 Kazennitsa became famous for the cavities with crystals of a gentle - pink topaz with weights up to 400 gr.
7. Visit corundum placers of the river Alabashka, where not large, but very transparent and brightly coloured rubies and sapphires were extracted.
8. The mining works “Delyunka”, where it is possible to find interesting samples of morion.
9. The mining works “Startsevaya”, which is famous for its fine aquamarines and heliodors. Here it is possible to find lepidolite, microcline, smoky quartz, grass-green beryl and beryl and topaz which are decorated with fine figures of etching and have freakish forms.
10. Visit the mineralogical museum of A. Fersman in the village Murzinka.
11. Picking up samples of barrel-shaped and fusiform greenish-blue corundum in vicinities of the village Murzinka.
12. Corundum placers “Koltashinskie”, which has been developed since 1880. These placers are interesting for corundum with an extraordinary color variety: dark blue and multi-color sapphires, yellow corundum, leucosapphires, reddish-lilac and gentle - pink rubies, quartz, topaz, beryl, garnet, hyacinth (zircon), olivine and occasionally - diamond. In 1865 in these placers the 1.5 carat crystal of diamond with well defined facets was discoverd.
Day 5 “Demidov’s Ancestral Land” or “Targilskii Malachite”
Visit the ancestral land of the Demidov’s - founders of the mining and metallurgical industries in the Urals.
1. Visit the famous deposit «Mednorudyanskoe”. This deposit was discovered in 1813. The major amount of uralian malachite of the 19th century was extracted from here. Right here was discovered a gigantic nest of malachite - which gave 480 ton of ornamental malachite, including a monolith of about 40 ton. Mednorudyanskoye deposit is where new minerals such as brochantite and delafossite are found. You can found out on the quarry’s dump specimens of malachite, chrysocolla, brochantite, martite, cuprite, pseudo-malachite, pyrolusite and quartz with hematite.
2. Visit the local lore museum of Nizhni Tagil (where was invented the first locomotive). The museum presents wonderful specimens of local stones, rocks and stone crafts.
3. Visit the Demidov’s metallurgical works.
4. See the main quarry at Vyusokogorsk – mining and ore concentration plants, which, from 1721 to 1990 was the source of raw materials for metallurgical production in Nizhnij Tagil.
The quarry has a depth of 200m is and partly flooded. Here is possible to discover specimens of magnetite, pyrite, tenorite, brochantite, pseudo-malachite, copper nuggets, fine pseudomorphoses of bright blue chrysocolla, which have distinctive bands of malachite.
5. Gorbunovskoye deposit of prase (green quartz). You can pick specimens of rock crystals, albite, tremilote, fantoms and also great specimens of cat’s eye.
Day 6 “Ural Emerald Mining-works”
1. T mine “Sretenskii” near the river Tokovaya, where almost 170 years ago were discovered the first Ural emeralds, phenacite and alexandrite.
2. Visiting Russia’s largest and world-famous emerald deposit– Mariiinskoe (Malyshevska’s deposit).
3. Visiting an emerald museum, where you can see unique samples of emeralds, phenacite, euclase, topaz etc. in the settlement Malyshevka.
4. Excursion on the “Krasnobolotnyi mine” which is well known for the extracted crystals of alexandrite.
5. Visiting the deposit of molybdenic ores. Picking up samples.
6. The mine “Krasnoarmeiskii”.
7. Picking up samples from the tailings of the Mariinskoe deposit. There is real opportunity to collect samples of phlogopite, molybdenite, actinolite, fluorite, beryl, oligoclase, and garnet.
8. Visit the largest Bazhenovskoe asbestos deposit in Russia. Pick up samples diopside, chrysotile -asbestos, serpentinite, vesuvianite, grossularite, calcite, chlorite and aragonite etc.
Day 7 Excursion Program in Ekaterinburg
1. Visit places of interest concerned with the stay in Ekaterinburg from 1812 to 1918 of members of the dynasty of the Romanov Tzars: Alexander I, Alexander II, Duke Leikhtenbergskii, Grand Dukes Vladimir and Aleksei, and the family of last Russian Tzar - Nikolai II.
2. Visit the obelisk marking the boundary of Europe and Asia.
Visit the geographical margin between Europe and Asia, examine the frontier obelisk “Europe – Asia” on the old big Siberian tract, which is a landmark and historical monument.