Oka River

Oka River
Oka River

Oka river between Serpukhov and Kashira cities in Moscow region. Its width there is about 200 m (220 yd).
Mouth Volga River
Basin countries Russia
Length 1,500 km (932 mi)
Avg. discharge 1,300 cubic metres per second (46,000 cu ft/s)
Basin area 245,000 square kilometres (95,000 sq mi)
Map of the Volga watershed with the Oka highlighted
The confluence of the Oka with the Volga in Nizhny Novgorod.
The Oka riverbank in Nizhny Novgorod.
The Oka River in Moscow Oblast, near Serpukhov.

Oka (Russian: Ока́, IPA: [ɐˈka]) is a river in central Russia, the largest right tributary of the Volga. It flows through the regions of Oryol, Tula, Kaluga, Moscow, Ryazan, Vladimir, and Nizhny Novgorod and is navigable over a large part of its total length, as far upstream as to the town of Kaluga. Its length exceeds 1,500 kilometres (930 mi). The Russian capital Moscow sits on one of the Oka's tributaries—the Moskva River.


Name and history

Max Vasmer connects the name of the river to the Gothic аƕа, Old High German aha, Latin aqua, which all mean either "water" or "river" (cf. Aa River).[1] Oleg Trubachev traces the origin of the name to the Baltic languages: it was the Baltic tribe of Galindians that lived in the western part of the Oka basin prior to the arrival of the Slavs.

Historically, the river gave its name to the Upper Oka Principalities, situated upstream from Tarusa. One of the largest Russian cities, Nizhny Novgorod, was founded to protect the Oka's confluence with the Volga. The Qasim Khanate, a Muslim polity, occupied the middle reaches of the Oka (around the city of Kasimov) in the 15th and 16th centuries.

Before the construction of the railways in the mid-19th century, and the Moscow Canal in the 1930s, the Oka, along with its tributary Moskva, was an important transportation route connecting Moscow with the Volga River. Due to the Oka's and Moskva's meandering course, the travel was not particularly fast: for example, it took Cornelis de Bruijn around 10 days to sail from Moscow down these two rivers to Nizhny Novgorod in 1703.[2] Traveling upstream may have been even slower, as the boats had to be pulled by burlaks.[3]


The banks of the river are dotted with historical and cultural sites, including the medieval monasteries of Murom, the mosques and minarets of Kasimov, the fortified kremlins of Kolomna and Serpukhov, the memorial houses of Vasily Polenov and Sergey Yesenin, the excavated ruins of Old Ryazan, and the Oka Shukhov Tower.

The Prioksko-Terrasny Biosphere Reserve lies along the left bank of the river opposite the town of Pushchino and is known for its wisent breeding nursery.

Main tributaries

Cities and towns on the Oka


External links

Coordinates: 56°20′N 43°59′E / 56.333°N 43.983°E / 56.333; 43.983

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Oka (river) — Oka River may refer to either: *The Oka River in European Russia which flows into the Volga *The Oka River (Siberia) in Siberia …   Wikipedia

  • Oka River — River, central Russia. The largest right bank tributary of the Volga River, it flows 932 mi (1,500 km) north to Kaluga, then east to join the Volga at Nizhny Novgorod. Navigable for most of its length, except during winter, it is an important… …   Universalium

  • Oka River (Siberia) — This page is for a river in Siberia, Russia. For the river in European Russia with the same name, see Oka River. Oka Origin Sayan Mountains Mouth Angara River Basin countries Russia Length …   Wikipedia

  • Shukhov tower on the Oka River — (Dzerzhinsk High Voltage Mast) is the world’s only surviving hyperboloid electricity pylon. It is located in Russia, in the western suburbs of Nizhniy Novgorod, on the left bank of the Oka River near Dzerzhinsk. History The Shukhov Tower was a… …   Wikipedia

  • Oka — or OKA may refer to: Oka (cheese), a Canadian cheese Oka (mass), an Ottoman unit of weight equal to 1.2829 kilograms Oca or Oca, the root vegetable Oxalis tuberosa MXY 7 Ohka (also spelled Ōka), a Japanese kamikaze aircraft in World War II R 400… …   Wikipedia

  • Oka (Siberie) — Oka (Angara) Pour les articles homonymes, voir Oka. Oka L Oka, rivière de Sibérie Caractéris …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Oka (Sibérie) — Oka (Angara) Pour les articles homonymes, voir Oka. Oka L Oka, rivière de Sibérie Caractéris …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Oka (Russia) — Oka as a geographical name in Russia may refer to: *The Oka River in European Russia, which flows into the Volga *The Oka River (Siberia) in Siberia, which flows into the Angara …   Wikipedia

  • river — river1 riverless, adj. riverlike, adj. /riv euhr/, n. 1. a natural stream of water of fairly large size flowing in a definite course or channel or series of diverging and converging channels. 2. a similar stream of something other than water: a… …   Universalium

  • Oka, Quebec — Oka   Municipality   Municipalité d Oka Oka village and Lake of Two Mountains as seen from Mount Oka …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.