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Fort Ross SHP: A Russian Fort by the Sea

Fort Ross State Historic Park Aerial View

Located on the California coast, Fort Ross State Historic Park was established in the early 1800s as Russian-American settlement from 1821 until 1841.

This commercial company chartered by Russia's tsarist government controlled all Russian exploration, trade and settlement in the North Pacific, and established permanent settlements in Alaska and California. Fort Ross was the southernmost settlement in the Russian colonization of the North American continent, and was established as an agricultural base to supply Alaska. It was the site of California's first windmills and shipbuilding, and Russian scientists were among the first to record California’s cultural and natural history. Fort Ross was a successfully functioning multi-cultural settlement for some thirty years. Settlers included Russians, Native Alaskans and Californians, and Creoles (individuals of mixed Russian and native ancestry.)

Today the fort is a historical park which attracts many thousands of visitors a year.

If you are interested in architecture, several of the fort’s buildings have been reconstructed, including the chapel, two blockhouses and the stockade.

For those wanting to just get away and enjoy the scenery, Fort SHP offers views of the ocean and picnic areas to enjoy a family picnic.

Wanting to just camp? Fort Ross SHP also offers 21 first come-first serve campsites.

It is advised to dress in layers as temperatures at the park can fluctuate.