Dikson Island

Dikson Island
Dikson and Dudinka

Dikson Island (Russian: Ди́ксон), initially Dickson, is the name of an island in Krasnoyarsk Krai, Russia, situated in the Kara Sea near the mouth of the Yenisei River. A nearby urban-type settlement of Dikson, which functions as a port and hydrometeorological centre is located at 73°30′25″N 80°32′47″E / 73.50694°N 80.54639°E / 73.50694; 80.54639. It is served by the Dikson Airport.

Diksonsky District covers an area of 25 km²; its population in 2004 was around 1,100.

Dikson is a port-of-call on the Northern Sea Route from Murmansk to the Bering Sea. It lies only two hours' flight from the North Pole.



Map of Dikson

Dikson has severe Arctic climate. The weather (even in August) is notoriously unpleasant. Winter in Dikson lasts ten months, and for two of those months the sun never rises.


Fiftieth anniversary of the urban-type settlement of Dikson. USSR stamp, 1965

Dikson Island and its adjoining urban settlement have been named after Swedish Arctic pioneer Baron Oscar Dickson. In the 17th century the island was known as Dolgy ("long") island, or Kuzkin, after its Pomor discoverer. In 1875, the Swedish explorer Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld renamed it for the wealthy Swedish merchant and philanthropist of Scottish origin Oskar Dickson. The name was soon Russified, by dropping the "c". Dikson has been the official name of the island since 1884. Oscar Dickson, along with Aleksandr Mikhaylovich Sibiryakov, had been the patron of a number of early Arctic expeditions, including Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld's Russian Arctic explorations.

In 1915 the island became the site of the first Russian radio station in the Arctic. The seaport on the mainland was built in 1935, and in 1957 the two settlements were merged into one.

During World War II the town was bombarded by the German pocket battleship Admiral Scheer in August 1942 during Operation Wunderland.


For administrative purposes Dikson Island belongs to the Krasnoyarsk Krai of the Russian Federation.


Coordinates: 73°30′N 80°32′E / 73.5°N 80.533°E / 73.5; 80.533