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Trip Planner Europe  /  Estonia  /  Harju County  /  Paldiski

Paldiski

3.2
Lighthouses · Geologic Formations · Architectural Buildings
Paldiski is a town and Baltic Sea port situated on the Pakri peninsula of north-western Estonia. Originally a Swedish settlement known as Rågervik, it became a Russian naval base in the 18th century. The Russians renamed it Балтийский Порт ("Baltiyskiy Port", i.e. Baltic Port, Baltisch-Port) in 1762. In Estonian the name was spelled Baltiski until 1933 when the Estonian pronunciation Paldiski became the official name.HistoryRussian EmpireOn 23 June 1912 the Russian emperor Nikolai II and German kaiser Wilhelm II met for the last time before World War I in Paldiski.Soviet eraIn 1962, Paldiski became a Soviet Navy nuclear submarine training centre. Employing some 16,000 people, and with two land-based nuclear reactors (at 70 MW and 90 MW power, respectively), it was the largest such facility in the Soviet Union. Because of its importance, the whole city was closed off with barbed wire until the last Russian warship left in August 1994, when the city ceased to be a closed city. This followed the events of 1991, when the Soviet Union collapsed and Estonia regained independence. To house the stationing troops and those in training, many barracks buildings were built, which have since been left in disrepair. Russia relinquished control of reactor facilities in September 1995; the nuclear reactors were shut down, and nuclear material was transported back to Russia. The reactors were thereafter decommissioned.
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