Its eastern and southern shores are flat and marshy, the north-western craggy and fringed by numerous small rocky islands, the largest of which are Valamo and Konnevitz, together having an area of 14 sq.
The hills of the north-western shore afford a variety of granites and crystalline slates of the Laurentian system, whilst Valamo island is made up of a rock which Russian geologists describe as orthoclastic hypersthenite.
The water of Ladoga is very pure and cold; in May the surface temperature does not exceed 36° Fahr., and even in August it reaches only 50° and 53°, the average yearly temperature of the air at Valamo being 36.8°.
Steamers ply regularly in two directions from St Petersburg - to the monasteries of Konnevitz and Valamo, and to the mouth of the Svir, whence they go up that river to Lake Onega and Petrozavodsk; and small vessels transport timber, firewood, planks, iron, kaolin, granite, marble, fish, hay and various small wares from the northern shore to Schlusselburg, and thence to St Petersburg.
The monasteries of Valamo, founded in 992, on the island of the same name, and Konnevskiy, on Konnevitz island, founded in 1393, are visited every year by many thousands of pilgrims. (P. A.