As an example, the city of Haifa (population 280k) has a Russian consulate in addition to the main embassy in Tel Aviv. The Haifa consulate is full fledged and can issue visas, not just an honorary outpost. Is there a smaller non-capital city that has a foreign consulate or embassy?

The exact conditions are:

  • The diplomatic outpost must be an embassy or a consulate, not an "honorary consulate"
  • It must interact with the general public in some way, e.g. issue visas or provide consular assistance to citizens
  • It must be staffed permanently, not just a few times per year
  • City here is defined as the largest settlement within a 50km radius from where the consulate is located. E.g. an embassy across the river from Manhattan would count as a New York City consulate, not as a New Jersey consulate.
  • The city must not be the official capital of that country
  • "Smallest" is defined by the total population of the city in question
  • 6
    What about non-honorary consulates that are not consulates general? They do exist, and I suspect that you would include them, but it would be better to be explicit about this in the question.
    – phoog
    Commented Jan 17, 2020 at 13:48
  • 7
    Is this a practical, real-life question? Further, surely the population within corporate boundaries of a municipality is less important than that of the metropolitan area, except as a piece of trivia?
    – choster
    Commented Jan 17, 2020 at 15:41
  • 2
    @choster I think it would be interesting to visit the world's smallest consulate
    – JonathanReez
    Commented Jan 17, 2020 at 17:17
  • 2
    @phoog any permanently open diplomatic office that interacts with the general public is okay, as long as it's not a "honorary consulate".
    – JonathanReez
    Commented Jan 17, 2020 at 18:15
  • 4
    @JonathanReez Then the proper terminology is simply “consulate”, not “consulate general” (the question still states otherwise).
    – Relaxed
    Commented Jan 17, 2020 at 19:16

5 Answers 5


Russian Consulate General in Barentsburg, Norway. The settlement has a population of 470 people.

Even if you assume that is also serves Longyearbyen, the capital of Svalbard (not connected by any roads with Barentsburg), the population of both settlements is only around 2570.


México has a consulate in Presidio, TX, which has a population of around 4500.


The city of Airar in the island nation of Palau hosts the embassy of the United States of America, even though it is not the capital of Palau. Airar had a population of 2455 in 2015. The embassy provides services to US citizens.

  • 5
    True, but it serves Koror, which is only a few km away, via a bridge. Koror used to be the capital, but it changed in 2006. Koror is the largest city in Palau with around 14,000 people in its 'metro' area, which includes Airar. And, no, I'm not missing a zero there. The largest metro area in Palau is really only about 14,000 people, with the entire country's population being only around 18,000.
    – reirab
    Commented Jan 18, 2020 at 19:40

The town of Puerto Obaldía in Panama has a Colombian consulate (not an honorary consulate). There are some photos of the consulate here.

Puerto Obaldía only host 672 people according to Wiki.

This town is literally in the middle of nowhere. It has no access to any roads (its located in the Darien gap) and only has a small airfield to connect it to the outside world.

I believe it could the smallest non-capital city with a full time operational consulate in the world.

  • Interesting! Do you know why they need a consulate there?
    – JonathanReez
    Commented Aug 19, 2021 at 16:07
  • From the location near the Colombian border, I would assume that people from Puerto Obaldía might often travel to Colombia, either by sea or overland or small plane, and in at least some cases they would need visas. Commented Aug 19, 2021 at 16:39

This is tentative because I can't find proof it...

A couple of years ago I saw a documentary about the research bases on Antartica. (Probably on Discovery or Natiopnal geograhic Channel, I don't remember.)

According to that documentary the various base-commanders have limited consular or ambassadorial powers. These bases can be isolated from the outside world for months and often have people of several nationalities on base. In order to be able to deal with certain things themselves the base-commanders have wide-ranging authority.
I tried to find some conclusive evidence that this is true, but I can't.

If this is true one could argue (since Antartica doesn't have a capital) that all these bases are "outside the capital" and given the very low number of people on each base it would probably beat the current (Barentsburg) best answer easily.

  • 8
    Interesting answer, but having limited consular powers makes this more like an honorary consulate, not a "real" consulate that's permanently staffed and can issue visas etc. Commented Jan 19, 2020 at 3:12
  • 2
    @lambshaanxy I agree. The other things is that no nation would call their representative on Antarctica a official consul or ambassador. Since Antarctica is a sort of no-man's land on which several nations have a claim having a official consul would acknowledge that your nation sees it as foreign ground, thereby relinquishing your own claim on the territory.
    – Tonny
    Commented Jan 20, 2020 at 11:33

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