About the destination
Сommittee on tourism of Murmansk region, Tourist Information Center of Murmansk region presents:
Main tourist attractions and cities of the region
Murmansk is a major Russian ice-free port located above the Arctic Circle, the center of the Murmansk region. Here one can check out numerous places of attraction: the first nuclear-powered icebreaker ever, called “Lenin”, monuments dedicated to the Great Patriotic War, museums and different events.
In summer the guests of our city have a unique opportunity to see the midnight sun — the sun shining in the middle of the night. Murmansk will touch your heart by all means.
Kirovsk town (Khibinogorsk)
The town attracts tourists with its spectacular Khibiny Mountains. Here you can go on a hike, have a picnic and even order a helicopter tour and fly above the mountainous area!
Teriberka is a fishing village situated at the coast of the Arctic Ocean, the End of the Earth! This is the location of “Leviathan” film shooting. People come here to see the authentic and severe northern nature, the ship breaking yard and the coast with dragon “eggs”.
Tersky coast is a gem stone of Russian North, located at the shore of the White Sea. Lots of attractions are situated here: petroglyphs of the Lake Kanozero, cultural heritage of the Pomors, Kuzomensky Sands, Amethyst Coast, the Pomor village Varzuga.
Lovozersky District is home to the Sami, aboriginal people of the Kola Peninsular. The peculiar thing about this district is not only the presence of ethnographic routes, but also a possibility to have an active rest: hiking, rafting and tours to the lake Seydozero.
Sredny Peninsula and Rybachy Peninsula are two the most beautiful places of North of the Artic Circle, an active rest lovers` dream come true! Having arrived there the visitors will be out of civilization and afterwards will be able to go on breathtaking tours on offroaders.
Here the Kolvitsky Bay is situated. The length of the Kolvitsky Bay is 7 kilometers. A turbulent and wide Kolvitsa river flows into the Kolvitsky Bay making it ai ideal place for rafting. One of the most beautiful waterfalls — Cherny Padun is located in Kolviza village, a nature trail with the length of 600 meters leads to the waterfall.
Transport availability of the region
One can take a direct train to Murmansk from Moscow and Saint Petersburg.
There are 2 airports in the Murmansk region: Murmansk airport (located not far away from an urban-type settlement Murmashi) and Khibiny Airport.
Murmansk airport is situated at the distance of 24 kilometers from Murmansk. One can get from the airport to the city by bus or by taxi.
Khibiny Airport is situated at the territory of an administrative district of Apatity town, at the distance of 32 kilometers from Kirovsk town.
Main tourist perks of the destination
Every person who has already been at the Kola Peninsula — at least just once, will never forget the beauty of the North and Murmansk hospitality and friendliness.
It`s not that difficult to find the Murmansk region, and it`s far easier to get there than it seems.
Just spend 2.5 hours in a plane flying from Moscow and you will get at the Edge of the Earth! At the distance of 120 kilometers from Murmansk lies a settlement Teriberka located at the coast of the Barents Sea, and namely this place is considered to be the endpoint of Russia. The endpoint has access to the Arctic Ocean and further lies just the Arctic and its endless everlasting snow and ice.
Those who would like to take a sea cruise towards the North Pole are being awaited by the most powerful nuclear icebreaker in the world — “50 years of Victory”, which makes about four voyages towards the North Pole from the Murmansk port per year.
The Murmansk region is a place inspiring people with its severe beauty, the beauty of forests, endless tundra, thousands of crystal lakes and turbulent rivers, which are world famous due to the fish shoals of wild Atlantic salmon and other valuable fish species.
The rivers Ponoi, Varzina, Rynda, Kharlovka, Yokanga, Varzuga, Umba and Kola are always attracting the sport fishing lovers to come to the Kola Peninsula.
With every year passing by there are fewer and fewer wildlands on the Earth planet. The Kola North is exactly the place, where the majority of wonders are created by nature, not by people.
Due to its special geographical location the region was blessed with numerous treasures and wonders. Among these treasures are polar lights, one of the most captivating phenomena on Earth. Many people are dreaming to see it with their very eyes.
The most inquisitive people are hunting polar lights, chasing them to the Far North, Murmansk. Polar lights hunting is interesting and unpredictable. The very process of hunting is a spectacular adventure in itself. Chase, hunt, shoot! Watching multicolored northern lights in the dark northern sky can make you crazy.
An incredible and unbelievable view demands a special preparation, as, perhaps you will need to wait for it during several hours. Your clothes and boots must protect you from cold and wind and you will need a tripod for taking pictures and video shooting.
And what about taking a walk in the night city, while enjoying the sun beams? Murmansk, the city of night sun beams is waiting for you. This beautiful time lasts since the 22nd of May and up to 22nd of July. The guests have just 62 days for checking out a unique phenomenon, enabling you to see night Murmansk bathing in the sunlight — without people and cars, to take a walk in its streets and to take a picture of your own shadow at midnight.
And vice versa, in winter the Kola Peninsula is submerged into full darkness, which lasts 24 hours a day, for 40 days there are no sunrises and no sunsets, beginning from the end of November and up to the middle of January. It is connected with such a nature phenomenon as a polar night, when the sun does not appear at the horizon within the whole day.
In the Murmansk region each tourist will be able to find an appropriate kind of rest for him/herself, for example to take a ride in the comfortable offroaders and quadricycles across the most northern roads and destinations of the Kola Peninsula, and across the stony mud-locked roads of the Sredny and Rybachy peninsulars.
One can take a ride on snowmobiles across tundra covered with snow, while chasing Aurora and enjoying every minute of being in Northern region, or one can walk into Khibini mountains — just on foot! Here one “unplugs” from the civilization and feels the mighty and powerful energy of nature, one enjoys the nature`s genius simplicity and falls in love with the northern stones, moss, water and illimitable space — forever, truly, madly, deeply.
One needs to pay special attention to diving in the Barents Sea. Sheer cliffs, blossoming actinias, hoards of Alaska king crabs, deep-sea scallops, remnants of the sunken ships: all of these make diving at the Kola Peninsula a dream come true for those who know better.
The earliest and the latest cloak of snow in Russia will guarantee a long sport season for those who have decided to ski in the slopes of the Murmansk region. The best period for skiing lasts from Murch up to April. The polar night has already subdued to the day, and the weather is sunny and fair.
Currently Kirovsk has become the main center of mountain skiing on the Kola Peninsula. Kirovsk is located near the foot of the Khibini mountain group. Every year more than 40 thousand tourists — mountain skiers visit this resort. The main tourist recreational areas are the south and the north slopes of Aikuaivenchorr mountain, which is a part of the Khibini mountain group. Here one can find the most high-altitude resort of the north-western part of Russia, the ski resort “Bolshoi Vudyavr” or “BigWood” is one of the best places for active rest lovers. **It is located within the city limits. The total difference of the altitudes varying at the routes is 550 meters.
Would you like to submerge into daily routine and traditions of the native North people? You can do it as simple as that! Sami people, who live at the territory of the Murmansk region live a traditional way of life, which is practically unchangeable. Sami people culture is distinguished by numerous amount of legends and ancient ceremonies, and they are ready to share it all with their guests from all over the world.
Local cuisine is one of the most prominent distinguishing features of this Northern part of Russia. Apart from it this cuisine is an important part of culture of the people leaving in the North. The courses of Northern cuisine are so original that no one can resist the temptation.
Such a trend in modern Russian cuisine as “Arctic cuisine” is based on exclusively useful qualities of products and wild-growing herbs of the Kola Peninsula, as well as on their taste qualities. The cuisine is represented with dietary venison with high vitamin content, as well as content of minerals and proteins, wild-growing Northern plants — nature products, nutritive and medicative at the same time, a source of vitamins and microelements — “the treasure of North” — baked apple berry, huckleberry, red huckleberry, crowberry, blueberry, Khibiny mountains herbs, as well as mushrooms and reindeer moss from the tundra of Lovozero. Also, you can try seafood, fish from the Barets Sea (cod fish, salmon, halibut, lancet fish, sea hedgehogs, deep-sea scallops and crabs) mussels from the White Sea and fish from thousands of the Murmansk region lakes.
Tour operator companies
The main tourist attractions of the destination
The mountain group “Khibiny”
These mountains are beautiful, mysterious and dangerous. It is fair to say so about the Khibiny mountains or just Khibiny — the largest mountain group on the Kola Peninsula, which saw this region the way it was several centuries ago, as the age of the mountains is estimated as more than 390 million of years.
Even at a rare occasion of a hot summer there is snow at the top of the mountains.
One can find lots of different kinds of animals in tundra, including rare animals and animals being guarded: reindeers, polar foxes, martens, hazel hens, cocks of the wood, Norwegian lemmings, shell-fish freshwater gems, adders, live-bearing lizards. The rivers are inhabited by bull-trouts, gangfishes, loaches, graylings and others.
Vegetation of the Khibiny mountains is like a filling of a puff pastry pie. The vegetation varies from tundra to forest-tundra and taiga. Forest area near the foot of the mountain slowly slips into birch forest of subalpine type and alpine tundra at the top of the mountains.
Under conditions of high altitude one can observe an interesting phenomenon: because of a strong wind and constant cold it`s very difficult for the trees to grow. That`s why birches grow as high as the grass or just trail on the earth.
Lake Seydozero was honored among Sami people, as holy. Here, at the North-western bank of the lake there is one of the most peculiar artifacts of Sami culture — the “Kuiva” seyid.
At the bank of Seydozero there is a rock with the famous image of Kuiva. If we translate “Kuiva” from the Sami language, it would mean “old man”.
Also, many fantastic writers and ufologists consider the lake to be one of the places where the hyperborean civilization supposedly existed. Hunters for the unknown have been studying these places since 1922.
Lapland Nature Reserve
Lapland Nature Reserve appeared in 1957 at the distance of 10 kilometers from Monchegorsk and takes the area of 278 435 hectars. The peculiar thing about the reserve is that people had never lived and worked there.
The climate is mild here: in winter the temperature can rise up to +5 and strong cold up to — 30 degrees Celsius is rare. This is one of the best places of the Kola Peninsula convenient for watching the polar lights or “vauvskaz” as Sami people call it.
There are five mountain groups in the Lapland Nature Reserve. The altitudes vary drastically — from 600 up to 1114 meters. The most low point is situated near the Konya river, where it flows out of the reserve and has the altitude of 92 meters above the sea level. The highest point is Ebr-Chorr Mountain or “Reign range of mountains”, it has the altitude of 1114 meters.
The forest in the reserve is highly valued and old-aged — some of the fir-trees are older than 600 years. Here grow Friesian pine trees, Siberian fir-trees, verrucous fir-trees, subarctic fir-trees, curly fir-trees, Arctic birches, ashberries, gray alderes, goat willows, bicolor willows and trembling poplars.
As for the animals, here one can find wild reindeers, elks, brown bears, wolfs, foxes, martens, weasel, American minks, gluttons, European beavers, alpine hares, beaver-rats, Norwegian and forest lemmings.
In 1985 UNESCO included biosphere reserve “Lapland Nature Reserve” into the National Network. In such a way we got the name “Lapland Biosphere Reserve”.
The first nuclear-powered icebreaker “Lenin”
Nuclear-powered icebreaker “Lenin” is the first ship in the world with a nuclear power unit. It is the only object of cultural heritage in Murmansk, which has federal importance. The icebreaker has led thousands of ships in the midst of Arctic ice, in the same tame the icebreaker itself has covered the distance of 654 400 nautical miles, which is three times more than the distance between the Earth and the Moon.
There is an interactive museum and educational center on board of the icebreaker. The center is dedicated to geographical particularities, ecology and biological variety of Arctica.
Petroglyphs of Kanozero
In 1997 about 1200 petroglyphs were discovered on the Kamenny island of Kanozero, the petroglyphs were estimated to stem from the 4th up to 5th millennium BC. They are considered to be one of the most ancient traces due to which we can estimate the life of people on the Kola Peninsula.
Currently petroglyphs of Kanozero are natural and archeoogical artifacts, which are situated on three islands (Kamenny, Yelovy and Gorely islands) and a sea cliff Odinokaya.
Petroglyphs tell us about the world of ancient people. Some of the petroglyphs are antropomorphous and depict people, others depict animals (elks, deers, cetacians, fishes, snakes, beavers, bears, otters and birds). Also, one can find objects depicted on the petroglyphs: boats, crosses, wheels, axes and wands, footsteps of people and animals and even traces of skis.
Sami village Sam-Syit
Lovozero village attracts tourists with beautiful landscapes and with a chance to see the world of the Kola Peninsula underpopulation of native people — Sami (or lopari). Near the village (at the distance of 100 kilometers from Murmansk) a Sami village Sam-Syit is available for visits.
Its name can be translated simply as “Sami village”. One can come to the commune for several hours or stay there for the night. There will be no ordinary hotels or rooms with European-style remodeling. The guests will be surrounded with unique and authentic culture. The guest house has special design, which takes into account the culture of Sami people, however it has modern conveniences, for example shower cubicles, sauna and a TV-set.
Museum and exhibition center АО “Apatity”
Its history started when unique apatite and nephelinic ore minerals were found in the Khibini mountains. They evoked such a great interest of scientist and manufacturers from all over the world, that it had been decided to create a place, where one would be able to study the findings.
Currently it has 8 showrooms, a conference hall, an exhibit hall and a gallery. One of the last developments is a new multimedia exposition “A travel from the Earth interior to the atmosphere” and an exposition “Domestic life and morals of Imperial Russia”.
Ski resort “Bolshoi Vudyavr”
Khibiny has been called one of the most attractive places for ski and snowboard lovers. After all it is a major mountain group of the Kola Peninsula, a mountain group, which has deep mountain clefts and beautiful plateaus. As well as breathtaking landscapes. The highest mountain is Yudichvumchorr, 1200.6 meters above sea level.
The ski resort “Bolshoi Vudyavr” or “BigWood” is one of the best places for active rest lovers. It is located within the city limits.
One can come to the resort without skiing gear — you will get everything you need at a local rental center. There are several chairlifts functioning at the slope, including both a chairlift and a gondola lift with transport capacity of 1750 and 2500 people accordingly.
“Murmansk region is a land of untouched nature, endless tundra, rapid rivers and thousands of lakes with crystal clear water, majestic artifacts of the Russian Arctic development, pristine traditions of the Sami and Pomors, and villages located at the End of the World.
The Arctic is closer than you think!
Welcome to the Murmansk region!”
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