Kandalaksha accommodation off season special 50% off, now 1000 roubles ($12) per night

Staying in our spare room is 1000 roubles ($12) per night per person till further notice that will follow probably some time in April or May. Enjoy snow, cold, and CHEAPNESS. Details here >>

Rates for my services are also very negotiable will the beginning of the season.

Questions on Russian travel (in particular to the north-west of European part of the country), working, or living are most welcomed. Write to inbox@unclepasha.com, contact me via Skype at Uncle_Pasha_2011, or use chat at the bottom right corner of this page.

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“Snow Flower” expo in Apatity Feb. 10-14 for serious souvenir shoppers

“Kamenny Tsvetok” (“Stone Flower”) is one of the best known large-scale events, with over 100 participants, in the Murmansk region. This year it is held in Apatity from Feb. 10 to Feb. 14 in the “Palace of Culture”, ul. Lenina 24, open from 11am to 7:30pm.

There you will find rare minerals and articles made of stone, bone, glass and amber as well as jewelry and books on the history of Kola north.

Here are our photo report on last year’s Stone Flower.

A public talk on alcohol-producing plants

drinkingNext Sunday, the 14th of February, in the reading hall of the L.A. Gladina Library in Apatity (ul. Lenina 24A, tel. +7 (815) 556 1110) at 3pm there will be a lecture by Evgeny Borovichev, an M.A. in biology and a member of the Russian Botanical Society, on the transformations of a variety of plants on their way from the field to your drinking glass. Sounds like fun. Time permitting I will try to be there.

The International Saami Day

saamiToday, Feb. 6, is the International Saami Day. On this day in 1917 the first Saami assembly was held in Trondheim, Norway. In the local Saami capital of Lovozero this weekend is full of activity. An exhibition of the mythology of Saami is on in the Monchegorsk History Museum Feb. 6-27. Let me take this opportunity to congratulate our Saami friends on this occasion.

Another Stalin monument in Petrozavodsk

stalin-in-petrozavodskA couple of days ago I wrote about Arkhanagelsk communists’ plan to put up a monument to Stalin. Since that I’ve been sent a link to a Stolitsa na Onego article on doing the same in Petrozavodsk, the capital of Karelia. The article mentions that there is already one in Lipetsk. Someone take me out of here!!

Visa-free entry to Russia via Murmansk Seaport being discussed again

visaTalks are under way again on allowing foreigners travelling by boat or ferry to get into the country for up to three days without a visa. From what I recall this issue was being discussed from over a year ago. Some sort of a decision is now promised by Feb. 12 2016.

Snob.ru on Mid-eastern refugees in Kandalaksha. Fame in Russia and Finland!

refugeesNoticed an article on the flow of Eastern (Syrian, Afghan, North African etc.) refugees trying to get into Finland via Kandalaksha on the site of snob.ru, a major Federal-level monthly. We are becoming famous! The only sad thing is that I’ve had not a single request to act as a “guide” – a job that pays, according to Snob, $1500 per trip. Only a couple of accommodation request from people with Middle Eastern sounding names that didn’t show up anyway.

Full article here >>

A monument to Stalin in Arkhangelsk

stalinThe campaign to erect a monument to the former Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin as well as the seemingly growing opposition to the project are well under way in Arkhangelsk.

The cost of the project is said to be about 500 thousand roubles (about $7000 at the currect exchange rate), of which 30 thousand have already been collected. Once the funds are there it should take 2-3 monthes to manufacture the statue.

Flu epidemic in Kandalaksha

fluActually, it is a country-wide thing. Schools get closed and people on the street wear masks.

Let me use this opportunity to share with the world my favourite anti-flu method.

First, it is tea with lemon, and hot peppers. Second, vodka, beer, and mulled wine, as much as you can take. Fresh shredded ginger root brew. Carbonated mineral water. Pour into yourself all of the stuff above and go to bed to sleep it off. The world will welcome the new you in two days.