Questions on Russian travel, working, or living are most welcomed. Write to, contact me via Skype at Uncle_Pasha_2011, or use chat at the bottom right corner of this page. In emergency call +7 921 155 5432. My unmoderated uncensored no registration hassles FORUM is a good place to take up issues that may be of interest to other travellers.

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Hibiny, waterfall Beautiful

The best known waterfall in the Khibiny mountains is Krasivy (beautiful) on the river of Risyok, not far from its mouth, in the center of the Kukisvumchorr mountain crest. Being wide-known and easily accessible it is called “on-duty (daily) waterfall”. The water is remarkably clean and of fantastic aquamarine colour, as in all other streams and rivers of Khibiny.


Photo by Olga Boman.


The Sandarmokh forest massif near Medvezhyegorsk

sandarmohThe Sandarmokh forest massif near Medvezhyegorsk (12km from Medvezhyegorsk towards Vologda)is the biggest shooting range and burial ground in the Russian North-West. About 10 thousand are buried here: 3500 Karelians, 4500 White to Baltic sea canal workers, and 1000+ political prisoners from Solovki, all shot in 1937-1938, at the height of purges. Now it is a memorial cemetery.

More here >> (English) and here >> (Russian).

Guest houses in Kuzomen, Chavanga, Pyalitsa, Strel’na

Insider info from Julia Solntseva, a local expert and a publisher of a variety of travel guides: Call 8 911 344 2772 or 8 921 281 7152 about guesthouses in Kuzomen, Chavanga, Pyalitsa, or Strelna. Or write to, Svetlana.

Here is a map clearly showing these somewhat obscure locations:


Click to open to full size

Accommodation in the Kuzreka village

  • A small one-room woodstove-heated bright red house right on the river. Great view. No shower. Indoor toilet opening right into the river. Tel. +7 911 326 30 78, +7 911 323 19 02.
  • Bath, barbecue grill, fishing, tours, equipment rental. A project by Umba-Discovery. Tel. +7 911 328 14 00.
  • gest_house_kuzrekaA two-story house, fireplace, wood stove, gas. 500-700 roubles per person per night, depending on the number of guests. Linen, dishes, kitchen utensils included. Motor boat rental 2500 roubles/day. Tours. Alexey Buyanov, no telephone, no e-mail, contact him through his VK page.