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Murmansk Oblast

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Northwestern Russia : Murmansk Oblast
Revision as of 09:42, 1 March 2009 by Peterfitzgerald (Talk | contribs)

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A view of Murmansk's harbor

Murmansk Oblast is the northernmost region of Northwestern Russia,P on the Kola Peninsula, which borders Finland's Lapland to the west, Norway's Finnmark Region to the northwest, the Barents Sea to the north, the White Sea to the southeast, and Karelia to the south.

Regions

Cities

  • Murmansk — the capital and largest city is an important naval base and has a large sea port which remains ice free year round; the world's largest city north of the Arctic Circle
  • Kirovsk — a large town with the world's northernmost botanical gardens and a ski resort
  • Kola — the peninsula's oldest town boasts its original fort, the Cathedral of the Assumption (the first stone building in the region), and a museum of local culture
  • Polyarny — a closed town, one of the region's oldest, on the Murmansk Fjord; currently a site for decommissioning nuclear Soviet and Russian submarines
  • Severomorsk — a closed city, the region's second largest city, and the main administrative center of the Russian Northern Fleet

Other destinations

  • Kandalakshky Nature Reserve
  • Lapland Nature Reserve
  • Pasvik Nature Reserve

Understand

Murmansk Oblast is of interest to a tourist mostly for its novelty value—it is located in Russia's extreme north, above the Arctic Circle, and is relatively easy to get to from Saint Petersburg. The highlights of a Murmansk Oblast trip are certainly the capital itself and perhaps also an adventurous trip out to Kola. To heighten the novelty value of your trip, try to come around the summer Equinox, when the sun moves around the sky but never sets, or the winter Solstice, when the sun never rises and the city is plunged into blackness. The winter is cold, but it is also the best time to see the Northern Lights.

Talk

See Russian phrasebook.

Get in

The easiest way to get in is via Murmansk's airport, which serves flights to/from Moscow, Saint Petersburg, and Arkhangelsk.

There is also a long (about 28 hour) daily overnight train to Murmansk from Saint Petersburg, which leaves Piter around 18:00 and arrives the next day around 22:00. Trains also travel between Murmansk and Petrozavodsk.

Get around

See

Itineraries

Do

Eat

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Stay safe

Get out

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