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Attractions in Karelia
The Republic of Karelia is one of the most beautiful regions of Russia. A land of tranquil northern nature and lakes. It is one big nature reserve and at the same time a suburb of St. Petersburg. Tours to Karelia are very popular not only among Russians, Petersburgers, but also among our neighbors from the Baltic States, Europe and even Asia.
This is a great option, if you are wondering where to go on weekends, or where better to go for the May holidays? To the question, "Where can I go to the sea in winter?" You can safely answer - to Karelia, closer to the White Sea!
Here is located Valaam, the unique monastery, which tells its history since the XV century.
On Kizhi Island, tourists will discover an incredible museum of wooden architecture.
Here the second largest waterfall in Europe, Kivach, takes its waters.
What to see in Karelia?
1. Petrozavodsk is the capital of Karelia
Petrozavodsk is beautiful and well maintained: neat modern buildings neighbors with old architectural monuments, sculptures and museums. The Botanical Garden is one of the most visited places in Petrozavodsk by tourists. At weekends and on holidays you can visit the Botanical Garden only by appointment. Visiting the tract "Devil's Chair" and walking around the Botanical Garden is available any day and any time.
2. Karjala Park
This is a place where you do not have to be bored and discouraged. Here you will not have to worry about organizing a tour. Everything will be done for you. On the territory there is "Karjala Park Complex", where you can comfortably accommodate for the time of rest. Fishing in Karelia is a popular activity and Karjala Park will arrange such a tour for you.
3. Blockade steam locomotive
Those who come by train, Petrozavodsk meets a monument. The station itself was built in the style of late classicism.
4. Park of the 50th anniversary of the Pioneer organization
It is a quiet park with delicate bridges, granite stairs and benches. River ponds and a huge number of planted trees and shrubs create a special atmosphere in this place.
5. Valaam - the heart of Karelia
Valaam is a cozy and quiet piece of land, the rocky shores of which rise above the turbulent waters of Lake Ladoga. To be more precise, it is a whole complex, which is called the Valaam Archipelago, and Valaam itself is the largest of the islands, which is why the two notions are often not distinguished. Pilgrims come here to touch the holy places, and tourists come here to relax from the hustle and bustle and enjoy the incredibly diverse nature.
People of Karelia consider Kizhi to be the 8th wonder of the world. Here are the monuments of architecture of incredible beauty. The uniqueness of the museum is also appreciated by UNESCO: the architectural ensemble was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1990.
7. The Transfiguration Church is the main sight of Kizhi. This church has 22 domes.
This is not the largest city, but it takes almost the first place among the cities of the Republic as to its attractiveness for tourists. In Sortovala there are more than 60 monuments of stone and about 160 of wooden architecture.
This mysterious mountain in Karelia. Its visit is not a part of usual tourist routes. The mountain keeps many secrets - these are numerous "seids", trees of bizarre shape, stone pool, "dead" silence and a special mysterious atmosphere.
10. Ruskeala Marble Canyon
In 30 km from Sartavala there is a unique place called Ruskeala.
Everyone must visit it to be personally convinced that such an extraordinary beauty is not a fantasy. Summer vacations in Karelia will bring unforgettable impressions and wonderful pictures.
The deep marble canyon goes deep into the transparent lake, and the top is sprouting dense forest.
Ruskeala marble - it is said to be "the color of white nights" - is used to decorate St. Isaac's Cathedral, the Marble Palace, St. Michael's Castle and other symbols of the northern capital. It is possible to stay at the Ruskeala recreation base and take an early morning walk around the quarry along an equipped trail, visit an adit, take a boat trip to a marble grotto, descend through a rope into a fantastic icy sinkhole.
Solovetsky Islands are quite young islands in Karelia. Despite the small area, there is a very diverse fauna. For tourists by the 20th century, stone labyrinths were laid out on these islands. They are located near the monastery.
Solovki is known for its "dancing" birches. If to look at such a tree at sunset, it can seem that they are silhouettes of dancing people.
12. Waterfall Kivach
The waterfall is located in one of the oldest nature reserves in Russia and is its crown jewel. It is beautiful both in summer and winter. Whether in December or in July, the waterfall is a wonderful place to visit.
What is a must try in Karelia?
- Hear the runes of Kalevala
The village of Kalevala on the shore of Lake Srednee Kuito has become famous for its runes, the Karelian-Finnish folk epic songs. In Kalevala Runes Museum you can see the instrument kantele, playing on which accompany the singing of runes, and a lot of curious things from Karelian life. Favorable weather kalevala for tourists starts already in March.
- Cross the Arctic Circle
It is possible to cross the border with the Arctic Circle in the very north of Karelia. The stele itself on the Murmansk highway represents nothing special. Much more remarkable is the change in the nature: from all sides mounds grow, which soon become hills. If you have time, you can continue to the Kola Peninsula.
- Take a rest at the first Russian resort
In 1719 there was created the first resort in Russia - the Marcial Waters, named after the ancient god Mars. From the Peter the Great's buildings remained only the church of the Apostle Peter, not resembling the usual Orthodox churches. But the Museum of Marcial Waters History and two sanatoriums have appeared: the first evokes the nostalgia for the Soviet time, the second is more modern and comfortable. It is convenient to combine a trip to Marcial waters with excursion on waterfall Kivach.
- Boat trip on the Ladoga skerries
"Skerries" means small rocky islands near the fjord-cut coastline. This beauty is found in areas where glaciers used to lie, including Karelia. The beauty is extraordinary! The best way to explore the islets is by boat. You can camp overnight in any bay you like.
The Polar Circle Dive Center in the village of Nilmoguba was founded on the enthusiasm of marine biologists. They know all about the northern seas with their severe, but very diverse underwater world and are willing to share this knowledge. The whole family can come to the "Polar Circle": while parents are getting acquainted with catfish and holovy mollusks, children can learn about the nature of the Russian North or snorkel in the cage with beluga whales. Another diving center on the White Sea shore is Nereis.
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