well, not everyone will like...
well, not everyone will like Murmansk. If you are interesred in ships, nuclear waste and postcommunist atmosphere, then this is the right place for you. Visiting Murmansk in Winter (especially in the polar night) can be a real adventure. There are many things to do (see below). Every activity was simply amazing. Generally, the polar night atmosphere is very special, and if the weather is nice (you must be very lucky) you can see the aurora borealis (polar lights)!
Tourists come here not so...
Tourists come here not so often, so people are quite helpful, not like in Moscow, for example.I recommend to visit Local museum in the end of central Lenin street, Art gallery, and do not forget Navy museum situated on the suburbs on the north of the city in Rosta, it's on the way to Atomic icebreaker base. Not much to see really.Enjoy the wonderful nature. Recently the snow-scooter rides are offered by MKTI company outside the city.
Something battered - nothing to stand out We travelled in winter time - the more clothes, the better. Hats are a necessity and babuskas (generic term for little old ladies) will come and tell you off for not wearing a hat. It is a dry cold and quite pleasant - if you visit the nightclub at the hotel 69 make sure you take your jacket with you when you leave. One of our group had left his outdoor 'survival' jacket in the nightclub and couldn't retrieve it until the next evening. So he spent the next day slowly turning blue while we were out and about/ Be prepared for the short amount of daylight in winter time (no big surprise, considering how far north you are) The photo on the title page was taken at about 2pm, sunset in early December.
if you want to see hell:...
if you want to see hell: stay in Nikel'! This Nickel mining town is situated 7 km from Norway, but you could be in northeastern Siberia. Over the years the minig operations destroyed the nature over 50km in all directions. If you want to see a horrible example of postcommunist apocalypse, go there. You must organise it in advance, and make the reservation for the only hotel there (Gostinitsa Uyut) at Inturist Murmansk. For further travel to Norway, let them organize a taxi. They will ask you, what you want to do there. Just say ''tourism'', and insist. The ''best'' way to go there is to take the train from Murmansk (daily, except sat); for this 196km trip it takes 8 hours!!!! When you arrrive there, ask somebody to show you the hotel, there's no chance that you will find it yourself. It's entry is situated in a backyard, and on the street's side there is nothing written about a hotel. After finding the entry (see pic), you must climb to the 4 th floor, where your odissey will end. We were there at russian christmas (jan. 6th), so there was a big party with DJ's and people dancing on the main square at -20 degrees! Very strange!! In the kinoteatr, there's even a disco. Don't miss this experience.
Northern City of Russia
"Murmansk, town of the many songs"
There is no much that I remeber of Murmansk. I was just a baby when I visited there but after the trip I have heard many songs about Murmansk as well as seen the pictures.
"Easy to travel by car"
Murmansk is just about 300 kilomters from Finnish border, so it is easy to reach if you visit in Finland or in Norway. Visa is a mandatory, but for a day trip it shouldn't be so difficult to get.
I wish I could go back there and see how the city looks nowadays. I have heard some sad stories, but I really believe that is it worth of visit.