Landing page

Small towns, villages, or other points of interest mostly between Moscow and Kandalaksha. I’ve group them by oblast (pl. oblasty), or regions, or proximity to attraction that are either well-known or on the list of my personal agenda:

  • Moscow and the region
  • The Golden Ring 
  • Tver region, where I feasure Staritsa and my former dacha
  • Novgorod region, including the City of Novgorod itself
  • Karelia
  • Murmansk region, with a focus on Kandalaksha, the Kandalaksha Nature Reserve, and Pomor villages along the Tersk edge Kola.
  • A few other places with which I’m familiar or where I have old tested reliable connections, are here >>

The site is based on my numerous trips to Staritsa, about 10 slow trips from Moscow to St. Petersburg and back, and so far three to Kandalaksha. Karelia and Kola Peninsula notes especially largely rely on Alexandra’s research.Getting there. Where to stay. What to see. Observations, impressions.
Questions welcomed. General advice from Russian living, working, and travel veteran is freely available as  public service. But, as usual, my secret agenda is to sell my traveller support services – from trip planning to visa arrangements to accommodation to whatever –  to those brave enough to visit this land of gloomy faces, smokestacks, traffic jams, drunken murders with dull rusty axes as the tool of choice, 99% pro-government vote, and of course exorbitant prices for inferior goods and services. 

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A herd of wild horses near Kuzomen, ~200 miles beyond Kandalaksha. The ugliest – in both appearance and behaviour – animals I’ve even seen. See Kuzomen.

 Camping near Staritsa, on the way to Vladimir and Suzdal on the Golden Ring. The cost of this service is no more than that of three restaurant meals and accommodation for three people. Plus you get a vehicle, a knowledgeable although somewhat grumpy guide, and ability to travel where you like without planning.

A late December trip to Staritsa, Tver region. Crawling along Lipinka, one of the tributaries to Volga. The way back, following a major snow fall and a warm spell, was more adventurous. Lessons learned, wheel chains and long towing ropes and a hand wench added to the set of adventure equipment.


FULLY EQUIPPED BUDGET APARTMENT IN MOSCOW AVAILABLE NOW. Almost direct from the webmaster. No agents, no commission, no misunderstandings. Apartment or room available July 26 to ~ September 1. Metro Alexeyevskaya, sleeps 2-3 very comfortably, walking distance to the Sokolniki park, AIR CONDITIONING, fast unlimited internet/WiFi, washer… $90/night or less. Or much less. See for more info and photos of the place and neighbourhood.