Teriberka: Russia has a rich history of building cities in the most remote and harsh environments. Murmansk and its environs are one of them. Despite long, cold, dark, and snowy winters, Murmansk has become the largest city in the world beyond the Arctic Circle. Visiting Murmansk in winter sounds crazy, but it could be the highlight of a trip to northern Russia. There is a lot to do in Murmansk. From visiting atomic icebreakers to watching the northern lights and playing with huskies at the dog farm. However, if you delve into the bosom of nature, then the village of Teriberka deserves special attention. Here you can see many beautiful natural attractions, such as waterfalls and beaches, ocean coastline and whale watching, snow-capped mountains, and picturesque landscapes of abandoned ships.
Teriberka is one of the oldest fishing settlements in the Murmansk region. People come here for breathtaking Arctic nature, whale watching, and a picturesque ship graveyard, and in winter for the northern lights. Filming”Leviathan” breathed new life into the village because, after the release of this film, Teriberka became known far beyond the region. In just a few years, the village has become one of the main tourist attractions in the Russian Arctic.
Where is Teriberka
The village of Teriberka is located in the northwestern part of Russia, on the coast of the Arctic Ocean, 120 km from the city of Murmansk, the capital of the Kola Peninsula and Murmansk region. Here you will see the unique northern nature and take a walk along the coast of the Arctic Ocean! Excursion to Teriberka starts from Murmansk. The road passes through the arctic tundra, vast forest areas of northern Russia with a harsh climate throughout the year.
How to get to Teriberka
On average, getting here from Murmansk by car takes from 3.5 to 4 hours. Part of the 130-kilometer route runs along a dirt road in the warm season and along an icy road in winter. A regular bus runs to the village, a one-way ticket costs about 700 rubles. A one-way taxi ride costs about 5,000 rubles.
What to wear and what to take with you on a long journey to Teriberka
The climate in Teriberka is relatively mild due to the proximity of the Gulf Stream in the waters of the Arctic Ocean. But never underestimate Arctic weather. You should always take warm waterproof clothes and comfortable shoes with you, even if you are traveling in summer. Ideally, pack thermal underwear, warm socks, and a raincoat. In winter, of course, you will need a warm down jacket, insulated trousers, high winter boots, thermal underwear, a warm hat, and mittens.
The end of May marks the beginning of the polar day in Teriberka, which ends only at the end of July. Those who are new to such conditions should also bring a sleep mask.
Why is Teriberka so famous?
The village is divided into two parts: the old Teriberka and the new part. Most of the residents live in the new part. There are several small grocery stores, a bakery, and a pharmacy, and the historical part serves as a kind of open-air museum. The village is located on the very shore of the Barents Sea, in the north of which there is nothing but the NorthArctic Ocean. The beach has a huge swing, from which you can admire the ebb and flow of the ice-free sea at any time of the year.
Along the coastline, at the entrance to the old part of Teriberka, there is the infamous Ship Cemetery. The remains of 12 old ships have been rusting here for several decades. These ships were built at the beginning of the last century but were decommissioned after the closure of the fish cannery in the 1960s. Now it is one of the most popular photoshoot locations in the entire village.
There are no organized boat trips in Teriberka, but you can negotiate with local fishermen. Boats depart from the pier near the fish cannery. On average, such a trip will cost 6,000 rubles, boats can accommodate up to 10 people. But such an adventure is worth it, because sometimes whales or killer whales swim right up to the boat, but, of course, no one can guarantee that you will meet them.
The waterfall is located about an hour from the village. Along the way, you can admire the colors of the tundra and even meet representatives of the local fauna. The waterfall originates from the Small Battery Lake and flows through a narrow gorge surrounded by red rocks, flowing into the Barents Sea. On the right bank of the waterfall (if you are facing the sea) there is an observation deck from where you can view the surroundings from the best angles.
Dragon Eggs Beach
Below the waterfall is an unusual beach, which the locals called the “Dragon’s Eggs” beach. The entire coastline here is strewn with smooth oval stones, ranging in size from tiny to massive. Carved by the sea, these boulders actually resemble giant eggs, covered with either green algae or a snow cap depending on the season. You can also take a short walk from the rocky beach to a gorge that looks like a dragon’s lair.
Snowkiting on Mount Eriev
Constant winds and soft snow have made Teriberka one of the most popular snow-kiting destinations in Russia. Every year, Mount Eriev, which is located 40 km from Teriberka, is visited by athletes and outdoor enthusiasts. But they also ride snowkiting in Teriberka itself. Dozens of colorful parachutes soaring into the sky over the snow-covered tundra at the same time is an incredible sight worth seeing even if you don’t know how to ride them yourself.
Of course, once in these northern regions, you need to find out about the nearest locations worthy of your attention. Some of these interesting places are located in Murmansk itself, from where the starting point of the trip to Teriberka begins.
Such an unusual location is the icebreaker “Lenin”. The icebreaker was the first nuclear-powered icebreaker that cleared ice for Russian cargo ships and also participated in rescue operations in the Arctic and other Arctic expeditions. The ship stopped operating in 1989 and is now a museum ship that is fun to visit even if you don’t have much interest in ships.
See the northern lights in Murmansk
Murmansk is a great place to see the northern lights, especially during polar nights. It is also one of the cheapest places to hunt this wonder. In most cases, in order to see this phenomenon, they buy tours and hire experienced guides. This increases the chance of catching the right weather and being in the right place, from where you will probably be lucky to see the northern lights. However, you can try your luck with the experience of the locals.
Visit a Sami village
One of the most popular entertainments near Murmansk is visiting Sami village. The Saami are the indigenous population of the Kola Peninsula. Once they were nomadic deer hunters in the tundra, but the Soviet Union changed their way of life forever. Forced collectivization and the closure of pastures for military purposes erased much of the Sámi culture.
Tourism is one of the sources of income and therefore the Sami village flourishes here. Arriving here, tourists can visit the Arctic Zoo, pet reindeer, and ride snowmobiles. In the Sami village, you can stay in a guest house, visit a sauna and find other pleasant leisure opportunities among the polar snow.
A visit to the village of Teriberka is only a small part of what the nature and culture of the Far North offer. Other locations, routes, and travels are also worthy of the attention of a tourist, and for some, they will become much more preferable. You can see some ideas for creating your own travel itinerary.