The largest city above the Arctic Circle, Murmansk has a relatively brief but storied past. Its utilitarian Soviet-era architecture is set against the natural beauty of the Kola Peninsula. Murmansk s northern location makes it a popular destination for outdoor adventurers during the summer period known as the midnight sun and those who want to view the Northern lights each winter.
One of Murmansk s most significant cultural landmarks is Alyosha, a massive concrete statue erected to commemorate soldiers who fought in the Arctic during World War II. The gold-domed Church of the Savior on the Water is a memorial chapel to sailors who perished during peacetime. When you fly to Murmansk, you can visit museums dedicated to Russia s Northern Fleet, art and the area s natural and cultural history. Other points of interest include the Oceanarium, the British Naval Cemetery, St. Nicholas Cathedral and the icebreaker Lenin, the world s first nuclear-powered surface ship.
Murmansk Airport (MMK) is located 15 miles southwest of the city. Prospekt Lenina is the main thoroughfare through the pedestrian-friendly downtown, which features the Five Corners Square, a setting for open-air concerts. The city has a subarctic climate that produces summer highs in the 60s and winter lows well below freezing. Murmansk has slightly fewer than 1,300 hours of sunshine each year.
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