"Once upon a time, a glacier moved across this land.
It crushed the mountains and left new ridges in its wake.
It brought along on its back billions of large and small stones.
It cut up everything in its path with wrinkles of rivers and mirrors of lakes.
Kola peninsula, "the country of the midnight sun", "Empire of polar night",
"severe Pokhyola - ancient Lopsky ground", it and "Russian Lapland",
native land of domestic northern navigation, basis of northern sea fishery,
pantry "stone of fertility"...
The brawe new-settlers, known as pomors, built wooden huts and timber churches topped by bell-towers. The bells announced the birth of children in the villages.
In an area of 145,000 sq. km., amidst the wilderness of stones, water and ice, there were a few settlements — Kola, Kandalaksha, Pechenga and Alexandrovsk. Small handfuls of Saami herdsmen roamed the tundra with their reindeer herds.
Half-a-century ago Murman was awakened from its slumber by the arrival of enthusiastic builders. They came literally on foot, because there was only a single string of a railway to connect central Russia with the tiny, still unfledged town of Murmansk, while to the right and to the left of the track lined with crossties there were wild mountains, impassable swamps, a tangle of thousands of unnamed streams, rivers and rivulets.
The turbulent rivers Niva, Tuloma, Kuma, lova, Voronya, and Paz have been tamed. Cascades of hydraulic power stations have been linked into a single "Kolenerge" pover grid. It is increasingly difficult for the polar night to compete against this ocean of light.
Geological parties have discovered here almost all the elements of Mendeleyev's periodic table.
Scores of square kilometres are occupied by the Apatite Combine named after S. M. Kirov, the chief supplier of valuable mineral fertilizers. One of its quarries is on the high Rasvumchorr plateau where snow blizzards rage for three weeks on end. But they are unable to stop the flow of ore through the unique 600-metre long channel. The snow violence is dispelled by the light of four man-made "suns". "Belaz" lorries of 40-ton carrying capacity are running busily over the flat area of the plateau.
Looking like a huge three-decker ship the fishermen's city of Murmansk is standing on the coastal terraces of Kola Bay. It is an amazing city, perhaps the world's only one in which it snows in summer and rains in winter.
This is a city filled with the breath and live of the sea. It seems as if it is just about to weigh anchor and sail off to distant lands. Indeed, this city, which is the world's largest beyond the Arctic Circle, goes to sea every day. If sends ifs ships fo 170 ports of the world.
To understand this city and fall in love with it, one has to see and hear it, to see its streets and squares, houses that seem to have grown right from the hoary granite soil, to hear its musicthe hooting of ships, the squeaks of sea-gulls, the drone of engines, the howl of winds, at times hardly audible but mostly resolute and peremptory. Our countrymen fish in the Barents and Norwegian Seas the Atlantic Ocean, off the African coast. No distance is too long for modern trawling ships.
Murmansk is the first port on the Great Northern Sea Route. From here ice-breakers sheph- erd ship convoys across the Arctic Ocean.
Murman stands on guard of the country's peace. The Order of the Russian Northern Fleet has its chief base at Severomorsk. There you can see the grey whiskers of Admirals and the boyish locks of rank-and-file sailors, streets bearing the names of heroes of the Navy. The one on the Kola Peninsula is the country's first and only operatind station of this kind.
In the tundra there is an ancient village of Lovozero with five-floors houses, a department store of glass and concrete, a House of Culture, a school and a boarding house. Smartly dressed lads girls stroll in the busy streets, kids are playing in all corners.
Another ancient townlet — Kola — is 400 years old. A visitor will never guess its age until he takes note of the mosaic ornament on the wall of a six-floors building or a timeworn wooden cross sticking lonely a little away from the highroad. The town does not look a day older than 15—20 years. Indeed, the entire Murman land seems to be newly-built huge city.
... In winter when the crisp air is twinkling lighly, the fiery dance of the Polar Lights is joined in by the twinklind red lights of a TV towers.
Visit us on Kola peninsula! Kolskiy, kolskiy, kola peninsula, murman
They will meet you as cordially as only northerners can. You will feel quite at home among them, and you will have the chance to sample delicious Murman fish. And then you can be engaged in fishing, go for a walk on mountains and woods, to be floating on the rivers and to be rolled on a mountain skiing. And all this - on the Kola peninsula!