A group of enthusiasts has transformed an abandoned tsarist marble mine into a tourist attraction and is now expanding the site.
Ruskeala – a network of tunnels and canyons near the eponymous village in Karelia – was the site of a mine that yielded marble of four different colors used in the building of St. Petersburg.
Marble was mined here until the collapse of the Soviet Union and was of particular value decorating metro stations. When the mine fell into disuse, part of it flooded, creating a picturesque underground lake.
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