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17 December 2018

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Everyday Russia


Wednesday, February 15, 2017


by Ilona Isayeva

Name: Ilona Isayeva

Age: 27

Profession: Deputy director of a children's art school

City: Kandalaksha

How long have you been doing photography? I'm a newbie. 

What style or genre most interests you? Showing extreme sports.

Can you give us a short description of your city? Where is it located? What is it famous for? Kandalaksha is located on the Kola Peninsula, beyond the Arctic Circle, along the White Sea. It is a small city, and its residents are mostly involved in industry. We have an aluminium factory, railroad, and the Niva Hydroelectric Station. Tourists visit here year-round to be in wild nature.

What are some things that only locals would know about the city? There was a time when you could catch salmon right in the city center, through which flows the Niva River. But now the river is full of dams and the fish no longer swim upriver through the city. In the spring bears appear on the outskirts of the city in search of easy pickings for meals.

Which places or sites are a must for someone to see if they visit your city? The White Sea. You must visit that. Recently they opened a restaurant at the Kandalaksha Yacht Club that has a panorama view over the gulf and that serves traditional northern food. That's also a place worth checking out.

Instagram: @ilonaisaeva

Anything else?: You really need to live here, but most people are leaving here.

  • Snow

    Kandalaksha is located above the Arctic Circle, on the south end of the Kola Peninsula. Тhe city's population is thirty thousand. Many people are moving away, heading south. The climate is difficult here, with a long polar night and the lack of vitamin D. Some people come back, saying that the north is calling them home. Life in the Arctic is charming in its own way.

    Ilona Isayeva / @ ilonaisaeva

  • Rink

    This is the ice rink of the Sports Palace, behind it is the stadium, and behind that the taiga. In lean years, bears show up on the outskirts of the city in search of food, wolves appear less frequently. Every second resident in the city has his own story about a bear. One day I was talking to a local taxi driver, and he showed me an image on his phone, in which he was feeding a bear cake directly from his hands. 
    Ilona Isayeva / @ ilonaisaeva

  • Skiing

    The city has a lot of hills. You can ride down a slope right next to your house. People love not only sledding; the youth also do cross-country and alpine skiing, snowboarding, hockey, and winter motocross, because the snow here doesn't melt until May.
    Ilona Isayeva / @ ilonaisaeva

  • Ice 

    A girl playing at a monument to the Great Patriotic War. Behind the tank you can see the lit windows of the city administration. On the pedestal, where the little girl is sitting, the spring thaw has formed flat sheets of ice - to the delight of local children.
    Ilona Isayeva / @ ilonaisaeva

  • Cat

    A pregnant cat rests at a grocery store. In the north, there are relatively few homeless felines - the winters are too severe. But stray dogs - we have a billion of those.
    Ilona Isayeva / @ ilonaisaeva

  • Volleyball

    As in many Russian cities, in the evening the school gyms are rented by adults. The city's female volleyball team trains.
    Ilona Isayeva / @ ilonaisaeva

  • Ice Fisherman

    Ice fishermen. Kandalaksha sits on the shores of the White Sea. Almost every family has a fisherman and every fisherman has his favorite fishing spot. The men usually go into the gulf in search of cod.
    Ilona Isayeva / @ ilonaisaeva

  • Hockey

    On the weekend there is always something to see. Here, an ice hockey match, Kandalaksha city versus Zelenoborsky village.

    Ilona Isayeva / @ ilonaisaeva

  • Teacher

    Ludmila Pavlovna worked as a primary school teacher all her life in one of Kandalaksha's schools. Her family came here many years ago from the Urals - the father was sent north into exile.

    Ilona Isayeva / @ ilonaisaeva

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