Tourist Centre «The Arctic Circle»
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Mussel Festival 2020

At the end of September, the traditional Mussel Festival was held in “The Arctic Circle”! In this post, we will tell and show you how these three beautiful September days went.

This year a record number of people came to the festival: there was literally no free space in the Lodge! Our guests took part in excursions and walks around the Karelian taiga and picturesque islands of the White Sea, listened to popular science lectures, got acquainted with our northern pets, sailed and, of course, enjoyed sea delicacies.

On the first day, we went to Savvateevsky Beach, where a real Taiga Lecture Hall was deployed! After a walk and a snack, we listened to Mikhail Safonov’s story about mussels — unusual and, most importantly, delicious shellfish that gave the name to the festival. In the evening, there was another lecture on dog sports from Maria Prozorova, the head of our Sled Dog Kennel.

Every evening there were friendly gatherings with mussels, which each time were cooked in different ways: with spices, with white wine, with cheese, vegetables and mushrooms... In general, we spent time fun and tastefully! :)

On the second day, there was an excursion to Biofilter Bay. We walked through the autumn forest, saw traces of logging and geological work that took place here during the Soviet era. From the top of the nearest hill, we had a beautiful view of the White Sea, the shore shimmering with orange-yellow-green trees. In the afternoon one half of the group had an excursion to the ombrotrophic bog, and the other half had a walk to the lake together with our sled dogs.

The third and final day of the festival was perhaps the most eventful. We went to the Panfilova Canyon, then visited the reindeer farm, and some of the guests went sailing on a catamaran. Then there was a lecture about the Great Symbiosis — an exciting story about the formation of eukaryotes (to which we belong, too), who were able to acquire important abilities that gave them a huge competitive advantage over other organisms.

In the evening of the last day, there was another lecture from Mikhail Safonov, this time about bears, formidable inhabitants of the Karelian taiga. And there was also a gastronomic master class: we learned how to eat scallops properly! From the very Barents Sea, we have brought no less than 200 kilograms of this exquisite delicacy. No matter how hard we tried, we could not eat everything :)

In general, if you want to take a good rest from urban life, see the beauty of the White Sea autumn, learn a lot of new things and enjoy the gifts of the northern seas — come to us at the Mussel Festival! We are waiting for you in 2021! :)

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