Holiday Tour: Visiting the Capital of the "Silver Necklace of Russia"

Фото: Елена Яркова

This year Ust-Tsilma is the capital of the tourist project "Silver Necklace of Russia". This is the name of the interregional tourism project, which involves 11 regions of the North-Western Federal District. The main goal of the project is to combine efforts to increase the tourist flow to the regions.

For the first time, the travel company "Aktivnyy Otdykh Komi" (eng. “Active Recreation Komi”) organized a trip to see the national holiday "Ust-Tsilma  Hill". According to Director Sergey Semyashkin, the company has been in existence for more than six years. It develops routes and organizes tours in the Komi Republic and beyond: trekking, climbing mountains, rafting on catamarans on rivers, traveling by snowmobiles. The current trial tour is the company's first experience of event tourism.


Фото: Руслан Царегородцев

Ust-Tsilma is part of the Arctic zone of Russia, located in a remote area. The village was founded by the Novgorodians in 1652 and is one of the oldest villages in the European North. In the 17th–18th centuries, many Old Believers who took refuge from the persecution of the authorities moved there. For centuries, due to the inaccessibility of the territory, the Ust-Tsilma residents were a closed community. The commitment of the population to the old faith has been preserved to this day. Russian and foreign tourists are attracted by the famous Ust-Tsilma festivities, which take place annually on July 12 and allow you to immerse yourself in the atmosphere of ancient rituals.

Tourists traveled by minibus from Syktyvkar to Ust-Tsilma (680 km). The Pechora was crossed by ferry. The road, with stops, took almost 12 hours. The travelers visited the A.V. Zhuravsky Historical and Memorial Museum.

Andrey Vladimirovich Zhuravsky (1882-1914) was an explorer of the European North of Russia, the founder of the first scientific institution in the Circumpolar region – the Pechora Natural History Station of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

Tourists walked around the village, visited the local beach, swam in the largest river in the Russian North – the Pechora. The program of the trip included a visit to the Petrovsky Fair, where the products of the folk arts and crafts masters and products of local manufacturers were presented. Tourists took part in master classes, where they were able to learn how to sew a traditional outfit for dolls, knit in a "pisany" pattern, paint wooden utensils, weave belts.

In 2022, the village celebrates its 480th anniversary. The performance "The Tale of the Land of Ust-Tsilma" was dedicated to this event. Historical events were reconstructed: the origin and foundation of Ust-Tsilma, which is associated with the name of a Novgorodian, a member of the dynasty of Rostov princes Ivashka Lastka.


Фото: Ольга Березовская

In the evening, villagers and guests gathered on the banks of the Pechora River to watch the powerboating competitions. On the night of July 12, they visited the ritual holiday "Petrovshchina", which takes place annually on the eve of Saint Peter and Saint Paul Day and is an echo of a ritualistic funeral rite.

And on July 12, in the evening, the main event "Ust-Tsilma Hill" took place – a folk festival with khorovods, songs, dances in bright historical outfits. Tourists gladly took part in the khorovods, dressed up in historical costumes.

It is not often that villages in the outback become the center of event tourism. The organizers are sure that such tours will have their fans.

Olga Berezovskaya