Tag Archives: Barentsburg

Cool comrades: Barentsburg greeting visitors with a huge facelift, but residents’ wariness and unseen decay linger


A hotel room without hot water or toilet paper (as for internet…surely you jest), buildings in full post-Cold War decay, and vodka flowing freely during breakfast before 8 a.m.

That was then.

Reaching the other side: Barentsburg residents embrace spirit of Wonderland, guide killed in accident during annual cultural exchange show

In the fairy tale seen on stage, a troubled woman trying to dig up the dead because “she missed her friends, her family and their love” finds solace with a magical winter visit to Barentsburg. In real life, the residents of the Russian settlement reached out to a recently departed colleague with a musical tribute to neighbors sharing their sorrow. 

The art of aging: Barentsburg turns old bureacractic center into bustling art museum that salutes its history and future


Turning an aging center of bureaucracy into a future-minded memorial of culture and history was an intricate work of art in itself. And like the ever-changing collections, the dreams of those eyeing the future are an evolving process – which, alas, still has to cope with the realities of bureaucracy.

Exchange students: Youths from Barentsburg and Australia get inadvertent education about life during brief cruise


The youths from Barentsburg ended up taking a boat trip to nowhere due to rough seas. An Australian family who paid to visit the Russian settlement decided they were too tired to disembark while the local kids climbed aboard. Which turned their “diminished” experiences into something much richer than originally planned.

Motherland lode: Barentsburg salutes its workers with food, music and frivolity during annual Miners’ Day party


On a day saluting the work of the miners, all work stopped except for tourism activity – and those poor folks couldn’t find more than 15 minutes to join the party and eat something.

Meanwhile, everyone else partied from morning until late afternoon during the annual Miners’ Day celebration last Saturday in Barentsburg.

Russian Revelution: Strange invasion from the motherland prompts foreigner to crash 85th birthday party in Barentsburg

Russians are flooding into Longyearbyen in force under very strange circumstances indeed.

The bus with the “Barentsburg” decal keeps going back and forth through town all day. The helicopter belonging to the state-owned company Trust Arktikugol is making multiple flights. A ship with passengers atypical of the cruisers typically arriving this time of year. An “interesting passenger” arriving at the airport.

Uninhibited misadventurer: Man’s unarmed walk to Barentsburg, Isfjord Radio ‘a lesson for the others’


Maksym Boreiko is a rugged explorer. He’s also a rash one whose hopefully thankful he’s alive.

Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of Feb. 23, 2016


Fleece, other synthetics are a major microplastics problem
A large amount of microplastics in local and other Arctic waters appears to be from fleece and other clothing made of synthetic materials, according to two researchers conducting a study in Adventfjorden.

Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of Feb. 9, 2016


Demolition of homes buried by avalanche at midpoint
Workers have demolished six of the 11 homes damaged beyond repair by the Dec. 19 avalanche as of this week, according to LNS Spitsbergen, which has posted a video of the ongoing work.

Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of Nov. 17, 2015


School will change weapons policy after accidental shot
Longyearbyen School will change its procedures for employees standing watch for polar bears after one accidentally fired a signal pistol shot last Thursday, according to Headmaster Anne Søvold Vikanes.