Pinezhye Fairytale

Pinezhsky district has a distinctive character, derived from its traditions, customs, and unique local folklore.

Project geography

Village of Karpogory, Arkhangelsk region (Northwest Russia), is the administrative centre of the Pinezhsky district with a total population of 22,000 people. Located 212 km from the regional capital Arkhangelsk, 1,351 km from Moscow. Founded in the 14th century.

Project Lead
Marina Klikunova

Project lead

Project Description

Pinezhsky district has a distinctive character, derived from its traditions, customs, and unique local folklore. There are many master taletellers, singers, and folk ensembles in the area. The project of 2017 managed to unite these disparate activities and practices, to preserve and promote the northern tradition of folk tales and fairy lore and to position the area as a destination rich in traditional cultural heritage.

Active local communities provided support for the project’s implementation. The core initiative group undertook regular expeditions and site visits to villages and settlements in the region to collect and record local folklore and to run training sessions and workshops for locals. Oral storytelling traditions, in particular fairy tales, have been identified as a unique cultural asset of the territory and a major tourist attraction.

As part of the first phase of the project, four villages in the area have started catering to tourists and developing their offer. Three new hiking routes have been created and 876 people have already participated in 42 guided tours. Local communities are engaged in reviving traditional crafts, restoring potteries and weaving shops, and contributing to the overall area’s improvement. Throughout the year, over 1000 local residents from across the region have taken part in the project’s activities, attended by 2000 people.

Objectives of the next phase

The goal of the next phase is to agree a strategy and detailed action plan for tourism development and promotion of the area. A dedicated coordination centre will open in a local library, becoming a ‘one-stop-shop’ for information, advice, networking, and learning opportunities for active community groups and individuals. Support programmes enabling self-employment and small business ownership, as well as competence-based training in project planning and management will be developed for local residents. The project’s reach will increase through partnerships with local institutions and public organizations across the Pinezhsky district.


Project team

Project lead
Marina Klikunova