According to Cell Phone Explorer, the main natural and cultural attraction of the Medvezhyegorsk region is the Zaonezhye Peninsula, which is located in the northern part of Lake Onega. Here are monuments of wooden architecture – churches, chapels, houses, mills and barns built in the 17th – the first third of the 20th centuries. It was in Zaonezhye in the 19th century that epics about Russian heroes were first recorded. On the Zaonezhsky peninsula on the western coast of the Unitskaya Bay there is a cultural and historical center “Pegrema”. A wide variety of flora and fauna is noted on its territory, as well as samples of the culture of the ancient population of Zaonezhye are concentrated. The complex covers an area of 20 thousand square meters. m. Here you can see groups of stones, boulders, in the outlines of which one can guess the resemblance to a person or animals, and burials.
Near the northeastern coast of the Zaonezhie peninsula, 6 km from the village of Tolvuya, on the island of Paleostrovsky stands the Paleostrovsky Nativity Monastery. According to legend, the monastery was founded by the hermit Cornelius from the Valaam Monastery in the 12th century. Under him, the Church of the Nativity of the Most Holy Theotokos was erected, the churches of St. Nicholas and the Prophet Elijah were cut down, and fraternal cells were built. The Monk Cornelius was buried at the place of his seclusion in a cave located not far from the monastery. Later, his holy relics were transferred from the cave and buried under the vault of the Church of the Nativity of the Most Holy Theotokos. The monastery was notorious for mass burnings of schismatics in the middle of the 17th century. This happened after in 1687 the black deacon Ignatius from the Solovetsky Monastery, who did not support Nikon’s reforms, shut himself up here with several monks. Archers were immediately sent to the monastery, the schismatics did not wait for the capture and burned themselves. Different sources call a different number of dead – from 1000 to 2700 people. The monastery was ravaged again in 1688, when a detachment of 500 armed schismatics seized the Paleostrovsky Monastery for the second time. Now the main building with a house church, some outbuildings and part of the fence have been preserved from the monastery.
There are many sources of mineral waters on the Zaonezhie peninsula. Especially popular sources are: “Tsaritsyn Klyuch”, “Three Ivans” and “Salt Pit”. In total, up to 40 springs are open in Zaonezhie, more than half of them are located between the Unitskaya and Svyatukha bays. Three types of mineral waters have been identified on the peninsula: ferruginous, radon and salty chloride-sodium. All springs pass through the zone of shungite rocks, common throughout Zaonezhye, receiving additional purification. The source “Tsaritsyn Key” is located near the village of Tolvuya. Local residents discovered the healing properties of water containing a lot of iron back in the 17th century. According to legend, the mother of Mikhail Fedorovich Romanov – Martha – was cured of epilepsy by her. It is because of this legend that the spring got its name. Source ” is located 6 km from the village of Cherkasy. Next to it rises a chapel. The composition of the source waters is characterized as hydrocarbonate, magnesium-calcium. The source “Salt Pit” is located in the vicinity of the village of Velikaya Guba. This is the only salt spring in Karelia with a sodium chloride composition.
On small islands off the coast of the Zaonezhie peninsula, monuments of archeology and history have been preserved. On Kolgostrov Eneolithic sites of the 3rd millennium BC, the remains of ancient Sami dwellings and places of worship in the form of masonry from boulders were discovered. In the southwestern part of the island, on a rock, there is an unusual stone, which is known for its ability to make melodic sounds, for which it received the name “Sounding”. Scientists have found that the stone makes sounds due to a crack in its upper part. Rock signs were found on the rock itself. In ancient times, a pagan sanctuary was located on Radkolye Island, from which stonework in the form of spirals or ovals has been preserved. The main attraction of the island is the boulder “Radkolsky idol” 2 m high, in the outlines of which you can see depressions similar to the eyes, nostrils and mouth of a person. On the South Oleniy Island one of the largest Neolithic burial grounds was discovered. Administratively, Kizhi Island also belongs to the Medvezhyegorsk District.