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Recreation and tourism
Imatra cannot boast of glorious traditions for the simple reason that it was founded in 1948, and acquired the status of a city only in 1971. It is interesting that Imatra was still in the 60s It is connected to Svetogorsk, a Russian city, which is only 7 km away by a railway border crossing, which was replaced by a road one in the 70s. The crossing was extremely convenient for the export of Soviet timber, and was also used to attract foreign specialists to Svetogorsk, who spent the night in Imatra and in the morning went to work in Svetogorsk. In the mid-90s, it was decided to modernize the border crossing and turn it into an international automobile checkpoint (MAPP), but the transformation dragged on for almost 10 years, the new checkpoint was opened only in 2002. Four years later, the checkpoint became round-the-clock. and not only Finns and Russians were allowed to cross the border freely, but also citizens of any other country. A prerequisite for crossing the border is the presence of a vehicle, which is often played by a bicycle for local residents.
Despite the short life of the city, it would not be entirely correct to say that it does not have a single historical landmark. One attraction still exists - these are the rapids and a waterfall on the river, which were once visited by Catherine II herself - a person of the highest degree of history. In addition, starting from the 19th century, all Russian nobility, who considered it their indispensable duty to visit the Finnish wonder of the world, went in the footsteps of the empress. At that time there was a luxury hotel near the waterfall called Imatrankoski, and a bridge was built, which could well be called the"Golden Gate" of its time: to commit suicide, future suicides from all over Europe came here to commit suicide. Near the famous waterfall there is now a monument - the figure of the Virgin of Imatra, throwing herself into the water, in addition, on the shore there are stones with the names of the sufferers who decided to go to another world here.
In the first half of the 20th century, a hydroelectric power station was built on Vuoksa (which, by the way, is reflected on the coat of arms in the form of three lightning bolts), but Imatrankoski has not disappeared: now it is “launched” every day from 8 to 25 August, 25 and 31 December. The spillway is a grand spectacle and lasts 20 minutes, accompanied by lighting effects and Sibelius music.
Despite the harsh climate by European standards, Imatra also has water activities, which include the Imatran Kulpula water park, located in the open air. The water in the park is artificially heated, there are practically no extreme attractions, but there are effects of thunderstorms, rain, a private waterfall, as well as a SPA center and swimming pools for sports swimming.
Not far from the city center, on the banks of the Vuoksa, there is a curious a museum called "Karelian House". In the open air, its employees have carefully recreated the rural landscape of Karelia of the 18th century, including houses, farmyards and other buildings made in full accordance with the historical truth.
For fans of cultural recreation, the Art Museum, under the roof of which more than one and a half thousand paintings by famous Finnish, Swedish, French and Italian artists of the 19th and 21st centuries are collected. The pride of the museum is a unique collection of Japanese prints by masters of the 17th century. Among other museums, it is worth noting the Automobile Museum, which contains old vehicles, as well as the Museum of the Border Service.
Of the architectural landmarks of Imatra, two churches stand out, one of which - Orthodox - was built in the middle of the 20th century by the architect Toivo Paatela and bears the name Nicholas the Wonderworker. The second, titled "Three Crosses", is the fruit of the works of the famous Finnish master Alvar Aalto. There are three crosses on the altar of this temple, symbolizing the crosses of Mount Calvary, but the exterior of the church is much more interesting than its interiors.
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Topic: Information about the resort of Imatra in Finland.