TOMSK, Mar 8 – RIA
Tomsk. Seven-hour walks across Tomsk, which are carried out by
the guide Elena Erofeeva, became her bestseller last summer. She is - Belarusian
by birth - was enchanted by Tomsk not at the first glance. What for we can love
a city without palaces, why Muscovites take a camera at minus 43 Celsius and where
are the three main Tomsk epochs - in our material.
To understand and
Elena Erofeeva moved to Tomsk in
2013 - she married a scientist, associate professor of Tomsk State University, whom
she met while studying at a Moscow postgraduate program. She was a tour guide since
studentship - she worked in Minsk, accompanied both the delegation of the tourist
structure of the Presidential Executive Office, and the sightseeing bus tours across
the cities of Russia, Ukraine, Poland.
But at the time of the move, Tomsk
was not considered as an excursion city. Categorical "There is no tourism in
Tomsk, you can’t earn money by doing excursions here" she had to hear quite
often, and, in general, at first she agreed with this opinion:
"Visually, at the first meeting,
Tomsk really did not make any special impression on me, primarily because of the
annoying different format of buildings. I was also unpleasantly surprised by the
huge number of abandoned buildings. Unfortunately, I did not see Tomsk in the state
of the "abandoned magnificence" of the 1980s - the beginning of the 1990s,
before the loss of wooden complex development", - remembers Elena.
But she was very impressed by the
people: "I saw at once that the people here with the capital, I would even
say, with the European thinking". Having decided to move, Erofeeva began to
explore the city - visited excursions, read a lot, met with local historians.
"I am convinced - in order
to feel comfortable in the city, it is important to understand it. To study the
resources and the logic of its development. This is the way of appropriating the
city - through knowing its history. It took me about three years. Today I tell everyone:
Tomsk - is the most interesting and the most multi-layered city in my 12-year guiding
practice", - she says.
© предоставлено Музеем истории Томска
"Tomsk - is a special mix of ceremonial provincial and university buildings with commercial buildings, church steeples and unique wooden housing stock. Siberian aesthetics of functionalism, rationality, minimalism, and at the same time such a historically interesting way", - considers Elena.
"Look to your
left, look to your right..."
As the Tomsk guide, Elena Erofeeva
began with the "classics of the genre" - bus tours from travel companies.
The Aleksiyevskiy Monastery of the Mother of God, wooden houses, universities, Lagerny
Garden, Resurrection Mountain and Resurrection Church - are a standard two-hour
set of impressions, limited by the sight from the bus window and short exits to
the sights ...
“Tomsk - is not a bus at all, unlike,
for example, from Minsk, where I spent a long time for bus excursions, or Moscow,
where I lived during postgraduate study. Here are small streets, houses are pressed
to the red line, low-rise buildings, perception of a picture from a bus is completely
different ... Literally after the first bus trips I conducted, I knew that I would
show the city differently", - remembers Elena.
She came up with a personal excursion
project, calling it "Hidden in Siberia", and a little more than a year
ago began telling the world about Tomsk and Tomsk citizens on Instagram.
© предоставлено Еленой Ерофеевой
During the year work, Elena became the heroine of the project "Pride of Russia", participated in the filming of a travel show about Tomsk, held a night tour for the famous video blogger, won the regional stage of the All-Russian professional skills competition in the "Best Tour Guide" nomination.
Her bestseller unexpectedly (even
for herself - it was believed that long excursions tormented people) was a long
walk "I am your city. Let's get to know each other!". It lasts six to
seven hours, starting at the House of Science named after Peter Makushin. This place,
according to the guide, best of all illustrates the multi-layered history of Tomsk:
"400 years ago, being here,
we would see the walls of the upper tenement fortress, this is our military-strategic
and diplomatic history of the 17th century. Then - Pushkin Street passes by, passing
into the Irkutsk tract, this is our long period of existence as one of the most
important cities in Moscow-Siberian path".
“And with all this, we are standing
near the building of 1912, which is an illustration of the modern approach to architecture:
modern for a provincial city - is a very fresh solution for that time! Plus, this
is the beginning of Tomsk’s history as an educational center”, - continues Erofeeva.
© предоставлено Еленой Ерофеевой
On Mamontov Street - a favorite view of tour guide on the city: historical districts at a glance!
Sightseeing tour ends in the area
of universities. For one walk, during which people had time to drink tea on the
wooden balcony on Shishkov Street, relax in public gardens, have lunch and chat,
they walked on foot for four centuries. They get an opportunity to understand the
city from a spatial and historical perspective, to figure out where some historical
areas are, what their peculiarities are, what direction the city grew in, how it
was built up in stages, who changed it and how ...
"This is an excursion base,
which can then be supplemented with narrow topics, independent reading of local
history articles. My task - is to arouse interest to the city, help to see it with
enthusiastic eyes of a tourist. This is necessary not only for tourists, but also
for residents: there are a lot of visitors in Tomsk, it is important to establish
a connection with the city of your everyday life", - says Elena.
предоставлено Еленой Девяшиной
Elena Erofeeva conducts an excursion tour in Tomsk.
Erofeeva calls Tomsk an obvious
tourist leader in the regional plan: from Novosibirsk, Krasnoyarsk, Omsk, Kuzbass
and Altai cities people come here for a weekend, to change the scenery. But there
are more and more Muscovites, Petersburgers, foreigners.
The interest to the Siberian cities
- is one of the latest tourist trends, which is noted by the guide:
"On New Year's holidays, for
example, two Muscovites stayed - a mother and a teenage daughter. Mother showed
her daughters "different Russia". Tomsk was chosen partly by chance -
they saw my suggestions on Instagram. And after reading the reviews on the "Otzovik"
website, where the city is praised literally by everyone, they packed their bags.
And there are more and more such tourists. Muscovites flew in and went on excursions
even at minus 43 Celsius. It's climate tourism!" - smiles Elena.
© предоставлено Еленой Девяшиной
"The social networks of citizens are a tremendous resource for advertising the city! We all appreciate personal experience and listen to sincere recommendations. Many of my tourists didn’t intend to go to Tomsk before acquaintance with the blog. Sotell about Tomsk, post a photo!" – calls Elena.
Random guests who come to Tomsk,
as a rule, do not expect anything special from the city. They understand: Siberia
is not Disneyland, there are few visual wow impressions.
"Tomsk - is not a holiday
city like Kazan, Yekaterinburg, St. Petersburg, which have capital character and
parade in culture, there are no palaces here - people looked at space as a resource
for survival. At the same time, being in Tomsk on business, many are pleasantly
surprised and they regret that allocated only one day for the city. Tomsk is for
unhurried contemplation and for so-called intellectual tourism", - says Elena.
© РИА Томск. Таисия Воронцова
"Tomsk lacks creative objects which would contrast with the patriarchal city. We would have unusual shops, trendy small architectural forms that would visually catch the eye. A small example - is when in the University Grove was set Hypercube TSU, it passed through all social networks!"
Her guests always note that in
Tomsk there is the most well-groomed wooden architecture. It is here that people
begin to believe that all this beauty - is not a fading, but a preserved heritage
"In terms of tourism development
there is one wish - is to bring into dignified condition demanded public spaces
and streets. So that guides do not have to justify why Bakunin smells bad and the
embankment in the Governor’s quarter is in a semi-ruined state. And in every way
to preserve and maintain historic wooden buildings. Without it Tomsk will cease
to be Tomsk", - adds Elena.
© РИА Томск. Павел Стефанский
There are places where almost all the guests immediately take out the camera. Top 3 are - house on the Belinsky Street, 19, The house with firebirds and the interiors of the main building of Tomsk Polytechnic University. On the fourth place - the Church of the Resurrection.