Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Moroccan Adventurers Fail in Strange Russian Expedition

It was hardly in the footsteps of Ibn Battuta, but it must have seemed like a good idea at the time. Sadly, the reality fell a little short of expectations. Reviving the traditions of the Age of Discovery, two Moroccan citizens tried to trek across Russia to Finland with a hand-drawn map while taking notes of the journey.

The Petrozavodsk crossing where a visa is required

According to the Russian Border Guard Service in Petrozavodsk (Karelian/Vepsian/Finnish: Petroskoi), the capital city of the Russian Republic of Karelia, the two Moroccan travellers were detained in the border zone without visas and without permission to enter.

The adventurous Moroccan duo were navigating with the help of nothing more than a hand-drawn map showing local towns and distances to the Finnish border, as well as routes toward Finland, the service said in a statement.

They were also taking detailed notes of their movements, possibly intended to help later trekkers to follow in their tracks, the border guards said.

The famous Petrozavodsk church 

However, the expedition ended in failure: The duo, whose names were withheld, will now have to explain their adventures to Russia’s Federal Migration Service, the report said. Hopefully they will have a chance to see some of the fabulous Karelian architecture before being shipped home.

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