What is Barents?

The Barents Euro-Arctic Region is Europe’s largest region for interregional cooperation, includes the northernmost parts of Sweden, Norway, Finland and Northwest Russia. The nature is unique and the environment vulnerable, with wide tundra areas in the north and extensive boreal forests zones in the south. The wealth and diversity of natural resources, e.g., biotopes, forests, fish, minerals, diamonds, oil and gas, poses great opportunities and challenges.

This is a vast region with approximately 5.23 million people; it is an area as large as Poland, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, France (mainland) and Spain (mainland) together, totalling 1,75 million km2, of which 75 % of the territory and population is Russian. Several indigenous peoples and minority groups live in the region, e.g., the Sami, Nenets, Vepsians and Komi.

The majority of the Barents Region belongs to the temperate conifer zone whereas the Scandinavian mountain chain, the northern parts of the Kola Peninsula, the Nenets Area and Novaja Zemlja are part of the Arctic tundra. The location mainly north of the Arctic Circle gives a period of exotic midnight sun and also long and dark polar nights.

Learn more about Barents from here.

Tourism in the Barents Area

Tourism is a growing livelihood in the Barents region and globally. “Europe’s northern wilderness” with its highly developed services is a great opportunity for entrepreneurs and tourists in the field. Indigenous people and rich local cultures are important actors in the development of tourism in the region. The overall aim of the competition is to make Arctic nature tourism globally known and intensify cooperation of the joint marketing of tourism in the Barents Area.


Century of Nature Photography in the Barents Area is a photo competition organized by the Regional Council of Kainuu. The idea of the competition is to capture beautiful moments from the Barents Area. You can take pictures for instance of animals, people or nature overall. The competition period is August 11 – October 31, 2017.  And the winner will be announced during a seminar held at the Kuhmo Arts Center on November 10, 2017 (more info coming soon).


The judging panel will be published later. The judges are international and they represent every Barents country. A professional photographer will be included in the judging panel.