Here are some things you might want to know before coming to Russia:
Walking through the streets of Russian cities, some contrasts have appeared in recent decades. This concerns not only urban architecture, but also residents.
Public transport is fairly well developed, however, the following difficulties can be encountered. First, it is traffic jams in large cities. Moscow metro is also rather crowded, it is better to visit it on the weekends.
Many foreigners, arriving in our country, are surprised by the gloom of the Russians. The constant polite smile in Russia is called a “duty smile” and is considered an unpleasant trait. A smile in Russian communication is most often addressed to friends. Despite the fact that smiling is not peculiar to Russians, the majority of Russians are cheerful, hospitable, cheerful and witty.
The only nationwide state language of the Russian Federation is Russian. Unfortunately, most Russians speak foreign languages poorly. According to various sociological polls, only 14-18 percent of the population can speak foreign languages fluently. The most common foreign language is English.
Holidays in Russia are considered a budget option, and there are quite a lot of destinations to have very different kinds of leisure.
Where to go to Russia for the first time?
If you are in Russia for the first time, then Moscow and St. Petersburg are the two main cities that every tourist must visit. If you are staying in Russia for two weeks or more you will be lucky to explore surroundings, take a cruise or go around the ancient cities of the Golden Ring.
Moscow, with its Orthodox shrines, architectural and historical sights, museums with rare works of art and famous theaters, attracts tourists like a magnet. Being in Moscow, it is impossible not to go to the Kremlin - this is the “heart of the capital”. Check out the cathedrals, which are the “pearls” of Russian architecture - Uspensky, Blagoveshchensky and Arkhangelsky, admire the Ivan the Great Bell Tower and take pictures with the Tsar Cannon and Tsar Bell. The Red Square is one of the most ancient and certainly the most famous square of our country. Old Arbat, Alexander Garden, Red Square, GUM, St. Basil's Cathedral - in Moscow there are a lot of places to be seen during your first trip to Russia.
Another must-see place is St. Petersburg. The Northern capital is a city of incredible beauty and significance for both national and European history and culture, a city of museums, palaces and mansions. First of all, it is the center of the city: Nevsky Prospect, a monument to Catherine II in the Catherine Square (locals call it Katkin kindergarten), Kazan Cathedral, Bank Bridge across the Griboyedov Canal, protected by griffins. It is also the St. Isaac's Cathedral and its colonnade, the Alexander Garden to the Senate Square to the Bronze Horseman. Walking past the Savior on Blood and the Mikhailovsky Castle towards the Mikhailovsky Garden, you will get to the Summer Garden and to Palace Square. In good weather, you can take a boat trip along the canals and rivers of St. Petersburg, visit the Peter and Paul Fortress. Rainy days are the best to visit museums. Visiting Hermitage only will take a full day. If you happen to be in St. Petersburg from mid-May to early October, when the fountains work, take a day trip to Peterhof.
The Volga is one of the largest navigable rivers in Russia and the largest river in Europe, which flows through the entire European part of the Russian Federation into the Caspian Sea. Volga is one of the most convenient “tourist rivers”, along which dozens of passenger ships who cruise along hundreds of routes.
The Golden Ring is a traditional circular tourist route through the ancient Russian cities of Central Russia. The classic route begins and ends in Moscow and unites the cities of Sergiev Posad, Pereslavl-Zalessky, Rostov Veliky, Yaroslavl, Kostroma, Ivanovo, Suzdal and Vladimir.
Rostov the Great, a small town in Yaroslavl Oblast and one of the oldest towns in Russia that was founded in 862. A trip to Rostov is a real time machine. The mirror of Lake Nero, strict and elegant monasteries, quiet streets and the majestic Kremlin give a from the hustle and bustle.
Suzdal, the sparkling diamond northeast of Moscow. The landscape characteristic of Suzdal is the white-stone Kremlin walls along the banks of the river and the domes of churches glittering in the sun.
Vladimir, the city on the left bank of Klyazma River with adorable buildings serving from the early 12th century.
Yaroslavl, one of the oldest cities in Russia became the first Christian city on the Volga River. There are more than 800 monuments of architecture.
Sergiev Posad, known as the heart of Russian Orthodoxy, has lots to offer, including one of the largest monasteries in the world called the Trinity Lavra of Saint Sergius.
Kostroma, a city where the past (both Imperial and Soviet) can coexist and look amazingly interesting altogether.
Ivanovo, also known as The City of Brides due to the local textile industry that brought hundreds of thousands women to this place, is also famous for its Medieval architecture and monasteries.
Pereslavl-Zalessky, was founded in 1152 that is known for its location on Lake Plesheevo, where Peter the Great built his toy fleet in 1688. This is a cozy and clean Russian town with beautiful landscapes.