10 Important Facts about Russia

Author: Dmitry Paranyushkin (on 20 Jul 2015)
There are some very important facts about Russia that you need to know before you even start thinking about that country, let alone travel there... Knowing those facts will help you understand why Russians are so proud of their country. It will also help you make a conversation about Russia with anybody, even if you don't speak the language, using the gestures and non-verbal communication.
 
• Russia is the biggest country in the world. Russia is taking the area of 17.1 million square kilometers - it’s like USA and Europe combined - and the country is 9000 kilometers from east to west and 5000 from north to south.

Russia is both in Europe and Asia. Ural mountains divide the Eurasian continent - and Russia - into Europe and Asia. One fourth of the Russian territory lies in Europe, the other part lies in Asia. If you want to check out Urals, travel to Ekaterinburg.

•  The capital of Russia is Moscow and the second largest city is St. Petersburg (which is also called the "Northern capital"). Moscow represents everything that Russia is and St. Petersburg represents everything that Russia isn't.

Map of Russia

•  Russia has the longest railway in the worldThe Trans-Siberian. It spans almost 10000 kilometers – from Moscow to Vladivostok. The journey lasts 6 days, takes about 6 bottles of vodka per person, several delicious tasty home-made meals prepared for you by the locals who sell it at train stations along the way. It has the most captivating views, makes you meet all kinds of people from all backgrounds and origins – and is, basically, a real trip, on par with the best psychedelics available on the market legally and illegally today.
  
Map of Siberia, Russia
 

• The population of Russia is about 140 Mln people and three fourths live in the European part and one fourth lives in the Asian part of Russia (Siberia and Far East regions). Most of these people are Russianss (81%) the others are Ukrainians, Tatars, Belorussians, Polish, Germans, Jews, Caucasians. The language spoken is mostly Russian, but some people speak Ukrainian and Tatar.

• Russia has several republics, which have quite a high degree of autonomy. For instance, Tatarstan with predominantly Muslim population. The capital of Tatarstan is Kazan (which is slightly off Trans-Siberian railway several hours east from Moscow), and it's a beautiful city to visit and very unique as well.

• Russia has the biggest and the deepest freshwater lake in the world Baikal lake in Siberia located a few kilometers off Trans-Siberian railway. The area around is great to come into union with the nature: it's empty, wild, and pristine. Besides, if it ever happens that there's a lack of clean water in the world, Baikal will be the most sought-after resource. So perhaps it makes sense to travel here now before it gets too popular.

Baikal Lake - Photo by flickr.com/photos/restlessglobetrotter/2873559078


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• The average salary in Russia is about $1000 per month. It's not too much and most likely the real "mean" number is lower (there are some very highly paid people in Russia and it's probably thanks to them that the average salary is higher) – in reality most people get around $500-$600 per month. Still, it is higher than most Baltic states, Ukraine, and the Eastern European countries that recently joined the EU. So the level of life in Russia is low, but not as low as this kind of photos like the one below like to make you think...

• The amount of officially consumed alcohol in liters per capita in Russia is around the same level as in France in Germany. However, if you add unofficial consumption, Russia is third on the list, after Belarus and Moldova. Also, Russians are the ones who drink the most strong spirits in Europe. Drinking is a real problem in Russia, but it also connects people and helps them go through the hard times and winter colds. Besides, recent studies have shown that 100 gram of vodka a day can be beneficial for your health as it helps expand blood vessels and improves circulation.

 

Any other important facts about Russia we missed? Please, leave your suggestions below.

 
 

 




 

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