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Some useful tips from tourists who have already been to Russia

Some useful tips from tourists who have already been to Russia
It doesn't matter you are going to Russia on business or just for pleasure. For the Americans and most Europeans, this country is completely different and some rules will be difficult to understand. We have collected some life hacks from the tourists who have already visited Russia. They will help you make your trip as great as possible.
What should you know before going to Russia?

Places to eat
There are a lot of places to eat and try Russian cuisine in Moscow. They differ with prices, dishes, and the atmosphere. Here are some recommendations from the tourists who have already visited Russia.

  • Cafe Pushkin on Tverskaya street or Tverskoy Boulevard offers tasty dishes at good prices.

  • Restaurants and cafes near Red Square are expensive. It's better to go to Arbat Street.

  • Some interesting and atmospheric places are around Patriarch's Pond.

  • You will get pleasure after visiting the restaurant Ruski in the district "Moscow city",

  • Vegetarians will like the Jagannath restaurant.

  • The Obed Buffet restaurant is like a canteen with a system of self-service. Lunch in a canteen №57 will be a gastronomic trip to the Soviet Union.

  • If you like to try Georgian food, you can go to Genatsvale Restaurant. There you can enjoy delicious food and traditional dance show.

  • It's a great experience to go to the food markets.

  • There are some street food, kebab shops, KFC, McDonald's, and others.

Remember, that food can have another taste as you have expected because of the different ways of cooking.

Places to visit
Moscow, like no other European city, has become unusually beautiful, clean, comfortable, interesting. Extraordinary lighting, various festivals, walking tours, make it attractive for tourists and its residents.

  • Metro. Some stations are stunning both in Moscow and in St. Petersburg. Sometimes it's difficult to understand Cyrillic names in the subway or the metro system seems like a labyrinth. So, it's better to go with an English-speaking guide or you just need some practice in reading in Russian. But the Metro is cheap, fast and you can go easily anywhere.

  • There are a lot of impressive museums in Russia. It's worth visiting the Tretyakov Gallery, the Pushkin Museum and the Hermitage in Petersburg.

  • Lots of Orthodox churches were rebuilt and restored but leave their magic style. One of the most famous churches is St. basil's Cathedral. It's a regular church and not always open. That's why there no regular tours there. It differs much from West European and American churches in style outside and inside.

  • The Russian Ballet is must-see entertainment. If you have an opportunity, try to take tickets to a performance at the Bolshoi theatre or Maly theatre in Moscow, and Kirov in St. Petersburg.

  • Russian banya is a traditional Russian bathhouse. It's a part of Russian culture. There you can eat, drink, be whipped with birch leaves.

  • There are lots of small "flat" museums to see the former life of the Russians.

If you are in Moscow and want to visit St. Petersburg, it's better to go there by overnight train just for 3,5 hours. You buy just a place, a bunk, that's why some strangers can come and stay with you the whole journey.

Tips to note
The Russians are like the Canadians are quiet, reserved, but sometimes can be very emotional.

  • Most people are friendly. Older generations don't speak English. Don't take this fact as arrogance. But people under 35 can help you if you ask them in English. Also, the staff in the hotels, waiters speak English well.

  • Don't greet or smile at strangers in a familiar way as, for example, the Americans do. Russian culture is much different. If you have a Russian friend, meet up with him and take him with.

  • If you are a guest of a Russian home, come with flowers, alcohol, and dessert. Don't forget to remove your shoes from entering the house.

  • Don't drink a lot with strangers

  • There are some apps for public transport and bus GPS. Yandex.Maps (App Store, Google Play), 2GIS (App Store, Google Play)

It'll be great and helpful to learn the Cyrillic alphabet before going to Russia. There are some apps to help you do it fast and easily. You may use Google translator but just for some words, not for communication.

Useful tips
  • Most tourists recommend buying a local sim-card. You will always have reliable internet. It costs about 10$ per month and includes 5-10GB traffic.

  • It's better to use credit cards. They are available everywhere: Mastercard and Visa. Just call your bank and let them know about foreign transactions. If you take cash, don't show it on the public.

  • The weather in Russia is changeable. The best time for visiting is late spring and early autumn. In summer it can be too hot and in winter too cold or wet. Otherwise, winter holidays, New Year and Christmas time in Moscow are very very exciting.