Destinations Europe Russia

20 Quick Observations on Russia based on 3 Months Travelling

I was mad enough to spend three months travelling around Russia in Winter. As with all places, there are stereotypes. Which are true? And which turned out to be rubbish? Let’s find out from my 20 quick observations on Russia based on my experience.

 

Quick Observations on Russia:

  1. Russia is the only country I have been to, where you can go to a fast food (Teremok) and get pancakes with caviar as a filling
  2. You never shake a womans hand in Russia when meeting her as I discvoered in Saratov with Sergei, Olga and 2 Germans

    Me and Olga in Saratov

    Me and Olga in Saratov

  3. Russians drink a lot less vodka than you think
  4. Russians dont say Ha здоровье
  5. Russians do say до свида́ния
  6. All questions can be answered with either нормально or я не знаю
  7. Russian men love to wear black
  8. Russian men aren’t all alcoholics
  9. Russian women love knee high black boots
  10. Russian women love fur coats
  11. Russian women aren’t all gold diggers
  12. Bears don’t walk down Russian streets – apparently some people believe this
  13. Lada Samara and Riva estate cars are still everywhere in Russia

    Lada Samara

    Lada Samara

  14. You really need to have a special mentality to survive winter in Russia
  15. The people in Kazan and Siberia where the nicest that I met

    The Qolşärif Mosque in Kazan

    The Qolşärif Mosque in Kazan

  16. You haven’t lived until you have tried powdered mashed potato and pasta on a 36 hour train journey
    Powdered Mashed Potato - Just add hot water

    Powdered Mashed Potato – Just add hot water

    Hungry?

    Hungry?

  17. I could stuff my face with Georgian food everyday and be very happy
    Khachapuri

    Khachapuri

     

    Khinkali

    Khinkali

  18. The Spanish guy i met in Volgograd in January going to Yakutsk, where it can be -65C, is probably dead now
  19. Marshrutkas are the best form of transport. Imagine minivans which would fit 20 people in the UK, except in Russia and Ukraine, 200 people can get on
  20. And finally, never lose your winter coat, hat and gloves at 6am in Siberia in January!
    Goodbye hat and coat

    Goodbye hat and coat

    Novosibirsk central market shopping

    Novosibirsk central market shopping

 

So those are my quick observations on Russia. Have you ever been? What would you add to this list?

You Might Also Like

19 Comments

  • Reply
    Melody PIttman
    August 18, 2018 at 00:57

    Good list, many things I never would have thought of. I loved vsiiting Russia and was so impressed by the opulence of the country. The Georgia food pics look amazing. We were invited to a wedding there next month but the airfare is entirely too expensive to squeeze it in. Keep on traveling!

  • Reply
    Astrid Vinje
    August 17, 2018 at 06:05

    I always figured the winters were pretty harsh in Russia. I’m not sure if I would survive!

    • Damien
      Reply
      Damien
      September 22, 2018 at 13:09

      Very harsh. If I can do it, you can do it!

  • Reply
    AMBER TATTON
    August 16, 2018 at 23:23

    This made me laugh a lot.i haven’t seen powdered mash potatoes since I was a young kid. I’d love to visit Russia just the winter might break me!

    • Damien
      Reply
      Damien
      September 22, 2018 at 13:08

      I was the same too, it was like a blast back to my childhood for sure.

  • Reply
    Jerry and Fiona
    August 15, 2018 at 23:45

    Powdered mash? How hungry were you? I am from Dublin and I know only severe hunger would prompt this! Blasphemy!
    We will look up Georgian food to see what that is about. I imagine a lot of cabbage, pickles, lamb, salty cheese, dill and kebabs, which all sound pretty good to us!

    • Damien
      Reply
      Damien
      September 22, 2018 at 13:06

      Haha well when you are on a train for 36 hours and its the only option if you want something hot, then you will do it. It is basically the same thing as smash actually (minus the weird aliens from the advert). Georgian food is probably not the healthiest but it is so damn tasty!

  • Reply
    Cindy Baker
    August 15, 2018 at 19:50

    I visited St. Petersburg and didn’t see any bears there either! I’m also glad I didn’t see any of that powdered mashed potatoes and pasta. Fun list!

    • Damien
      Reply
      Damien
      September 22, 2018 at 13:04

      It does take a little bit of getting used to!

  • Reply
    Bernie Jackson
    August 15, 2018 at 15:56

    That’s a great read – looks like fun! There were definitely plenty of Ladas when we visited, plus lots of instant noodles and mash on the trains. I’ve only ever visited in summer, so I can’t add to any more to your winter advice. I wonder if I’d be able to go undercover as a Brit, due to my love of knee high black boots?

    • Damien
      Reply
      Damien
      September 22, 2018 at 13:04

      I would have liked to visit in the summer but I wasn’t able to and I wanted to challenge myself. If I can survive winter in Russia, I can bloody survive anything I think!

  • Reply
    Samantha
    August 14, 2018 at 21:15

    Haha, what a list – I don’t really have a desire to visit Russia, but these are some interesting observations that I am sure people have more to add to the list!

    • Damien
      Reply
      Damien
      September 22, 2018 at 13:02

      Thank you for liking the list 🙂

  • Reply
    Carmen Edelson
    August 14, 2018 at 19:05

    Hahaha, this was really funny! I’ve heard the people are super friendly in Sibera too. I’ll pass on the powdered mashed potato 😉 But I would LOVE to try that cheese boat!!

    • Damien
      Reply
      Damien
      September 22, 2018 at 13:01

      Haha well when you are on a train for 36 hours sometimes that mashed potato can be a lifesaver if you want something hot. Oh and you really should try it! It is not the healthiest of things but sometimes, who cares!?

  • Reply
    bonbon
    August 13, 2018 at 17:31

    I haven’t been but have some Russian friends:) You’ve got quite a good list here… LOL Love my Russia friends and love having some vodka with them definitely:)

    • Damien
      Reply
      Damien
      September 22, 2018 at 12:58

      Glad you liked the list 🙂 I could probably add to it now as I have thought of a few more things

  • Reply
    Nic
    August 13, 2018 at 11:33

    This is great, we loved Russia and hope to go back and spend more time there. I found it to be a really eye opening and surprising country that really does change your perceptions. It was visiting Russia that really made us fascinated in the region and fall in love with Eastern Europe.

    • Damien
      Reply
      Damien
      September 22, 2018 at 12:57

      I was hoping to go back again this year but sadly it wasn’t to be. And I love Eastern Europe as well. It is my favourite place to travel actually.

    Leave a Reply