Rossiyskaya Federatsiya, Russian Federation)
- Location: Europe
- Capital: Moscow
- Language: Russian
- Population: 142,905,208,000
- Total Area: 17,075,400 km2
- Currency: Ruble
Russia is simply the largest country in the world, and by a huge margin, but there is an equally huge margin between the culture and even ethnicities of the different regions; a characteristic it shares with its former "sworn enemy" - the USA. The European Russia has two of the largest and most expensive cities in Russia- St. Petersburg and Moscow. Further east, one enters into virtual wastelands. Despite its size the collective cities, towns and villages hold a population only three times the size of metropolitan Moscow.
It is hard to believe there are other people in Europe as fervently patriotic as the Russians are. Even today, it is easy to believe the majority of its people will follow a strong leader to their death. In fact, from an outsider’s point of view that is precisely what differentiates Russia from the most of the rest of Europe- its continuation of the cult of the leader. Many Russians for example, worshipped Putin and heaped similar adulation upon and to some degree still heap upon Josef Stalin. In contrast, they largely despise the man largely given credit for ending the Cold War, Mikhail Gorbachev. Go ahead and make your own judgements...
The problem with visiting Russia is that there is so much diversity and so much to see, that you could probably travel the whole country for a year without getting the full flavor of the country. First on the agenda, however, should always be St. Petersburg. The cultural center of the nation is the city where many of Russia's past and present artists, musicians and writers have made their home. Walking around you can see exactly why they have found the city so inspirational- full of 18th and 19th century palaces and mansions, stunning parks and an incredible range of museums. Simply amazing!
The Golden Ring, located just outside of Moscow, comprises of some of Russia’s oldest towns. The most famous of these is perhaps Vladimir, but for those looking for the complete experience, your best bet is to visit the smaller villages in between. Many have a majestic church in its center surrounded by a collection of simple wooden huts.
Interesting Facts About Russia
- Russia is the largest country on earth in terms of land size.
- In terms of population, Russia is the ninth largest in the world.
- Russia has the largest forest reserves anywhere in the world.
- Around 25% of all the fresh water reserves on earth are found in Russia.
- Yuri Gagarin, the first human in space, is a Russian. Same with the first woman in space, Valentina Tereshkova.
Kazan is the capital of Tatarstan and following the Islamic origins of its tribes, its architecture is reminiscent of Central Asia. Of particular interest is the Kul Sharif Mosque located inside the city’s fabulous Kremlin.
Story By World By Shotglass
©2012 World By Shotglass. All Rights Reserved
Special thanks to our contributors:
Simon Arms (Berlin, Germany)
Daniel Krasnopolsky (Woodmere, NY, USA)
Adebayo Ahmed Adebola (Ilorin, Nigeria)