Baikal Mile

A crazy ice speed race has been taken its’ a place on Baikal Lake this year on 27 February 2020 – 2 March.

Since USSR times cold war between Russia and USA. And then nowadays sanctions and so on. So russians decided to make theis on Bonneville competition ‘branch zone’.

That’s a technical challenge for the frozen bodies, burning minds and surely great challenge for the unbelievable designed vehicles. This year

Let’s see amazing pictures from Baikal and all that stuff on instagram by hashtag #baikalmile

Russian bath experience

What do you know about russian Banya? Is it crazy hot and people hit each other with brunches? All naked and drunked? Or it looks more like it shown in the movie “Red Heat” 1988 with Arnold Schwarzenegger?

Well… Some of that true.

Is it damn hot?
– Yes. Normally it’s pretty humid inside and temperature rised close to 90°C (194°F) degrees. We using a hats to protect the head and brains to overheating. That’s the most important part. If you wearing any rings and jewerly – take it out before coming. Piercing? It might be a problem. Just cover it with dry towel.

Brunches fights..
We use brunches not to harm and beat each others but to ‘apply’ hot air to the body. That’s all about the procedure of being beaten with birch bunch of brunches. It’s also perfect relaxing massage for your back.

Hesitate of being naked in Banya?
Russians are naked in the bath, but man and woman goes separately. But If you plan to have russian bath experience with us and you aren’t fully russian – bring with you swimming suit. We do the same during the tours.

Vodka and Banya
It goes separately. It’s bad to your health drink vodka before the bath. Firstly it’s useless because high temperatures forces evaporation of alcohol from your lungs and you getting somber very fast. Secondly, it’s just dangerous and lacks of coordination could play a bad joke. So, left vodka after banya. But better drink some healthy herbal tea from our Samovar!

Great russian bath experience we could provide on following tours:

Russian pilaf recipe

Pilaf [Плов] is a main course that came from Asia. We call it Uzbekistan pilaf but it’s pretty similar to other country cousines. Just two main ingredients – meat and rice. But in fact the way you make it and some of other flavouring ingredients make it special. And when you try something special it gives you new experience what fullfill your life with amazing memories. Enjoy your life.

This recipe is perfect to feed up 4 people.

Ingredients

  • 300-400 gr of pork or lamb meat
  • 3-4 Tbsp of sunflower oil
  • few onions
  • 1-2 medium carrots
  • 1 liter of water
  • 0,5 kilo of basmati rice
  • 1-2 garlic cloves
  • Salt and special mix of spices
  • Dill and green onion if you like it

Instructions

  1. Make a campfire and put the wok on it and preheat it. 
  2. Add sunflower oil, onion, carrot and meat.
  3. Then garlic and spices and cover everything with rice.
  4. Then pour 1 liter of water at the top and cover the wok.
  5. Keep maintain the fire and prevent it from burning.

When all the water wape out – pilaf is done! Enjoy the meal!

Meal on a campfire. Russian winter video.

However, you probably just got your morning coffee in the office and just started your day full of job routine and dreams about your next vacatons. And you definitely need something special and adventurous – that’s the reason to take a tour with us. Just take a look at the video!

Do you want to have a brreakfast made on a campfire – join us!

The gift to Ekaterinburg from Guangzhou

Europe and Asia border

Sister cities or twin towns are a form of legal or social agreement between towns, cities, counties, oblasts, prefectures, provinces, regions, states, and even countries in geographically and politically distinct areas to promote cultural and commercial ties. So one if the twin towns of Ekaterinburg is Guangzhou. Chinese government present that flower sculpture as a gift to Ekaterinburg. And it was a surprise to have a traveller with that origin. Mr.Cole visited the border of Europe and Asia near Ekaterinburg during his journey across Russia.

What you need to go by Transsiberain railway

Spill some wine into your glass, smell it gently and think: how do the russians do that – too much vodka is killing them but they are still alive! And you make a decision to go by Trans-siberain railway. And now you imagine you hold a shaking grained glass in the midnight train in the middle of nowhere – frozen russian motherland.

What do you need to make this journey?

Encourage to go is the most importans thing you need
Than a vacation and a bit of money,
Russian visa for a month or so
and 10 most useful russian words

That’s it!

Top 5 Ekaterinburg attractions

Yeltsin Center

A must-visit for any age even you have no clue or interest in Russian history. And it’s not about politics.
It’s a modern, beautifully-designed cutural centre which includes a museum showing the whole history Russia in 7 rooms. You might get carried away for a couple of hours, but you won’t regret it. Their web site unfortunatelly providen in russian only.
Museum entrance – 350 rub.

The Romanov Church

In the early XX century Ekaterinburg was known as a revolutionary city and it became infamous as a place where the last Russian tzar was assasinated. In 1977 the Ipatiev house where this happened was demolished in attempt to turn down the growing pilgrimage, but in 2000 the Russian Orthodox Church canonized the Romanovs and three years later the city government built a massive Church on the Blood, also known as the Romanov Church, on the site where the violent mass murder took place.
Entrance is free. There is a small gallery inside.

Europe and Asia border

To visit Ekaterinburg without seeing the Europe-Asia border is much like as going to Paris and missing a shot with the Eiffel tower. So if you’re not the type of person who can skip a shot with one foot in Europe and the other in Asia – go for it.
Join the Europe and Asia tour that includes all of the nearest 3 borders or go there by taxi or public transport.

Vysotsky – the heighest nothern-most skyscreaper

If you are excited about Russian cities, but that’s just not enough for you to walk the streets, take a look at the city from another angle – try a birds-eye view from the height of 280 meters. Enjoy it in the sunset hour and then use the same ticket to get aquatinted with the museuml of Vladimir Visotsky – the most famous Soviet singer, songwriter, national hero of the Russian theater and cinema. Check wiki about skyscreaper and Vladimir pages.
Entrance fee – 350 rub (both obsevation deck and museum)

Military Museum in Verkhnyaya Pyshma

Open-air exposition of cannons, tanks, planes, warships and trains in a town o the outskirts of Ekaterinburg. Despite that a huge musuem of retro cars and motorbike where you can find such exemplars as a still-working prototype of the first gasoline automobile before looking at the complete line of Soviet cars. There is also a enormous military museum. So if you are keen on hot guns, that’s not a place to miss.
You can plan a whole day it the musum and take a break at the canteen on the ground floor. Even it’s not belongs to the city – but it’s one of the best attraction.
Outdoor exposition is free. Entrance fee for retro cars and motorbikes – 350 rub. There’s a separate ticket for military exposition which is also 350 rub.

Russian railway tickets

An English version of the Russian Railways website has appeared http://eng.rzd.ru/ . It is extremely useful as it allows English-speakers to buy russian train tickets online. To buy an e-ticket enter tab “Passengers”. When you’re done with filling up the form and payment you’ll receive an e-ticket control coupon. Keep in mind that it is not valid without a boarding pass. In order to receive your boarding pass you need to pass an electronic registration on site (trains with the e-registration are marked by ER sign) or obtain your boarding pass in form of a ticket at the ticket office or self-service terminal in Russia. For more information about e-tickets, go to: http://pass.rzd.ru/static/public/en?STRUCTURE_ID=5236
Russian Railways has discounts for children and groups so check this link http://pass.rzd.ru/static/public/en?STRUCTURE_ID=737 if you’re travelling with your family or friends!

Beside that there’s still lots of issues connected with ticket booking like station names. Moscow for example is named ‘Moskva’ and to get to Ekaterinburg railway station you need to choose ‘EKATERINBURG-PASSAJIRS’.

Take care and contact us if you have any questions. We would love to help you out! Have an amazing journey to Russia!

Ekaterinburg – guide yourself around city center

Watch the aerial video guide around Jekaterinburg

Welcome to Ekaterinburg, Yekaterinburg or even Jekaterinburg!

1. Railway station

Most travelers begin to discover the city from the Railway station. And we decided to start the guidance here.

The central railway station main building dates back to 1914, but it received its contemporary look only in 1939. Let’s start our walk from here along Sverdlova street which stretches to the city centre. Lined with Soviet neoclassic housing from the 1950’s in a sort of perspective it brings you to the one of the most well-known places of the city – the Church on Blood. It had built at the place of assassination of the last Russian tzar. You can visit the church and its little museum to learn about the days the emperor and his family spend in Ekaterinburg.

Literary Quarter

Proceed along Proletarskaya street across the quiet Literary Quarter with its wooden museums of local writers from late XIX – early XX century towards the busy Lenina street (alias Main Prospect) where you can find the brightest exemplars of constructivist architecture, Ekaterinburg is so proud of. Turn left and explore the House of Press (1930) with its own street of restaurants inside and the Ural State University (1957). Walk on along the Lenin street to Hotel Iset – another gem of constructivism (1920’s) with a soviet style self-service cafe Fabrika-Kukhnya on the ground floor.

After lunch break like Kondinsky had

After a short break let’s return to the city center and enjoy the stunning building of the Opera House (1912). Then walk towards Malysheva street and check out the northernmost skyscraper Vysotskiy. Here you can explore the panorama of the city from the top of 280 meters and visit the museum of a famous soviet poet, singer and actor of theatre and cinema, Vladimir Vysotskiy. Now let’s walk to the place of foundation of the city at the river bank – the river Dam. It was constructed as a part of the cast iron factory and dates back to 1723. The former buildings of the factory house a museum of architecture, a lore museum and many others. There is an exposition of factory machinery outside.

The Dam and the city founders

Beside the Dam stands the monument to the founders of the city, Vasiliy Tatischev and Willam de Gennin. Also note the beautiful Neo-Gothic building across Lenin street – that is the House of Sevastyanov, a rich collegiate assessor of XIX century. Now we suggest to walk along the river towards the Circus taking a selfie with the monument of the Beatles, jump-typing your name on a huge keyboard and chasing the ducks on the river. And when you finish with observing the area around the Circus hit the 8 Marta street down to the 1905 Square to see the statue of Lenin and the City Hall. Proceed until you reach the Yeltsin center and spend at least 3 hours diving into the history of modern Russia. There are some nice restaurants inside to relax and finish your day in Ekaterinburg. 
Don’t forget to check out Samovar (some-of-our) hiking tours in the beautiful natural sites of the Urals to make the best of your experience in Russia!

It’s really that cold in Russia?

Average temperature map for December in Russia

Climate of Russia is well known as the tough and cold one. Even frozen bears falling asleep in forests of Siberia and bones of mammuth still in a fresh state is there. But telling the truth – that’s not that bad. An you don’t need that much vodka to stay alive.

Russia is a big country that consist of time zones likewise the climate is significantly changing from place to place. So, let’s get first preceiptions of temperature in the major russian cities.

Saint-Petersburg

It’s famous about the weather. I bet you heard about the white nights during the summe. It’s mild time when you could enjoy the city and see the magic of movable bridges during your night walks but there’s nothing comparable with the ‘black days’ during the winter! So, never try it! Around -10°C wind and snowy rains. Completely wet shoes and clothes and has no ability to get warm again. If you decided to visit it during the winter – take tons of socks and spare shoes with you, waterproof jackets, windblock stuff and hang around the best bars with live jazz.

Moscow

There is humid continental climate with warm and long summer and short winter. Coldest time for Moscow is Dec-Feb, when the average temperature is -10°C. Extreme is -20°C for few winter days usually in February. During the summer daylight lasts more than 18 hours and you can spend whole day observe the city and for a warm night get into the nightlife of the biggest city of Russia.

Let’s move a bit further to East – Ural mountains.

Yekaterinburg.

Summer here is shorter than in Moscow and lasts usually from May till September. Warmest days in July with extreme +30°C and average +20°C during the day. Due the mountains around could play with the weather and better to take a jacket with you even it’s pretty hot during the day. Temperature here get down below zero usually in October. Coldest time is Nov-Feb with average -15°C. Extreme cold few days here could be -30°C during the day time with some wind. In case you’re willing to go travel Russia in winter – you can ask for some warm clothes for you. We have some stuff you  could use to survive.

But probably you want to know about the coldest place in Russia where the still ~500 people live in – it’s Oymiakon village. Absolute minimum temperatures during the wintertime go below -65°C degrees (-85°F).

Here you can check the average temperature map of Russia according the month.