Russian Federation | Российская Федерация
Russia is a country that spans all of northern Asia and eastern Europe; it is often considered a European country though, due to its values and systems. Russia is the largest country by area in the world, and it has the 9th largest population. Russia shares borders with Norway, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland (both via Kaliningrad Oblast), Belarus, Ukraine, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, China, Mongolia, and North Korea. It also touches the Sea of Okhotsk, with which it shares a maritime border with Japan, and the Bering Strait, of which Alaska (USA) is across from.
Russia has had a rough history, and many people are still skeptical of visiting Russia, as it has had a bad reputation, especially stemming from the last century. In spite of its history, Russian cities and countryside are filled with beautiful places to discover, from the vastness of Moscow to the serenity of Lake Baikal. Russia, as the largest country in the world, has many things to offer. Architecture and history can be found in the western part of the country that is considered to be in Europe, while vast wilderness with sometimes extreme temperatures can be found in the eastern portion of the country.
In Moscow, the capital and largest city in Russia, is a wonder of its own. It is considered to be one of the most expensive cities in the world, as well as one of the most unfriendly; however, don’t let that deter you from traveling there. Moscow is full of unique history and culture that are worth visiting for. Visit the Kremlin grounds, as well as all the beautiful cathedrals and churches that dot the city. St. Petersburg is Russia’s most-European city, without the red, communist-era construction that seems to define Moscow. Canals run throughout the city, not unlike Amsterdam.
Aside from the big cities, Russia is home to some interesting wilderness environments, such as Siberia. Siberia may not sound like a tourist destination, with its brutally cold winters, and summers that can be an ungodly kind of hot, but it is worth a trip for adventure-seekers and those wishing to get away from it all. Take a ride on the Trans-Siberian Railway, between Moscow and Vladivostok, the world’s longest connected rail route.