Yoshkar-Ola: discover the other side of Russia

Yoshkar Ola

Russia is the biggest country in the world. It’s the perfect place where to get lost. Once you have visited the most popular places (Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Baikal lake…) why don’t you dare to discover the “real Russia”? I invite you to visit Yoshkar-Ola (Йошкар-Ола) where soviet buildings and fake Europe get together. A… Continue reading

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Let’s pickle it! Russian most popular way to preserve food for winter

Pickled veggies

Have you ever tried pickled tomatoes? What about pickled garlic? And pickled apples? If these foods sound unusual to you, there are high chances you are not Russian. Strolling through Sadovaya market in Saint Petersburg, I was struck by the amount of pickled food they sell. In particular, there is a specific spot where Russian… Continue reading

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Closed Cities – Discovering the secret Russia

Warning outside City 40

As a European citizen, I’m used to travelling wherever I want without much restriction. Of course, some specific buildings or areas might be off-limits, but I had never heard about Closed Cities (Закрытое административно-территориальное образование ЗАТО in Russian) until I came to Russia.  But what do they exactly mean by close city? The concept of… Continue reading

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Mikhail Shemyakin and his art in Saint Petersburg

Mikhail Shemyakin

A black hat, a pair of thick-glassed wide eyeglasses and a scar along his right cheek: those are the three trademarks of Russian artist Mikhail Shemyakin, whose works of art are now displayed all over the world. Mikhail Shemyakin was born in Moscow, in 1943. Throughout his life he stood out for his quirky personality… Continue reading

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Russian horror films – the perfect plan for Halloween

Russian horror films

Which would be the perfect plan for a Halloween chilly evening? Watching Russian horror films! Although Halloween’s origins are not linked to Russia and the celebration is not as popular in the country as it can be in the USA or Ireland, Halloween has also taken over Russian territories. If you want to learn more… Continue reading

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Who is Alyonka?

Alyoka chocolate bar

Although Russia’s main exports have for a long time been oil, gas and other natural resources, the iconic chocolate brand Alyonka (Алёнка) stands out for selling one of the few Soviet products which made it through the economic chaos following the collapse of the Soviet Union. Today, Alyonka is still the brand market leader of… Continue reading

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5 surprising facts about Russia’s cultural history 

Natasha's Dance

Russia is simply a fascinating country: Studying its long and diverse history and its rich culture makes us understand the country and its people better. However, neither in university, nor at school do we really learn to understand what Russia’s cultural history really used to be like. We often spend hours and hours learning about… Continue reading

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Russian natural health remedies that actually work

Russian health remedies

Russian winter is coming, and so are colds, tonsillitis and flu. But don’t be scared! Russians have the best solutions for these problems, and they mostly come from nature. Despite modernizations, in fact, Russia remains one of the powerhouses of traditional natural medicine, providing people with effective tips and tricks on how to survive their… Continue reading

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