Tag Archives: advice

Russian styled clothing, hats, shoes, decorations


Sarafan (Сарафан)Russian sarafans

- traditional Russian women’s clothing in the form of dresses, often sleeveless. Originally sarafan was a menswear. It was a ceremonial dress  made of silk, brocade, velvet and other expensive fabrics. It was long, touching the ground, with long folding sleeves. It is also known that sarafan had a golden embroidery.

The  clergy was also using that suit, but after a certain time it became women’s clothing. The complex of clothes  included – sarafan, shirt and belt. In a while it was supplemented with a headdress (kokoshnik).

Kokoshnik (Кокошник)

-old traditional Russian headdress.


Orenburg shawlRussian-orenburgskiy-platok-ring

—Knitted scarf made of goat down and thread base (cotton, silk, etc.). It is known that regardless of the size it can easily pass through any engagement ring.

Fluff of Orenburg goats is the thinnest in the world: its thickness – 16-18 mkm, Angora goats (mohair) – is 22-24 mkm. Therefore, the products of the Orenburg fluff are especially gentle and soft. Orenburg goats have such a thin fuzz due to the harsh conditions, as well as eating habits on the mountain steppes of the Ural. Despite the thinness, the fluff is very durable – it is stronger than wool.

There are several kinds of Orenburg shawls.

  • The first is the grey (seldom white) thick down hair shawls. These shawls started the tradition of Orenburg down-hair knitting.
  • The second is the quite dense kerchiefs and pautinkas. They are used for every day wear and they give a similar warmth to shawls. Such pautinkas are knitted in the Orsk region.
  • The third kind of Orenburg shawls are very thin (compared with “spider web” pautinkas and tippets).

As a rule thin pautinkas have fancy patterns and are used as decoration on special occasions.

Each scarf  is an original work of art, which required a lot of creative work and patience of its masters.  A good knitter can knit two kerchiefs – pautinkas (“spider lines”) of medium size or three tippets a month. It will take a month or more to knit a largeshawl or a kerchief with a pattern or inscription. Because of the high cost of down hair and yarn, an original hand-made Orenburg shawl or kerchief is an expensive item.

Pavlovo shawls, stoles, silk scarves, shawls, scarves for men (Павловопосадские шарфы)

-items produced in Moscow Region, the city  Pavlovsky Posad,  at JSC “Pavlovo Posad Shawl Manufactory”.russian-traditional-pavlovoposadskiye-platki

Pictures on Pavlovo shawls developed from standard samples specific to tissues of Moscow region and eastern shawls (“Turkish pattern”).

In the 1870s there was a tendency to expand the range of scarves with naturalistic floral motifs. Preference was given to garden flowers, especially roses and dahlias.

At the end of XIX – early XX century, the final design was created: three-dimensional images of flowers, gathered in bouquets, garlands or scattered across the field of a shawl on a black  or a red background, sometimes with the addition of an ornament and stylized vegetal elements. Shawls were made of translucent or heavy wool fabric, later they began producing the silk ones.

Vologda lace (Вологодское кружево) 

- сommon  type of Russian lace produced in the Vologda region, made with a help of special wooden sticks. All the main images in the coupling Vologda lace are made of dense, continuous, equal in width, gently wriggling linen braid; they are clearly silhouetted against the patterned arrays decorated as asterisks and sockets.  Linen  is a typical material for the Vologda lace.

You can get Information about clothes and hats with military and Soviet themes  in the relevant article of the Russian souvenirs theme.

Fur products – mittens, hats

One of the original forms of folk decorative art is sewing and decorating clothes, shoes and hats with fur. For creating  artistic fur items they usually use fur of deer, elk, seals, walrus, polar fox, foxes, squirrels, beaver. More rarely they use synthetic furю

Stained glass, colored lanyards, badges, metal pendants made of copper, brass, iron are popular for  for decorations. There is also a term “fur mosaic.”


Bast shoes=Lapti (Лапти)  Russian-lapti

- Low shoes, formerly in wide use in the countryside until the 1930s. They were woven from bark wood (basswood, elm, birch and others). Sandals were the main routine (and festive) summer (and sometimes winter) footwear.

Bast shoe laces were tied to the legs, twisted from the same bark of construction for themselves and sandals. The bast shoes would wear out very  quickly, so for each long journey it was necessary to take several bast shoes.

Felt boots=Valenki (Валенки)

- Warm felt boots made of matted wool (method of manufacturing identified the name of the shoes). They are often made solid, for wearing under other footwear (galoshes) they are made soft.

Earlier the colors of boots were black, gray or brown, now there are more options.

Russian dishes, utensils

Samovar (Самовар)

- Russian folk device for boiling water and tea making. You can try tea from a samovar at some of the places mentioned by me in this article.

Samovar for a Russian was a symbol of home, comfort, companionship. The presence of a samovar in the house was the evidence of material prosperity. During the XIX and XX centuries samovar became characteristic feature of Russian life, the central subject of tea drinking. In the XIX century it was already considered to be a part of the national cultural tradition.

XIX century was the “golden age” of Russian samovar manufacturing. Each factory was trying to come up with their original samovar. The items had extremely diverse shapes, sizes and capacities from a glass to twenty liters.

In Soviet times, they were producing samovars, running on coal and electric ones. They are still available in our days. Electric samovars are like the same kettles made in the shape of traditional samovar (so it is kind of fake samovar).

Faced glass (Гранёный стакан)

Faceted glass has a number of advantages over conventionalrussian-facets-table-glass glass of cylindrical shape. Due to its faces a glass is stronger than usual, can survive at falling to the floor. Therefore faceted glasses are produced so far and are used in schools, catering, passenger trains (usually with a cup holder), on ships.

Mass production of glass began only in 1756  after opening Gusev Crystal Factory. Since then, changing color, size, shape and number of faces (it ranged from 8 to 20, always staying even), faceted glass became  an integral symbol of Russian people’s life.

Cup holder (Podstakannik= Подстаканник)

- a convenient fixture that allows people to keep a glass with hot drink in the hands. Variety of shapes and decorative elements can easily explain the popularity of cupholders among foreigners.

The decoration on the kettle made of patches

Kettle covers made of patches are quite popular among foreign visitors, as well as bright toys, made from patches.


Items made of traditional Russian materials

Items made of birch bark

Soft, velvety surface of birch bark is very beautiful and nice to touch, moreover, it has healing properties. In birch bark were stored, such as milk, which could not turn sour two weeks, as well as fish, meat, mushrooms, that too long remained fresh. The natural properties of of birch bark allow  maintain the freshness of the bread for a longer time.  cereals and flour stored in birch bark box would never have insects, besides birch bark could  take the excess moisture of these products.

In Russia you can purchase the following articles made of birch bark: boxes, breadbaskets, mirrors, combs, hairpins, cases, flasks, napkin holders, coasters for hot food, sets for spices.

Semikarakorskaya ceramics

Semikarakorsk Russian folk art craft is located in Semikarakorsk city of Rostov region on the right bank of the Don River, near the estuary of Sal river.

The original artistic direction is characterized by swipe underglaze painting with the use of metal salts with a bouquet-floral ornament, with a focus on the larger central flower, narrative compositions in the style of Russian splint images using Cossack folk motifs, stylized Don landscapes.

Kazakovskaya filigree work

Filigree is one of the oldest forms of artistic metalworking. Feature of Kazakovsky products is the independent meaning of filigree, Kazakovsky products are entirely openwork.kazakovskaya-filigran-podstakannik

Kazakovsky products are primarily characterized  by white color of silvered copper wire, which may be associated with Russian winter. Kazakovsky plant produces a wide variety of art works: decorative vases and bowls, boxes with music, coasters, vases, candy, women’s jewelry, teaspoons, cups, medals, badges, medals and decals.

Filigree is a hand-made item. Each product is unique.

Glassworks, crystal glass (Goose-Crystal city)my-gus-chrystalniy-bell

Since building the plant in Gus Crystal city they started making products of simple and colored glass with flower painting and gilding. All the products made of crystal  were known for their diamond (brilliant) faces, decorated with engraving. The city was also well-known for it’s vases.

After studying the work of Czech factories that manufactured Bohemian glass, the Russian industrialist Maltsev, who was specializing in manufacturing glassware,  purchased samples of  Czech factories’ production, acquired recipes for products. Thus, the plant  mastered the technology of manufacturing Bohemian products as well.

Nowadays the plant still amazes by it’s assortment.  Bells with the images of goose are particularly popular among tourists as good fine souvenirs.


- production of works of art using a glassy powder, enamel, on a metal substrate, type of applied art. Glass coating is long-lived and does not fade over time, and products of enamel are remarkable for their special bright and clean colors.

Vologda (Usolye) enamel – traditional painting on white enamel. Initially, the main motive was floral composition inflicted on a copper base: masters were making on a white enamel flower ornaments, birds, animals, including mythological using a variety of colors. However, at the beginning of the XVIII century the art of multicolored enamel was lost, it began to oust monophonic enamel (white, blue and green).


Rostov enamel -There from the XVIII century in the city of Rostov (Yaroslavl region). The thumbnail images are performed on enamel by transparent fire-resistant paints, invented in 1632 by French jeweler Jean Tooten.

Kholmogory bone carvingrussian-traditional-kholomogorskaya-reznaya-rospis

-One of the types of Russian bone carving, art craft, now centered in the village Lomonosov of Kholmogory District of the Arkhangelsk region. Items made in this technique, are known from the 17th century. The basic techniques of thread developed in the heyday of the craft in the 18th century (combination of openwork ornament with the topical relief images, color engraving, the lining under openwork carving colored foil, coloring bones’ plates); the combs, snuff boxes, chests and furniture were very popular as well as glasses and other decorative crafts, lined with plates of bones.


Russian honey

Russia is a big country with different delicious and tasty food. Real Russian honey is a tasty and useful gift for guests of Russia.

Bee honey (МЁД) – is a food, actually, a nectar which is partially digested in the jowl of the honey bee. Honey contains 13-20% water, 75-80% of carbohydrates (glucose, fructose, sucrose), vitamins B1, B2, B6, E, K, C, carotene, provitamin A, folic acid. A special taste and aroma of honey, along with its usefulness, are the main reasons why many people prefer honey to all other sweeteners.

Color of honey depends on the type of plants from which the bees collected nectar. By color, there are three groups of honey: light, moderately colored and dark. The most valuable are lighter honeys (made of acacia, linden and etc.). The exception is of buckwheat, which is very valuable to the body. At the same time,  dark types of honey are more rich in minerals.

Nutritional and therapeutic properties of honey are reduced when it is heated. The temperature that is above 50 ° C makes the greatest harm to it. Honey thus loses the bactericidal properties and flavor. The more intense and lasting is the influence of heat, the more deteriorated is the quality of honey.

 Polyfloral honey

According to the landscape basis honey can be divided into these groups:  forest, meadow, prairie, taiga, field and mountain.

Field (Полевой) honey has various colors ranging from light amber to brown, it crystallizes quickly. It is usually of high quality, with a strong flavor and good taste. This honey is produced from coriander, sainfoin, lavender, bittercress, sow-thistle, phacelia and cultivated plants – sunflower, colza, buckwheat, alfalfa, mustard.

Meadow (Луговой) honey has many shades from light yellow to light brown, has a very fragrant bouquet and pleasant taste. It is produced from the nectar of meadow flowers: dandelion, thyme, white clover, sow-thistle, wild mallow, hypericum, cow-parsnip, sweet clover, meadow cornflower, sage, chicory, motherwort, thistle and many  other honey plants growing in meadows.

It is characterized by high nutritional and medicinal qualities.

Forest (Лесной) honey also has a lot of different shades, from light yellow to dark brown. Compared with the meadow and field it is always darker. It is not worse the meadow or field honey in taste.

Bees produce it from wild honey plants: wild fruit trees – wild rose, hawthorn, Tatarian maple, viburnum, willow, linden and other plants – raspberries, blackberries, cranberries, fireweed, heather. The most demanded forest honey is produced from spring honey plants (rowan, willow, fruit trees, acacia, raspberry, blueberry).

Prairie (Степной) honey – honey that is collected in the prairie plains of the Altai Territory. This type of honey is considered to be  a classic Russian honey. It is collected by bees from various plants, mostly plants that bloom in the prairie – sage, clover, sweet clover, fireweed, sow thistle, thistle, dandelion, bittercress, motherwort, buckwheat, cornflower and many other honey plants. Has an unusually rich, reddish-amber color. Taste is rich, herbal, there is a little bitterness.

Taiga (Таёжный) honey – honey that is collected from wild honey plants of  taiga-forest zone. Spring honey plants are:  Lungwort, coltsfoot, yellow acacia, etc. Summer honey plants are: oregano, fireweed, sow thistle forest, motherwort, strawberries steppe, etc.

Taiga honey has a specific, distinct taste and strong medicinal properties. This honey is considered to be one of the most high-quality varieties. Has a dark brown color and an amazing rich aroma of taiga expanses.

Mountain (Горный) honey. According to various information sources, mountain honey that is collected in alpine meadows at an altitude of over 1,000 meters is considered to be the most valuable  among  polyfloral types of honey.

 Single-flora honey

Single-flora honey tend to have the smell of the plants from which they are collected and have a refined, subtle, spicy flavors. The pure single-flora honeys actually do not exist, so you can only talk about the prevalence of a specific component.

Acacia (Акациевый) honey. Stands among the best varieties. It is widely popular because of its taste, and it is also widely used in folk medicine. Honey of white acacia is characterized by delicate aroma and pleasant taste. Fresh honey has a light transparent color. It crystallizes very slowly getting milky-white color; honey can remain long as a syrup. It is the most liquid among  all types of honey .

Barberry (Барбарисовый) honey. Has a golden – yellow color, pleasant aroma and delicate sweetness.

Cornflower (Васильковый) honey. Honey bees collect it from blue or field cornflower. This honey has a pleasant taste with a slightly bitter aftertaste, it is of is greenish – yellow color. Its smell can remind you almonds. It has not only good taste, but also healing properties.

Buckwheat (Гречишный) honey. Has a high content of proteins, minerals, very strong specific pleasant aroma and taste. Its color  is light – brown with a reddish tinge. Excellent food and medical product.

Sweet Clover (Донниковый) honey. It possesses high gustatory qualities. Its color is different from light amber to white with a greenish tint. Has a specific taste, sometimes slightly bitter, and specific aroma reminiscent of the smell of vanilla. Crystallizes to a form of grained solid mass .

Chestnut (Каштановый) honey. It is collected by bees from flowers of horse and edible chestnut. Honey that is collected from horse chestnut, is colorless, watery, the one that is collected from edible chestnut  is dark, very liquid. In general, any type of  chestnut honey has a slight scent of chestnut and bitter taste. It crystallizes slowly gaining the look of of oil, after that the crystals  appear. Has valuable antimicrobial properties.

According to its properties belongs to the category of low-grade honey.

Clover (Клеверный) honey. Colorless, almost transparent, with a high gustatory quality, one of the best among light honeys. At crystallization turns into a fine-grained solid white mass. Is characterized by low natural diastaznym number (less than 10 units Gotha).

Linden (Липовый) honey – the most high quality type of honey. It has a pleasant aroma of linden, pale – yellow color. Quickly crystallizes into small crystals, has  white afterwards. Has a high specific taste.

Honey from bee plant burdock (Лопуховый). Has a high pleasant scent, very malleable, fragrant and delicious. He has a light – yellow with a dark – olive hue.

Alfalfa (Люцерновый) honey. Bees collect it from the purple or violet alfalfa flowers. Honey that is freshly pumped out has various shades – from pale light to amber, it crystallizes quickly getting white color and consistency of heavy cream. This honey has a pleasant aroma and specific taste.

Raspberry (Малиновый) honey. This honey is collected from forest clearings, covered with raspberries. Raspberry honey is light in color, has very pleasant aroma, tastes wonderful.

Mint (Мятный) honey. Bees make it from the nectar of flowers of spicy plants – peppermint, so honey has such a pleasant aroma. Peppermint is widely cultivated and gives plentiful gathering of qualitative honey. Mint honey is of amber color, contains large amounts of vitamin C. It crystallizes with fine grains of light – yellow color.

Dandelion (Одуванчиковый) honey. Has a golden – yellow color. It is a very thick, viscous, fast crystallizing honey with a strong smell and strong taste. Bees make it from the nectar of the well-known and widespread dandelion.

Sunflower (Подсолнечниковый) honey. Has a distinctive taste, but a subtle aroma. When has a liquid form its color is light – brown. Crystallizes very quickly, its crystals are large, has a yellow color afterwards.

Honey made of the motherwort flowers (Пустырниковый). Bees collect it from the pale – purple flowers of motherwort, or cardiac herbs grown on wasteland. Honey has a light – golden, straw color, with a light aroma and specific good taste.

Rowanberry (Рябиновый) honey. Rowanberry honey has a reddish color, strong flavor and good taste. Bees make honey from the nectar of the blossoming rowan.

Beeswax – the second most important product of beekeeping. Natural wax which composes honeycombs possesses therapeutic properties on its own. And in combination with honey all these valuable properties are dehiscing even more. Such type of a honey should be eaten by small pieces, with long and carefully chewing  (as chewing gum).

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Purchase of honey

I advise you to buy honey in specialized stores. As for me, I do not buy honey at all (I have no particular desire), but for foreignchain-of-beekeepers-pchelkin-myod friends and acquaintances I buy Medovukha (=mead, a product of honey) in the Beekeepers’ chain shops called “Пчёлкин мёд”. Based on the information of the references you can buy there the most popular and famous  Russian  honey according to honey bee plant species (check the list below):

  • Acacia honey (акациевый)
  • buckwheat honey (гречишный)
  • Sweet Clover honey (донниковый)
  • willow honey (ивовый)
  • chestnut honey (каштановый)
  • fireweed honey (кипрейный)
  • maple honey (клёновый)
  • cranberry honey (клюквенный)
  • coriander honey (кориандровый)
  • linden honey (липовый)
  • burdock honey (лопуховый)
  • alfalfa honey (люцерновый)
  • honey of camel thorn (с верблюжьей колючки)
  • Euphorbiaceae honey (молочайный)
  • carrot honey (морковный)
  • mint honey (мятный)
  • cucumber honey (огуречный)
  • dandelion honey (одуванчиковый)
  • sow-thistle honey (осотовый)
  • honey from valleys  (падевый)
  • Sunflower honey (подсолнечниковый)
  • motherwort honey (пустырниковый)
  • rapeseed honey (рапсовый)
  • Resedaceae honey (резедовый)
  • rowanberry honey (рябиновый)
  • honey of bittercress (сурепковый)

and other types. russian-honey-souvenir

By the way, you can buy a stylized jar of honey (usually the shops offer chkockloma styled jars or made of beresta). Once i bought such a jar as a present, its recipient loved both the package and the honey.

 Advice on buying real honey:
  • The best way to buy honey is to go to a specialised shop. If you are at the trade fair (a usual situation in St. Petersburg), you can follow my advice written below;
  • If you are going to buy specific type of honey, you should read some information about it in advance. Any specific type of honey has its own flavour and color;
  • If honey is very pale, close to white, it may me not natural, made of sugar. If the flavor is not clear enough and you feel a taste of caramel, it is one of the signs of fake honey;
  • Also pay attention to the consistency of honey – it must match the density of the class, at a temperature of 20 degrees Celsius is enveloped around the spoon, like a ribbon, sweet threads, interrupted at some point;
  • Beware acquiring honey from apiaries located along road routes with heavy traffic. This honey may have an increased amount of lead compounds and other substances that fall on the flowers with car exhaust fumes. With nectar and pollen lead gets into the honey, and it is dangerous to the health of those who eat it.
How can you determine the quality of honey?

 1) By color

  • Each variety of honey has its own certain color. Flower honey is usually of light yellow color, linden – of amber color, Ashenvale – transparent as water, buckwheat has different shades of brown. Pure honey (without impurities) is usually transparent, whatever  the color  may be.
  • Honey, having in its composition additives (sugar, starch, and other impurities), is unclear, and if you look closely, it is possible to find sediment.

2) By flavor

  • Honey is usually characterized by fragrant aroma. Honey with an admixture of sugar has no flavor, and the taste is close to the taste of sugar water.
 How else can you distinguish a fake?
  • Over time, the honey becomes turbid and gets denser (candied) – that is a sure sign of good quality. Some may mistakenly believe that honey is spoiled.
  • Sometimes during storage honey is split into two layers: it gets denser from below and remains liquid from above. This indicates that the honey is verdant and therefore it should be eaten as soon as possible – it may be stored for a few months.

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 Медовуха (Medovukha=Russian mead)

Медовуха – a special drink of honey, water, hops or yeast, which also may have additional ingredients such as spices, berries.

May be as low alcohol beverage (without addition of ethanol. Mead Strength – from 5 to 16%.) as well as strongly alcoholic (with addition of ethanol).

The most famous traditions of making this drink are preserved in Suzdal and Novgorod the Great. Beverage is characterized by an expressing honey flavor and aroma, lightness and sweetness of taste (because of the high content of fructose and glucose in honey and  a large amount of honey in the drink).

 When I want to treat foreign guests with this Russian beverage (with low alcohol amount), I buy Медовуха in the apiculture chain «Пчёлкин мёд». Recently I have tried the beverage in a Russian fast-food chain «Теремке» -the taste was right.

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Train tickets. F.A.Q.

In this article you can see some of the most frequently asked questions about train-ticket purchase and answers to them (in order to refresh your memory with the benefits of Russian travel you should read the relevant article).

a.      How do I receive my train tickets?

 There are a number of ways this can happen depending on the type of ticket you have ordered.

  • E-Ticket – These will be emailed from Real Russia to you within two working days of payment. This voucher will then need to be printed, and exchanged at a rail ticket office within Russiafor a paper ticket, before boarding your train. The identification used to book the ticket will need to be presented; this will usually be your passport.
  • E-Registration – This will be emailed from Real Russia to you within two working days of payment. This voucher can then be printed and used to board the train. The identification used to book the ticket will need to be presented; this will usually be your passport.
  • Paper Ticket – There are a number of options with regards to paper tickets.
      • For tickets departing from a station within Russia, you can have your tickets delivered by courier worldwide, or, if you are beginning your journey in Moscow, they can be delivered to a hotel or collected from the Real Russia offices. Courier prices will vary dependent on location.
      • For tickets departing from a station in China or Mongolia, you can collect them from one of Real Russia partner offices, or have them delivered to a hotel within the relevant city. Further details will be made available on booking.

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b.      There is a mistake on my ticket, what do I do?

Contact Real Russia travel experts for advice in this instance (you can do it in the form of response to a letter with your tickets).

As a rule, you will be allowed to board the train with up to three mistakes on your ticket. Missing out a letter in your name, or a mistype of a letter in your name would each count as one mistake. Beyond three mistakes a new ticket would need to be issued.

Issuing a new ticket would involve cancelling the current ticket and purchasing a new ticket at the current price; which may be more expensive than the price paid originally.

For this reason Real Russia specialists recommend checking all the details on any tickets booked immediately upon receipt of them.

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c.       Can I cancel tickets that I have already purchased and get a refund?

Yes, you can.

Contact Real Russia travel experts for advice in this instance (you can do it in the form of response to a letter with your tickets).

Refunds are calculated by the ticket issuer on a sliding scale that differs for domestic, and international, train tickets from country to country. Generally speaking, the amount of refund you will be eligible for will depend on how many days remain before your date of departure. The nearer to your date of departure, the smaller the available refund.

If physical tickets have been issued, such as those issued for an international journey, departing from Russia, then  Real Russia partner company  will need the tickets in their possession to process the cancellation and refund. If the tickets are already in your possession you will need to send the tickets to Real Russia’s Moscow office at your own expense.

If you have international tickets, and are travelling within Russia already, then returning them to Real Russia partner  may be difficult. In this instance you can go to the ticket counter in your closest station and cancel them there. You will be given a cancellation receipt and your unused ticket, but no immediate refund. You will need to send this cancellation receipt, and your unused ticket, to Real Russia’s Moscow office, at your own cost, who will then be able to process the refund. Your cancellation must be made before the departure date and time on the ticket. You will then have up to four months from the date of cancellation in which to claim your refund.

If your booking is an e-ticket, and you have yet to exchange your voucher for a paper ticket at a station within Russia, or your booking is e-registration, Real Russia travel specialists will be able to process your cancellation.  All requests received will be processed on the next working day. During peak times, such as during the summer, processing may not take place until 48 hours after receipt of your request. All refunds will be calculated based on when Real Russia travel specialists are able to process your request.

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d.      Are prices reduced for children?

Children are eligible for reduced ticket prices.

Within Russia, children under 5 can travel for free with one paying adult provided they share one place. If the child requires their own space, or is between the age of 5 and 10, they will need to pay, but at a reduced rate of around 40 % – 50% of the regular ticket price.

Children’s prices to, from, and within other countries may vary, in both price and what ages are considered to be children; though, generally, prices will be around 40% – 50% cheaper than adult tickets.

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e.      When can I book my tickets?

While Russian Railways and other ticket issuers will not allow the booking/issuing of tickets more than a few weeks before the date of departure, Real Russia booking system can take your details at any time in preparation for booking when the ticket issuers allow.

As it stands, these are the rules that the following issuers use when issuing tickets:

  • Russian Railways issue tickets 45 days in advance for domestic travel and 60 days in advance for international travel.
  • Mongolian Railways issue tickets around two weeks in advance for all travel; this can fluctuate depending on demand and public holidays.
  • Chinese Railways issue tickets around 10 – 12 days in advance of travel; this can fluctuate depending on demand and public holidays.

If you would like to start your journey within these dates Real Russia travel specialists will book and, where possible (such as when E-Tickets/E-Registration are selected), issue your tickets within two working days.

If you would like to start your journey on dates further in advance than these rules allow, Real Russia booking system will save your booking enquiry so that on the first day that booking is available your ticket will be booked and, where possible (such as when E-Tickets/E-Registration are selected), issued within two working days. Payment will be required before booking takes place; one of Real Russia travel experts will be in touch to confirm these details in advance of confirming the booking.

Please note:

Owing to the fact that the ticket issuers are based in various time zones around the world, the time at which Real Russia travel specialists are able to book/issue your tickets may vary.

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f.        Is Russian train travel safe?

Millions of people, both Russian locals and tourists, travel safely on Russian trains every year. In many ways they are the safest trains to travel on.

  • Each carriage is looked after 24 hours a day by at least one or two conductors.
  • Each passenger must show their ticket upon entry and present with it an official identification document; for foreign visitors this will usually be a passport.
  • At every stop the train will be checked to ensure there is no damage.

With regards to remaining safe and secure, the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office has the following to say:

    • If you are travelling by overnight train in a sleeping compartment, store valuables in the container under the bed or seat. Don’t leave your sleeping compartment unoccupied as some compartments only have a simple lock on the sliding door. On some trains there may be an additional security device, which can be attached to the fitted handle/lock unit. There may also be a steel switch at head-height on the door panel which, when pulled down, prevents the closed door from being slid open.
    • Don’t agree to look after the luggage of a fellow traveller or allow it to be stored in your compartment.

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 g.      What are ‘gender specific’ cabins?

 On the many trains travelling the Russian rail network it is possible to select to travel in a male, or female only cabin. This may be of interest to lone female travellers who may feel awkward, or unsafe, sharing a room, exclusively, with men they do not know.

You can only mark a cabin for single gender use if it is currently empty. If there are any bookings at all this will not be possible. Once a cabin has been selected for single gender use it is not possible to change it back again. Please bear this in mind if you are travelling with, or potentially travelling with, a member of the opposite sex.

Real Russia travel specialists cannot guarantee that single gender cabins will be available. The earlier you book the more likely it is that you will be successful in creating a single gender cabin.

Not all countries that have connections with the Russian rail network operate single gender cabins. So if you travel outside of Russia in a single gender cabin, you may find that the cabin becomes open to all again.

You will find gender specific cabins in the booking system by looking for tickets marked with sign-gender-specific-cabins.

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Useful links


Enjoy your trip, explore real Russia!

Back to “Russia by train” section


The best Russian chocolate

As for the author of this article, she is a sweet tooth, loves chocolates, tasty (!) cakes, candies and etc. that is why she knows everything about this theme.

Concerning the topics on the website I can proudly say that Russian chocolate is one of the Russian well-recognized brand, loved not only by the natives but also by the foreigners. Russian sweets are not less popular among travelers, but not very discussed in a non-Russian speaking social community.

That is why I decided to share some information for those who want to have a great gastronomic impression while being in Russia and also to bring a great tasty souvenir and present to their nearest and dearest.

This article contains personal advice, it is your decision what to buy/try.

I do have a lot of foreign friends so while buying them chocolate as a Russian present, I always choose these 3 brands:

• «Фабрика им. Н.К. Крупской» – is the leader of confectionery market in the North-West region. Also it is a famous brand brand-griffon-Krypskaya-russian-chocolate-factoryof St. Petersburg (its logo shows Griffin of St. Petersburg Bank Bridge proudly looking forward). In addition to amazing taste of the merits of these confections you can include a great number of gift packages and exclusive art decorations of the products;

• «Вдохновение» –  famous Russian chocolate brand, which recipe was created in 1976. The new product quickly gained the love and acceptance of millions of consumers not only for its high quality and special taste, but also for the original format – within a 100-gram package there were are ten chocolate sticks, each of which was wrapped in foil;

• “Бабаевский” - the company offers a high-quality dark chocolate made of selected cocoa beans and cocoa butter. The history of the “Babaev” brand began over 200 years ago with a small confectionery shop founded in 1804. The factory received its formal status with a management of Alexei Ivanovich Abrikosov – Moscow merchant of the first guild (a summary of the chocolate is taken from the official site http://www.uniconf.ru/assortment/catalog/).

Russia is well known for its bitter chocolate – well, it is really tasty there! For the bitter chocolate I prefer buying “Бабаевский” brand (attention, the first two chocolates are really bitter, others contain about 50-55% of cocoa – you can read it from the label): the-best-russian-babayevskiy-chocolate

  • Бабаевский горький (Classic dark chocolate)
  • Бабаевский Элитный 75% (Elite sort of dark chocolate, contains 75% cocoa. It received the diploma of the 1st degree and a gold medal “For high quality products”, it was the winner of the contest “The Best 100 Goods of Russia 2011″, also it was a best-seller, as it was mentioned on the official website)
  • Бабаевский фирменный (Branded  dessert chocolate made according to a special recipe with the addition of brandy, grated almonds and tea extract, according to the description on the official site)
  • Бабаевский Люкс (Dark chocolate. Produced according to the original recipe 1939.)
  • Бабаевский с цельным миндалём (Dark chocolate with whole almonds. Was the winner of the “Best 100 Goods of Russia 2011″)
  • Бабаевский с цельным фундуком (Dark chocolate with whole hazelnuts.)

Concerning chocolate and sweets of «Вдохновение» factory – I like everything they produce. Their classic chocolate bar is called “Классический”, contains crushed roasted hazelnuts. It is produced according to the original recipe since 1976. the-best-russian-chocolate-vdokhnoveniye

You can see the whole variety of flavors on the official website of a holding http://www.uniconf.ru/assortment/catalog/ by clicking on the 5th brand picture of the slide show (it has a blue color). You can translate the page with Google translator or Word Lens app that is mentioned everywhere on my website ;-)

Another favorite brand is “Фабрика им.Н.К.Крупской” – I love practically all their products and buy those for my friends (as you have already read above, in addition to great taste the production has attractive wrapping).
They have the following categories of chocolate:

Вернисаж” – chocolate, decorated with well-known Russian pictures – there you can find bitter chocolate, aerated bitter chocolate and aerated milk chocolate with whole hazelnuts and raisins. The wrapping of the bars have different background color with a picture of a person in the middle – you will not miss such a chocolate! I do not include the photos there, because the wrappings of it are always different (to my mind).

Особый” – dark chocolate with salt. The wrapping has brown and red color and a lot of dots. I prefer the chocolate with a wrap of dark brown color (plain chocolate with salt) and of red color (with salt and crushed hazelnuts) russian-best-chocolate-osobiy

Тройка” – they have bitter (горький= gor’kiy) best-russian-chocolate-troykaand milk (молочный=molochniy) chocolate. Everything is very tasty.

Классический” (classic) – I like these three types:

  1. “Горький 70%” – bitter 70% russian-best-chocolate-krypskaya-Premium_Gorky
  2. “Летний сад” (горький) – also bitter russian-best-chocolate-krypskaya-Letny-sad
  3. “Санкт-Петербург” –  Dark chocolate with crushed almonds russian-best-chocolate-krypskaya-Sankt-Peterburgbest-russian-chocolate-krypskaya-mishka-na-severe-ris

Мишка на Севере” – a special type of milk chocolate with air rice, you can try it if it sounds interesting (although it is not a de lux type)

Boxes of Sweets of “Фабрика им.Н.К.Крупской” are absolutely great – you can buy any and get the best quality and taste.

They also offer sweets sold by weightbest-russian-chocolate-krypskaya-Mishka_na_severe –praline sweets stand out among all. I recommend “Мишка на Севере”  and “Сказки Перро”- Конфеты, глазированные шоколадной глазурью, best-russian-chocolate-krypskaya-Skazki_Perroс начинкой между слоями вафель – those are the candies with chocolate coating, that have a filling between the layers of wafers – they are so tasty!

In the brand shops of “Фабрика им.Н.К.Крупской” you can buy the sweets decorated with St. Petersburg best-russian-chocolate-krypskaya-konfety-Leningadskieviews – they are called “Ленинградские”= “Leningradskiye” (of Leningrad)  – Candies with chocolate coating. They have whipped egg-white mass with the addition of milk grated nuts, alcohol and with the scent of punch (if they say the truth on the official website).

If you like chocolate wafer cakes – you chocolate_princeshould definitely try “Шоколадный принц”(“Chocolate prince”) or “Балтийский” (“Baltiyskiy”)chocolate-wafer-cake-baltiyskiy of “ПЕКАРЬ” brand. They are the best in their category.

To my mind Russian aerated chocolate of “Русский шоколад” brand it is not better than the ones mentioned above or the foreign analogues. russian-aerated-chocolate

As far as I know, there is a variety of Russian-stylized chocolates and sweets which seem to be a good present. tasty-russian-stylized-chocolate4 I haven’t tried them all, so I can recommend you to read the wrapping carefully. tasty-russian-stylized-chocolate DO NOT buy the chocolates where you see the phrasestasty-russian-stylized-chocolate3  “пальмовое масло” (it means palm butter, I think you know that it is not very good for your health) or “шоколадная глазурь” instead of “шоколад”(chocolate) “какао-бобов” (cocoa) – it will mean that you get not chocolate but simply chocolate glaze, which has nothing in common with famous Russian chocolate (I haven’t checked any of the chocolates on the 3 photos above).

Enjoy your trip, enjoy your purchases!

Magic places of St. Petersburg

You can see a map of these places in the end of the article. Check it out! =)

1. Malaya Sadovaya street

As you may have noticed, you can make wishes for the whole family on Malaya Sadovaya street: the smallest of Petersburg’s streets has 5 lucky monuments: 2 cats, a photographer with a bulldog and ball-fountain.Magic-fountain-petersburg-on-Konushennaya-street

Ball fountain is a composition of a large heavy granite ball, weighing more than 700kg, rotating due to water pressure, and 12 granite steps for the water flows (of course, these things happen during the working period of the fountains). If you want your wish to come true, you just need to think about it and touch the ball (I do not advise to turn the ball or stop its rotation by force, it may damage the mechanism design). They say there is a kind of a “pore from the door into a dream”, located directly on the ball and which can be seen at good light composition. I have never seen that (as I have never tried), so I do not know whether it is true or not.

2. Palace Square – Alexander Column Hermitage-in-the-evening

It is said that every wish will be granted if a person walks three times around the column (clockwise), mentally focusing on his dream.


3. Fountain near the Admiralty petersburg-wish-place-fountain-Admiralty


It is located in the Alexander Garden, near Palace Square.

You can make a wish and throw a coin over your head back to the fountain, if you are facing the Admiralty. Then, without turning around, you should go ahead, so that the desire will be fulfilled in the future. If you are already tired of making wishes, you can  throw a coin into the fountain in order to visit St. Petersburg one day and to attend this particular place.


4. Potzeluyev Bridge petersburg-wish-place-potselyev-bridge


Glinka Street, 1, not far from Yusupovskiy palace.

Potzeluyev Bridge (the name is translated “the bridge of kisses”) has never been a drawbridge, so that lead to several signs. If lovers were kissing before parting, it would become a guarantee of a short separation. Also it was said that long kiss of loved ones on the bridge would be the key to a happy life together.

Here is the map of all the places. You can see the routes to each particular place by clicking on the car symbol.

Map of magic places of St. Petersburg

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Malaya Sadovaya street: 59.934366, 30.337565
Palace square (Дворцовая площадь): 59.939020, 30.316172
Fountain near the Admiralty (Фонтан у Адмиралтейства): 59.937085, 30.309134
Potselyev bridge (Поцелуев мост): 59.928066, 30.295122
Часовня на могиле Ксении Блаженной : 59.944319, 30.251391
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Malaya Sadovaya street
There you can find 5 magic statues and make wishes for the whole family!
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Palace square (Дворцовая площадь)
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Fountain near the Admiralty (Фонтан у Адмиралтейства)
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Potselyev bridge (Поцелуев мост)
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Часовня на могиле Ксении Блаженной
Россия, город Санкт-Петербург, Санкт-Петербург, Камская улица 24

You can also click on the QR sign (of a scanner), so that you will get a special code, which you can print and take with you without getting the addresses with directions. With a free app Scanvi your mobile device (ipod, any smart phone) will show you that real map, which you can zoom and do whatever you like =) Enjoy it! =)

Here is a self-made code

petersburg-Map of magic placesMap of magic statues with human faces made by mapsmajker through skanvi

And the scanned picture will appear like that (after showing you a 2 sec ad)

Wish-fulfilling animals of St. Petersburg

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You can also click on the QR sign (it is the 3rd above the map), so that you will get a special code, which you can print and take with you without printing all the addresses with directions. With a free app Scanvi your mobile device (ipod, any smart phone) will show you that real map, which you can zoom and do whatever you like =) Enjoy it! =)

Here is the self-made code

 Map of magic animal statuesMap of magic statues with human faces made by mapsmajker through skanvi

And the scanned picture will appear like the one you had in the previous post but with other marks  (after showing you a 2 sec ad)

Wish-fulfilling people and creatures with human faces in St. Petersburg

You can see a map of these places in the end of the article.  Check it out! =)

1.Peter the Great in the Peter and Paul Fortress Petersburg-statue-of-Peter-fortress

 If you rub the knees of Peter the 1st, located in the territory of the fortress (Shemyakin is author of that unusual sculpture), the pain in your own feet will pass (although nowadays the execution of this ritual is interfered by fence that surrounds the sculpture). If you hold the little finger of an emperor, any dream will come true.

  1. Peter I – the carpenterpetersburg-Peter-carpenter

This monument is located to the right of the palace bridge. The energy of the person, who was fluent in different handicrafts  will add you mastery to your profession, will help you with career growth, and  will help for job seeking in general.

* according to contemporaries, Peter 1 could perfectly master 15 crafts: joiner, turner, painter, armorer ,blacksmith, plumber, watchmaker, typographer, shipbuilder, architect, carpenter, mechanic, cartographer, navigator, artillery.

  1. Peter the Great near Mikhailovsky Castle Peter-the-great-bas-relief-Gangut

Directly in front of the main entrance to the Mikhailovsky (Engineer) castle there is Klenovaya Street, on which you can see a monument to Peter the 1st. You should make a wish with the help of an image on the bas-relief where a person gets into a boat (“Gangut Battle”). You should grasp the heel and make a wish. It will come true and you will become more successful, you will be able to find a way out of any, even the hopeless situation.


Also, you can see another shining bas-relief from another side of the monument. I do not know the legend, but am sure, that grasping the horseshoe can lead to happiness and luck =)

  1. Lieutenant Kizhe (Kije) Mikhailovskiy-castle-Lieutenant-Kije

Figure of Lieutenant Kizhe (the character of  historic anecdotes of Paul the Ist time) is small in size, it can be missed by an uninformed person. It is installed at the bottom of the main facade of the Mikhailovsky Castle in a small niche.

Lieutenant Kizhe will bring you luck, if you manage to throw the coin to him.

  1. Photographer with a Bulldog  magic-photographer-on-Malaya-Sadovaya-street

Sculptural group in the street Small Garden depicts the famous photographer of the XIX century Karl Bulla. By taking picture underneath the right hand, you can be photographed for happiness, for financial well-being you should hold the little finger of the photographer. You can find information about a dog in the section about wish-fulfilling animals.

  1. Atlantes of the Hermitage magic-atlantes-of-Hermitage

The most famous Russian Atlantes prop part of the museum overlooking the Millionnaya Street. Some claim that it is necessary to hold out the thumb of the left leg of the second Atlanta (counting from the Field of Mars), that will make the dreams come true, but it seems to me that this role is suitable for any finger of any Atlanta. It is recommended to hold the finger while making a wish.

  1. Janitor (dustman) on Ostrovsky Square magic-dustman-and-yulia-gladtomeetyou

How to get there

You should go to the right from the metro station russia-petersburg-subway-3-line“Gostiniy Dvor” (exit on Nevsky Prospect), cross the Sadovaya Street, turn onto Ostrovsky Square, pass it to the Alexandrinsky Theatre, go around Alexandrinsky Theatre from the right side. When you look to the right you will see a statue of a janitor on the diagonal away.

Historical background

The monument was erected on March 16, 2007 in front of the Housing Committee of Saint Petersburg. The figure was a collective image of the janitor of the XIX century. Face and a shape of the Russian peasant figure could show force, diligence and accuracy of people of this occupation.

At that time the responsibility of the dustman included not only cleaning the territory entrusted to him, but also following the general procedures, issuance of passports, first aid, etc. Such a wide range of duties could be explained by subordination of the dustman to the Ministry of the Interior.

The procedure of making wishes

It is believed that if you put a coin at the feet of a granite statue, it will help “to rake money with a shovel, as he has.”

  1. Ostap Bender magic-statue-of-Ostap-Bender

How to get there

At the Italian street, 4, near the restaurant “Golden Ostap”, stands a bronze Ostap (literary character of the novel “12 Chairs”)

Historical background

Monument to the great strategist Ostap Bender was set on July 25, 2000 in St. Petersburg at his “birthday” at the entrance to the restaurant “Golden Ostap”.

The sculpture represents a figure of Ostap (sculptural portrait of Ostap Bender embodies features of the actor who played him -Sergei Yursky), his left hand is resting on a chair made by Gambs, and his right hand holds a folder with collected material about subterranean millionaire A. Koreiko.

The procedure of making wishes

It is said that you should to rub his nose for execution of the planned actions! Ostap also helps in adventurous projects. Instead of grasping the nose, you can sit on a chair, if you wish.

  1. The first Lamplighter magic-first-lightman-of-petersburg

How to get there

The address is Odesskaya Street., 1. You should go there from the subway station russia-petersburg-subway-1-line“Ploshad’ Vosstaniya”, if you are going to use public ground transport or go by foot from russia-petersburg-subway-1-line“Chernishevskaya” station.

Historical background

In 1873, for the first time in the world flashlight created by inventor Alexander Lodygin was lit. Now on that exact street there is a monument to the lamplighter, who helps with money and family well-being.

The procedure of making wishes

It is believed that wealth will come to the house, if you rub his feet. Left boot should be rubbed to the growth of the “left” income, the right – to the increase of official salary.

  1. The Good Soldier Schweik petersburg-soldier-shvejk

Location: russia-petersburg-subway-2-lineKupchino subway station, Balkan area, Shopping mall “Balkan”, between buildings #5 and 6. It is several meters away from the subway exit.

I do not advise going so far away from the city center if you do not have anything to do in the area, because you will not find sculpture and architecture masterpieces there, it will be a time-waste.

The procedure of making wishes

This positive character is a symbol of good luck and good mood. Buyers of shopping center are specially coming to the sculpture in order to rub the soldier’s nose and a tin cup (it is hidden behind his back) for “good luck“.

Here is the map of all the places. You can see the routes to each particular place by clicking on the car symbol.

Map of magic statues with human faces

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Peter the Great - a carpenter (Пётр - плотник): 59.939245, 30.307551
Peter the Great in Peter&Paul fortress (Пётр 1 в Петропавловской крепости): 59.950191, 30.317861
Lieutenant Kizhe (Kije) (Поручик Киже): 59.939906, 30.338332
Peter the Great near Mikhailovsky Castle (Петр 1 у Михайловского замка ): 59.939198, 30.338531
Photographer with a Bulldog (Фотограф с бульдогом): 59.934581, 30.337436
Atlantes of the Hermitage (Атланты Эрмитажа): 59.941057, 30.317599
Ostap Bender (Остап Бендер): 59.936381, 30.333810
Janitor (dustman) on Ostrovsky Square (Памятник Дворнику на площади Островского): 59.931697, 30.335151
The first Lamplighter (Фонарщик): 59.945976, 30.387379
The Good Soldier Schweik (Бравый солдат Швейк ): 59.830389, 30.377584
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Peter the Great - a carpenter (Пётр - плотник)
Peter the Great - a carpenter
59.939244650779294, 30.307551193982363
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Peter the Great in Peter&Paul fortress (Пётр 1 в Петропавловской крепости)
59.950304308085975, 30.31630039215088
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Lieutenant Kizhe (Kije) (Поручик Киже)
Lieutenant Kizhe (Kije)

location 59.939905679091034, 30.33833222463727
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Peter the Great near Mikhailovsky Castle (Петр 1 у Михайловского замка )
location 59.939198, 30.338531
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Photographer with a Bulldog (Фотограф с бульдогом)
Location 59.934581, 30.337436
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Atlantes of the Hermitage (Атланты Эрмитажа)
Location 59.941057, 30.317599
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Ostap Bender (Остап Бендер)
Location 59.936381, 30.333810
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Janitor (dustman) on Ostrovsky Square (Памятник Дворнику на площади Островского)
Location 59.931697, 30.33515372313559
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The first Lamplighter (Фонарщик)
Location 59.945976, 30.387379
59.94565964597142, 30.38735780864954
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The Good Soldier Schweik (Бравый солдат Швейк )
Location 59.830389,  30.377584
59.82968704325725, 30.37607626989484

You can also click on the QR sign (of a scanner), so that you will get a special code, which you can print and take with you without getting the adresses with directions. With a free app Scanvi your mobile device (ipod, any smart phone) will show you that real map, which you can zoom and do whatever you like =) Enjoy it! =)

The self-made code will look like this Map of magic statues with human faces made by mapsmajker

And the scanned picture will appear like that (after showing you a 2 sec ad) Map of magic statues with human faces made by mapsmajker through skanviEnjoy your walk!

Hermitage through my eyes

After viewing the photos, you can find my most favorite places of the Hermitage, hopefully they interest you, too.

Photos of Hermitage halls

Photos of Hermitage pictures

The rest artworks of the Hermitage

Interiors in conjunction with exhibits on the premises:

Halls (in my list there are only 31) are listed in an increasing order of numbering (you can download the plans of the Hermitage to mark the rooms you are interested in). I advise you to start viewing exhibits from the second floor, and then move to the others.

In order to see the 3d panoramic views on the official webpage of the Hermitage, you should type the Russian names to the search field (among the options you will see something like Зал B20_F2_H204_Павильонный_зал), and click on the link and after that choose the 2nd button “ПОКАЗАТЬ В 3D”. Otherwise, you will not even see such an option on the English version of the website.

  1. 100 Hall of Ancient Egypt Зал древнего Египта 
  2. 107 Hall of Jupiter. Art of Rome I – IV centuries. Зал Юпитера. Искусство Рима I – IV вв.
  3. 128 Hall of the Big vase. Art of Rome era emperors Trajan and Hadrian, the end of I – II cc. Зал Большой вазы. Искусство Рима эпохи императоров Траяна и Адриана, конец I – II в.
  4. 153 Portrait Gallery of the Romanov family Портретная галерея дома Романовых
  5. 178 Library of Nicholas II Библиотека Николая II
  6. 189 Malachite Room Малахитовая гостиная 
  7. 194 Peter’s Hall (Small Throne Room) Петровский (Малый тронный) зал 
  8. 195 Armorial Hall Гербовый зал 
  9. 198 Georgievsky Hall (Big Throne Room) Георгиевский (Большой тронный) зал 
  10. 204 The Pavilion Hall Павильонный зал
  11. 207 The Hall of Renaissance Italy XIII -XV centuries. Зал искусства Италии эпохи Возрождения XIII -XVвв.
  12. 214 Hall of Leonardo da Vinci Зал Леонардо да Винчи 
  13. 227 Loggias of Raphael Лоджии Рафаэля 
  14. 229 Raphael hall Зал Рафаэля 
  15. 230 Hall of frescoes by Raphael Зал фресок Рафаэля 
  16. 237 Small Italian headroom Малый итальянский просвет 
  17. 238 Big Italian headroom Большой итальянский просвет 
  18. 239 Spanish headroom Испанский просвет 
  19. 241 Gallery History of Ancient Painting. The exhibit: European sculpture of the XIX century. Галерея истории древней живописи. Экспозиция: Европейская скульптура XIX в. 
  20. 242 Nicholas ladder  – there are stunning sculptures around the perimeter of the space above it Николаевская лестница 
  21. 243 Knights’ Hall Рыцарский зал 
  22.  245 Room of the  Flanders Art of XVII. There are the places for sitting (and contemplating the beauty)!!!! Зал искусства Фландрии XVII в.
  23. 247 Rubens hall Зал Рубенса 
  24. 248 Hall of Flemish and Dutch paintings Зал фламандской и голландской живописи 
  25. 254 The Rembrandt Room Зал Рембрандта 
  26. 282 Alexander Hall Александровский зал 
  27. 285 Hall of French Art of the XVIII century Зал искусства Франции XVIII века 
  28. 289 White hall Белый зал 
  29. 298 Room of British Art Зал искусства Великобритании 
  30. 304 Golden living room. The apartments of Empress Maria Alexandrovna Золотая гостиная. Апартаменты императрицы Марии Александровны 
  31. 306 Boudoir. The apartments of Empress Maria Alexandrovna Будуар. Апартаменты императрицы Марии Александровны 

I am, of course, happy to look at all the works of art during my walks in the museum, but my favorite route remains unchanged.

When you  visit the Hermitage for the first time, you shouldn’t dissipate attention to everything that is in the museum – you’ll quickly get tired and fed up with information and experiences; Always prepare to visit the museum, make a route that will suit your preferences, and it will remain in your memory for sure.

In order to find a good place to eat, you can read an article about finding shops and restaurants nearby.