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Old 12-28-2015, 09:06 PM
 
3 posts, read 1,885 times
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I would like to get your opinion on the pro and cons of visiting Russia. I'm planning on touring/ site seeing Moscow and St Pete for about a week. With the current events, USA/West vs Russia sentiments, what would be the resection between a human being to another.

Thanks and happy new year!
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Old 12-29-2015, 10:34 AM
 
Location: Seattle
1,744 posts, read 3,202,825 times
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You might start by enrolling in STEP alerts.
https://step.state.gov/STEP/

We were in St Pete for 2 days last year. We found that unlike many countries in Europe, most residents don’t speak English. We were on an organized tour so it wasn’t a big problem and they also took care of our Visa requirements. We are normally DIY but for Russia we are glad we did the tour.

The tour leader was a high school art teacher. She was a wealth of information while touring the Hermitage. Wouldn’t have been the same if we did it on our own. Organized tours are allowed in before opening to the public. It was packed with people as we were ending our tour.
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Old 12-29-2015, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Hougary, Texberta
8,602 posts, read 11,098,771 times
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We were just there in September. It's fantastic.

I actually found it different than Chilkoot. St. Petes is very European, and had no problems finding English speakers everywhere. We self toured, and did the hop on hop off bus, Hermitage etc.

Moscow on the other hand is much more difficult. It is very Russian, and English isn't as widely available, but it is extremely easy to get around with the Metro, and both cities are amazing, but different.

I'd recommend the Sapsan high-speed train between the two cities, or there are overnighters available if you really want the throw back feel.

As far as the people go, you'll find that people everywhere are generally pretty good. It's the governments that screw everything up. Just remember that Russians are generally pretty stoic until you get to know them a bit, so they can come off as being cold.

It's a great time to go. The rouble is in the tank, hotels are cheap, as is food and drink. My trip in September was only about 40% of the cost of what it was in the summer of 2014.

Have a great time. It's amazing.
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Old 12-29-2015, 11:18 PM
 
3 posts, read 1,885 times
Reputation: 12
Thank you Chilkoot and mickeyyc for your inputs.


My relatives and my coworkers are shocked that I brought the idea of traveling to Russia;even thought, they know, that I had been in Ukraine and Belarus.

I'm a little bit familiar with Eastern Europe and was great all around for the most part. My concern is with the locals people and governmental reactions toward westerners / Americans tourists like me. Should I start writing my last will or should I not worry about what is going on the media/ propaganda?

BTW. I wish you all a prosperous and happy new year
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Old 12-29-2015, 11:23 PM
Status: "I'm travelling at the speed of light." (set 19 days ago)
 
Location: Hamburg, Deutschland
1,233 posts, read 608,954 times
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I think as long as you do not start lecturing the Russians on the superiority of the American way of living, everything will be ok.
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Old 12-30-2015, 07:14 AM
 
Location: Hougary, Texberta
8,602 posts, read 11,098,771 times
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I second what Norne said. You have to remember that their media/information comes from generally different sources than ours, and they have a very different perspective on Crimea/Ukraine/Syria than we do.

So long as you stay away from politics, which is generally good advice when travelling anywhere, you should be fine. Russians are very, very proud people, but their nationalism is much less "in your face" than the American style. They know that tensions are higher than they've been before, and are generally appreciative that you're there taking it in. This is all much more so in Moscow than St. Pete's. Short of the Cyrillic, St. Pete's is much more laid back and open, less "Russian" for right or wrong.
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Old 12-30-2015, 12:18 PM
Status: "I'm travelling at the speed of light." (set 19 days ago)
 
Location: Hamburg, Deutschland
1,233 posts, read 608,954 times
Reputation: 1804
St. Pete was supposed to be a "window into Europe", and it was largely built by Western architects - Italians, Dutchmen, Germans, so it does look much more European than Moscow.
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Old 01-04-2016, 02:44 PM
 
Location: Russia
4,228 posts, read 2,370,834 times
Reputation: 1236
Pokazhy, your nickname shows that you know Slavic languages. Where are you from?
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