(Russia) It is really new country to me

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Russia001

It had been really complicating and expensive to get Russian visa for Korean before. But since this year, Korean doesn’t need the visa. That’s how I decided to come here to get out of Schengen Area. Just in case I printed out the documentary of the law of visa in Russian. But it was so easy that they didn’t care about it. Just one thing was that nobody spoke English at all in Russian Immigration.

 

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Oh..this is Russian road! I’ve never expected to cycle in Russia before!! Because of visa-free, I could see Russia. At the first night in Russia, I slept in a local people’s house which I already contacted before. The house was really warm.

 

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Russian church

 

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Cute caffe

 

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People were waiting a bus. I cannot believe that I was in Russia. I was just so excited ever.

 

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When I thought about Russia, the word of the Soviet Union came out first. But the city in Russia was much developed.

 

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I thought some of Russian liked Army’s color. Many men wore Army’s clothe. I didn’t think they were real army. They just liked that color, I guessed.

 

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Many people were selling mushrooms and potatoes on the street. Many of them liked to read an old book while waiting customers on a cold street. It seemed that some of Russian were literary.

 

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Some people was selling a local shoes.

 

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Scary cloud

 

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I set up my tent at somebody’s yard after getting permit from a local people. My tent was so big that it was a little bit hard to put it.

 

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It looked unique station.

 

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The house’s roof was the sign board of traffic.

 

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It seemed that WiFi is popular in Russia as well. Many cafes put WiFi letters on their window. Another interesting thing was many supermarkets and cafes were run for 24 hours. It was like Korea! Just next European countries’ big supermarket only worked until 9 pm. But here many shops opened for 24 hours!!

 

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There were many old houses beside the main road. The road was too narrow and there were too much traffic to St Peteresburg. Many of them drove too fast that I felt too dangerous many times. I felt like I was in Italy.

 

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Many Russian cars have Black box Camera on their car. I’ve heard that most of Korean cars have it as well. It means the style of driving is similar, I guess.

 

Russia017

I made some Korean soup in the night. I just started to use sea mustard I bought long time ago. It was so delicious.
(Korean eats sea mustard soup on their birthday. However, it was not my birthday. Just I liked it!)

 

Russia018

It looked like I was doing wild camping.

 

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But actually I set up my tent in front of a gas station. I asked the worker it is safe to sleep here. He said it would be alright.

 

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It looked an old public telephone booth. I was wondering it is still working.

 

Russia021

I stayed for a night in a warmshower’s host house. At the next day I had a small interview with his friends. They said they will post on vk

I looked really shorter because of tall Russian guys!! hahaha

 

Russia022

vk.com is like facebook in Russia. But vk.com is much popular than facebook.com in Russia. vk.com started on 2006 and facebook started on 2004. So it could be said that vk.com copied facebook.com. (The design is similar and even the color is almost the same!)

 

Russia023

Although it was so cold that I felt winter, the scenery was so peaceful fall.

 

Russia024

My host, Pavel, and his little cute boy. Thanks to him, I could get a simcard.

 

Russia024a

It was so shocking that sim card was so cheap ever!!

5GB is 7$, 30GB is 12$
(All included of Simcard and calling was 10$ for 5 gb)

In Swaziland which is a little small country in Africa, 1GB was 100$.
In Europe 1GB was around 20$
I was not sure why it was so cheap in Russia. (The company I used was Beeline.)

 

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It was so cold autumn.

 

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I bought some food from a grocery. The left one was totally like Korean side dish. It was interesting that Russia is a bit similar to Korea. There were also many Korean snacks. It was too cold to enjoy the food on the road. I found that I cannot enjoy the rest on the road if it is too cold.

 

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I arrived in Saint Petersburg at the late afternoon.

 

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Russian

 

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My host, Denis, introduced me his class. It was interesting time.

 

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Russia032

I wanted to buy something on the street, but I gave up. I felt the language barrier was the highest in Russia. Most of people don’t speak English at all in Russia. I felt really hard in North Sudan where government stopped teaching English because they didn’t like the U.S. These days Sudanese government starts teaching English again. I think Sudanese speak more English than Russian. Somebody said because of cold war, Russian doesn’t speak English.

 

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In the train.. It didn’t look different from Korea. There were people reading papers and using smart phone.

 

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The subway was really deep. There was woman watching cctv in front of an escalate. I was wondering it is necessary? I watched something about North Korea on youtube. It looked totally the same as that there was woman watching in North Korean’s subway as well.

 

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I had to go up for a while to see bright light.

 

Russia036

Russian letter, Cyrillic, sounds like Korean slang sometimes. The name of bank sounds like some Korean slang.
I have difficulty to say thank you(spasiba) in Russian. It is totally like Korean slang that I don’t feel good when I have to say it.

 

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The park which was in front of Church of Our Savior on Spilled Blood

 

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Church of Our Savior on Spilled Blood looked so beautiful. I thought they believe some new religion, because the architecture is totally different from other church. But actually it is for Orthodox Christianity.

 

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Car coffee..
Espresso is 119 Rubles, 3$. In Europe, an espresso was only 2$.
I really bought many cheap food products while cycling in Western Europe thanks to a big grocery. But in Russia it is hard to find cheap food products on a grocery. I think I spend more money in Russia than in Europe.
Maybe I am confused because of the currency. 1$ is 40 Rubles. So when I buy something, the number is too higher than before.

 

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In the center

 

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There were many people under subway.

 

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Russian beer. I liked the left one.

 

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Most of Russian house have double-glazed windows. The picture was taken from the museum. Most of house has little gap between windows.
Surprisingly Russian houses are too warm that I have to wear a short shirt.
When I was in Europe on last January, most of European houses were too cold although the weather was less cold than Russia. At that time I put all of my summer clothes on the bottom of the bag. Now I cannot put my short shirt to the bottom, although it is the coldest winter I’ve ever faced during trip.
I was wondering why Russian house is super warmer ever than European house while European salary is much better. Some people said because Russia has cheap oil.
But still it is mystery to me.

 

Russia046

I visited Hermitage Museum which is one of the largest and oldest museums in the world. I heard that I had to wait a long line. But now there were machines that I didn’t need to wait.
Entrance fee was 10$

 

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It was too big that I couldn’t look around third floors. I was a bit disappointed, because I expected that it was time to study Russian History. But there was only little part for Russian history.

 

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Palace Square

 

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Saint Isaac’s Cathedral

 

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Light house

 

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A luxury ship was used for a gym.

 

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Peter and Paul Fortress

 

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Their subway looked luxury.

 

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I made some Korean curry and bought some side dish which looked totally like Korean one.

 

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I wanted to have a perfect waterproof gear, so I bought rubber gloves. It didn’t work for warming up. Maybe I will try to use for spring.

 

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There was Decathlon which has very cheap sports gear. I bought some winter gear and waterproof jacket and pants. I have a winter jacket, but I bought another one incase if it is too cold. It has inner jacket, so I can wear one of them in the spring. It was a little expensive around 70$

 

Russia057

I bought winter shoes as well. It said it is good for -14. But truly it doesn’t work for even 0. Many gear from Decathlon really don’t work well. I just buy because it is cheap. I bought pump as well, because old one was broken. Also I bought long sleeves.

I paid 260$ for all. Oops… I bought too many things….

 

Russia058

I stayed in St Peterburgs too long over two weeks. The host has another house, so I could use flat alone. With a cheap Russian 30 GB sim card, I uploaded all delayed postings. My website was hacked, so I changed a design as well.
After two weeks, the weather gets really colder.

 

Russia059

I knew I had to hurry, but I really didn’t like to delay postings. Anyway the weather is now too cold.

 

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My hands and feet were frozen while cycling in the city. New shoes are totally useless. Hahahahahahah

 

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It is time to face real Russian winter. I am wondering I could overcome this cold.

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[14/09/26~10/18 (D+1144) Luhamaa to Saint Petersburg]


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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  • – Have you been to Moscow? (Much bigger city than the Saint Petersburg (SPb) with toooo many people in subway or any other places you’ll go.
    – But some people say, that SPb is more better and beatiful (SPb is like a russian Paris).

    • Hello Dmitrii,
      -I’ve never been Moscow. But I’ve heard that Moscow is so expensive for living.
      -It is true that SPb is really beautiful :)
      Thanks!

  • Your new camera gear is working for you! These photos are very beautiful, Russia seems very interesting, but it is a big country, how long did you spend there?

    • Hello,
      Yes, Russia is huge! I cannot say I know Russia!! Some Russian asked me why I only cycle in a small part of Russia.
      But actually to me it is really long distance already in Russia!! The people in a big country thinks really big!! :)
      I might leave next week here.
      Thanks,

USAKorea