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Baikal is a lake of tectonic origin in the southern part of Eastern Siberia, the deepest lake in the world, the largest natural reservoir of fresh water (23615.39 cubic km which is about 19% of the world’s fresh water reserves in lakes). Local residents usually call it the Baikal Sea.

Lake Baikal is located in the center of the Asian continent on the border of the Irkutsk region and the Republic of Buryatia. The lake stretches from north-east to south-west by 620 km in the form of a giant crescent. Baikal width ranges from 24 to 79 km.

Beautiful ice of Baikal Lake, Russia photo 1

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Feb/13

2

Variety of colors in the Valley of Geysers

The Valley of Geysers is one of the largest geyser field in the world and the only in Eurasia. The valley is located in Kronotsky State Biosphere Reserve in Kamchatka.

The territory of the geyser field is about 2 square km. There are around 20 large geysers and a lot of small ones that periodically emit fountains of almost boiling water (95° C) or hot steam.

The Valley of Geysers colors, Kamchatka, Russia photo 1

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There is a widespread belief that Stalin’s Soviet Union was a country almost completely closed to foreigners. However, advertising of “Intourist” (organization responsible for foreign tourism in the USSR) created in 1930ies, gives somewhat different look at the issue.

The country was in desperate need of foreign currency for industrialization, so all the ways to lure wealthy foreign tourists to the USSR were used. And it was not just about the major cities – Moscow and Leningrad.

Stalin's Soviet Union posters luring foreign tourists 1

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Jan/13

14

The largest miniature of Russia

Even sleeping areas of St. Petersburg may surprise you. Among the usual residential buildings of Moscow district there is a unique museum project – the largest miniature of Russia (total area is about 800 square meters).

Miniature is a collective image of Russia, which has absorbed all of its most characteristic features, and objects. You will be able to find the Moscow Kremlin, Karelian Kizhi, Peter and Paul Fortress, and other sights of Russia here.

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Yakutsk is surrounded by many hills. In the Soviet era the tunnel in one of them, located near the mountain Chochur Muran, was used as a huge cellar for food storage. In November 2008, tourist center “The Kingdom of Permafrost” was opened here.

At the entrance to the “Kingdom” visitors receive warm coats and boots. It is necessary because in summer the temperature in the tunnel is minus 4 degrees Celsius. But in winter the temperature does not fall below minus 10 degrees C, so after minus 50 degrees C outside it is a good place to get warm. Photos by Alex Cheban

Tourist center "Kingdom of Permafrost", Yakutsk, Russia photo 1

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November 27, 2012 in Kamchatka, after a 36-year interval, volcano Plosky (Flat) Tolbachik began to erupt. Volcanoes Plosky Tolbachik (altitude 3140 meters) and Ostry (Sharp) Tolbachik (3682 meters) are the parts of one single large volcanic massif (volcanoes location on Google Maps).

Tolbachik is located in the south-western part of the Klyuchevskaya volcano group, 63 kilometers from Kluchi village and 343 kilometers from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. Previous eruption began in July 1975 and continued until October 1976. Magnificent views! Photos by Sergey Gorshkov

Plosky Tolbachik volcano eruption, Kamchatka, Russia photo 1

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The Solovetsky Islands (also known as Solovki) is an archipelago in the White Sea (total area is about 347 sq km) in the Arkhangelsk region. It consists of 6 large and about 100 small islands (Google Maps location of the largest island).

The archipelago, including five-kilometer area of the White Sea, is the protected area – Federal State Institution “Solovetsky state historical-architectural and natural museum-reserve.” Photos by Dmitry Mordolff

The Solovetsky Islands, Arkhangelsk region, Russia photo 1

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Nov/12

3

St. Petersburg off the beaten track: Top-5

There is a wide range of extremely famous sights in St. Petersburg, such as the Hermitage and the Winter Palace, St. Isaac’s Cathedral and Savior-on-the-Blood (the last one has a very Russian look).

It’s a must for everyone visiting this marvelous city to see all the main attractions. But on the other hand, falling the victim of guidebooks can be very upsetting, and this makes the travelers look for something new and exotic which is not necessarily mentioned in the guidebooks.

Are you one of the off-the-beaten-track seekers?

Savior-on-the-Blood church, Saint Petersburg, Russia

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Built in 1580-1620, Astrakhan Kremlin is a fortress in Astrakhan located on the place where new city was founded by the Russian Tsar Ivan the Terrible who captured Astrakhan in 1556.

On the territory of the fortress you will find such architectural monuments as Assumption Cathedral (1698-1710, cubic, with five domes and a rich decor of the facade), Trinity Cathedral (16th-18th centuries), Bishop’s House (16th-18th centuries) with the home church, St. Cyril Chapel (17th-19th centuries), Prechistinsky gate (the bell tower), and others. Photos by Alexander Lipilin

Astrakhan city, Russia Kremlin photo 1

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Saint Petersburg is located in northern Europe, in the north-west of the Russian Federation, on the shore of Finnish Gulf and on Neva River. St. Petersburg is the only city in the world with the population over 1,000,000 which is located so far in the north.

Saint Petersburg is the largest city located in Europe which is not a capital. Last week the population of the city exceeded 5 million people. Our congratulations and to celebrate this event here is a great time-lapse video of the city.

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