Page 3 of alferov Travel Blog Posts

Europe » Russia » Centre October 25th 2014

The visit to Torzhok is my final day trip from Moscow. I am leaving to St. Petersburg, if nothing goes wrong, next Friday on October 31. After that, I intend to go to my native town for a couple of days. For the next few months I will be working freelance and stay in St. Petersburg. Torzhok presents some difficulty from the transportation point of view, but the problem is solved easily with the help of a commuter train to Tver and a bus from there. The commuter train takes about two hours and the bus – about an hour. Tver, I supposed, need not be included in the list of must-sees for a foreigner in Russia, but as such it is an interesting city and it meets my own sightseeing criteria (I’ve been there in ... read more

Europe » Finland » Satakunta » Rauma October 17th 2014

Porvoo I had thought about visiting Rauma long ago, when I checked up the lists of UNESCO World Heritage sites in European countries. Of Finland’s World Heritage Sites, I have seen only the Suomenlinna Fortress, and the other few ones I’m not yet planning to visit. It was not a nearby town, and when I checked up the total price of getting there (from Petersburg) I thought it a bit expensive, but nevertheless made plans to go there. Finally, I had the opportunity of arranging a short journey to Finland. According to initial plan, my work in Moscow was to be finished by October 14 but I will have to stay till the end of October. However, when I was planning this trip I yet thought I’d be at home during this time. So, I bought ... read more
Porvoo Street

Europe » Russia » Centre » Kostroma October 11th 2014

Kostroma It’s another weekend and it’s another train trip on an overnight train in the ‘depths’ of interminable Russia. In my head now are dozens of names of Russian cities, towns and places, which I’d like to visit, and each and every time I return from a town, I want to see more, and more, and more. I am also arranging three trips to Europe. I am losing roubles for each euro I pay for those hotels and tickets, and I blame this solely on the American and European governments. I chose Kostroma and Ivanovo, because they have a lot of sights and are located close to each other. Somehow Ivanovo is included in the Golden Circuit of Russia, but I would dispute this, because Ivanovo is too young as compared to the other towns, and ... read more

Europe » Russia » Northwest October 5th 2014

The visit to Porkhov seems to crown my exploration of fortresses in the Russian Northwest (starting point always being St. Petersburg). There is still Narva to be visited (on the Russian-Estonian border), I think I will go there in November or December while my visa is still valid. I am always thinking about completing a certain list of interesting places in a certain area of Russia, but new interesting ones are popping up like mushrooms after a long rain. I bought the excursion to Porkhov with Pervye Linii Company on the very day I got my salary. I was then in St. Petersburg and my wife was glad to join me on this excursion. This was an exhausting excursion from 7-30 in the morning till 22-30 in the evening. I had ‘fun’ getting to St. Petersburg ... read more
Porkhov Street
Porkhov Museum

Europe » Russia » Centre » Smolensk September 27th 2014

I managed to buy convenient train tickets from Moscow to Smolensk. However, departure was at 1.45 in the night which was not at all convenient. I wouldn’t take a taxi, but went to Byelorussky train station within the metro working hours and waited for two hours. Surprisingly, I did not find the waiting hall, it seemed to be either closed because of late time or under repair. Thankfully, the outdoor air was not too cold and there was no wind, so I just paced the platform to and thro, sat here and there, thought about things and tried to figure out what the inscription “2пр4” meant on the train departure display. Now, even if you know Cyrillic letters, it would not help you decipher what this means. Only asking a person would, but I did understand ... read more
Peter and Paul Church (1146), Varvara Church (XVIII c.)
Dnieper River, Uspensky Cathedral and Fortress Wall
Dnieper River, Uspensky Cathedral and Fortress Wall

Europe » Russia » Centre » Pereslavl-Zalessky September 20th 2014

I got up early in the morning without much wish to go anywhere, but still decided to hurry up to the bus station. Today I visited Pereslavl-Zalessky, an ancient Russian town not very far from Moscow (140 kilometers). The bus departed from Schelkovsky bus station at ten o’clock. The web schedule also stated a bus at 9-30 but the tickets seemed to be sold out (recommended to buy one or two days in advance). Everything was all right except for a traffic jam which lasted for almost one and a half hour. The highway (‘so-called’) was for many kilometers under repairs and construction works, narrowing it down, so that the everlasting flow of vehicles, damn them, seemed to go on forever and the bus moved a meter at a time. I was so annoyed. The traffic ... read more
Trading House

Europe » Russia » Centre September 7th 2014

I got up in the morning without a clear idea where exactly to go. The previous evening, I read about several towns and fell asleep still unsure of what to do. However, after lying in the bed for about ten minutes I got up with the firm idea to visit Zaraisk. I decided to go there because it had a Kremlin and was nearer that other towns on my list. I would perhaps not know about this town, but very long ago I came across a Russian website with a list of one hundred best places. The bus departed from Vykhino bus station where I had been previously, so I knew where to go to buy tickets. The bus came 10 minutes before departure and arrived in Zaraisk rather quickly, about half an hour before the ... read more
Monument to Soldiers

Europe » Russia » Centre » Rostov September 6th 2014

I made a failed attempt at visiting Rostov several weeks ago and this time got up quite early to be able to catch the train in good time. The only bad thing about this was impossibility to have breakfast at the hotel (I departed at 6.30, the meal began at 7 in the morning). Nevertheless, I felt quite good in the train and enjoyed its fast ride without any stops, the train did not even seem to decelerate anywhere. Its final destination was Yaroslavl, and the duration of stop at Rostov was one minute. The majority of people went to Yaroslavl. During the train journey, I read Gerald Durrell’s “The Whispering Land” – an inspiring story of author’s adventures in Argentina in quest of animals, containing colourful, witty descriptions of nature, animal behaviour, and the locals. ... read more

Europe » Russia » Northwest » Moscow August 12th 2014

This entry, though lacking in true depth and representation of the country in all its facets and aspects of life, history, and culture, will emphasize certain things about Russia that one can see in Moscow museums. I do not go to any museum, but I select them most carefully, trying to point out the essential things and take photos of specific Russian (and, of course, Soviet) items. As my further progress in visiting the other museums is now a bit hindered (I am lazy to go there after work – it’s surprising that I do much less work there than I used to as a freelancer, but I am much more tired by 5 o’clock already), whereas I still want to share what I saw, I decide to add the entry and update it later. The ... read more

Europe » Russia » Centre » Vladimir August 3rd 2014

Combining a trip to both these towns within a single day is a hard task but I managed to do it, though with a very stupid mistake. Both these towns are listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and so are of highest priority for me. This time I managed to board the train without any occurrences, and arrived to Vladimir in three hours. Instead of doing the sights at once, I decided first to go by bus to Suzdal, and proceed with Vladimir. All would be done rather quickly. The bus station is right in front of the train station, nevertheless, I had to wait for half an hour for the bus. I bought a ticket to Suzdal (there were many people in queues) and it turned out I, as many other passengers, had standing places. ... read more

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