We have collected 5 amazing places for vacation in Russia that are devilishly gorgeous!
Be ready for a one in a lifetime experience seeing the gems of Russia and Siberia: Altai Mountains, Lena Pillars Nature Park, Baikal Lake, Swallow’s Nest Castle and ancient Kizhi city.
For more inspiration here are Top 10 places to visit in Russia.
1. Altai Mountains
Since ancient times, Altai is considered sacred and extremely attractive for religious pilgrimages.
The Altai Mountains are a complex system of the highest Siberian ridges separated by deep river valleys and vast intramontane hollows. Mountain system is at the junction of the borders of Russia, Mongolia, China and Kazakhstan.
Altai region is famous for its scenic lakes, like Lake Jellyfish. There are thousands of lakes here, and they are spread all around Altai. Most of the lakes are in the lowlands and on Kulunda Ob plateau. Small in size mountain and steppe lakes give the natural landscape peculiar charm and originality.
No wonder the Altai is called the land of blue lakes.
2. Lena Pillars
Lena Pillars is a 80-kilometre stretch along the right bank of Lena river in Yakutia, two hundred kilometers from the city of Yakutsk. Each column is a sculptural building that resembles a medieval tower.
Scientists believe that the formation of rocks began 500 million years ago, and the very formation of the Lena Pillars started about 400 thousand years ago.
The Nature Park covers over 1.27 million hectares of forest land.
In addition to the pillars there are areas with cold northern sandy desert, site of ancient people and a unique permafrost ecosystem. Must see are the fossilized remains of the ancient fauna: mammoth, bison, woolly rhinoceros. If you want to admire the unique topography, familiarize yourself with local vegetation, listen to the story of that living creatures that lived here a long time, plan at least a week for your Yakutia experience.
By the way, the climate within Yakutia is continental or extreme: summer’s hottest can reach up to 40˚C or 104F and in winter it can drop to -60˚C or -76F. :)
3. Baikal Lake
Baikal lake hardly needs any introduction, but just in case… Baikal is the deepest lake on the planet and the largest natural reservoir of fresh water. Lake and coastal areas feature a unique variety of flora and fauna. Local residents traditionally call it Baikal Sea.
Its width varies from 25 to 80 kilometers and the surface area is equal to the area of the territories of countries like Belgium, the Netherlands or Denmark.
The maximum depth of the lake is 1642 m. There are only two lakes in the world deeper than 1000 meters: Tanganyika (1470 m) in Africa and the Caspian Sea (1025 m) bounded to the northwest by Russia.
Baikal Lake is one of seven wonders of Russia and an absolutely must do in life.
4. Swallow’s Nest Castle in Crimea
Of all the sights of the Crimea it’s really hard to choose just one thing. But we decided to stop at one of the most inspirational places.
Swallow’s Nest is a monument of architecture, romance and history, is located on a steep of 40-meter Avrora cliff in the village of Gaspra, near the city of Yalta in southern Ukraine. The castle is a miniature – only 12 m high, which only adds to the enchantment. The neo-Gothic Swallow’s Nest castle is 40 meters (130 feet) above the Black Sea.
The structure resembles a medieval knight’s castle like Belem tower or a villa Miramar near Trieste. The first wooden structure on the site was built for a Russian general after the Russian-Turkish war of 1877-1878.
Its present form “Swallow’s Nest” was created thanks to Baron Steingel, an oil industrialist, who loved to rest in the Crimea. Steinheil decided to build a romantic castle that resembles the medieval buildings on the banks of the Rhine. The project of the Swallow’s Nestle was designed by an engineer and sculptor Leonid Sherwood, the son of the architect Vladimir Sherwood, the author of the Historical Museum on Red Square in Moscow.
Swallow’s Nest Castle is proudly called The Jewel of Crimea.
5. Kizhi. The Republic of Karelia
Kizhi is a unique museum of wooden architecture under open sky. The museum is located on the Kizhi island on Lake Onega in Karelia. The centerpiece of the exhibition is a set of wooden temples of Kizhi, built in the XVIII-XIX centuries. The construction techniques date back to the ancient traditions of Novgorod Russian wooden architecture, when no metal fasteners like nails and screws were used.
For many centuries the lands of Karelia formed a unique fusion of Finnish-language and Slavic culture. In the period from the XI to XV century Kizhi was part of the Novgorod Republic.
In 1478, all the possessions of Novgorod became part of Muscovy principality.
In 1990, Kizhi was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
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