Russian Federation

Russian Federation

Etymology

The name Russia is derived from Rus, a medieval state populated mostly by the East Slavs. However, this proper name became more prominent in the later history, and the country typically was called by its inhabitants “Русская Земля” (russkaja zemlja), which can be translated as “Russian Land” or “Land of Rus'”. In order to distinguish this state from other states derived from it, it is denoted as Kievan Rus’ by modern historiography. The name Rus itself comes from the early medieval Rus’ people, Swedish merchants and warriors who relocated from across the Baltic Sea and founded a state centered on Novgorod that later became Kievan Rus. [wikipedia]

Places to Meet People

Places to Meet People

DevDay Innopolis – We are discussing about aytishnye and technology in an informal atmosphere. As anyone can come up with an interesting presentation. This is a non-profit community for everyone to deeply explore the world of IT. [meetup]

Introverts in Moscow – It is a myth that introverts do not like to talk. In fact, love. Only in a peaceful environment, in small groups, and a really interesting topic! [meetup]

Ivanovo IT Garage – If you are interested in IT, programming and live in Ivanovo, you are in the right place. Usually our meetings 25-50 participants collect on them, we consider a variety of technologies, exchange experiences and simply communicate. [meetup]

Moscow Creative Writing Group – Have you always wanted to write a book? This is a group for anyone interested in ‘WRITING’. All skill levels are welcome. Been writing for a long time or just always wanted to give it a go? I started this group because I am a wordsmith who loves to meet other writing enthusiasts. Looking forward to exploring creativity with like minded people. [meetup]

Moscow Good Food Club – The Moscow Good Food Club is a group organised by Moscow expat Life magazine. We arrange specially prepared dinners with wine pairings at some of Moscow’s best restaurants. Our principles are good for, good wine and great company. The price of our dinners is generally under R.5,000 per person including a 4-course meal, different wines with each course tea/coffee etc. Join us if you like good food and wine! [meetup]

OpenStack Russia Kazan – This group is for all who are interested in OpenStack in Kazan. [meetup]

PebbleSPB – It’s a monthly gathering showcasing projects from our amazing international developer community who love working on cool apps, exploring great connected hardware integrations, and sharing app development insight for the Pebble and Pebble Steel smartwatch. Meet other Pebble developers, enthusiasts, and partners to learn how to develop great apps and experiences for Pebble, the smartwach with the largest appstore on the planet. [meetup]

St. Petersburg Lean Coffee – This is the group for those brave and bright people who are inspired by Agile and eager to be change agents in their companies.  [meetup]

St. Petersburg LessWrong Meetup – Less Wrong is an online community for discussion of rationality. Topics of interest include decision theory, philosophy, self-improvement, cognitive science, psychology, artificial intelligence, game theory, metamathematics, logic, evolutionary psychology, economics, and the far future. [meetup]

How to Find a Date

How to Find a Date

Dating.ru – Dating.ru is one of Russia’s biggest dating websites, with over 2.7 million users. It was launched way back in 1999, and its website unfortunately looks the part. Overall, Dating.ru’s features are pretty standard, but for the fact that all communication features are available to free members, even video chat. [visa hunter]

Loveplanet.ru – LovePlanet.ru is a Russian “freemium” dating site: mostly free to use, with some premium features available. LovePlanet was started in 2005 and is one of the largest dating sites for Russian speakers, with around 18.5 million members. [visa hunter]

Mamba.ru – Mamba.ru is a dating site dedicated to those who speak Russian. The site is one of the biggest of its kind with over 23 million users. Mamba.ru has been around quite some time, and its experience in the game shows with a user friendly interface that is packed with useful features that don’t overwhelm the user. [visa hunter]

Russiancupid.com – Russiancupid.com is by far the best online dating site in Russia. As is the case with pretty much all sites run by Cupid Media, it rocks! I was a long time member of one of the sister sites of Russiancupid.com, Afrointroductions.com, while I was living in both Mauritius and South Africa as an expatriate. [visa hunter]

Walking Tours

Walking Tours

Anglo Tourismo – We provide boat tours along rivers and canals of St Petersburg with guidance in English as well as free walking tours in English and Spanish. Our boat tours and free walking tours are available in the period from May to October. Now the season is closed and there are no boat and regular free walking tours until May 2017. [anglo tourismo]

Moscow Free Tour – Moscow Free Tour is the only company in the city offering 5 daily tours, including the Kremlin, regardless of the weather, day of the week and group size! [moscow free tour]

Peters Walk – A team of young, streetwise, well-travelled individuals, based in St. Petersburg, Russia. We offer a range of English-language walking tours running to a set timetable, several walks every day. Designed for a curious and energetic budget-conscious traveller, our walks cover all aspects of St. Petersburg’s life, from history, arts and social culture to everyday practicalities. [peters walk]

Free Things to Do

Free Things to Do

Excursion to Star City – Star City can be visited when in Moscow and is home to a cosmonauts training centre. [audley travel]

Moscow City Tour – The tour of Moscow takes you through the most important sights of this great city – places that hearken back to the days of the ‘Hammer and Sickle’ or beyond into earlier Russian history, as well as the modern, energetic, and hugely divided city that is present-day Moscow. [audley travel]

MS Tolstoy Cruise – The MS Tolstoy is one of the more comfortable ships cruising on Russia’s rivers. [audley travel]

Museum of Political History – The Museum of Political History is housed in the mansion of Kshesinskaya, who was a famous ballet dancer and Tsar Nicholas II’s lover. [audley travel]

Pushkin Village Excursion – Visit the sumptuous Tsars’ Village, which was the summer residence of the Russian Emperors. Tsars’ Village is a unique ensemble, comprising a number of palaces, pavilions, and the dwellings of lesser nobles and servants, in harmony with lakes and landscaped gardens. [audley travel]

Sergiev Posad Excursion – Known as Zagorsk during the years of communism, Sergiev Posad is a small town at a small distance from Moscow. The town is centred around its golden heart – the exalted monastery of St Sergius. [audley travel]

St Petersburg City Tour – The city tour takes you to the main streets and squares of the city – names that stir the Russian heart – Nevsky Prospect, Palace Square, the Bronze Horseman, the Fontanka Embankment, the Neva River, and Vasilevsky Island. [audley travel]

Theatre or Ballet Performance – St Petersburg is the home of ballet – the dance was first developed here from the 18th century onwards, with all of the most famous ballets being premiered here. As well as ballet, the city has a thriving musical scene, with many fine orchestras and performers. [audley travel]

Trans-Siberian Railway – The Trans-Siberian Railway, linking Moscow to Beijing, is not only one of the classic train journeys, it is also the longest continuous rail line on earth. [audley travel]

Volga Dream Cruise – Discover the highlights of the Russian countryside on board the luxury river cruiser, Volga Dream. [audley travel]

Festivals

Festivals

Russian Orthodox Christmas – A different calendar is used in the Orthodox religion, with Christmas falling on January 7 and celebrated with joy in churches and homes across the huge country. Families gather to worship, midnight masses glow with hundreds of candles, and the snow glitters with the reflection of Christmas lights. [iexplore]

Maslenitsa Festival – February’s Maslenitsa Festival is the pre-Lenten carnival, lasting a week. Full of traditional fun and games; enjoy parades, live music, Russian dances, nighttime fireworks, and endless eating and drinking in preparation for the fast during Lent. [iexplore]

International Women’s Day – Moscow’s International Women’s Day in March is a major event on the festival calendar, with women’s groups from all over the city parading, campaigning, and rallying to make the world a better and more equal place for the female race. [iexplore]

Easter – As with Christmas, Orthodox Easter falls later than Easter on the regular Christian calendar, usually in early April. It’s a quieter celebration, but perhaps the loveliest religious festival of the year, taking place from Palm Sunday through the church services on Easter Sunday. [iexplore]

Stars of White Nights Festival – Held in St Petersburg’s Mariinski Theater, this festival kicks off in May and ends in July, highlighting the Russian love of opera, classical music, and ballet with top artists, orchestras, solo musicians, and conductors showing off their talent. [iexplore]

St Petersburg Beer Festival – The June Beer Festival is one of the all-time favorites in St Petersburg, featuring hundreds of brands laid out at the Peter and Paul Fortress. Thousands attend, and there’s live music and food to keep the party going. [iexplore]

St John the Baptist’s Day – This festival, held on the saint’s birthday in July, is in fact a pagan holiday when bonfires are lit in cities, towns, and villages across the country. Young couples gather to jump through the flames hand-in-hand as a demonstration of their undying love for each other. [iexplore]

International Moscow Film Festival – Held in June and running through early July, the International Film Festival is a truly international event. Celebrities and famous directors arrive for the screenings of Russian documentaries, short films, and the latest Hollywood blockbusters. [iexplore]

Den’ Goroda – September sees Den’ Goroda (City Day), the celebration of the founding of Moscow. Free street concerts, festivities, and parties bring many thousands of Muscovites into the parks and boulevards, and the pubs and bars do a roaring trade. [iexplore]

Russian Winter Festival – Moscow’s Russian Winter festival kicks off mid-December with a plethora of cold weather events taking place at Izmailovo Park. Troika (sleigh) rides, folk music and dance, skating on the lake and frozen pathways, warming street food, and lots of vodka make this one of the year’s favorite celebrations. [iexplore]

Public Transit

Public Transit

Boat – In St Petersburg, Moscow and several other cities located on rivers, coasts, lakes or reservoirs, public ferries and water excursions give a different perspective.

Bus, Marshrutky, Trolleybus & Tram – Services are frequent in city centres but more erratic as you move out toward the edges. They can get jam-packed in the late afternoon or on poorly served routes. A stop is usually marked by a roadside ‘А’ sign for buses, ‘Т’ for trolleybuses, and ТРАМВАЙ or a ‘Т’ hanging over the road for trams. The fare (R15 to R30) is usually paid to the conductor; if there is no conductor, pass the money to the driver. You will be charged extra if you have a large bag that takes up space.

Metro – The metro systems of Moscow and St Petersburg are excellent. There are smaller ones in Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Novosibirsk, Samara and Yekaterinburg.

Taxi – Normal yellow taxis, which one could hail in the street and which used meters, disappeared after the fall of Communism. The taxi situation was tortuous until a few years ago, when Uber and its competitors, such as Gett and Yandex Taxi, made cabs much more affordable and easy to use.

Professional Groups & Events

Professional Groups & Events

3D4WEB – Our goal – to collect those involved in front-end programming for the web, and anyone interested in modern imaging technology of various three-dimensional data – HTML5, WebGL, JS, Unity, etc. [meetup]

Deep Learning Meetup – Group to discuss topics related to machine learning techniques such as Deep Education (Deep Learning) and Deep Neural Networks (Deep Neural Networks). [meetup]

DevOps-40 – DevOps Engineers of Saint-Petersburg, unite! Let’s build our own community with blackjack and ZFS pools! [meetup]

Moscow nopCommerce meetups – The Russian-speaking community nopCommerce developers and users in Moscow. We talk about innovations in nopCommerce world to develop on nopCommerce, share information about related technologies (eg an asp.net, and just exchange experiences with. [meetup]

Moscow Startup Founder 101 – At Startup Founder 101, aspiring and early-stage startup founders meet once a month to hear candid talks by successful local entrepreneurs. Learn the best practices, strategies, and mistakes to avoid from those who have been there, done that. Then, if you’d like, you can share your ideas and plans in a relaxed setting to get personal and professional feedback. [meetup]

progmsk – As it turned out, in Moscow there is a great need for informal meetings of programmers, without being tied to specific technologies and languages. Niche “sit and talk” was blank. This gap requires immediate liquidation, which we are doing. [meetup]

Yappi Days – Group for students and professionals in the field of IT-technologies in Yaroslavl city. This community is for connecting people from different areas of software development. Within this group mitapy held since 2013, Hackathon, intensives and entire educational marathons for a variety of topical and popular destinations. [meetup]

Language Exchange

Language Exchange

Conversation Club JustSpeak – brings together people interested in the practice of spoken English. [meetup]

English Speaking Clubwith a Native Speaker – Every Saturday we organize an English speaking club with a native speaker. It’s a wonderful opportunity to train your language skills, find new friends, overcome language barrier and just have a nice time, discussing latest news and up-to-date topics. [meetup]

Language Club MERGE – MERGE is the Group for those who want to learn English, Chinese and Russian as second native, and want to communicate in English, Russian, Duetch, Español, Français. For job or for fun – welcome aboard! We know how to blast expand your thinking…Communicate and stay connected. Love lives on our bleachers. [meetup]

MoscowLEM – A big group of +300 friends who meet each week for good company, good conversation and improvement of language skills while having a drink. You can join active groups for English, German, Spanish, Italian, French, Russian and more..! [meetup]

St. Petersburg Meetup for Language Exchange and Activities – Welcome to the language and culture exchange club in St. Petersburg! Locals willing to practice English (or maybe some other languages), guests from abroad wishing to learn the local ways, those, who just want to make new friends, we shall all be meeting at one place to spend great time together!  [meetup]

LGBT Groups

LGBT Groups

Russian LGBT Network – Russian LGBT Network is an interregional non-governmental organization working on the federal level. [facebook]

Resources

Resources

Places in Russian Federation

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