In 1466, some 30 years before Columbus arrived in America, the Russian merchant Afanasy Nikitin left his hometown of Tver on a commercial trip to India. Travelling to distant countries in the middle of the XV century was actually even harder than in the "Covid months" of 2020 and it would take Nikitin a staggering three years to reach... Continue Reading →
The highest ski resort above the Arctic Circle – Travel Tip!
«Big Wood» is the name of a ski resort in the town of Kirovsk, located at the spurs of the Khibiny Mountains on the shores of the Lake Bolshoy Vudyavr, 175 kilometers (109 mi) south of Murmansk. The skiing trails are located on the southern and northern slopes of the Mount Aikuaiventchorr (I'll give you a minute to try and... Continue Reading →
The magic light of the Great North – Travel Tip
There is an old saying that goes: "amateur photographers talk about gear, professional photographers talk about composition, but great photographers talk about light." I don't consider myself a great photographer, but today I want to talk about light. There is a reason why Northern countries are increasingly popular with photographers (think Iceland, but also Norway,... Continue Reading →
A full lunch here will cost you between 3 and 7 US$! – Culture Shock n.12
Russia can undoubtedly be a wonderfully inexpensive holiday destination (see also my previous post on the price of medicine in Russia). The country's largest cities, Moscow and Saint Petersburg in particular, offer a huge choice in prices for lodging and eating. For hotels it might be sometimes less than advisable to choose the cheapest option... Continue Reading →
Relics of former Soviet glory in Murmansk – Travel Tip
We recently spent about a week in and around the Russian city of Murmansk, the largest city on Earth North of the Artic Circle, discovering new places preparing a new photo itinerary. I will post more pictures and infos on this trip in the coming days and weeks, but, first thing first, let's start with what... Continue Reading →
Tsarskoe Selo Parks – off season
Tsarskoye Selo (or "Tsar's Village") was the town containing a former Russian residence of the Romanov imperial family and visiting nobility. It is located 24 kilometers (15 mi) south from the center of Saint Petersburg. It is now part of the town of Pushkin ( which got its name in 1937 to to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the death of the Russian... Continue Reading →
After living in Russia for over a year, I decided to start this blog to share what I see and experience every day, living in the largest country on Earth and one certainly filled with co-existing opposites. The blog is called Russia Through The Lens, not just because I publish one (or more) picture I... Continue Reading →
In Moscow there’s a market that looks like a circus tent – Travel tip!
Just a couple of hundred meters from the Tulskaya station of the Moscow Metro, basically where the Third Ring Road crosses the Moskva river, you can find a pretty unique place where to eat and do a little food shopping: Danilovsky market. In the past, this used to be one of Moscow's largest and most... Continue Reading →
The Lady of the Korolenko
The town of Vyborg lies on the Karelian Isthmus near the head of the Vyborg Bay, 130 km (81 miles) to the northwest of St. Petersburg and 38 km (24 miles) south of Russia's border with Finland, where the Saimaa Canal enters the Gulf of Finland. The town has changed hands several times in history, most recently in 1944 when the Soviet Union captured it from Finland during World... Continue Reading →