Traveling Eastern Europe - Be On The Road | Live your Travel Dream!
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Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Traveling Eastern Europe

Saint Basil's Cathedral, Moscow, Russia

Eastern Europe and the Baltics are places left undiscovered to many travellers. The lands of the former Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc were, for many years, difficult to access for many tourists. Even if you were permitted entry, you were likely to be watched strictly by government assigned tour guides. Those days, however, are long gone. Today thousands of people visit these fascinating countries every year. Look below for some tips on the major cities of this fascinating part of the world.

Moscow


Moscow city by night

Perhaps more than any other city in the region, Moscow is a place that inspires awe in the hearts and minds of people around the world. Once the centre of the Muscovite aristocracy, then the centre point of the Russian Empire, and latterly the capital of global communism, Moscow is a truly fascinating place. Like many metropolises, Moscow can cause shock and wonder in equal measure.

A note for when you are travelling to parts of the world that you are unfamiliar with, such as Russia: money transfer services can be a little hard to understand when in Eastern Europe, so it’s best to visit a money transfer site like www.exiap.com/guides/money-transfer-services before you set off. This will ensure you have a back up plan if you do find yourself in a sticky situation with your finances when you travel.

Tallinn


Christmas market at the town hall square, Tallinn, Estonia

This Baltic city is a real gem. The Estonians are proud of their national identity and consider the rule of the USSR an illegal occupation. Therefore, it is not strictly speaking correct to describe the country as a one time member state of the Soviet Union. The fierce independence of the Estonians is clear in the unique architecture of their maritime capital. St Olaf’s Cathedral is believed to have been the tallest building in the world in the 16th century and it still stands imperious over the city today. The historic old town centre is another enjoyable architectural wonder.

St Petersburg


The Naval St. Nicholas Cathedral, St Petersburg, Russia

The next city on our list is another Russian marvel. St Petersburg has long been considered the “cultural capital” of the Russian Federation, and it’s clear to see why - the city’s thriving arts scene rivals those around the world. The city is replete with historical splendor as well. A trip to the Hermitage museum (the 2nd largest museum in the world) will leave any traveler truly amazed. The Winter Palace, part of the Hermitage and home of Russian emperors for almost 300 years, is an incredible example of grandiose, aristocratic European design.

Tbilisi


View of Tbilisi, Georgia

Tbilisi is a fascinating and unique place where East begins to interact with the West. Sitting on the southern side of the Caucasus mountains, Georgia borders Turkey and comes close to Iran and the Middle East. Georgians are renowned for their hospitality and residents of Tbilisi are no different in this respect. Be sure to try the incredible Georgian cuisine. Dishes like Khachapuri and Khinkali are a well kept secret to those not from Georgia - they are wonderfully full of flavor.

Minsk


Church of Saints Simon and Helena, Minsk, Belarus

Minsk is a little known gem. It is the capital of Belarus, a country that sits between Poland, Russia, the Baltic countries and Ukraine. The city is renowned for its incredible Soviet architecture. If Soviet Realism is your thing then Minsk is the place to be.

Photo Courtesy: The photographs in this article are courtesy of wikipedia.org and have been borrowed under the creative commons license. Each photograph has been linked to its host page on wikipedia.



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