Russian Lessons .Net

Russian Travel Guide

A guide to Russia and it's regions

Travel in Russia is becoming more popular now that Russia has opened it’s doors to tourists. However few tourists actually find there way off Russia’s major tourist trails. This guide is intended to help you find out more about Russia and its many regions. The Russian federation is broken into 83 regions and this guide is arranged accordingly. We will also include some general information topics about Russian travel.

This guide is still quite new but we intend to keep adding to it regularly. As we visit and research different Russian cities we will continually add more information. If you live in one of these areas in Russia and with to contribute to the Russian guide please contact Admin in the General Administration forum in the forums section of this site.

The Russian Regions

The 83 regions of Russia are classified as follows:

Federal Cities
(города федерального значения)
There are 2 federal cities. Moscow and Saint Petersburg. They function as their own region under direct federal control.
There are 21 republics in the Russian federation. Republics have some degree of autonomy in government. Each republic has it’s own constitution, president and parliament. International affairs however are still handled by the federal government.
There are 46 oblasts in the federation. An oblast is like a province. They have their own local administrative government but have less autonomy than a republic.
There are 9 krais in Russia. A krai is also known as a territory. They have the same legal status as an oblast. The use of the word krai is traditional, it was used mainly to refer to territories located on Russia’s border regions.
Autonomous Okrugs
(автономные округа)
There are 4 autonomous districts (or okrugs) in Russia. They were setup to provide autonomy to indigenous groups. The level of autonomy fits somewhere between a republic and an oblast. Autonomous Okrugs may have administrative jurisdiction delegated to a nearby oblast.
Autonomous Oblast
(автономная область)
There is 1 autonomous province in the Russian federation.
Map of Russian Regions
Image Credit - Adapted from this image released under the GPL

Largest Cities in Russia

Here is a list of the largest Russian cities and where they are located.

2Saint PetersburgSaint Petersburg 4,661,219
3NovosibirskNovosibirsk Oblast1,425,508
4Nizhny NovgorodNizhny Novgorod Oblast 1,311,252
5YekaterinburgSverdlovsk Oblast1,293,537
6SamaraSamara Oblast1,157,880
7OmskOmsk Oblast1,134,016
9ChelyabinskChelyabinsk Oblast1,077,174
10Rostov-on-Don Rostov Oblast1,068,267
12VolgogradVolgograd Oblast1,011,417
13PermPerm Krai1,001,653
14KrasnoyarskKrasnoyarsk Krai909,341
15SaratovSaratov Oblast873,055
16VoronezhVoronezh Oblast848,752
17TolyattiSamara Oblast702,879
18KrasnodarKrasnodar Krai646,175
19UlyanovskUlyanovsk Oblast635,947

Recommended Books For Learning Russian

The New Penguin Russian Course: A Complete Course for Beginners - Probably the best course in a book.

Russian-English Bilingual Visual Dictionary - A visual dictionary with lots of illustrated examples.

A Comprehensive Russian Grammar - A great reference on Russian grammar.

The Big Silver Book of Russian Verbs - A great reference book of conjugated Russian verbs.

Russian Learners' Dictionary: 10,000 Russian Words in Frequency Order - A simple but powerful concept. Expand your vocabulary by learning the most used words first.