Russia is situated in northern Asia and, west of the Urals, Europe. Russia is bordering the Arctic Ocean, between Europe and the North Pacific Ocean.
The defeat of the Russian Empire in World War I led to the seizure of power by the communists and the formation of the USSR. The rule of Josef STALIN (1924-53) strengthened Russian dominance of the Soviet Union. The Soviet economy and society stagnated in the following decades until General Secretary Mikhail GORBACHEV (1985-91) introduced glasnost (openness) and perestroika (restructuring) in an attempt to modernize communism, but his initiatives inadvertently released forces that by December 1991 splintered the USSR into 15 independent republics. Since then, Russia has struggled in its efforts to build a democratic political system and market economy to replace the strict social, political, and economic controls of the communist period.
Russia has a total os 19,961 km boundaries. Border countries are: Azerbaijan 284 km, Belarus 959 km, China (southeast) 3,605 km, China (south) 40 km, Estonia 294 km, Finland 1,313 km, Georgia 723 km, Kazakhstan 6,846 km, North Korea 19 km, Latvia 217 km, Lithuania (Kaliningrad Oblast) 227 km, Mongolia 3,485 km, Norway 167 km, Poland (Kaliningrad Oblast) 206 km, Ukraine 1,576 km. Additional Russia has a coastline of 37,653 km.
Russia’s climates ranges from steppes in the south through humid continental in much of European Russia; sub-arctic in Siberia to tundra climate in the polar north; winters vary from cool along Black Sea coast to frigid in Siberia; summers vary from warm in the steppes to cool along Arctic coast.
Russia’s terrain includes a broad plain with low hills west of Urals; vast coniferous forest and tundra in Siberia; uplands and mountains along southern border regions.
- Allexperts Russia Travel Q&A – Veteran travellers answer in detail all one-on-one questions about tourism in Moscow, St.Petersburg, and the rest of Russia, for free.
- Guide to Russia – Includes information on Russian history, culture and geography, as well as a currency converter.
- iExplore – Russia – Adventure and experiential travel group provides a guide on the country and its history, events, places to go and activities with tours, photos and other tourist information.
- Lonely Planet – Russia – Comprehensive facts and advice for traveling along with background material on the culture and history of the country.
- A Lovely World: Russia – Photographs of Moscow and St Petersburg.
- Moscow Today – Some views of Moscow.
- Trade.State.Gov – Russia – Offers travel information including Quick Facts, embassies and consulates, entry and exit requirements, safety and security, local laws, health, transportation and Fact Sheet. From the U.S. Department of State.
- Where Russia – A national portal for foreign tourists and businessmen as well as everyone who is interested in visiting Russia, first of all Moscow and St. Petersburg.
- World Travel Guide – Russian Federation – Tourist and business travel information with facts on climate, visa, health, passport, currency and customs requirements.