In the former worker’s paradise, transporting the masses was a priority. The attention given to this aspect of life is still very much in evidence. Most Russian cities are well served by an extensive network of buses, trams, trolleys, and (in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Nizhny Novgorod, and Samara), subway stations. The advantage to the tourist of taking urban transit is that it is often faster, tremendously cheaper, and a good cultural experience for those who are seeking it. Among the disadvantages are the chance of getting lost (it’s not English-language friendly), and during rush hour and on weekends, overcrowded stations and vehicles can resemble a rugby scrum.
Nonetheless, if you have enough familiarity with the Russian alphabet to decipher station names (this can be learned on the plane ride over) and a sense of adventure, public transportation in Russia is highly recommended.
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Russian Life is a 29-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.
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