Traveling to Kazakhstan from Moscow

Kazakhstan is located in Central Asia, a landlocked country and the ninth largest country in the world. I took a four-hour flight from Moscow to Almaty for a little over $100 (cheaper tickets are definitely available). The gargantuan mountains that tower Almaty to the south of the city dominated my first impressions of the city, […]

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The Golden Ring: Kostroma, Yaroslavl and Rostov Veliky from Moscow

The Golden Ring, a group of historic cities northeast of Moscow, is known for kremlins, monasteries and churches preserved from the 12th–18th centuries. There are eight principal cities (plus several more that have come, especially as tourism in Russia has grown, to market themselves as part of the Ring). Thus, it’s impossible to see it […]

Trip to Vilnius, Lithuania from Moscow

I visited Vilnius in January 2018 to catch up with an old friend who’d moved there from America about a year earlier. Although it was my first time in the Baltics, and I had no idea what to expect, I quickly fell in love with the small, winding cobblestone streets, the old architecture and charm […]

Trip to Kazan from Moscow

After hearing my friends and professors rave about Kazan for months, a friend and I finally went from Thursday through Saturday during the last week of February. At a brisk -12C, it certainly could have been colder, but the wind did cause us to spend a little more time indoors. Nonetheless, Kazan lived up to […]

The Importance of Living Outside of Your Comfort Zone

Studying by itself can be challenging, which puts studying in a foreign country in a whole different level of difficulty. This past summer has been one of the most formative and informational experiences that I have ever had; but it may not have ended that way unless I took the advice from my professor before […]

Masha’s Dacha – Featured SRAS Excursion out of Moscow

Masha’s Dacha Included as part of SRAS’ Cultural Program Summer, 2017 This summer, the students enrolled with SRAS Moscow had the opportunity to visit the outskirts of the city and spend the day at a very generous Russian family’s dacha. A dacha is similar to a country house, and they are a hugely important part […]

Sergiyev Posad and the Lavra: Day Trip from Moscow

Сергиев Посад/Sergiyev Posad Троице-Сергиева Лавра/Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius Троице-Сергиева Лавра – open daily 8:00 to 18:00 Weekends churches are closed to the public Lavra’s Museum on-site closed on Mondays Free Admission to the monastery Train tickets round-trip – 600-1000 rubles   As our program rounds out to a close, some friends and I decided […]

Literary History on the Trans-Siberian Railroad

This article originally appeared on SRAS.org in 2007. It is reproduced here, in updated format, as an excellent guide to using travel to bolster cultural understanding and professional insight.  It was written by Sarah Kapp, who studied Russian as a Second Language in Moscow through The School of Russian and Asian Studies (SRAS). She also […]

Travel to Eastern Europe from Moscow

Note: This text, about a trip I took through Eastern Europe in 2006 is actually still surprisingly up-to-date. This is particularly true of the text’s main message – that actually visiting the places you’ve studied in college and written term papers professing your knowledge of is essential to actually knowing what you are talking about. […]

Suzdal / Суздаль

Trip to Suzdal Weekend Trip from Moscow Best as part of a trip to Vladimir On a mid-October weekend trip, my MSU dormitory roommate, Ellie and I visited the famous Golden Ring (Золотое кольцо) city of Suzdal. Suzdal is located on the edge of the Kamenka River (река Каменка) in the Vladimir Region (Владимирская область) […]

Vladimir / Владимир

Trip to Vladimir Weekend Trip from Moscow Cost: ~6,000 rubles Several weeks ago my English roommate, Eleanor (Ellie) and I traveled together from Moscow to Vladimir. We bought tickets for and boarded a Moscow-Vladimir express train at Kursky Station (Курский вокзал) on a Friday afternoon and left on a weekend adventure. We planned to stay […]

Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius

Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius / Свято-Троицкая Сергиева Лавра In Sergiev Posad – Day Trip from Moscow Hours of Operation: 5:00-21:00; tours run daily from 9:00-18:00 during the summer, and from 9:00-17:00 during the winter (November 11-April 30) Cost: Free except for Vestry (Разница); one can purchase various guided tours On October 5, after visiting […]

Abramtsevo Artists’ Museum-Reserve

Abramtsevo Artists’ Museum-Reserve Day Trip from Moscow с. Абрамцево, ул. Музейная, д. 1 Hours of Operation: 10:00-17:30 (Summer Schedule), 10:00-15:30 (Winter Schedule), Wednesday-Sunday except the last Thursday of every month Cost: Full Price (adults, all exhibits) 1,295 rubles; Special Price (students and pensioners, all exhibits) 800 rubles; Free for other designated groups; Photos and videos in […]

Daytrip to Yasnaya Polyana

Leo Tolstoy’s Family Estate Yasnaya Polyana Ясная Поляна, Тульская область, 301214 Open Tuesday-Sunday (Closed Mondays) Guided Tours 9:30-3:30 30 rub entry for students check the website for guided tour info&cost www.ypmuseum.ru Did you ever wonder how Tolstoy became a national treasure in his own time? How  an aristocrat become a celebrated author? What was his […]

The Nizhny I Knew in 1995

 Nizhny Novgorod Day or weekend trip from Moscow Budget for train tickets there and back: $30 or less About four hours by train from Moscow Budget for a hostel: about $10-20 In Nizhny, I feel I’ve finally been in a real Russian city. Nizhny Novgorod is the 3rd largest city in Russia with approximately 2.9 […]