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Russia is the biggest nation on the planet, occupies one-tenth of all the land on Earth. It spans 11 time zones throughout two continents (Europe and Asia) and has coasts on three oceans (the Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic). The Russian landscape varies from desert to frozen coastline, tall mountains to huge marshes. Much of Russia is comprised of rolling, treeless plains called steppes. Siberia, which occupies three-quarters of Russia, is controlled by sprawling pine forests called taigas.

Well, those are well known facts about Russia and I am sure you’d have come across those things. Now, here are some things you might never knew about Russia. They shower in a lake with temperatures listed below -25 degrees Celsius. They commemorate 2 New Years. Forget the cliché of the bearskin clad bear of a man gulping vodka to keep the icicle off his beard. Let’s get things directly with these 10 truths about Russia.

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Monastery in Borodino near Moscow

Russia gets hotter, sometimes!

You may think it lives under a layer of permafrost, but similar to any other large landmass, Russia experiences a fantastic variability in temperature level. And nearer the southern latitudes, it can get annoyingly warm, especially in the month of July which is the mid summer season in Russia.

Feasting on reindeer!

The Nenets, tribespeople of Russia’s frozen Yamal peninsula have survived the age of the Tsars, the Bolshevik revolution and the disorderly 1990s, and yes they do love feasting on reindeer. But just when they’re not utilizing them as a mode of transport.

Icy shower!

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A dip in the icy water is a winter tradition in Russia

This is not a screen grab from ‘Fear Factor’ with candidates competing for a massive reward. These are Russians waiting for their turn to take a shower in the freezing cold waters in a frozen river at -26 Degrees Celsius (-14.8 Fahrenheit) in a park near Moscow. Brain freeze? Yes, please!

Sit quietly for a few seconds before travel!

Before heading out on a journey, Russians sit quietly for a few moments and say “Присядем на дорожку,” which means “let’s sit down for the road”. In earlier days, people used to sit in silence for a few seconds and then do a quick prayer for the trip ahead.

Move over, Dead Sea!

The mineral mud of the Dead Sea is said to have numerous recovery qualities, so instead of travelling the Russians decided to discover their own. The mineral-rich blue mud on the banks of the Tus Lake in Russia’s Khakassia area, about 370 km (230 miles) southwest of the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk is stated to be simply as corrective. Russians take a trip from afar to live in a camp, shower in the bitter-salty water and smear themselves with the alleviative black and blue mud.

Back in 90 seconds!

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Moscow Metro is one of the oldest and biggest subway systems in the world

While Japan and China appear speed ahead, the Moscow metro follows in line as one of the fastest metros worldwide. Don’t take on too much while you wait, there’s another one can be found in 90 seconds.

Soviet traditions!

Everybody wants memorabilia from their journeys. And refrigerator magnets are a popular option. Russians love to collect those souvenir magnets from places they travel. You will easily find a souvenir shop in every city of Russia.

2 New Years to celebrate!

The Russians keep two calendars, the traditional Western one that tolls the New Year day on the very first of January and another conforming to the Eastern Orthodox Church that starts the year afresh on January 14. Fireworks at Red Square is a great feast during New Year’s Day celebrations in Moscow.

75% of Russia is in Asian continent!

Though major portion of it’s land is in Asia, only 22% of the population lives within the parts of Russia that are technically located in Asia. An awesome majority of Russians are concentrated in western parts of Russia.

Moscow Metro is a classic piece of architectural artwork!

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Moscow Metro features unique architectural designs at every stations

Moscow features a super-beautiful subway network, including the 4th deepest metro station in the world. In the 1930s when the metro system was being constructed, Russians were preparing for an additional possible war. therefore the metro system was alleged to double as shelter during air raids.

Park Pobedy station is the 4th deepest subway station in the world. It is 84 m deep which is nearly 1.7 times the length of an Olympic sized swimming pool.

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