By car from Milan to Novosibirsk, is it possible?
Usually tourists travel to Russia by plane, or at most by ship in the case of St. Petersburg. An Italian boy, however, has decided to want to discover deep Russia, at least the European one, and to do so he has decided to visit the country by car!
Roberto Castiglioni is a boy from Corbetta in & nbsp; province of Milan. Inveterate traveler, with his Ford he visited all of Europe. Now he has decided to visit Russia and, to share his experience, he has created a group on Facebook where every day he publishes videos, photos and descriptions of his trip. Sputnik Italia interviewed Roberto to find out the itinerary of his trip and the reasons for wanting to travel in & nbsp; Russia in & nbsp; by car.
- & nbsp; I traveled all over Europe in & nbsp; by car, including Eastern Europe, Morocco to below Agadir and Turkey to the border with Armenia and Iran. Now I have decided to give myself to Russia. I wanted to get to know Russian cities and the Russian people more closely.
- & nbsp; I created the group to document this particular trip, in & nbsp; when it comes to places quite far from Italy. Then besides visiting the tourist cities I wanted to show a less touristy Russia and less known by many. I wanted to give an idea of my itinerary for the whole period of the trip, to show the real Russia.
- & nbsp; So this is your first time in & nbsp; Russia and you don't speak Russian. What was your main impression? Is it difficult to understand Russian or Russians, is it easy to move to & nbsp; Russia?
- & nbsp; I don't speak Russian and it's the first time I go to & nbsp; Russia. I have been twice in & nbsp; Ukraine. The first time in & nbsp; Ukraine the situation proved difficult already from customs: I arrived, I saw the signs in Cyrillic & nbsp; and I wanted to go back to & nbsp; Hungary. Then I thought that after waiting two hours of customs and covering two thousand kilometers it would be a real shame to give up. So I decided to continue and, after a couple of days, I got used to the Cyrillic. It is clear that a tourist who travels alone, without organized tours, and enters & nbsp; a border town, may find himself a little confused, especially if a different alphabet is used in the country visited. So traveling to Russia has already been easier this year after 2010 and 2011 in & nbsp; Ukraine.
- & nbsp; It. Quite. I think that in general in big cities and those of the golden ring it is quite easy to get around. The problem is that traveling in & nbsp; car you go through many places, plus in & nbsp; in the middle of nowhere, where nobody speaks English. So much so that on the road between St. Petersburg and Moscow I stopped to eat in & nbsp; a restaurant and, since the menu was in & nbsp; Cyrillic, I had to first order and then I found out what I had ordered. Nobody spoke English, even in & nbsp; customs, on the border with Latvia.
- & nbsp; Well then, they don't try to understand you, they don't help you, they gave me the documents to fill out in & nbsp; Russian, but I don't know Russian. My level of English is also scholastic, so when I asked for the documents to be completed in & nbsp; in English, I clearly asked them for help, but in the end I had to see it for myself because they just did not try very hard to help you.
- & nbsp; Clearly in the main cities more people speak English and it's easier. But it's not a problem. As a traveler, they are obstacles that can be encountered, not everything can go smoothly, they are difficulties that in & nbsp; travel can be overcome. You have to be calm and solve the problem.
- & nbsp; I've been to St. Petersburg, Tver, and Moscow. Now I want to visit the cities of the golden ring, then I will go to Nizhny Novogorod, Kazan, Perm, Ekaterinburg, Chelyabinsk, Samara and Togliatti as a short tour. Then as a possible long ride from Ekaterinburg & nbsp; I would like to go from Omsk and Novosibirsk, however there are 3500km round trip from Ekaterinburg to Chelyabinsk; because driving for 11-12 hours it is not possible to do more than 900km a day.
- & nbsp; I am considering going through the north of Ukraine, but it must be considered that in & nbsp; this case I would have to go through two customs, the difference & nbsp; with the outward road is 350km. So it would be more convenient because I shouldn't cross Ukraine where there is no highway network and where you are constantly being stopped by policemen.
- & nbsp; So, what shocked me is this: in & nbsp; 700km from St. Petersburg to Moscow I have never seen so many speed cameras one after the other. Not even in & nbsp; Italy. We are talking about 3 speed cameras in & nbsp; 5km of austrada, luckily from the opposite lane.
- & nbsp; I was told that the road between Moscow and St. Petersburg would be of poor quality. But I found a beautiful road, always for the Russian canons of course. They told me that after Moscow they are getting worse, but that the worst roads are those in the Far East after Baikal.
- & nbsp; St. Petersburg is beautiful, I visited the Kazan Cathedral, the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood, the Hermitage and walked through almost the whole center which is quite small. I visited the Peterhof palace and the gardens. But Moscow in & nbsp; somehow struck me most. It was only when I arrived and entered the city by car at night that I was struck, did the atmosphere of Moscow capture me. Moscow is clearly much larger than St. Petersburg.
- & nbsp; Of course I would like to get to Vladivostok but I would need at least four weeks of vacation. If I don't say nonsense from Milan to Vladivostok it's a return journey of almost 25000km. I think instead I will go to Samarkand in & nbsp; Uzbekistan through Kazakhstan.