Explore Yekaterinburg, Russia
Explore Yekaterinburg, the capital of the Urals region of Russia.
With a population of 1.4 million people, Yekaterinburg is the 4th most populous city in Russia after Moscow, Saint Petersburg, and Novosibirsk. The city was founded in 1723 by the order of Peter the Great as a metallurgical factory. It was named after the wife of Peter the Great, Yekaterina. In 1918, the last czar family was imprisoned, and later executed, in a house in Yekaterinburg which was later demolished. During World War II, the city grew rapidly as industries and people moved east to escape the war. Between 1924 and 1991, the town was known as Sverdlovsk named after Communist party leader Yakov Sverdlov and signs with this name still abound, particularly at the train station.
To this day, the city retains its metallurgical roots and the metal industry is the largest contributor to the economy.
The city is situated near the Ural Mountains, the border of Europe and Asia, and there are several symbolic monuments to mark the border.
What to see. Best top attractions in Yekaterinburg, Russia.
When in Yekaterinburg, make a visit to the “Chinese Market” or Bazaar. The market consists of many hundreds of small outdoor stalls, selling everything from toilet paper to fur coats, all at the best prices in the city. But this kind of market is not really the right place to buy souvenirs. Vaynera Street, in the center of the city, has a lot of shops with a wide range of small things to buy. Usually this street (it’s pedestrian only) is called The Urals Arbat, after the famous Arbat in Moscow.
Leather in Russia is considered some of the best in Europe; handbags and wallets are of especially high quality. Gold jewelry, while expensive, is also very good. Markets, such as the Chinese market is good for cheap bargains.
During recent years many new cafés and restaurants have opened in Yekaterinburg, providing the usual mix of Russian/Japanese and Italian food; unfortunately the level of international cuisine is not that high.
Outside of the city you can visit.
· Europe & Asia border monument, (Take a tour or buses 150 or 180). There are semi-daily tours offered from the main train station). When you first get off the bus, there is a small (somewhat historical-looking) stone monument that has a red brick line where the border is. To get to the main monument, follow the tarmac path up through the wood for five minutes and you will get to a tall impressive monument where the tour buses go on the big tour. This is where Czar Alexander II is said to have stopped and opened a bottle of wine in 1837. It is a spot for weddings, so usually you will find a bride or two. After you are done taking pictures, go back down the tarmac path, cross to the other side of the highway and signal a bus driver to pick you up. Buses 150 or 180 take you back, however 180 takes you only near metro station Tsirk. If no bus driver happens to be willing to pick you up outside a bus stop (though this is common practice), you can walk into Pervoural’sk. If you decide to walk without attempting to flag down a bus, then turn right at the big monument and walk along the small road, which joins the main road just before the town – this saves about ten minutes walking. Bus 150 stops at the first bus stop you encounter in Pevoural’sk, to take you back to Yekaterinburg.
· Deer Streams National Park (Prirodniy Park Olenji Ruchji), Nizhnie-Serginskiy rayon, posyolok Bazhukovo (150 km W from Ekaterinburg, take tour or by bus/train). A hiking tour in a national park “Deer Streams”. A picturesque river, cliffs, deepest cave of Sverdlovkaya Oblast region, beautiful forest. A very popular place to go among Russians both in summer and winter. Several different routes to choose from, depending on difficulty.