Cycling 12,000 miles from Lisbon to Shanghai
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Russia

  • Miles cycled: 583
  • Feet climbed: 8,987
  • Cycling days: 12
  • Non-cycling days: 5

Rating (1-10) and comments:

  • Road – condition: 9
    (We stuck to the main roads and these were, on the whole, very good. Even roads in towns and villages were in good condition.)
  • Road – shoulders and cycle lanes: 8
    (We had a decent shoulder on most of the main roads)
  • Road signage: 7
  • Drivers: 8
  • Campsites – Availability: 0
  • Campsites – Facilities/Value: n/a
    (Didn’t find any campsites)
  • Hotels: 7.5
    (Not as good value for money as Ukraine, but rooms are generally clean and well-equipped)
  • Shops: 8
    (Always little mini markets found in even the smallest towns)
  • Food: 9
    (Lots of great soups and stews. Good value.)
  • People: 9
    (Like Ukraine, folk everywhere were super friendly and helpful despite the language barrier)
  • Cost: 7
  • Scenery: 4
    (Bugger all to see in the section we went through)
  • Cultural interest: 5
    (Due to us being in the arse-end of nowhere in Russia rather than more interesting parts)

Overall: 7.4

General tips:

  • Pick up a copy of the Auto-Tourist Guide (available from service stations and guesthouses) – although not a map, it shows accurately where there are hotels, shops and cafes along the major highways of Russia. We found this extremely useful.
  • Look out for signs of “Dom Otdikhas” – these are guesthouses/lodges.
  • Some of the Baza Otdikhas/Baza Ribalnayas are hunting/fishing bases with accommodation. Some are reluctant to take foreigners but a little patience/persistance can produce results.