Yearly Archives: 2017

Riding the Kiev Funicular

Funicular railways seem to be quite common in European cities, and the Ukranian capital is no different. The Kiev Funicular is a 238 meter long railway opened in 1905 that links the top and bottom of a hill. Here is […]

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Newsagents: then and now

Here’s a traditional newsstand on the Kiev Metro. And the modern equivalent in Moscow – a bank of newspaper vending machines. Given how the internet has decimated traditional print media, how long until even the vending machines disappear?

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Dynamic next station displays on the Moscow Metro

Dynamic next station displays are beginning to become common onboard trains, as they clearly indicate to passengers where they are and where they are headed. I found this example onboard a Koltsevaya Line (line 5) train that encircles central Moscow.

LED next station display onboard a Koltsevaya Line train Continue reading

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Диггерство – the urban explorers of Russia

In the English speaking world the practice of exploring tunnels, drains and abandoned buildings is known as urban exploration. Russian speakers have their own term – Диггерство – which translates to ‘digger’.

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Danger onboard a Russian train, or just free electricity?

In the hallway of a Russian sleeping train I found this ominous looking sign beside the electrical outlet. Am I allowed to touch it? Is it just for electric shavers? And will it blow up my phone charger if I plug it in?

Power point onboard our Russian sleeping carriage - the ominous looking notice pretty much reads "DEAR PASSENGERS - FREE TO USE!" Continue reading

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Want a career on the Moscow Metro?

If you have ever wanted to work on the Moscow Metro, going out applying is easy – there are posters scattered all over the network.

Ornately decorated central passage of the platform, with chandeliers above Continue reading

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Clearing icicles from the streets of Moscow

Growing up in Australia, icicles are something I’ve never had to deal with. But over in Russia they are deadly serious for anyone standing below when they fall.

Deadly looking icicles hang from the eaves Continue reading

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Traffic lights and Russian trams

Where trams and road vehicles co-exist on public roads, special traffic lights are often provided to give them priority at intersections, and Russian cities are no different.

ЛМ-99 tram number 3304 waits at a set of traffic lights Continue reading

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Australian souvenirs in Russia at «Kangaroo»

Russia may be a crazy country, but there is one thing I never expected to see in a St Petersburg shopping mall – a shop selling Australian themed souvenirs called «Kangaroo».

'Kangaroo' - an Australian themed store in Saint Petersburg Continue reading

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Sapsan – the train more like a plane

The premier high speed train of the Russian Railways fleet is the «Сапсан» (Sapsan). Linking Moscow to Saint Petersburg, the Sapsan has a top service speed of 250 km/h, and a level of onboard service more like an aircraft than than train.

«Sapsan» train on the Moscow — Saint Petersburg route (photo by Sergey Korovkin, via Wikimedia Commons) Continue reading

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