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Rostov-on-Don

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Rostov-on-Don is an administrative centre of Southern Russia, and one of the largest cities in Russia.

Get in[edit]

Rostov-on-Don Airport has been moved out of the city in December 2017 and now has brand new terminal, with majority of flights handled via jetways. It is located 40 km (25 miles) north-east of downtown Rostov-on-Don. About 80% of operation is domestic; however there are scheduled fligths to a number of neighboring countries including Turkey, Israel, Armeria, Georgia, UAE, Czech Republic.

Public transportation from the airport is currently limited to two minibus routes. Line 285 travels to the main railway station Rostov-Glavny (as well as the main bus station and local railway terminal, all co-located near downtown). The trip takes 1 hour and costs 95 roubles. It is also best for the western part of city center and western part of the city. Line 286 runs to local bus station (Prigorodny Avtovokzal) at Sholokhova St and is handy for trips to the eastern part of city center, as well as north and east of the city. Price is 75 roubles and travel time is normally 40 minutes.

Intervals of both routes tend to be 30 minutes with most departures in 00 and 30 minues of each hour (but intervals can reach up to 60 minutes at night). Both minbuses take either cash or contactless bank cards, seats can be limited at peak times. They also can refuse to take standing passengers.

Any taxi offered at the airport itself (both from official stand and unofficial touts) will be overpriced. Regular fare (approx. 700-1200 roubles depending on the destination in the city and traffic conditions) can only be obtained from mobile apps of major taxi companies (Uber, Gett, Yandex, Maxim).

Rostov-on-Don has several train stations, but only main station Rostov-Glavny normally handles long-distance trains (occasionally, some slower long-distance trains may be routed through Rostov-Pervomayski, a smaller station in the far west of Rostov - twenty-minute taxi ride from downtown). Rostov-Prigorodny terminal, located 300 metres from Rostov-Glavny, handles local and commuter rail routes. Both Rostov-Glavny and Rostov-Prigorodny are centrally located and are only a three-minute taxi ride to downtown. Square in between, which also houses main bus station, is a major hub for city transport as well, with several dozens routes to almost anywhere in Rostov. Downtown is served from there by frequent departures of buses 3, 3A, 7, 70, 80 and trolleybuses 1, 2, 22.

Flying is normally the cheapest comfortable option of travelling from Moscow or Saint-Petersburg to Rostov. Trains can be cheaper in summer period of high airfares, but take at least 16 hours from Moscow and more than 24 hours from Saint-Petersburg.

If both rail and air options are expensive, express buses of various companies link Rostov and Moscow approx. 15 times daily. Trip takes from 15 hours, normal fare is about 1500 roubles as of 2018. Most such buses depart from the square between rail and bus stations. Same place is full of ticket booths selling express bus tickets to a number of cities in Russia, Ukraine, Georgia, Armenia. These can be best option for going to places without reliable air or rail link from Rostov, like Volgograd, Stavropol, Elista, or places in Ukraine.

Get around[edit]

There is no metro system in Rostov, and the tram (light rail) system is limited. The bus system can be hard to understand, but is VERY efficient and reliable. However, any public transport can be used to some degree if you have a GPS-capable phone, or an application such as YandexMaps to find routes. Alternatively, route maps are posted on many bus stops; just show up to the bus stop, determine the bus number, and wait. Buses come very often in Rostov, so you won't have to wait long. If you are unsure of what bus you need, most buses have their entire route listed on the side (in Russian only).

Buses in Rostov are often very crowded, but are inexpensive (24 rubles per trip, as of October 2017). If you are issued a small ticket on either the bus or the tram, keep it, as the conductor may ask to see it.

Leader taxi [2] can be booked online, probably with Google translate. Recently, Uber has begun operations here [3]. A word of warning: Rostov is home to several unlicensed taxi "companies" which may attempt to scam foreigners. ALWAYS determine the fare to your destination before sitting in the taxi.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Don River Lookout, Beregovaya ulitsa. (47.215538,39.721733) edit Often referred to as "The Enbankment", visitors and locals alike will enjoy a stroll along the riverside. More than a picturesque view, the Embankment is lined with several restaurants, statues, lighted fountains, and a few shops; It is the center of nightlife in Rostov. Several steamboats are docked along the bank, and tickets for hour-long excursions can be purchased at the ticket booths on location for about 200 rubles.
  • An Obelisk at Teatralnaya square, Teatralnaya ploshad. (47.226097,39.745800) edit Affectionally dubbed "Stella", by locals, the obelisk appears as a winged tower, across the street from Maxim Gorky Drama Theatre. As one approaches the obelisk, inscriptions honoring the arts, science, agriculture, military, and education can be seen at the base. On the south side of the obelisk, the golden lady (Stella) hovers between the wings.
  • Pushkin Street. Visitors may enjoy a stroll down this highly ornate, landscaped boulevard, lined with thousands of trees, restaurants, food kiosks, flowers, benches, statues, and memorials. A favorite sight near the eastern end of the boulevard are the wrought-iron globes, depicting scenes from Pushkin's most popular works. Pushkin Street leads into both the City Park (Park Gorkovo) and October Revolution Park, where visitors will see more meticulously cultivated garden beds and other diversions such as amusement parks and souvenir kiosks.
  • Underground Tile Work, While perhaps not the most impressive sight, tile mosaics (depicting scenes of Soviet life, found on the walls of underground street crossings ("perekhody"), make for a momentary distraction. Though mosaics are found under several street crossings on Bolshaya Sadovaya Street, the most beautiful and well-maintained mosaics are under the intersection of Boshaya Sadovaya and Buddyonoskiy Prospect. Note: Appreciate the tile work as you walk; do not stop and stare, or you will block other pedestrians.

Note: Many statues and monuments not listed here can be found in almost every public park and major street of Rostov.

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Rostov State Opera and Ballet, (134 Bolshaya Sadovaya Street), [1]. Rostov has a nice Musical Theatre,which is not located far from the Maxim Gorky Drama Theatre. Most operas are sung in an original language. Ballets are exquisitely choreographed and are invariably accompanied by extravagant sets. Refreshments are almost always sold in the lobby during intermission (for an inflated price). Most Rostov locals will dress formally (but practically) while attending a ballet or opera. $10-$40 / 400-1500 rubles.  edit
  • Rostov-on-Don ZooPark [4], This zoo is well worth a visit, especially if one is accompanied by children. As one of the largest in Russia, the ZooPark is home to a staggering variety of animals, including giraffes, camels, polar bears, falcons, reptiles, fish, and simians. Entrance costs only 200 rubles for adults and 100 rubles for children. To get there, take the #6 Bus from the Central Rinok and exit at the stop "ZooPark".
  • Shopping at the Central Rinok, "Rinok" might be translated at "bazaar" or "farmer's market". This massive outdoor-and-indoor assortment of tiny shops and booths can be both exciting and intimidating for Westerners, who are unaccustomed to either haggling/ bargaining or being yelled at by shopkeepers. Shopping at a Rinok is one of the most memorable experiences that Russia has to offer for an adventurous North American, so don't be put off by the different feel of things. The majority of the Rinok is devoted to food and clothing, but you can buy anything here. Yes, anything (though it might take a while to find). Even if one does not speak the language, shopping at the Rinok is far preferable to shopping at the nearby, overpriced, department stores. Just let the money do the talking. The Rinok is located downtown, on Stanislavskovo Street, just four blocks south of the central intersection of Bolshaya Sadovaya Street and Buddyonovskiy Prospect.
  • Maxim Gorky Academic Drama Theatre. (1 Teatralnaya Ploshad), [5] Despite the name, this theatre is a venue not only for dramatic plays, but also comedies and concerts. The theatre is located on the eastern end of Bolshaya Sadovaya Street, directly across the street from the monument known as "Stella". Even throughout the summer months (when other theatres may be closed), Maxim Gorky Theatre still operates. Prices will vary depending on the show, but tickets are generally inexpensive when compared to other large theatres.
  • Stroll Through October Revolution Park, More than just a wooded area, this park is filled with things to do: amusement park rides, ping-pong tables, and a petting zoo, just to name a few.
  • Stroll Through the City Park (45 Bolshaya Sadovaya Street), Sometimes called "Park Gorkovo", this park is filled with beautiful flower beds, a full amusement park, restaurants, and souvenir kiosks.

Buy[edit][add listing]

The best shopping can be done at the Central Rinok (Bazaar/ Farmer's Market) in downtown Rostov. (See "Do" Section, above). This Rinok, located on Stanoslavskovo Street sells everything. This is an interesting place but be careful, criminal's activity possible.

For a more Western-type mall experience, check out the new Megamag Shopping-Entertainment Complex (Megamag TrK) on the south bank of the Don River, or another on East exit from Rostov (Sholohova st, road to Moscow). Take a #75 or #73 bus from the Central Rinok across the bridge to 1 Poymennaya Street, on the stop "Megamag".

If you are uncomfortable speaking Russian, but need to buy groceries downtown in a familiar supermarket-type environment, try either Zelenyy Perekrestok (49 Buddyonovskiy Prospect, bottom floor of the department store "Astor"), or Magnit (146 Bolshaya Sadovaya Street, next to the State Ballet and Opera Theatre).

It is not recommended to shop in the upscale department stores (such as TsUM, on the corner of Bolshaya Sadovaya and Buddyonovskiy), where prices are inflated and store clerks are intimidating.

Many souvenirs sellers, graphists, painters with his pictures, may be founded in undergrounds at "Voroshilovskiy prosp / Sadovaya st" and "Buddyonovskiy prosp / Sadovaya st", in Gorky's Park in Saturday and Sunday, at Beregovaya st.

If you interesting for "swap meet", visit "Radio Rynok" (radio market) on Guseva str (on hill), it works at Saturday and Sunday from 09.00 to approx. 13.00. You may look old "one-floor" Rostov near that market, cobblestones roads, and look for different electronic used stuff and trash near (outside) that market, many from soviet era: radio receivers, headphones, old vynil, electronic parts and other. Inside market, under roof, you may find used and new electronic stuff, TVs, cell phones, notebooks, CDs and other. This is an interesting place for nerds and retro-electronics collectors.

Eat[edit][add listing]

If an English-speaking visitor wishes to eat in a sit-down restaurant, be warned that in southern Russia most restaurants do not carry a copy of their menu in English. Also, service at these restaurants is slow compared to North American sit-down restaurants. It is not uncommon to spend an hour waiting for your meal, even when the restaurant is not busy. For travelers on a budget, be warned that a meal for two in these restaurants often costs more than 1500 rubles ($40), and the portions are comically small.

Perhaps preferable is the cafeteria-style restaurant that is ubiquitous in Russia, where non-Russian speakers can point at items on display, or load up a tray. Most cafeterias carry good quality, authentically Russian food at reasonable prices. In Rostov, two centrally located cafeterias are: 1) Zolotoy Kolos (43 Bolshaya Sadovaya Street), and, 2) The cafeteria with the green-and-yellow sign (34 Bolshaya Sadovaya Street)

For those of you still reading who still want to go to a sit-down restaurant, the best ones are on the River Embankment (See section "See", above), on the north bank of the Don. These include: Frau Mueller (German Cuisine, 29 Beregovaya Street), Osaka (Japanese Cuisine, 30 Beregovaya Street), and any of the ship restaurants docked at the bank.

Drink[edit][add listing]

It is not recommended to drink Rostov water. Buy all your drinking water from a large-chain grocery store (See "Buy" section, above) in 1.5 or 5 litre bottles for 20-50 rubles. In summer time possible to find kvass points on streets (Staroninskiy, Otlichnik and other kvass).

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Westerners will appreciate the Don Plaza Hotel (sometimes called the "Intourist"). This four-star hotel is a three-star on the North American rating, and features a fantastic free breakfast buffet. I'm not kidding. This breakfast is freaking amazing. The Don Plaza has quite small rooms and spotty Wi-Fi, but makes up for those shortcomings with a really, really, really, really good breakfast menu.

Other options for hotels with less-illustrious breakfasts include the Hotel Rostov (corner of Krasnoarmeskaya Street and Buddyonovskiy Prospect) and the Hermitage Hotel (54 Ulyanovskaya Street).

Contact[edit]

Consulates[edit]

  • Am-flag.png Armenia (General Consulate), Sovetskaya street, 24, +7 (863) 269-7239 (, fax: +7 (863) 269-7240).  edit
  • Fr-flag.png France (Honourary Consulate), Zhuravleva street, 37, +7 (863) 295-0090 (fax: +7 (863) 295-00997).  edit
  • Ro-flag.png Romania (General Consulate), 7th Line street, 18/39, +7 (863) 253-0861, 230-2915, 227-5925 (, fax: +7 (863) 223-6293).  edit
  • Lo-flag.png Slovakia (Honourary Consulate), Bogatyanovsky Spusk, 27, office 215, (fax: +7 (863) 227-7324).  edit
  • Up-flag.png Ukraine (General Consulate), Khalturinsky pereulok, 28/40, +7 (863) 227-05-51, 227-05-53 (, fax: +7 (863) 62-57-89). 9AM - 6PM.  edit

Visa Centers[edit]

  • Bu-flag.png Ez-flag.png Da-flag.png Gr-flag.png Ic-flag.png Mt-flag.png Nl-flag.png Sp-flag.png Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Greece, Iceland, Malta, Netherlands, and Spain (EU Visa Center), Semashko per., 117 G, +7 (863) 237-89-72 (fax: +7 (863) 269-7240).  edit

Get out[edit]

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