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It depends on whom you run into, but most people in the streets won't probably speak English with you if you need help. Don't think of them as being rude or unfriendly. Many young people can speak English but are afraid of talking to foreigners, and older people tend not to speak foreign languages at all. Hence, it is recommended to go to Novosibirsk with someone who understands Russian or to learn some Russian before you go.  
It depends on whom you run into, but most people in the streets probably won't speak English with you if you need help. Don't think of them as being rude or unfriendly. Many young people can speak English but are afraid of talking to foreigners, and older people tend not to speak foreign languages at all. Hence, it is recommended to go to Novosibirsk with someone who understands Russian or to learn some Russian before you go.

Revision as of 21:25, 13 February 2014

Novosibirsk (Russian: Новосиби́рск nuh-vuh-see-BEERSK) is a city in Novosibirsk Oblast, Siberia, and is the third largest city in Russia.


It depends on whom you run into, but most people in the streets probably won't speak English with you if you need help. Don't think of them as being rude or unfriendly. Many young people can speak English but are afraid of talking to foreigners, and older people tend not to speak foreign languages at all. Hence, it is recommended to go to Novosibirsk with someone who understands Russian or to learn some Russian before you go.


Summers in Novosibirsk are typically warm, but sometimes cold and rainy. Winters can be really cold with temperatures as low as -40° Celsius.

Get in

The main train station

Flights are handled by the Tolmachevo Airport [5], 16km away from city center. S7 Airlines is the major airline here and have domestic flights to most cities in Russia. Aeroflot also have direct flights from Moscow. Bus #111 connects the airport with the major train station "Novosibirsk-Glavny" (Новосибирск-Главный) and Avtovokzal (Автовокзал), the bus terminal (each 30 min). Bus #112 since 06.2011 connects the airport with shopping mall "Mega" (IKEA). Also minibus #1122 shuttles between the airport and main train station.

A taxi between the airport and downtown (around Lenin Square) takes about 30 minutes with no traffic and is 400 - 500 rubles as at Feb 2013.

Novosibirsk is a major station on the Trans-Siberian Railway, in fact the Vokzal-Glavny (Вокзал-Главный) station is the largest station along the route. This means that there are daily trains avalible from Moscow and Saint-Petersburg with a journey time of 2-3 days. Coming from the other direction, there are direct trains from Beijing, Ulaan Baator and Vladivostok amongst others. Also, Novosibirsk is also the final destination of the Sibirjak express train, the longest train journey originating in the European Union. This weekly train leaves Berlin each Saturday afternoon and arrives Wednesday at lunch time. Apart from the long-distance trains there are plenty of local and regional trains connecting with most nearby cities. Vokzal-Glavny station is very close to the Garina Mikhailovskogo (Гарина Михайловского) Metro stop.

Get around

The Novosibirsk metro system

There is a lot of public transport in this city. Everywhere you will pay from 13 to 30 rubles (it depends from your change of transport). Taxis, metro, buses, street railways or trams and so on. Most citizens can't speak even basic English (although almost all of them were taught English in schools). Very often this also depends on the English accents of tourists.

The Metro [6] is cheap but only runs through the city center and just past the Ob River. Still, for the visitor, you can get to many major destinations from its six major stops, including the main square, Lenin Square, on Krasny Prospekt (Red Avenue).


  • Novosibirsk State Museum of Local History and Nature (Новосибиркий Государственный Краеведческий Музей), Krasnyi Prospekt 23 (Metro Station - Ploshid Lenina), 8(383)227-15-43, [1]. The Novosibirsk State Museum of Local History and Nature is dedicated to the history of Novosibirsk, the Novosibirsk Region and Siberia. The main building of the museum is located conveniently in Ploshid Lenina, right outside of the metro station. There are 2 other buildings associated with the museum with the Siberain Contemporary Art Center and the House of Cabmen within walking distance. 100 roubles.

Lenin Square (city center)

Novosibirsk's Nikolai Chapel

See the Lenin's square with a grey-color monument of Lenin left from Soviet era standing right in front of the Opera and Ballet House which, by the way, is beautiful at night. It is also the largest opera house in Russia. There's also the exact geographical center of former Soviet Union just south of Lenin Square, marked by the Chapel of St. Nicholas, originally built in 1915 to commemorate 300 years of Romanov rule, destroyed in 1930 and rebuilt in 1993. In winter residents build an ice town on the Ob River, and in summer you can go to the beach. Near the city center on Krasny Prospekt,you can also see some excellent works in the Novosibirsk Art Museum and Local Studies Museum. You could also consider the Novosibirsk Regional Puppet Theater (over 70 years old in an interesting historic building), Novosibirsk Circus, and several other theaters. As in every Russian city, there are multiple monuments to heroes of the Great Patriotic War (WWII), including an eternal flame guarded at special ceremonies by youths with replica Kalashnikovs. Those are standard touristic places, but you should definitely make friends with locals to see the "best" parts of the city.

Novosibirsk Zoo

The zoo is one of the largest in Russia (after Novosibirsk had a really tiny one for decades until 90-s). Much money have been invested in the zoo during "prosperous 00-s", thanks to the zoo's devoted director Shilo, a member of the bureaaucrat United Russia party. The zoo is very well-attended and one of the best places to visit that Novosibisk can offer.[7]


A visit to Akademgorodok, built in the 1950s as a mecca for academics but suffering from neglect in the post-Soviet years, is still pleasant as a day trip. This formerly elite institution is located about 30 KM south of the city and features several museums and nice, tree-lined streets.

While you're in the area, you might also visit one of several nice beaches on the Ob Sea, the large body of water created by a dam on the Ob River.

Also south of the city, about 2 km north of Akademgorodok, is the open-air West Siberian Rail Museum. There are about 90 historical trains and rail cars there.


Tanning at the beach in spring

Many foreigners may find Novosibirsk gray and boring and not attractive at all, as tourism system isn't really implemented in the city. You'll never see any buses with tourists visiting the city. Yet Novosibirsk is the third biggest city in Russia, it's probably one of the most not touristic destinations in the country. You won't find a lot of touristic guides and prospects about the city. However, if you are interested in exploring real Russia and Siberia and understanding Russian culture, seeing what life in Russia is like and getting in touch with Russia and Russian household, it's a must visit place. Here are a couple of things you might do while staying there:

1. One of the things you should do is visiting Opera House (Novosibirsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater). Here is the link to their web-page But it's recommended to book tickets in advance. They have very nice operas and ballets and they usually play classic things. Many of the plays are known around the world and it'd be very interesting to see a sort of Siberian interpretation. The Opera House is situated on Lenin Square and you can get there by catching a subway train. There are also a lot of buses and troleybuses running to OperaHouse. The location is very central and you'll easily find it.

2. As there's a lot of snow in Siberia in winter, going skiing or ice skating could be a lot of fun in Novosibirsk. There are a lot of ice arenas in the city. Some of them are free of charge, but those don't usually rent skaters. The ones that rent skaters may be not free of charge. One of the central stadiums is "Spartak", it's quite central.

3. Try some Russian specialties, such as pancakes ("Blini") and "pelmeni"). You can either go cafes or this stuff may be found in many cafes in malls.


  • MegaMall "IKEA, MEGA".
  • Shopping Mall "Aura".
  • Shopping Mall "Royal Park".
  • Shopping Mall "Moscow — Moskwa".
  • Shopping Mall "Megas".
  • Shopping Mall "Siberian Mall".
  • Shopping Mall Pharaon.

There are a lot of malls, shops, boutiques and stores in Novosibirsk. They offer a lot of goods from all round the world and you can have a great time while shopping. However, be careful when buying anything there - always check what you buy, before you pay. Sometimes the goods you buy may be produced not by a brand company but by a company in an Asian country that has a license for producing products under this brand name. Sometimes the quality of these goods doesn't correspond to the quality of the original brand. This may be especially applied to the European brands. For example, the same scents may have a different aroma in Novosibirsk and somewhere in Europe. It doesn't mean that the goods have bad quality and you shouldn't shop. But be careful if you want to purchase anything. You could have a lot of fun if you go to markets like Central Market ("Центральный рынок") or "Baraholka". There you'll see people from around the world selling stuff that is not brand but it may have a good quality. Be careful there as well, as you may run into pocket pickers. You may even find some local food there and try some specials. There are a lot of different markets in the city but the most famous are Central Market and Baroholka. You may buy nothing there but what you see, you'll see nowhere in the world. It literally looks like an Asian market with only difference it's in the Russian way.


There are plenty of good cafes and restaurants around the city, where you can get quality, non expensive food and drink. Most of the best cafes in the city are chains, and you will find five or six other branches around. Most are located around Lenin Square, and will be in the big shopping centres. The most popular choice of food in Novosibirsk is Italian or Sushi, however you can find places with Russian food, and there are also a few well known fast food chains. You can generally get a good meal with wine for under 500 rubles, but look out for the Business Lunch menu, found in all cafes from 12pm -4pm. Portion sizes the same, but prices are very low. Starter, main and wine can be bought for 200-250 rubles.


Perchini (Перчини) Over looking Lenin Square. Free WiFi. During summer there is also a rooftop bar which is open from 9th May. They don't speak much English, but the menu is in Russian and English and has pictures. They serve good pizza, pasta ranging from 200-400 rubles. Business Lunch 10am-4pm - small pizza or normal sized pasta for 115 rubles.

Il Patio (IL Патио) Next to Lenin Square. Smoking upstairs, downstairs non smoking. Free WiFi. Service in this branch is excellent, and there are some waitresses with really good English. The menu is all in Russian but you will find the usual classic dishes. Recommended is the lasagne, and the pizza is really good quality. Business Lunch 12pm -4pm - full sized pizza or pasta for 150 rubles or a combination menu.


Riba Ris (Риба Рис) Lenina Street next to Lenin Square. Large menu, all tables are booths - remember to push the button for service! And the waiting staff wear red beanie hats with big eyes on top. Menu is in Russian but lots of pictures. 8 pieces of sushi cost between 120-300 rubles.


Shashlikof (ШашлыкоFF) Found all over the city - Lenina Street, Krasnyy Prospekt etc. Fun cafe, music, cheap prices, always busy, so for a Friday/Saturday night always book a table. Speciality is Shashlik - barbecued meat on a stick, which you can have with a choice of potato or salad.

Buffet No 1 Lenina Street. USSR recreation cafe serving traditional food from that time. No table service, but very cute, retro style. And prices are very cheap. Breakfast costs no more than 100 rubles.


People's Bar and Grill Very popular on Friday and Saturday evenings, so book tables if you plan to visit. A very general menu, burgers, wraps, pasta, pizza, sushi, fajitas and cocktails. Recommended is the chocolate fondant for dessert. Lively atmosphere, loud music, great service, and a good place to come for an evening.

Fast Food

KFC All of your fried chicken favourites!

Carls Junior The closest equivalent you will get to McDonalds. Found on Lenina Street, Aura or Sibirian Mall with a large choice of burgers. Classic Kombo meal starts at 150 rubles.

New York Pizza


Travelers Coffee Good selection of tea and coffee. They have an English menu if you ask. Some light snacks - sandwiches, wraps, and cheesecakes, muffins and cookies. Free WiFi and plug sockets for your laptop. Very good service.

Coffee House Good coffee and tea. Cakes are nice. Food reasonable.


  • Truba Bar, [8]. Visit if you want to meet Novosibirsk's "underground" culture. Foreigners usually like this place.
  • Peoples Grill & Bar.
  • Pub 501, [9].
  • Old Irish Pub, [10].
  • toni, 5218shelbon circle, 2731236. 10. 1000. (369,300)
  • Pechki Lavochki, Leniskaya Ulitsa (central, downtown). rustic "Traktir" type restaurant, with typical Russian cuisine — grilled and/or smoked beef and pork, sausages. Several kinds of fish dishes. Wide selection of hot and cold appetizers, and hearty soups like Solyanka and Borscht. Reasonable prices, $5 — $10 for entrees.


  • Central Hostel, Semji Shamshinyh st. 12, flat 113, +7 (383) 217-48-13, +7-913-759-50-36, [2]. checkin: 12pm; checkout: 12pm. In the centre, ten minutes away from metro station Ploschad Lenina. Close to cafes and restaurants, bars and night clubs and The Pervomaysky Park. For those who like shopping there are boutiques and different shops like one of the biggest shopping centers of Novosibirsk - Aura. The hostel offers Wi-Fi and 135 TV channels. The staff is always pleased to help you with everything. Maximum number of customers is sixteen. 10-57$.
  • Dostoevsky Hostel, Inskaya st., Building 56 - Apt 8, +7 913 002 7189, [3]. A new modern hostel with a western feel and excellent security. The owners Ksenia and Marina are very welcoming and look after all the guests. Situated across the road from Rechnoy Vokzal metro station. Easy to get to from the Central Train Station (20 min). Excellent accommodation for Trans-Siberian Railway travellers, general tourists and business travellers. [email protected] $19-$23.
  • River Park, [11], formerly known as the Ob Hotel, on the bank of the Ob River, is situated close to the Metro just southeast of the city center. After being gutted by fire in the 1990s, it has been refurbished, with reasonably clean rooms, free wi-fi internet, a business center, and a nice Russian restaurant on the first floor. Don't look for English-language television or air conditioners, but there are plenty of rooms with private bathrooms.
  • Tsentralnaya Hotel, Lenina street 3 (On the street opposite the opera/ballet house.), (+7383) 222-72-94, 222-36-38. checkin: anytime(?); checkout: exactly 24h after checkin. TV, fridge, and sink in the room. Won't get any cheaper than this for a private room. Grim, shabby Soviet-era accommodations for hardy, budget-conscious travelers. Not recommended for families. From 1200 rubels for shared toilet/shower.
  • Zokol Hostel, Shchetinkina st. 34 (2 minutes walk from the main street, Lenina St), +73832233611, [4]. Close to the main train station, around a 10 minute walk. Very comfortable rooms, more akin to a hotel, with single beds and a nice communal kitchen/living area. The staff speaks excellent English and are extremely friendly, helpful and enthusiastic. There's free wi-fi and a shared toilet and bathroom. 500 Rubles for a shared room and 650 for a private..
  • Beerman. up market friendly bars at 3 locations in the city - 2 "Beerman" and "Beerman Pelmini" are downtown in the Novosibirsk Hotel (by the station) and Hilton Hotels. Great food and their oen brew of beer


  • There is free wi-fi in Beerman&Grill opposite the train station
  • The central post office on Lenin Street has an "internet bar", 30 rubels/hour/10MB, not possible to connect notebook
  • Novosibirsk State University, located in Akademgorodok, offers free Wi-Fi coverage of its surrounding area

Many cafés and restaurants offer paid (and free) Wi-Fi all over the city.


  • Gm-flag.png Germany, Krasny Prospekt, 28, +7 (383) 231-00-52, 231-00-20 (, fax: +7 (383) 231-00-55). Mon-Thu 8-30AM - 4PM; Fri 8-30AM - 3PM.

Visa Centers

  • Bu-flag.png Ez-flag.png Da-flag.png Gr-flag.png Ic-flag.png Mt-flag.png Sp-flag.png Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Greece, Iceland, Malta, and Spain (EU Visa Center), Sibirskaya street, 57, +7 (383) 209-0379. Mon-Fri 9AM - 4PM.
  • It-flag.png Italy, Lenina street, 52, +7 (383) 238-0723 (fax: +7(383) 238-0723). Mon-Fri 9AM - 4PM.

Stay Safe

While it's better to stay away from some run-down areas the overall situation is not bad. Pervomayskiy rayon and far-off neighborhoods of Leninskiy and Kirovskiy rayons should be avoided at any time.

The safest place is the center (nearby Lenin Square), stay there and you will be all right.

Get out

Routes through Novosibirsk
YekaterinburgOmsk  W noframe E  KrasnoyarskIrkutsk

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