Yekaterinburg is geographically classed as the beginning of Siberia, a sign at the train station clearly read ‘Welcome to Asia!’ Nestled amongst the Urals mountain range, it is a popular stop off for any Trans-Siberian traveller.
Yekaterinburg is most well known for being the place where the last Tsar, Nicolas the 2nd, and his family were murdered by the communists. We decided to take a walk with our hosts Anya and Eugene to the ‘Temple on the Blood’ a place of worship that was built on the exact spot the Romanovs were put to the sword.
I was surprised at how warm it was for this time of year, walking around the river Iset soaking in the atmosphere was interesting….
Yekaterinburg is famous for two other things, the home town of Boris Yeltsin and the U-2 affair. But I was more interested in exploring the surrounding area of the Urals, than the city itself.
We drove to Ganima Yama, a monastery built on the site where the Romanovs were buried. The set of wooden churches were an interesting contrast from the usual churches we’ve visited, to be honest it was nice to be away from the city for a while. We hung around the monastery and I made some poi lightsabers in the forest…
We took a road trip with Eugene 276 kilometres from Yekaterinburg, to visit the Kungur ice cave. Kungur is actually in the Perm region which is geographically back in Europe. Perm also is the only place in the world where it is still acceptable to have…a perm. The cave is home to numerous ice formations and grottos, all of the guided tour was in Russian so didn’t understand a lot of what was said but found it pretty ahem *cool* non the less. The old lady guide we had was very unenthusiastic about the tour, at the end she stated that whoever walks through the cave is believed to become five years younger, this led to a bombardment of jokes from the Russian men, such as ‘well it obviously hasn’t worked for you pet!’ nice one lads.