Eco-friendly travel guide to Rostov-on-Don advises how to be a responsible tourist. Learn how to explore the attractions in a sustainable way and how to respect the local people and culture. Make your trip green by supporting locally owned hotels, organic restaurants and other businesses. Read more on how to protect the environment by making conscientious choices and how to travel green in Rostov-on-Don, Russia.
- Air quality: 4 / 5
- Exploring by foot: 4 / 5
- Exploring by bicycle: 3 / 5
- Public transportation: 3.5 / 5
- Parks: 4 / 5
- Outdoor activities: 3 / 5
- Locals' English level: 2 / 5
- Safety: 3.5/ 5
- Accommodation: US$25 - $220
- Budget per day: US$50 - $280
- 1 Responsible Travel
- 2 Air Quality and Pollution
- 3 Respect the Culture
- 4 Top 10 Places to Visit
- 5 Explore
- 6 Eat
- 7 Drink
- 8 Activities
- 9 Accommodation
- 10 How to Get There
- 11 Moving Around
- 12 Sustainable Shopping
- 13 Recycling
- 14 Work and Study Abroad
- 15 See Also
Rostov-on-Don is a very popular city located in Southern Russia that has a population of over one million people. It is also quite unique due to the fact that it was made after merging two towns and one of the towns had an Armenian population so even today Rostov-on-Don or commonly known as Rostov has a sizeable Armenian population. The best thing about this city is its rich history and culture. It has a very interesting past and in the 90's this city was also under the control of the Mafia. Luckily those times are over. There are plenty of museums in the city that will give you an insight to the major wars and events that happened over the course of time and help you to much more valuable information about the city and country. Rostov lies on the coast of the Don River and only 32 kilometers away from the city you will find the Sea of Azov.
A very interesting thing about this city is that it is shaped like a tractor on the map. Rostov-on-Don is also the economic strength of the country as well as the port which helps promote industries and with trading. There is a sizeable traffic of travellers that the city sees every year. While exploring different places and the general idea of tourism is great, it is also harmful for the environment because of the way tourists travel today. It is of utmost importance to be a responsible traveller especially when we are at the verge of a climate disaster. Here are some of the things that you need to keep in mind while traveling to Rostov-on-Don as an eco-friendly traveler.
- Eco friendly Accommodation: While there are plenty of options available from cheap to expensive and you will have no trouble finding a suitable place, you need to choose a place to stay that will both keep you and the city safe from pollution such as the green hotels.
- The right transport method: Although there are a lot of transportation options available in the city that you can choose for moving around, most of them pollute the air and emit harmful gases. You can choose to move around using eco-friendly transportations like electric vehicles and bikes. If that does not seem like the ideal option then you can choose public transport like buses and trains over private taxis or cars.
- * Do not throw waste: As an eco-friendly traveler, you need to promote green as much as possible in the city to motivate not only fellow tourists but local people. When you visit any tourists attractions especially city parks, make sure you do not throw any food wrapper and do not just stop at that but if you see any trash, pick it up and throw it in the dustbin. It might look like a very small thing to do but has a huge impact on people watching especially the children present in the park since they learn and mimic the behaviour of other people around them.
- Trying local food: A huge part of the local culture is the traditional food that is offered at the local traditional restaurants and by street food vendors. Instead of just sticking to international fast food franchises that contribute to so much waste being produced in the world, you should try the local options. Not only will it help the local economy but also will directly help the families whose sole source of earning are these small food businesses.
- Shop local: You will be able to see a lot of small shops and stalls in the city in almost all corners. While some of them are selling food, others are selling handcrafted items made by local artisans. Try to purchase things from these sellers to both save a lot of money and help them to keep running their businesses and supporting their families.
Air Quality and Pollution
There are multiple things that a traveller worries about and one of those things is the quality of air. If the air quality is bad and it is polluted, then it can be the reason behind a lot health issues. The air quality of Rostov-on-Don is moderate, which means it is not entirely safe to go without precautions. You will need to take precautions like carrying masks and medicines with you like anti allergy ones especially if you have any major conditions like asthma or breathing problems. The average AQI figures show that the range is 40-60 for Rostov which is not as bad as major tourist destinations like New York City, Dubai, London etc.
Respect the Culture
Apart from all the famous attractions, experiencing the unique and vibrant culture of Rostov will an experience on its own. The blend of Armenian and Russian cultures is what makes Rostov even more unique. There are some traditions that have been celebrated since ages. You can visit at the time of festivals to get the best cultural experience in this city. From clothes to food, the city gets colorful in a very cultural and traditional way.
Make sure to explore all the sides of the local people to explore the culture very well. You will find people belonging to a lot of different religions here in various areas of the city. Make sure to respect the culture and traditions of the local people on your trip. Also, the rich history of the city and country will help you to the rest of the past stories about the ancestors and other information.
Top 10 Places to Visit
This beautiful city that is also known as the city of smiles has so much to offer especially when it comes to exploring. There are plenty of places to visit and you will have a very busy itinerary. Some of the places that should not be missed on your trip to Rostov are:
- Azovskaya Krepost - A fortress that was established in the year 1475 and is very famous among tourists and locals. It was made on behalf of the Ottoman ruler and overlooks the Don river. It is worth visiting for all history buffs.
- Rostovskiy Zoopark - One of the biggest zoos in Russia where you would get to see Rhinoceros, Kangaroos, Koalas, and many other animals. Come here and you can get a chance of interacting with them. If you love animals, then this place is a must-visit
- Kafedral'nyy Sobor Rozhdestva Presvyatoy Bogoroditsy - An orthodox church where you can visit and pray the best wishes for yourself. Legend has that If it is from your true heart, then one day it will definitely come true and fulfill all your dreams. Nowadays it is considered to be the holiest place, which is a must-visit for all the tourists.
- Don Embankment- The embankment began to turn into a recreation area. Boulevards and flower gardens were opened there. Works on the improvement of the embankment were conducted under the guidance of the architects Valentin Razumovsky and Jan Rebayn. The opening of the reconstructed Rostov Embankment took place on 7 August 1949.
- Theater 18+ - An amazing theatre where you will get to see some famous plays by the most prominent writers. Apart from tourists, a lot of local people still visit this theatre to enjoy the plays
- Rostovskoye More - Without any doubt, we all can say that this reservoir is the actual meaning of beauty. Here you can come for fishing and boating as it is famous for these two activities. This place is regarded as one of the A-listers
- Tachanka - This monument is lovely as it is a tribute to all those martyrs who sacrificed their lives during the war period. Visit here and you will know some of their contributions which are immortal even today.
- Holy Monastery Iversky Female - This monastery is responsible for promoting the city's cultural heritage. Here you will get knowledge about the significance of the city and its foundation. A place like this is nowhere there in any other cities of Russia.
- Porokhovoy Pogreb - It is a place that conveys you some valuable information about archeology and its relevance. There is no such person who misses it because here the archaeological artifacts become a point of attraction.
- Gorizont Mall - Last but not least, is to visit this shopping mall as it has various varieties of departmental stores. You can visit this mall to shopping some of the best handcrafted items and others
Exploring all the different nooks and crannies is a very important part of the trip in order to have a great travelling experience. Your whole traveling experience to Rostov-on-Don depends on visiting places like museums, city parks, national parks, and others. There is so much to see and so much to explore so you will not get bored at all.
- Nikolai Ostrovsky Recreation Park - Here you can play interactive and outdoor games like football and cricket. The park is surrounded by repent hat helps you to get close to nature and fresh air .
- Park Levoberezhnyy - This place is perfect for an evening visit as during that time you will get light & sound shows. The show is held on a fountain for which this park is famous. In other words, this place is also referred to as a heaven of dreams.
- Gorky Central Park - Named after the Soviet writer Maxim Gorky, this mesmerising park with lush green gardens is perfect for a picnic, exercising, grabbing a bite to eat or just for sitting and relaxing.
There are no national parks in Rostov-on-Don. If you want to explore the wildlife, you can visit the city parks or zoos in the city.
As the city is situated on the mainland far from the sea, you will not find a lot of beaches available. However, the Don River helps to get some sandy beach experience to tourists.
- Zelyony Island - It is a part of Proletarian City District of Rostov-on-Don. The island is covered with wood and meadow vegetation. Poplar, ash and blackberries are habitat there. The beaches are mostly sandy, overgrown with sedge. There is also a public beach with amenities, recreation centers, children's camps.
Following are the top landmarks in the city of Rostov:
- Bolshaya Sadovaya Street
- Rostov Virgin's Nativity Cathedral
- Tachanka-Rostovchanka Monument
- Rostov Regional Museum of Fine Arts - This is a museum, where you can see some paintings and sketches made by famous artists. They are known for some of their bright works in the field of art. Some of them come with interesting history and stories that will make the trip exciting for you
- Rostov Space museum - A museum that showcases some activities and experiments related to the space world. If you are a science lover, then you will enjoy it and learn some new things about it.
Food is an important part of the culture of any place. It is essential for you to try local delicacies while on your trip to Rostov in order to truly experience the essence of the city. All kind of options are available from international to local cuisine. However, traditional food is the first thing that you need to try in the city as it is not available anywhere else. You will get a wide range of traditional dishes available in almost all the corners of the city.
Make sure to visit them for the best food experience. Along with the restaurants, keep in mind to visit the street food stalls as well to get some local traditional food at low prices.
Traditional Local Restaurants
Traditional food is one of the things that you can not afford to miss when visiting a destination like Rostov. You might have tried these dishes in other parts of the world but it cannot be as authentic as the food found in the city itself. Rostov-on-Don offers a wide range of restaurants that you can visit to taste these traditional local dishes. The most chosen places for dining are given below.
- Onegin Dacha - The place is named after Eugene Onegin who is known for being the lead role of famous novels. You will find a lot of traditional dishes available in this restaurant. If you want to get the true Russian culinary elegance and experience, then this is the place for you. Chef Anton Kochura makes sure to keep the food very high quality and tasty
- Zolotoy Kolos - This is another restaurant located in the heart of the city that can help you to get the ultimate Russian cuisine. You can try different traditional dishes in this city at a very low price
Vegetarian and Vegan
You might face many problems in different destinations to find food as a vegetarian. However, you do not have to worry about getting veg food in Rostov-on-Don as there are many veg restaurants available in the city. Make sure to visit all the different parts of the city to find these restaurants as they are scattered throughout the city. Some of these restaurants will help you a lot get the traditional taste. Here are some of the famous vegetarian restaurants that you need to visit in Rostov-on-Don.
- Green Cafe
- Uncle Frank
- Soul Kitchen
As mentioned earlier, street food plays a very important role in shaping the culture of the city. Just like plenty of restaurants, you will be able to get a lot of food stalls available that will help you to taste some delicious food and save money. They are as good as any other restaurant and offer food at a cheaper price. Most of these people are dependent on tourism. So, eating food from them will help them a lot to earn money. It is best to visit these places early as they are very popular and tend to get full of people very fast. You might need to wait in line if you are visiting them at the time of the evening.
Just like food, drinks also play a very important part in the culture of Rostov-on-Don. You will get plenty of options available in the city from alcohol to soft drinks. For the best drinking experience, you will need to visit the bars and pubs of the city that will help you to get all the drinks available in one place. The nightlife of the city is very vibrant and colorful that boosts the drinking experience up a notch.
In the past years, the bars and nightclubs have evolved a lot in Rostov-on-Don. Among all the other drinks, make sure to try the vodka in this city that is very famous for locals. Apart from that, you will get to see different rituals and traditions in each of these bars. Here is some information about different drinks and breweries available in this city that will help you to know more.
Just like checking the air quality before visiting the city, you also need to check the quality of tap water. Many places serve the tap-water as a primary drinking option. Before choosing them, you need to know if it is safe for your health. Well, you do not have to worry much as the tap water of this city is totally drinkable. Most of the local people of this city use tap water as their primary drinking option.
However, some of them filter the water very well before drinking using filtering machines. If you want to stay extra safe, then you can use one of these to filter the polluted components out of the water. You can also boil the water very well before drinking it. However, if you do not want to use tap water for drinking, then you will be able to get packaged drinking water available in almost all the shops around the city.
If you are one of those travelers who like to have organic foods available during your trip to different locations, then you will not have a problem in Rostov-on-Don. There are many organic cafes available in the city that you can visit to have organic foods. These organic foods are very good for keeping you healthy and ensure that you do not get sick during your trip. Also, organic foods are one of the ways to get energy for exploration. You might need to search a bit to find these places. So, here are some of the names given below of these organic cafes that you can visit for the best experience.
Rostov-on-Don is very well known in the country for having a good range of drinks especially vodkas. In recent years, the drinking industry has managed to get a lot better. You have a lot of options available now in different places like bars, nightclubs, pubs, and others. The nightlife has increased in the city and became a good place to relax for the tourists. Apart from them, you can visit the breweries as well in the city that will help you to know the secret ingredients and making the process of these drinks. You might also get the chance to taste some of the drinks in these breweries. Visit early to take a tour of this palace and have a very good experience.
When visiting Rostov-on-Don, you will never run out of things to do. There are wide options available for activities to do in this city. As the city is known for showcasing some rich histories. You can visit the museums and historical places to find the best activity for you. You can visit the historical places to know these stories about the past wars and others. Apart from that, the landscapes of the city also make the city very attractive. If you like to take part in different activities, then you will be able to see a lot of outdoor activities here. Some of the outdoor activities that you can try in the city are trekking, hiking, wildlife exploring, swimming, rock climbing, and others.
Yoga and Retreats
Yoga and retreats are some of the things that will help you to get away from the crowd of the city. You will find a lot of yoga centers available in different parts of the city. As the people of the city like to stay fit, you will find a lot of yoga and retreats nearby. Most of these places offer classes at a reasonable price that will help you to save money. However, make sure to book the classes in advance as they seem to get full very early. You can take the help of online services to book them in advance before starting your journey.
Accommodation is one of the major parts of making the trip memorable.After exploring different places, this is the place that you will visit to get a good sleep. This city offers a wide range of accommodation options available in different price ranges. You can choose the best one depending on your budget and requirements. Although all of the options are very comfortable and perfectly safe for your stay, green hotels are one of a kind that helps to keep the environment and your health safe. Whichever you choose to stay in this city, make sure to book in advance to ensure getting your room. Here are some of the different options given below in detail that you can pick for your stay in Rostov-on-Don.
Green hotels are one of the most chosen accommodations by the travelers as it helps them to keep their health in good condition while keeping the city safe. You will find a lot of green hotels available in this city too. They use eco-friendly options to improve the overall environment of the city. Some of the most common ones that you will get to see are recycled water, solar energy, carbon-free facilities, and many more. As they have become very popular, you might need to take the help of online services to book the tickets early to get the rooms available. Some famous green hotels of this city are listed below.
- Marins Park Hotel Rostov
- Green Hall Apart Hotel
Hostels and Guest Houses
Hostels and guest houses are the next best thing that you can get in this city. They offer similar facilities to the customers but do not offer eco-friendly options. However, you will be able to get them from a lower range that will help you to save some money if you are planning to stay in the city for more than a week. There are some hostels available that offer you the option to share the room with other travelers to distribute the room price. Just like hotels, you will also need to book the rooms in advance to ensure getting one available. Try to book in the middle or center of the city to get connected well to all the parts.
Apartments are the best options for your stay if you are planning to stay for a long time in the city or cut the cost of your accommodation. You will find a lot more apartments available in Rostov-on-Don compared to all the other ones. Even in those locations, where the other accommodations are not available. However, the thing that makes it special is it helps you to explore the culture and traditions of the local people very well.
Many local people stay in these apartments which makes it easier to take a closer look at their daily life and lifestyle. You might become friends with them too after staying for a long time. Unlike the other options of accommodations, you do not have to book the apartments in advance. They are available, and you can book them offline too.
If you want to save money for accommodation and stay like a local in the city, then you can choose Couchsurfing. It is a group or community of travelers that help each other by offering them a place to stay and hospitality when others are visiting their home town. You will need to take the help of online services to contact the Couchsurfing hosts. You will find a lot of them available in this city who are ready to offer you a great staying experience. Not only stay, but you will be able to get local foods, learn languages, rituals, and many other things about them.
Camping is the best way to get close to nature and have a very good adventurous experience. As Rostov-on-Don has a wide number of locations available, you will be able to camp very well. Some of these places are surrounded by greens that help you to get the best natural feeling. Apart from that, you might get some outdoor activities available as well such as trekking, hiking, rock climbing, fishing, bird watching, and others. Like all the other accommodations, you will be able to get all the facilities available in camping spots. From toilet to electricity, the basic facilities are available in almost all the camps.
How to Get There
Before planning all the different things about the trip to Rostov-on-Don, you need to know the different available options to reach the city from your home. Based on your home location, and budget, you need to choose transportation. You can use multiple ways to reach the city from different locations. If you are traveling outside of Russia, then you will have fewer options available than traveling from another city of Russia. Here are some of the best options given below in detail to help you choose the best one.
Air is the best option to travel to this city from both outside the country and inside. It is the fastest option of transportation that helps you to reach the destination very fast. You will need to keep some things on your mind such as the flight tickets are the most expensive. Also, you will not be able to enjoy any landscapes or views on your way to the city. If you want to get your seat booked and reduce the price of the tickets, then you will have to book the tickets early. Platov International Airport is the latest airport that serves the city of Rostov-on-Don.
Buses are the cheapest way of traveling to Rostov-on-Don from most of the other cities of Russia or outside the country. If you are traveling from another country, then you might not be able to get a direct bus to the city if it is not a neighboring country. The best thing about the bus is that it helps you to explore all the beautiful places on your way. But it takes a lot of time to reach the destination compared to flights. You can both book the bus online or offline based on your booking time.
If you want to get one of the best traveling experiences to the city, then the train is the best one after flights. Many travelers choose to travel by train as it helps you to get a completely different experience compared to others. If you are traveling from another city in Russia, then you will be able to travel by train. However, the option might not be available to you if you are traveling from a country that is located far from Russia. It takes a long time to reach the destination as well but there are no worries about getting stuck in traffic.
If you want to save money on transportations, then hitchhiking is the best option. Using this, you can hike to your destination and take the help of the cars going the same way. You will have to take a lift from the people who are going in the same way. So, if you are traveling from another city in Russia, then it is the best option for you. However, from other countries, it will take a lot of time to reach the destination. Make sure to carry a map with you that will help you to reach the destination correctly.
There are many other ways of transportations available as well but most of them take a lot of time to reach the destination. If you want to have some of the best traveling experiences, then you can choose to travel by other transportations. One of the most common ones includes traveling via the road that helps you to get connected well to the destination but takes a lot of time. You can rent a car or bike to travel to Rostov-on-Don via road from other cities and countries.
You will have the entire experience of the trip based on traveling around the popular places of this city. As the city is very popular for having a rich history, it attracts a very large wave of tourists each year. You will be able to get a lot of transportation options available to move around. Here are some of the most common ones given below in detail.
Walking is considered to be the best way of exploring a destination. You will be able to see all the different things such as buildings, markets, and streets very well. Although you will need a lot of time to reach the destination, it is the best option for you if you want to explore the city very well.
By choosing to travel using bicycles, you will be able to get your exercise done and keep the city safe from air pollution at the same time. If you do not have a lot of time available on your hand, then a bicycle is the best option for you to reach the different parts of the city. There are many services available that can help you to rent a cycle easily. There are lanes available in the city that will help you to get connected to different areas very well.
Instead of choosing fuel cars, try to choose electric cars and vehicles that help to keep the environment safe from air pollution. You will be able to get them available in almost all the different areas of this city. With electric cars or vehicles, you will be able to reach your destination very fast.
Many people choose buses to travel inside the city as it is the cheapest option available. Also, it helps to observe the local people and their lifestyle from very close. As the buses are very frequent in this city, you will have no problem getting on for your trip.
Tram, Train and Subway
This is the only city in Russia where you will be able to get a 1435 standard gauge network system while the railway network in the country is 1520 mm broad gauge. You will get the ultimate experience of riding the trams as the city offers 16.5 meters long trams that can carry 175 passengers. It is quite well connected with different locations. Trains are also available but not well connected to different corners of the city.
As an eco-friendly traveler, one of the first things that you need to keep in mind is keeping the environment safe and clean. Sustainable shopping helps you to do that by offering a second hand, eco-friendly products. Here are some different sections are given below in detail that will help you to know a lot about sustainable shopping destinations.
After trying all the different dishes, you might be wondering what are the ingredients used to create the delicious taste. Well, you can visit the food markets to find it out for yourself. You will be able to explore a wide range of spices and seasonal herbs, vegetables in the city that makes the traditional dishes special.
If you are in love with having collectible items, then you can visit the flea markets of this city. There are many flea markets available that will help you to get vintage, antique, and rare items. Try to visit these markets as early as possible to get the items available as they get sold early.
Second Hand Stores
As the name suggests, you can choose to buy second-hand clothes instead of new ones. It will help to reduce the waste of the city and help the people who are selling recycled items. You will find a lot of shops that are selling second-hand items like clothes, bags, accessories, and many others.
Eco-fashion is the modern way of clothing that helps to keep your health safe and the environment pollution free. These fashion accessories or clothes are made using natural materials instead of chemicals. There are shops available in Rostov-on-Don that offer these eco-fashions at a very low price.
With the rapid climate change and pollution in the environment, it has become necessary for all the cities in Russia and other countries to recycle goods. Rostov-on-Don is not far from the rest of the world and has a very good recycling system available. They have made a lot of recycling plants and other programs.
A big part of the recycling process depends on the waste management of the city. The annual municipal waste of the city is more than 400 thousand tons. Most of this waste used to go to the landfill and others. However, things have changed a lot and now the wastes are recycled. However, the government and the people of the city are trying to make it better.
Work and Study Abroad
Apart from tourist attractions, there are many other reasons available that attract people from other countries and cities to Rostov-on-Don. The most common ones are a good education system at low cost and available jobs. You will meet a lot of students and workers from other countries in this city who are living for a long time here. Here are some of the benefits that make it very easy and good for them to stay in this city.
The exchange student program helps the students to study in any university that has a partnership with their home college around the world. You can check if your home institute has a partnership with the college of Rostov-on-Don that you want to study in. However, you will need to get nominated by the home university to have this program that helps to study at a very low price.
Staying in the city as an Au Pair is a great option. You will be able to stay with local people, help out with chores in return for money and if that sounds like a feasible opportunity then you are in luck because the concept of an Au Pair is rapidly gaining importance in the city of Rostov.
Thinking of helping out the city to stay clean in a better way? Choose to volunteer for different jobs like keeping the famous attractions clean, teaching English to the local people, collecting waste from different areas, and many more.