Eastern Europe is a fairly untouched region. It is an ideal place to visit if you're looking for the off beaten path experience. Even though the big cities welcome a lot of tourists, there are many places that are yet to be discovered by many tourists. This region contains all the experiences any kind of tourist might look for. The cuisine varies region to region and is a must try. Eastern Europe is packed with natural wonders. Its beaches, mountains, forests, national parks, nature reserves and lakes make it every nature lover's paradise. There are many activities and festivals to attend making sure that there is never a dull moment. Thie region has a rich history and is home to many world heritage sites. Eastern European people are very warm and hospitable. Travelling to Eastern Europe is quite cheap especially compared to other parts of Europe.
Great food. Natural Beauty. Rich culture.
Pickpockets. Transportation can be unreliable at times.
Eastern Europe consists of Bulgaria, Belarus, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, and Ukraine. All Eastern European countries have an excellent cuisine, rich history, and a breathtaking scenary. At the same time, each country has it's own charm. Bulgaria is known for it's great energy, beautiful beaches, and outdoor sporting activities. Belarus has managed to preserve the region's folk culture and ancient traditions. It also has a mounth watering cuisine and some of the best museums and galleries. Estonia is the proud owner of over 1500 islands. If you're planning to spend some time with mother nature, Romania is a good place to explore the region's natural beauty and observe its wildlife. It also has some of the best villages, historical sites, and castles. Ukraine is known for it's breathtaking scenaries. Its natural beauty is worth a visit. It is also home to many of UNESCO's world heritage sites.
You would find a variety of accommodation options in Eastern Europe from deluxe hotels to midrange hotels, private rooms, pensions, hostels and budget hotels. Unless you opt for a 4 star or a 5 star hotel, hotels in this region are affordable. For budget travellers, campsites are available which are affordable and quite comfortable.
The culture of this regon is heavily influenced by its art and literature which springs from its rich history. Eastern Europeans are very warm aand welcoming. They place a lot of emphasis on being a good host to their guests. Majority of the people in Eastern Europe are Christians followed by a Muslim and Jewish minority. English is understood by the people living in major cities. However, it is helpful to learn a few basic phrases before visiting the country you're travelling to.
Eastern European food varies from country to country. It is influenced by the region's culture, climate, and ethnic diversity. A huge portion of the Eastern European cuisine is considered as comfort food. However, that does not mean you can't tickle your tastebuds with it's lavish dishes and fine wines. Some of the common ingredients used in these dishes include eggs, cheese, yogurt, rye, barley, wheat, buckwheat , and millet. The popular meats include chicken, duck, goose, partridge, quail, turkey, veal, beef, pork and mutton. Fruits and dry fruits are used in desserts and liquor.
Make copies of your travel documents. Don't go to dimly lit areas at night. Get a city tourist card as it will get you some discounts on certain attractions and tours.
Eastern Europe has a vibrant nightlife. It is not what the region is particularly known for but there are plenty of places where people can relax and loosen up. Eastern Europe's nightlife in mostly concentrated in Russia, Romania, Estonia, Latvia, and Ukraine. There are many bars, clubs, and pubs one could visit. Liquor is relatively cheaper in Eastern Europe as compared to other places.
Some of the things that attract visitors include carpets, clothing, jewelry, ceramics, and fretwork. knitted woollen sweaters, textiles, glassware, porcelain ware, silverware, carpets, woodcarvings, leatherwear, amber and pieces of folk art. There are many iopen air markets that sell souvenirs at a cheap price. Bargaining is acceptable in small shops.
Eastern Europeans are very jaunty and cheerful who make sure that they celebrate till their hearts content. If you're visiting Eastern Europe, you must join the people in their celebrations. Bulgaria's Fun City is a festival that involves music, extreme sports, street dances, crafts, workshops and entrepreneurship opportunities. If you're an art lover, you might want to stop by the Traditional Crafts Fair in Romania. Artists and craft enthusiasts gather to offer free demonstrations of wood carving, rug weaving, textile weaving, pottery, glass blowing, egg painting etc. Bucharest of Old celebrates the historical times of the city through parades of 1800s costumes, horse drawn carriages, traditinal food, and musical performances. Belarus's Menestral Guitar Festival invites musicians from all over the country to entertain the crowds with classical rendition of famous folk songs. Food enthusiasts all over the world impatiently wait for Estonia's Tallin Food Fest. It attracts restaurants, bakers, and whole salers to show off all their goods. If you're visiting Ukraine, you would want to stay for Lviv City Day. Tourists visiting the city for these two days enjoy jazz, pop, and rock music. There is also folk dancing, theatre performances, parades, and carnivals.
Eastern European health standards are a bit lower than the the rest of Europe. Therefore, travellers are advised to practice good food and beverage choices. It is best to drink bottled water at all times. Before you travel make sure to be up-to-date on routine vaccines including measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine, and your yearly flu shot. Besides that, get vaccinated for Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Tick - borne Encephalitis, Typhoid and Rabies.
Dressing rules in this region are not strict so it is best to pack according to the weather. Eastern Europeans are very friendly people who are quite frank and open while conversing. Most people greet by shaking hands while maintaining eye contact. Close friends and relatives hug or kiss on the cheek starting from the left. First names are used freely but it is polite to address elders by an honorific title. Drinking and smoking in public is acceptable to a certain point. Tipping is not mandatory but a 5 - 10 percent tip is appreciated in restaurants. It is nice to leave a small tip for the hotel staff and cab fares should be rounded to the next whole number.