Not least among Russian traditions that Westerners find odd is Christmas - it comes 13 days late, "Santa" doesn't live in the North Pole and you wait until midnight on New Year's to hear...the President! RBTH tries to explain some of the peculiarities about winter holidays in Russia...

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New Year dinner à la Russe

Elena Revinskaya

Known as “Russian Salad” all around the world, Oliviye is a popular winter salad traditionally made in Russia around the New Year

Snowboarders’ paradise? Sheregesh!

Elena Safonova

Sheregesh is the most famous ski resort in Russia. It’s located in the south of Siberia, 5 km from the eponymous village in Kemerovskaya Oblast’ (3,876 km from Moscow). The unique Siberian climate makes it possible to ski 7 months out of the year (from November to May). The location is perfect for enjoying the beauty of a genuine Russian winter!

Putin questions lavish corporate New Year’s parties

Maria Karnaukh

One of the main New Year’s traditions in Russia is throwing corporate parties on a large scale, costing hundreds of thousands of dollars. This year President Putin has decided to seriously question this tradition

New Year in Russia: The favorite, most magical celebration

Vladimir Stakheev, Pavel Inzhelevskiy, Ksenia Isaeva, Pavel Gazdyuk, Ekaterina Konovalova, Elena Potapova, Daria Donina

An RBTH correspondent found himself in an ordinary Russian family home where, joy and a magical atmosphere prevail on New Year’s Eve.

The basics of the best Russian drinking toasts

Alexey Mikheev

It is customary in Russia to propose a toast before each new round of drinks. At official events, the toasts are serious and earnest. At a party with close friends in attendance, they are usually ironic and jocular

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