Dobro Pozhalovat (welcome)!

Once we went to England in the summer and we kept a blog ( for those who could not come with us.

We came home to Siberia and thought, "Why not start a blog about our life here?"

We will not be posting everyday, but hope to give you some glimpses into our lives!

суббота, 1 сентября 2012 г.

Something Russian - Banya

I decided to rename "Only in Russia" as "Something Russian", because there is very little in our modern world that is unique to just one country, so no more claims of exclusivity!

A Banya is a kind of sauna or steam bath. The Russian version, "Banya", is much steamier than a Finish sauna, which is all I can really compare it with.

There are public Banyas where you can pay 50 rubles (probably more by now) and steam yourself with a crowd of strangers, you can also hire a commercial banya with a group of friends, the one in my pictures is at a friend's Dacha. In the many off-the-grid private houses the banya is the place where you wash yourself and your clothes.

This family have a kitchen sink in the entrance, useful for washing the dishes.

This wonderful device is simple but very useful. You fill the top part with water, which is released at the bottom by pushing up on the rod below. It means you can wash your hands without anyone to pour water on you.

This is the changing room, where you can also have a drink and a snack between sessions
in the steam room.

You can see the door to feed the stove at the bottom right, the door leads into the wash room.

Looking into the wash room, this is where you can wash when your finished or pour a bucket of cold water over yourself after the steam room (rolling around in the snow is good too)

Upper and lower benches, the higher you sit the hotter it is, also used for lying on to be beaten with birch branches. 

The stove, where the magic happens! It is fed with wood from the outside, so there is no danger of being gassed.

Hot water tank.

Stones to make even more steam, when you throw water on them.

Most banyas have a collection of silly felt hats to protect your head from the heat.
The thermometer goes up to 160 C (320 F),  I don't think anyone makes it that hot, 
100 С (212 F) is a more normal temperature. 

2 комментария:

  1. You could add something about the dress code, at least it differs from the american.

  2. For those who don't know, Russian Banya's are "clothing optional". So often the silly hat is the only thing you wear. Bed sheets are also allowed especially for sitting on hot benches in the steam room!