Bashkortostan (Russian: Реуспу́блика Башкортоста́н rees-POOB-leek-uh buhsh-kuhrt-ah-STAHN) or Bashkiria (Башки́рия buhsh-KEE-ree-yuh) is a region in the foothills of the Ural Mountains, bordering Tatarstan to the west, Udmurtia to the northwest, Perm Krai to the north, Sverdlovsk Oblast to the northeast, Chelyabinsk Oblast to the east, and Orenburg Oblast to the south.
- 1 Ufa — the biggest (with over a million residents) city, the capital of Bashkortostan
- 2 Beloretsk — a small town in the Ural Mountains, known for its steel works and surrounding attractions like Mratkino ski resort, Bannoe lake, Abzakovo
- 3 Chishmy — a village with, remarkably, two Golden Horde-era mausoleums, the most ancient structures in the whole of the republic, close to picturesque mountains rising from the steppe
- 4 Ishimbuy — a mid-sized city with air engineering industry
- 5 Krasnousolsky — a village in the sparsely populated and beautiful Gafuriysky Region of Bashkortostan; main tourist attraction here is the old church, and hot springs
- 6 Kumertau — a mid-sized city with engineering industry
- 7 Mesyagutovo — hometown of national hero Salavat Ulaev
- 8 Neftekamsk — an oil and engineering industry city near the Kama River
- 9 Oktyabrsky — a mid-sized city with a love for auto-racing and other sports activities
- 10 Salavat — a mid-sized city with oil and chemical industry
- 11 Sibai — beautiful small town
- 12 Sterlitamak — Bashkortostan's second largest city and a major center of chemicals production; famous for Shihani (Kush-Tau ski resort) and limestone mountains
Bashkortostan is named for its native Bashkir people, a Muslim people who speak a Turkic language. Bashkirs, Tatars, and ethnic Russians each comprise roughly one third of the population of the region.
Bashkortostan is sometimes called "second Switzerland": high mountains and expansive steppes, evergreen forests, 600 rivers and 800 lakes. Various kinds of tourism and sport are very popular here, for example rafting and alpine skiing.
Bashkir, a Turkic language closely related to Tatar, shares official status with Russian. Tatar is also widely spoken. But nearly everyone is at least bilingual in Russian. Students may understand English and German.
International flights arrive at 1 Ufa International Airport (UFA IATA) from Frankfurt, Tel Aviv, Sharm el-Sheikh, Baku, Yerevan and Istanbul. Domestic flights from Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Syktyvkar, Krasnoyarsk, Yekaterinburg, and others.
Ufa train station is one of the principal stops on the South Ural route of the Trans-Siberian Railway. Trains also arrive from nearby cities Orenburg, Samara and Chelyabinsk. The daily train from Moscow takes 26 hours. It is also possible to arrive by train from northern Kazakhstan.
The capital of Bashkortostan — Ufa — is accessible from federal highways M5 and M7.
- Bus. Entire cities are covered by local bus operators. A bus from one end of the city to another typically costs $0.3-0.5.
- Intercity buses cost $10–25, depending on the distance. Buses are frequent and fast.
Picturesque villages are found across Bashkortostan.
- Skiing. One of the most attactive ski resorts in Bashkortostan is Mratkino, in the city of Beloretsk.
Bashkortostan is one of the most socially and economically developed republics of Russia, although it is slightly less developed than neighboring Tatarstan. The average salary here is $ 250-350. The region as a place for earnings attracts not only residents of neighboring regions (for example, people from Repuplic of Udmurtia, Perm Krai and Chelyabinsk Oblast), but also foreign immigrants and labor migrants. Most of all there are visitors from Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan. Bashkortostan residents consider people from these countries to be related and fraternal.
Bashkortostan is one of the safest regions of Russia, so you can observe basic precautions here. The danger can only be posed by pickpockets on public transport and in queues.
Although approximately 55% of the population of Bashkortostan are Muslims (moderate Hanafi Sunnis), this region (like neighboring Tatarstan) is quite secular, unlike the overly Islamized Dagestan, Chechnya or Ingushetia. But it is worth considering that there are many deeply religious Bashkirs and Tatars, as well as conservative Russians, so it is not uncommon to see women in a hijab or headscarf, and men in traditional headdresses. The capital of Bashkortostan Ufa is considered one of the centers of Islamic education in Russia. Meanwhile, Russian girls and women and secular Bashkirs and Tatars may dress too openly, in short shorts or skirts and with open shoulders.