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Panoramic photo by gorod360.com Taken 17:19, 16/04/2012 - Views loading...

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Central Park of Culture and Rest named М.Gorky (gorod360.com)

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Central Park of Culture and Rest. Maxim Gorky (Country Park) - the largest park in the city of Samara, the public nature monument of local importance. The park is located on the banks of the Volga River and covers an area of 42.4 hectares. In the park there are over 7000 trees and 30,000 shrubs. The park has a scientific-cognitive, cultural, recreational value. Oaks grow here at the age of 100 years or more, remain rare plant species. The park is located archaeological monument of federal importance (parking, accommodation VIII-IX centuries. N. E.).

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This panorama was taken in Russia

This is an overview of Russia

Just in case you mistakenly heard that it was all ice and snow in Russia, take a peek at the Big Bikini Exposition. This is right on the river Moskva in Moscow!

Moscow has been the capital of Russia for almost its entire history. The exception is during the period of the Russian Empire, which lasted from 1721 until the Russian Revolution 1917. For these two centuries the capital was St. Petersburg. The Russian Empire was the second largest contiguous Empire in world memory; only the Mongol Empire had been greater.

Check out what's happening north of Mongolia these days, in Chita

Although you may not have heard of Sochi, on the Black Sea, they're building up quickly and hope to host the 2014 Olympics.

Other periods of Russian history include the Tsardom of Russia, from Ivan IV to Peter the Great, and the Grand Duchy (14th-16th centuries).

The earliest period of Russian history was ruled by the Novgorod Republic and Kievan Rus, which was the first Russian state dating back to 800AD in Kiev.

Modern Russia remains one of the world's superpowers. They launched the earth's second satellite, called Sputnik 1, and were the first country to put a human being into orbit around earth. (The first one is called the Moon.)

After the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991, Russia became a federal republic of 83 states.

Text by Steve Smith.

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