When I speak with foreigners about Russia, I hear plenty of interesting comments about Russian culture, Russian food, Russians girls, beautiful buildings in Moscow and Saint-Petersburg, about our president and government.
However, during more than 15 years of traveling, I have never heard anything about Russian Banya. I started to ask my foreign friends, who have already been to Russia if they visited Russian Banya.
90% of people I asked have never been in Russian Banya. Moreover, they have never even heard about it, and have no idea what is it Russian Venik. My interview with a Morrocan guy about Russia has also approved it. (read the article Foreigners about Russia ).
So, my lovely readers. I hope thanks to my explanation about Venik, you will know some more crazy things about Russia.
Here in the picture below is Venik. It is a part of a well-aged Russian custom.
Before when more Russians lived in villages we used to build our bathhouses. It is like a sauna, but we call it “Banya”. We in Russia believe that the hot steam of the Banya is very good for health and can help to get rid of many illnesses. It gives our body and soul a very good cleaning.
When we go to Banya we take “Venik” with us. It is a bundle of branches with leaves, usually from birch or oak trees. We soak Venik in a bucket of hot water for at least 10-20 minutes. When you feel the Banya is hot enough and your body is properly warmed – up, you take Venik and start gently hitting your body. After soaking, the leaves and branches are soft and do not hurt your body. It is something like a pleasant massage.
If you want to experience Russia, Russian Banya it is a must-do thing for you. Do not forget to take Venik with you!