Photo Essay: Dacha Season Kicks Off in the Russian Countryside

The “dacha,” or country cottage, is a cultural institution in Russia. The tradition began during the Soviet Union when dachas were given as rewards to good workers.

Dachas play an important role in providing food for the Russian table. During lean times, Russians can always count on the food they grow and preserve at their dachas.

The classical Russian childhood includes summer vacations to family dachas, spent playing with other dacha children and members of the extended family.

Today, many Russian cities have expanded, enveloping what used to be separate dacha communities inside city borders. The trend in suburban home building is to bring the dacha into the city, with expansive backyards that have a cottage-like feel.

Read the full story: Photo Essay: Dacha Season Kicks Off in the Russian Countryside


Ryan Bell is a Fulbright-National Geographic Fellow traveling through Russia and Kazakhstan. He’s reporting about food topics for The Plate, and his travel adventures for Voices. You can also follow him on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Storify.

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