Skip to Content

Understanding Russia’s Geographic Identity

Russia is a transcontinental country which means that it is officially part of two continents: Russia and Asia, so the answer to the question is Russia part of Europe or Asia is that it is part of both Europe and Asia.

Located in Eastern Europe, Russia is like a bridge between the Western and Eastern heritage and one of the very few countries on Earth that are located on two continents.

Some of the following links are affiliate links. When you buy something using the retail links in our article, we may earn a small commission at no additional cost for you. You can read our full disclosure disclaimer and privacy policy.

So it is correct to say that Russia belongs to both Asia and Europe and is one of the very few countries with this particularity.



Russia or the Russian Federation has more than 17 million square kilometres and it spans from the Baltic Sea in the west to the Pacific Ocean in the east and from the Black Sea, the Caspian Sea and Azov Sea in the south up to the Arctic Ocean in the north.

According to the official records and maps, about 75% of Russia is located in Asia and this part is known as the Asian part or Asian Russia.

The rest of 25% of the country is located in Europe and is known as the European part or Western Russia.

Things are a little bit different when we speak about its population which measures about 145 million people.

About 75% of the Russians are located in European Russia while the rest of 25% is on the Asian side.

Is Russia part of Europe or Asia and the Ural Mountains

The Ural Mountains, one of the most important mountain ranges from the country and Ural River are considered to be the natural boundary between Asia and Europe.

This actually means that everything that is located in the western part of these mountains is located in Europe, while the area from the eastern part of the Urals is in Asia.

At the intersection of Europe and Asia can be also found in the Caucasus Mountains that run east-west and divide these two continents.

In the second part of the 18th century and in the 19th century the answer to the question if is Russia a part of Europe or Asia was even more complicated as the country spanned three different locations.

During that time Russia was not just in Asia and Europe, but it also held territories in North America and here I refer to the large number of colonies living across Alaska.

These are the new essentials you have to pack for your trip

Important moment over Russian history

Under Peter the Great, Russia was proclaimed an Empire in 1721 and became one of the most powerful countries on Earth.

In 1867, Russia sold to the United States the territory known today as Alaska for the incredible price of 7.2 million US dollars.

In 1922, Russia together with Ukraine, Byelorussia and the Transcaucasian SFSR formed the Soviet Union.

Stay safe while you travel

  • medical safety abroad
  • medical assistance including COVID-19
  • emergency medical evacuation
  • trip interruption -up to $5.000
  • travel delay - up to $100/day

In 1991 the Soviet Union fell apart and 15 post-Soviet states were born: Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia

Although the Union Soviet fell apart, Russia still remains the largest country in the world with more than 17 million square kilometres.


Even though 75% of the Russian territory is located in Asia, the majority of the Russians live in the European portion of the state ( about 75% of the population).

Now that you know if is Russia part of Europe or Asia, let’s find out some interesting facts about the Russian population.

Russia is a multinational state with more than 190 ethnic groups living on its vast territory and a total population of 145 million people.

From the total population, about 111 million are ethnic Russians, while the rest of the population are minorities.



About 85% of the Russian population belong to the European ethnic groups such as Slavs, Germanic, Baltic- Finnic and others.

All over the country, there are 22 republics with their own ethnicity, culture and language which means a very diverse environment.


The official language of the country is Russian, a language is spoken all over the country. Besides the official language, there are another 100 languages spoken by the minority ethnic groups.

The Russian constitution gives the right to the individual republics of the country to establish its own state language in addition to Russian.

In another world, they can have what official language they want but they also have to know Russian.

Because of the large number of people that live in all parts of the country and speak Russian, this is the most spoken native language from Europe.

The Russian language is part of the Indo-European language family and is the widely spoken Slavic language in the world.

After Russian, inside the Russian territories, the second most used language is English, which is also one of the six official languages of the United Nations.


The majority of the people, more than 80% are Orthodox Christians but you might also find Muslims (10%) and other religions like Buddhism or unaffiliated.

Is Russia a part of Europe or Asia and what to see

Such a large country hides many beautiful attractions and amazing sceneries, not to mention its diverse landforms that create unique habitats and climates, different from any other places on Earth.

Among the most beautiful place which you have to visit when in Russia I would name:

1. Lake Baikal which is the oldest and deepest lake in the world located in Siberia. The lake has more than 1.640 metres in-depth and is more than 25 millions year old. Lake Baikal is also the cleanest lake in the world, and on a sunny day of winter, you might be able to see up to 40 metres down into the water.

2. Moscow which is the largest city in Russia and the capital of the country, located in the European part of Russia. Among the most important attractions from Russia, I would name Red Square, St Basil’s Cathedral, Pushkin Museum, The Bolshoi Theatre and the pedestrian street Stary Arbat.

3. St Petersburg which is the second-largest city from Russia, founded by Peter The Great in 1703 and one of the most cosmopolitan Russian cities. Include on your travel list a short visit to the Moika Palace, St Isaac’s Cathedral, Hermitage Museum and Peterhof Palace.

4. Altay Mountains from Siberia that extend from Russia to China, Kazakhstan and Mongolia. These mountains, together with a large number of natural reserves and lakes are part of the Unesco World Heritage Sites.

5. Sochi which is the most beautiful summer beach resort from the Black Sea with imposing Stalinist architecture and home of a world-famous summer film festival known as Kinotavr.

6. The Russian Tundra which is a unique habitat that exists in and near the Arctic Circle. The only vegetation from here consists of moss, shrubs and certain types of grasses that can resist such low temperatures.

7. Olkhon Island which is one of the world largest islands covered with steep mountains, taiga and lush vegetation. The island is located in the Eastern Siberia and has just a few residents, the Mongolic indigenous group known as Buryats.


Russia is one of the very few countries from all over the world which is located on multiple continents at once.

I guess it is the world’s most famous transcontinental country after Turkey, which is also located in both Europe and Asia.

Other examples of transcontinental countries from all over the world include France which is in Europe but has territories on almost every continent.

So, yes, part of Russia is in Europe and another part is in Asia so if anyone asks you if is Russia part of Europe or Asia, now you know the answer.

With more than 75% of its territory in Asia but almost 75% of people in Europe, Russia is an amazing country and the question Is Russia a part of Europe or Asia find its answers in this article.


Logistical tips and tricks for your trip

Book your accommodation
We always use as they have the best price-quality ratio and they offer a wide range of hotels, guesthouses, apartments, and villas to choose from.

You will find here all types of accommodations, from the cheapest ones to the most luxurious.

Don't forget travel insurance
We never leave home without HeyMondo Insurance or Safety Wings Insurance as they offer the best services and a good value for money.

When we go for longer trips around the world we get Globelink Insurance as it offers a good cover for an affordable price.

Travel insurance will always protect you against unexpected costs caused by medical events like illness, injury, theft, or travel cancellation.

We never go on any trip without travel insurance and there were many cases when we had to use it.

Renting a car
We like to explore a country on our own and a car gives us the mobility and freedom to do that.

We always rent our car from Discovercars as they have free cancellation 48 hours prior to starting date and a wide range of car rental companies and options to choose from all over the world.

Tours and attractions
When we are looking for some adventure or we simply want to break up the monotony and discover new places, we always use GetYourGuide.

We love it because we always find the most amazing experiences, with free cancellation and a large variety of activities and tours to choose from.

Airplane tickets and holiday packages
Expedia is our ally when searching for the best price for airplane tickets as it works as an aggregator for a huge number of airlines and we always find the best price for our flights.

Travel tip: use Expedia when you are searching for holiday packages as they have many last-minute offers and great discounts for hotels, flights, and even the whole holiday packages.