Real Russia Blog

Russian Holidays, Part 3: May 9th - Victory Day

Russian Holidays, Part 3: May 9th – Victory Day

… Mamajev Kurgan in Volgograd, Russia

Victory Day is a celebration that brings together the Russian public and showcases the military might of Russia. Celebrated on the 9th May, the parade dates back to 1945.

Moscow hosts the largest Russian parade each year and this year, it showcased on TV, a parade of servicemen and women that serve in Russia, plus displayed many Russian military weapons. It highlighted the beautiful St Basil’s Cathedral and the Kremlin as a back drop to the parade.

Victory Day is often considered a remembrance day for ex-servicemen, and traditionally red carnations are given to veterans. The public thank their veterans for defending their freedom and ensuring equal rights, regardless of nationality or citizenship. This is very similar to the Remembrance Day parade in Britain, with a poppy worn to commemorate ex-serviceman, on the 11th November, each year.

In our Real Russia office in Russia, many of our colleagues talk about this event as it continues to play a role in their heritage. Eugene describes the ways in which they celebrate Victory Day today:

There is a parade, fireworks/salute, feast, high spirit, pride. In places like Volgograd where the most significant battles took place the local governments organise special venues like Mamajev Kurgan where people mix up with the veterans, taste field-kitchen of those days. Often there is a good feast – and I often attend a local parade or watch it on TV, then have a picnic with my family or friends – Eugene

Over the generations, the significance of these events may be reduced as younger generations become less familiar with the origins and history of the event. Our colleague, Igor, describes what Victory Day means to him as a man in Russia, today –

For me, this day will never lose its importance for my generation. It is a Victory of all realistic people in the world who stopped the expansion of fascism. It does not belong only to the Russian or to the soldier etc, it belongs to all peace-loving peoples regardless of their nationalities, positions, beliefs….. And, the ceremonial parade is regarded as the protection of freedom and peace! – Igor

At Real Russia, we are an international company with offices in Britain, Europe and Russia, we aid travel arrangements for all travelers across Europe, Russia and Mongolia as well as into China. We appreciate and understand the celebrations in all countries and we encourage travelers to experience these unique cultures too. Russia, China and Mongolia are beautiful countries with many natural wonders and cultural differences; they have a great deal to offer to all!

If you have experienced Victory Day, or other celebrations and traditions in Russia, Mongolia or China, and would like to share your experiences with us, then please get in touch. You can reach us via Facebook or Twitter, or sign up to our website Forum.