The Volga river
The Volga river is the longest one in Europe and one of the longest in the world (3530 km). It originates in the Valday Hills northwest of Moscow and flows down Astrakhan and there finally enters the Caspian Sea. The Volga carries about half of all river freight in Russia. Numerous dams (bypassed by locks) provide hydroelectricity and water for irrigation. The river, known in Russian folklore as Mother Volga, has been very special for the Russian people. There is a host of small and large cities situated along the river, just as my home town Ulyanovsk.