1. Kremlin, 2. Bolshoi Theatre, 3. Red Square, 4. Museum of Cosmonautics, 5. Tretyakov Gallery, 6. Kolomenskoye, 7. Saint Basil’s Cathedral, 8. Gorky Park, 9. VDNKh All-Russian Exhibition Centre, 10. GUM, 11. Cathedral Of The Archangel, 12. Losiny Ostrov National Park, 13. Lenin's Mausoleum. Moscow is one of Europe's most enigmatic cities, with a fascinating history and colorful, awe-inspiring architecture found nowhere else. With over 11 million inhabitants, Moscow is one of the world's most populous cities, but this hasn't changed the city's strong cultural and social traditions. It's difficult to tell what century you're in if you walk the cobblestone streets of Red Square or the banks of the Moskva River early in the morning.Tsarist architecture, must-see churches, and opulent shopping opportunities combine for an unforgettable visual experience. For suggestions on what to see and do in Russia, check out these best places to visit Moscow.
- Bolshoi Theatre
- Red Square
- Museum of Cosmonautics
- Tretyakov Gallery
- Saint Basil’s Cathedral
- Gorky Park
- VDNKh All-Russian Exhibition Centre
- Cathedral Of The Archangel
- Losiny Ostrov National Park
- Lenin’s Mausoleum
The Kremlin, a 15th-century fortified complex covering an area of 275,000 square meters and surrounded by 1400s-era walls, is without a doubt Moscow’s most recognizable structure. The Grand Kremlin Palace, which has over 700 rooms, was once home to the Tsar family and is now the official residence of the Russian Federation’s president, though most heads of state prefer to live somewhere else.
The massive complex also contains a number of other buildings, some of which are open to the public and can be visited on a regular basis. Aside from three cathedrals (including one where the Tsars were once crowned) and a number of towers, the Kremlin is also home to the Armory Building, a museum holding everything from the royal crown and imperial carriages to the ivory throne of Ivan the Terrible and Fabergé eggs.
“The Kremlin deserved a trip to Moscow,” wrote French traveler Marquis de Custine in the nineteenth century, and it is still true today. Don’t pass up the chance to book a tour of the Moscow Kremlin. While planning your visit, consider what you would like to see. Ticket types available include: Kremlin grounds with cathedrals, Armory Museum, Diamond Fund, Ivan the Great Bell Tower, and Archeological exhibition.
Address: Moscow, Russia, 103132
Hours: 9AM – 5PM
Phone: +7 495 697-03-49
Google rating: 4.8/5
Youtube Channel: AirPano VR
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The Bolshoi Theatre, home to one of the world’s oldest and most famous ballet and opera companies, is unquestionably one of Moscow’s major landmarks. The Bolshoi Theatre is known throughout the world for producing world-class ballet dancers such as Maya Plisetskaya, Vladimir Vasiliev, Galina Ulanova, and Maris Liepa. They established the theater’s reputation and catapulted their careers to dizzying heights of international success. New talents are currently adorning the stage.
Which seats should you select? Check the hall layout before purchasing tickets. There are some areas where visibility is only 50%. Seats in the first and second gallery circles, close to the center, could be ideal. You must select the first row. Take note of the age limit for children. The rules at the Bolshoi are quite strict. You can bring your child aged 6+ to the afternoon performance and your child aged 10+ to the evening event.
The dress code is less stringent these days. Unless you go to extremes, the Bolshoi Theatre does not impose any specific requirements. As a result, men wearing shorts will be denied entry to the auditorium. During the Bolshoi backstage tour, you can visit the theatre. You can join the theatre’s group guided excursions on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. A one-hour tour begins at 11.30 a.m., with a maximum group size of 20 people. The Bolshoi Theatre is conveniently located near major Moscow attractions, and they can easily incorporate the tour into any of your classic programs, such as Moscow in one day, Moscow in two or three days, and others.
Address: Theatre Square, 1, Moscow, Russia, 125009
Phone: +7 495 455-55-55
Opened: January 18, 1825
Youtube Channel: Channel 4 News
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Red Square is the largest and most famous square in Russia. It has a magnetic pull for all visitors to Moscow. Standing in Red Square, you can see the Kremlin, the GUM department store, the State History Museum, Lenin’s Mausoleum, and, of course, St. Basil’s Cathedral. The bright domes bloom like an elaborate stone flower planted by 16th-century architects.
All of Moscow’s significant thoroughfares radiate from here. The Red Square is Moscow’s central square and the symbolic heart of Russia. Moscow’s main streets begin at Red Square, so it’s easy to see why it’s regarded as the city’s beating heart. The square, which measures 330 meters by 70 meters, is surrounded by the Kremlin, Lenin’s Mausoleum, two cathedrals, and the State Historical Museum. In 1945, a massive victory parade was held here to commemorate the Soviet Armed Forces’ defeat of Nazi Germany.
St. Basil’s Cathedral, one of the square’s most recognizable structures, was built in 1555. The cathedral’s architectural details are inspired by Byzantine and Asian designs and those found in famous mosques. Inside the church, there are nine individual chapels, each decorated with colorful mural art. Both the square and the Kremlin have been designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. On weekends, stalls selling souvenirs and traditional items, such as matryoshka (Russian nesting dolls), can be found at the square’s entrance.
Address: Red Square, Moscow, Russia, 109012
Youtube Channel: Walk About
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Museum of Cosmonautics
SP Queen, the chief designer of space rocket systems, had the idea of establishing a museum. The museum opened on April 10, 1981, the 20th anniversary of the Yuri Gagarin space flight. The museum meticulously preserved samples of space technology, personal belongings of figures from the space industry, archival documents, film and photographs, numismatics, philately, and philopatry hallmarks, and works of fine and decorative arts. Russia and the United States used to compete in space exploration. While that is no longer the case, the museum’s incredible collection of over 85,000 items is still breathtaking.
The space capsule used by Yuri Gagarin, the first human to travel into space; a USSR flag with moon fragments; a Soviet spacesuit; and a rocket propulsion unit from the 1960s are among the main exhibits. A unique two-story hall displays sections of the interior of the Mir space station, as well as models of the first sputniks and a miniature spaceship replica. There are English-language tours available, and a Cinema Hall showing subtitled short films about the history of space exploration programs and the first manned space flight is also available. The museum is housed within the base of the Conquerors of Space monument, built nearly 20 years before the museum opened.
Address: Prospekt Mira, 111, Moscow, Russia, 129223
Phone: +7 499 750-23-00
Youtube Channel: Bhupi & Globe
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Among the best places to visit in Moscow, the Tretyakow Gallery is one of them. The State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow is one of Russia’s largest museums, housing over 100,000 works of art spanning the entire history of Russian art, including icons, paintings, graphics, and sculpture. It has the best collection of Russian realism from the second half of the nineteenth century in the country. Pavel Tretyakov, the owner of a successful textile firm, founded the Gallery collection, which became famous from the moment it opened to the public in 1870.
Following Tretyakov’s death, the gallery’s collection expanded rapidly, particularly after the October Revolution, when museum collections were privatized: art was purchased, donated, or “transferred” from other museums, private collections, cathedrals, and monasteries. The most recent section of the collection, dating from 1950 to 1990, was recently opened.
The Vladimir Mother of God, a Byzantine icon of the Virgin and Child from the 1100s, Andrei Rublev’s The Trinity icon from the 15th century, and several works by Ilya Repin, Russia’s most famous realist painter, are all significant works. There is also an 86-meter-tall statue of Peter the Great on the museum grounds, as well as a number of Socialist Realism sculptures.
Address: Lavrushinsky Ln, 10, Moscow, Russia, 119017
Phone: +7 499 230-77-88
Youtube Channel: Best of Europe with Maged
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Kolomenskoye is now a lovely park spread across 390 hectares of land in the city’s south. The Kolomenskoye Estate contains 19 cultural and historical monuments, eleven of which are of federal significance and several of which are UNESCO-listed. Tsar Alexei Romanov, the second Romanov dynasty to rule Russia, and father of Tsar Peter the Great, who spent his youth there, built the estate.
This region, which was once the Moscow country estate of Russia’s tzars, is now incorporated into Moscow. Ivan the Terrible, the first Russian tzar, was born here, and during the reigns of subsequent tzars and emperors, Kolomenskoye grew into a full-fledged estate.
The natural landscape (the Moscow River village), picturesque views, and traditional Russian architecture (mostly medieval) – a walk around Kolomenskoye will broaden your perspective on Moscow. You can walk along the river, visit the museum, listen to the bell ring, try traditional bagel-like rolls and mead, have a picnic in the summer, and go ice skating in the winter. This is one the best places to visit in Moscow.
Address: Andropova Ave, 39, Moscow, Russia, 115487
Phone: +7 499 615-27-68
Youtube Channel: GoodWalkers
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Saint Basil’s Cathedral
When it comes to the best places to visit in Moscow, can’t help but mention Saint Basil’s Cathedral. St. Basil’s Cathedral is Moscow’s most famous architectural work. The most recognizable Russian building, also known as “Pokrovsky Cathedral” or “The Cathedral of Intercession of the Virgin by the Moat,” is the most recognizable Russian building. This cathedral represents to Russians what the Eiffel Tower represents to the French: an honorable symbol of their past, present, and future.
You must see both its interior and exterior because its architectural style is unique. UNESCO designated it, along with the entire Kremlin, as a World Heritage Site in 1990. Keep in mind that St. Basil’s Cathedral is not the main cathedral in Moscow, nor is it the seat of the Orthodox Patriarch of Moscow, as the Cathedral of Christ the Savior is.
Many people confuse this cathedral with the Moscow Kremlin because they are located next to each other, but they are not inextricably linked. This cathedral is frequently combined with other tourist attractions in Red Square and Kremlin, such as Lenin’s Mausoleum or the GUM department store.
Youtube Channel: KaimarkLifestyle
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Gorky Park is Moscow’s most famous park, built during the Soviet era as a hub for relaxation and cultural activities. Muscovites and tourists alike enjoy strolling through the park in all seasons, enjoying sports, admiring the park’s attractions, and attending cultural events. Gorky Park is the centerpiece of a group of four green spaces – Muzeon Park of Arts, Neskuchny Garden, and Sparrow Hills Nature Reserve—that wraps around the Moskva River’s southern bank to the south-west of Moscow’s city center. During your Moscow vacation, you can spend some time here and enjoy nature and contemporary art.
Gorky Park, located directly across the Moskva River and named after the famous Russian writer Maxim Gorky (who was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature five times but never won it), spans 120 hectares of beautiful ponds and green spaces. The park, which is popular with both locals and tourists, provides a variety of amenities, including sunbeds, hammocks, and drinking fountains, as well as free yoga classes and children’s playgrounds. There are free Wi-Fi and phone charging stations, as well as a variety of food stands and wild animals such as deer, rabbits, and pheasants.
Visitors can explore the park by renting paddleboats and bicycles, and from May to October, there is also an open-air movie theater, as well as scheduled performances by street performers, musicians, and artists. Gorky Park draws both young and old people, so expect to see a mix of people exercising, playing chess, and sunbathing.
Google rating: 4.7/5
Address: Krymsky Val, 9, Moscow, Russia, 119049
Phone: +7 495 995-00-20
Youtube Channel: Walk About
VDNKh All-Russian Exhibition Centre
Workers’ palaces! There is no better place to see this Soviet slogan put into action than at VDNKh, which stands for Exhibition of National Economic Achievements. The place has the feel of a Stalinesque theme park, with palatial pavilions designed in their own distinct style to represent all of the Soviet republics and various industries ranging from geology to space exploration.
The place looks better than ever after a thorough, though not entirely finished, reconstruction. Originally intended as a general-purpose trade show venue, this park complex now includes amusement rides, ice rinks, and a variety of galleries and other attractions for people of all ages.
The Moskvarium, a marine biology center with over 8000 species of marine animals, the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, and a shopping center selling traditional products from former Soviet countries are the park’s most famous landmarks. There’s even a film museum where you can watch Soviet cartoons or even a full-length film (for a fee), as well as an education center where you can learn everything from how to be a barista to video montage (call or write in advance to find out which ones are English-friendly). There are also Soviet-era pavilions, sculptures, and fountains, such as the famous Friendship of the Peoples Fountain, which features statues of women dressed in costumes from various former Soviet countries.
Address: Prospekt Mira, 119, Moscow, Russia, 129223
Phone: +7 495 544-34-00
Youtube Channel: PlanetTraveler
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The oldest and most upscale shopping center in Moscow is an architectural marvel. GUM (Glávnyj Universálnyj Magazn or “Main Universal Store”) was constructed in the late 1800s in neo-Russian style to showcase a beautiful mix of a steel skeleton and 20,000 glass panels forming an arched roof.
This was a one-of-a-kind construction at the time, as the glass had to be strong enough to withstand the snowy Russian winters. The building’s exterior is equally impressive, with marble and granite covering all three levels. While GUM is no longer Moscow’s largest shopping center, it is by far the most beautiful. This is not the ideal destination for most budget-conscious visitors, but the beauty of the building itself is worth a visit. It is home to brands such as Gucci and Manolo Blahnik.
There are also excellent dining options on the third floor, including a Soviet-style canteen serving traditional Russian cuisine and a stand selling ice cream made by hand using an original 1954 recipe approved by the Soviet government. This is considered one of the best places to visit Moscow.
Google rating: 4.6/5
Address: Red Square, 3, Moscow, Russia, 109012
Phone: +7 495 788-43-43
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Cathedral Of The Archangel
The Cathedral of the Archangel is the Kremlin’s second-most important church. Aleviz Noviy, an Italian architect, built this magnificent masterpiece of Russian architecture in 1505–1509. The cathedral’s design includes five domes that are shifted to the east. The center one is made of gold, while the others are made of silver.
Until the end of the 17th century, the Russian monarchs were buried in the Cathedral of the Archangel. There are 54 graves of male members of Russia’s Tsar family, including Ivan Kalita, Ivan IV Grozny, and others. Following the demolition of the Voznesenskiy monastery in 1929, the remains of Russian Queens and Princesses were also relocated here.
The walls are covered with frescoes created in the mid-seventeenth century by masters such as Simon Ushakov, Stepan Ryazancev, and others. The Cathedral also houses important Russian Orthodox Church relics. The Cathedral was renovated in 1955 and is now used as a museum, but divine services are still held there on important Orthodox holidays.
Address: Moscow, Russia, 103073
Phone: +7 495 695-37-76
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Losiny Ostrov National Park
Losiny Ostrov National Park, located in the Moscow Region and city of Moscow, was established in 1983. It covers an area of 11 000 ha, of which 3 000 ha are within the administrative boundaries of the city. The park is located northeast of Moscow in the heart of the Eastern European Plain, with the highest elevation being 194–234 m above sea level.
Losiny Ostrov National Park, of all Moscow attractions, offers the best combination of nature and wildlife. In terms of size and grandeur, it is often compared to Rio de Janeiro’s Pedra Branca State Park and Cape Town’s Table Mountain National Park. It is the Russian capital’s first national park, where many species of birds, mammals, amphibians, and reptiles can be found.
Moraine and water-glacier relief characterize the terrain. Coniferous-broad-leaved forests of spruce and linden with an admixture of oak or maple are common; pine forests can be found on sands and loamy sands. The flora includes over 500 vascular plant species, including numerous orchids in the Yauza swamps. The upper Yauza wetland complex is the most valuable; it covers approximately 500 ha and contains channels, shallows, reed and cat’s tail thickets, and an oligotrophic moor.
Waterfowl on the flyway use it as a breeding ground and a stopover, including the red-necked grebe, great crested grebe, bittern and little bittern, common heron, and various ducks. There are 186 species of birds in the world (including 125 nestings). The Park is home to rare birds such as the red-footed falcon, hobby falcon, goshawk, kestrel, common buzzard, honey buzzard, and kite. The quail can be found in meadows, while the hazel grouse can be found in spruce forests and along streams.
Address: Poperechny Prosek, 1G, Moscow 107014, Russia
Phone: +7 499 268-60-45
Youtube Channel: Travelingbc
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One of Moscow’s most popular attractions is a visit to the Lenin Mausoleum, which houses Lenin’s mummified body. The Mausoleum is located in Red Square and is free to visit. All you have to do is wait in line, which can be long or short depending on the season.
The Mausoleum of Lenin, the final resting place of Soviet leader Vladimir Lenin, is located in the heart of Red Square. His body has been in the mausoleum since his death in 1924, and while the original plan was for him to be buried after a brief period of public mourning, that plan quickly changed.
After over 100,000 people visited the tomb over a six-week period, it was decided that a new sarcophagus and a more permanent display space could actually preserve Lenin’s body for much longer than expected—hence the construction of Lenin’s Mausoleum. Over time, the mausoleum and its marble stairs became the primary location from which Soviet leaders observed parades and events in Red Square.
Today, Lenin’s embalmed body can be seen lying down in a bulletproof glass sarcophagus, as if sleeping. While visiting the mausoleum is unusual, it has become a must-do for history buffs interested in learning how Lenin’s legacy truly changed the country. But be prepared to wait—there are usually lines to get in.
Google rating: 4.4/5
Opened: November 10, 1930
Youtube Channel: ETours Russia
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