Moscow Journals

Marvelous Moscow

A June 2001 trip to Moscow by akakd

St. Basils Cathedral (Sobor Vasiliia Blazhennogo) Photo, More Photos
Quote: Russian Poet, Pushkin, described Moscow thus: "And now at last the goal is in sight: in the shimmer of the white walls gleaming near, in the glory of the golden domes, Moscow lies great & splendid before us! Ah, how I trembled with joy when this be-towered, shining city, bright-hued, imposing, once again, of a sudden, stood before my eyes! How often, in profoundest grief, in the night of my wandering fate, O Moscow, have I thought of you! Moscow: how violently the name plucks at any Russian heart!" Moscow--the heart of Russia. Though it's been said that Moscow may not be the type of city to win your heart at first sight, in time, I can see how one would become more attached to it.

Marvelous Moscow

Overview

Quote:
In what city would cemeteries & metro stations count among top tourist sites? None other than Moscow. Two highlights of Moscow are not your typical tourist sites: 1) the cemetery @ Novodevichii Convent w/ beautiful, life-size sculptures & tributes to important people in Russian history & 2) the metro stations dubbed "Underground Palaces" or "Palaces for the People".

Quick Tips:

Best Way To Get Around:

Hotel Rossiya

Best Of IgoUgo

Hotel

Quote:
We had requested a non-smoking RENOVATED room. What we got was a smoking room in desperate need of renovation! Every once in awhile, a piece of plaster would fall from the ceiling. The door to the balcony wouldn''t open, so we had to climb out the window, wallpaper was tacked up in some places, the sink was cracked, the tv didn''t work, etc. Still...couldn''t complain too much. The view was awesome! From our balcony we had a view of the Kremlin, Red Square, & St. Basil''s!!! On one rainy day, it was surreal to sit in our room playing cards while looking out at the Kremlin.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on November 3, 2001

Hotel Rossiya
6 Varvarka Overlooking Red Square
Moscow, Russia
(7-095) 232-6046

Gosudarstvennyi Universal'nyi Magazin (GUM), (State Department Store) Photo,
Quote:
GUM "Mall" or Gosudarstvenny Universalny Magazin means State Universal Store. This is a modern, huge three story high & three level deep glass-roofed complex built between 1888 & 1894 & contains over 200 shops. Modern Western stores are found among ornate bridges, Russian shops, chandeliers, fountains, etc. An ultimate shopping experience, rivaled only by the QVB in Sydney, Australia.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on November 2, 2001

Gosudarstvennyi Universal'nyi Magazin (GUM), (State Department Store)
Krasnaia ploshchad', 3
Moscow, Russia
+7 095 929 3211; 7 0

The Kremlin

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Kremlin"

The Kremlin Photo, Moscow, Russia
Quote:
"The earth, as we all know, begins at the Kremlin. It is her central point." So says Vladimir V. Mayakovsky, Russian Poet. Allow plenty of time to explore the Kremlin. There was so much to see. I'll comment on a few of the things I remember. Probably one of the first things we came to was the Emperor Cannon ("Tsar Pushka") which is said to be the world's largest cannon. To this day, it has never been fired. The Russian Orthodox Cathedrals are spectacular, but a bit overwhelming. Icon paintings cover EVERY INCH of the walls. The Cathedral of the Dormition was where Tsars were crowned, & contains Ivan the Terrible's 1551 throne. The Cathedral of the Annunciation was the wedd...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 3, 2001

The Kremlin
Entrance From Red Square
Moscow, Russia 103073
+7 095 202 4256

Aarbat Street

Attraction | "Old Arbat Street"

Aarbat Street Photo, Moscow, Russia
Quote:
Similar to The Ramblas in Barcelona, we enjoyed the street musicians & artisans on Old Arbat Street. Arbat frequently appears in Russian literature, being first mentioned in the 15th century as a favourite residential area for nobility & upper classes. Pushkin spent his honeymoon in No. 53 in 1831. Old Arbat is now Moscow's only pedestrian precinct, featuring shops, cafes, & handmade wares. We were disappointed in one lace shop where they refused to wait on us, & delighted in a matryoshka shop where they waited on us in a friendly, helpful manner. (Needless to say, we didn't buy lace, but did purchase a beautiful 15 piece matryoshka.) We were surprised to see 31 Flavors & KFC on Old Arbat, but d...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on November 3, 2001

Aarbat Street
Aarbat Street
Moscow, Russia

Sputnik Monument

Attraction

Sputnik Monument Photo,
Quote:
Sputnik was the first rocket to go into space, launched in 1957. It transmitted a radio bleep. Three months later it burned up. Later that same year, Laika the dog was the first living creature to go into space. The dog was fitted w/ a special suit, but perished in space. Sputnik essentially started the "space race".

As you may have seen on "Who Wants to Be a Millionnaire", Sputnik is Russian for "Traveling Companion". The base of the monument houses the Cosmonaut Museum. The avenue in front of the monument, leading to Prospekt Mira, is lined w/ sculptures to the "heroes of the cosmos".

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on November 3, 2001

Sputnik Monument
near Metro station VDNKh, Prospekt Mira
Moscow, Russia

Novodevichii Convent (Novodevichii Monastyr')

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Novodevichii Convent & Cemetery/Metro Stations"

Novodevichii Convent (Novodevichii Monastyr') Photo, Moscow, Russia
Quote:
If you visit Novodivichii Convent, arrange to stop across the lake from it for a unique viewpoint. Novodevichii looks life a fairy-tale city to me! Having seen enough of Russian Cathedrals, we actually spent our time in the adjacent cemetery w/ its unbelievably beautiful life-sized sculptures to important historical & political figures. In addition to Krushchov & Chekov, we saw monuments to WWII Generals, test pilots, inventors, ballerinas, surgeons, sculptors, politicians, etc. Hard to believe a cemetery was one of my favorite stops, but this one is beyond words. Surprisingly, another favorite activity was touring the underground Metro stations known as "Underground Palaces" or be...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 3, 2001

Novodevichii Convent (Novodevichii Monastyr')
Novodevichii proezd, 1
Moscow, Russia 119435
+7 095 246 8526

St. Basil's Cathedral (Sobor Vasiliia Blazhennogo)

Attraction | "St. Basil the Blessed"

St. Basil's Cathedral (Sobor Vasiliia Blazhennogo) Photo,
Quote:
Rather than describe St. Basil's myself, here is an historical viewpoint from Nicholas V. Riasanovsky in The History of Russia: "The Church of St. Basil the Blessed at one end of Red Square, outside the Kremlin wall, provides the most striking illustration of wooden construction in stone. Built in 1555-1560 by two architects from Pskov, Barma & Posnik, it has never ceased to dazzle visitors or excite the imagination. This church, known originally as the Cathedral of the Intercession of the Virgin, consists in fact of nine separate churches on a common foundation. Striking & different cupolas further emphasize the variety & independence of the parts of the church. Bright colors & abundant decorati...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on November 2, 2001

St. Basil's Cathedral (Sobor Vasiliia Blazhennogo)
Krasnaia Ploshchad', 2
Moscow, Russia 103012
+7 095 298 3304

Poem by Pushkin

Story/Tip

Quote:
"And now at last the goal is in sight:
in the shimmer of the white walls gleaming near,
In the glory of the golden domes,
Moscow lies great & splendid before us!
Ah, how I trembled with joy
When this be-towered, shining city,
Bright-hued, imposing,
Once again, of a sudden, stood before my eyes!
Now often, in profoundest grief,
In the night of my wandering fate,
O Moscow, have I thought of you!
Moscow: how violently the name
Plucks at any Russian heart!"
-Aleksandr S. Pushkin-