Member Rating 4 out of 5 by akakd on November 3, 2001

"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 wedding cathedral of the Tsars dating from 1490.

The Ivan the Great Bell-Tower survived the attempt by Napoleon to blow it up in 1812. The three-level inscription reads: "By the grace of the Holy Trinity & on the order of the Tsar & Grand Prince Boris Fyodorovich, autocrat of All Russia, this sacred place was completed & gilded in the second year of their reign."

As we left the Kremlin hours later, we passed the Emperor Bell ("Tsar Kolokol") said to be the world's largest bell. Cast in 1734-1735, it contains just under 80% copper. During a great fire in 1737, the bell, still in the foundry pit, had to be sprayed w/ water to prevent it melting. The difference in temperature caused an 11.5 ton piece to break off. That piece, taller than I am, sits @ the base of the bell.

While filming the bell, a heavily armed motorcade whizzed past, possibly Putin headed to his office nearby. He was preparing for a meeting w/ US President, George W. Bush.

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

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