Exploring the capital of Russia with Discover.Moscow
Journeys | 26.08.2020
Moscow has lots of great places to see. So, besides visiting all the main attractions try thematic walks with our guides catalog. We have partnered with Discover.Moscow and released amazing walks in the guides catalog.
Moscow's Space-exploration Sites
Moscow has been home to various prominent spacecraft designers and space researchers, and is also where the first team of cosmonauts trained for their space flights. The city's research facilities been involved in spacecraft development, astronomical research, and medical and biological experiments.
Route: bus. Duration: 3 hours
Start: VDNH metro station
End: Leninsky Prospekt metro station
Museum of Cosmonautics
It was Sergey Korolev's idea to put a museum inside the base of the Monument to the Conquerors of Space. The museum opened in 1981. It features eight exhibition halls, a cinema, a conference hall and over 99,000 exhibits. The most valuable include taxidermy mounts of the famous space-faring dogs Belka and Strelka, as well as the original ejection container in which they returned to Earth. The museum also features the SK-1 spacesuit used by Yuri Gagarin in training, a copy of the Volga airlock Aleksey Leonov went through during the first spacewalk, full-size replicas of the Lunokhod-1 lunar rover and many other unique artefacts.
The Moscow Planetarium
The Moscow Planetarium is the oldest in Russia and one of the largest in the world. It was a popular place in Soviet times, and is where polar aviation pilots trained and cosmonauts studied astronavigation. The planetarium reopened in 2011 after undergoing renovations. Today it includes the small star hall, a 4D cinema, the Lunarium interactive museum, the halls of the Urania museum, the large and small observatories, and the Sky Park astronomy deck. Under the dome is the Large Star Hall, which is equipped with a projector capable of showing over 9,000 celestial bodies.
Moscow Iconic Buildings
Moscow is one of the oldest capitals in the world. The city's appearance is a unique blend of architectural styles, including early Moscow architecture, Russian decorative styles, baroque, classical, empire-style, modern, avant-garde and constructivist architecture. Our walking tour is a chance to see the most prominent of these architectural styles.
Route: pedestrian
Start: Teatralnaya metro station, Ploshchad' Revolyutsii metro station
End: Teatralnaya metro station
The Kotelnicheskaya Embankment Building
The Zaryadye observation deck provides a great view of the Kotelnicheskaya Embankment Building, one of the Seven Sisters (the seven skyscrapers built in Moscow during Stalin's reign). The structure is the height of the post-war Soviet art deco. The monumental size and rich decoration are reminiscent of Manhattan skyscrapers such as the Empire State Building. However, the Moscow skyscrapers also feature elements of Russian baroque, specifically the towers at their top. The building was designed to serve as a city within a city, with its own shops, post office and the Illyuzion cinema. Famous residents include Soviet celebrities such as Alexander Tvardovsky, Lidia Smirnova, Galina Ulanova, Ludmila Zykina, Evgeny Evtushenko and Faina Ranevskaya.
Saint Basil's Cathedral
This cathedral showcases the finest features of medieval Moscow's stone architecture, including tented roofs, intricate domes, gables, narrow windows, barrels and other architectural elements. In the late 16th century, a heated church was built on the north-eastern side of the modern cathedral on the spot where Saint Basil was buried — hence the cathedral's name. The domes were originally painted green, and were repainted in their current colours in the late 18th century. The cathedral's domes signify the cardinal directions, with the blue-white dome standing to the north (the colours representing snow and cold) and the red dome (symbolising heat and a red sun) in the south.
Where Moscow's Famous Merchants Lived
Moscow is a truly merchant city. Over the years, it has been home to the country's trading elite, including the Morozovs, the Ryabushinskys, the Bakhrushins, the Mamontovs, the Tretyakovs, the Soldatenkovs and many more. These famous merchants have had a particular influence on the city's development, and are responsible for the building of churches, shelters and educational and medical institutions. Take a walk along a route dedicated to the most famous families in Zamoskvorechye District.
Route: pedestrian
Start: Tretyakovskaya metro station
End: Tretyakovskaya metro station, Novokuznetskaya metro station
Furrier Halperin's House
The luxury building lined with green ceramics was known as the Emerald on Pyatnitskaya.
It was built by the architect Fyodor Schechtel at the request of the furrier Ilya Halperin.
Schechtel worked in the Art Nouveau style and employed 'kabanchik' ('little boar') tiles in his works.
The tiles get their name from their two openings at the back which resemble a piglet's heel. Surprisingly, the shop continued to sell luxury fur products throughout the Soviet years.
Outbuildings of the Zhuravlev Merchants' Estate
The two houses at No. 27 are the outbuildings of the former estate of the Zhuravlevs, who made their wealth in the 18th century from the fur trade. Their city estate comprised a central mansion and two outbuildings overlooking the street. Unfortunately, the manor house was demolished, but the outbuildings survive to this day. The unique positioning of the side walls resulted in a trapezoidal interior. As a result, the house created an optical illusion: from Pyatnitskaya St., the building seemed closer than it actually was, while looking at the street from the building's porch made it appear further away.
Art and culture Around Vagankovsky Hill
Moscow is a city built on seven hills. One of them, Vagankovsky Hill, is located right opposite the Kremlin. This hill is where Moscow's dukes kept their treasury, and where nobles that made the country's history had their residences. It has left its mark on culture, literature and the arts. On this route, you're going to learn about how unique art collections were put together, how museum associations were set up, how to find the addresses of famous artists and literary characters and much more.
Route: pedestrian
Start: Biblioteka Imeni Lenina (The Lenin Library) metro station, Borovitskaya metro station, Aleksandrovsky Sad metro station
End: Kropotkinskaya metro station
The House of the Artist V. Serov
This relatively small Moscow estate house in the quiet Starovagankovskiy Lane was built in the mid-19th century. It's where the famous Russian artist Valentin Serov lived and worked between autumn 1908 and 1911. He loved Moscow, moving here permanently in 1878. When he was young, Serov attended classes taught by Ilya Repin in Khamovniki. This is where he also met the philanthropist Savva Mamontov. Thanks to Mamontov, Serov spent some highly productive years in Abramtsevo — this is the period during which he painted his famous Girl with Peaches. The flat in the lane was Serov's last address. He painted numerous portraits of his contemporaries there, as well as a series of historical works.
The Golitsyn Estate
17 Starovagankovskiy Lane was the meeting place of the famous performance arts commission of Moscow that didn't like Woland's tricks in Bulgakov's The Master and Margarita. During the events of the book, all the civil servants working for the commission go insane. The building was constructed in the 19th century. It was paid for by the mother of Valentin Golitsyn, who took part in the Decembrist revolt. The estate later belonged to Nikolay Pastukhov, a famous journalist and the owner of the Moskovsky Listok newspaper.
The open-work metal grate bearing the owner's initials, 'NP', survives to this day.
Romantic Moscow
Moscow is a city of romance and love. Every day, people fall in love, go on dates, and make marriage proposals. Countless love stories have taken place in the city's squares, boulevards and side streets, and great and unknown people alike have spent their lives here. But all of them have filled the city with love of different kinds: mutual and unrequited, passionate and cautious, happy and unhappy. The stories behind each of the city's monuments and buildings are, above all else, love stories. The 'Moscow for Lovers' route takes in the city's most memorable romances.
Route: pedestrian
Start: Smolenskaya metro station
End: Pushkinskaya metro station, Chekhovskaya metro station, Tverskaya metro station
Old Arbat
Old Arbat is the essential starting point for a romantic walk. This famous street has long been a symbol of old Moscow, and has been immortalized in songs, poems, prose and cinema. And that's no accident — many writers, poets, directors and artists have lived and worked here. Today, Old Arbat is a pedestrian zone with all sorts of interesting, mysterious and romantic places to draw the eye of Moscow locals and visitors alike.
Lovers will be accompanied by street musicians and artists throughout the route.
Monument to Aleksander Pushkin
Today the monument to Alexander Pushkin is a symbol of the city and a landmark place, near which first dates and marriage proposals are made. Our romantic route ends here, but romantic atmosphere surrounds you wherever you go.
Whether it's Strastnoy Boulevard, Tverskaya Street or other Moscow lanes, every corner is full of love stories and legends.
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