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Tourism in Russia > Moscow city


Moscow is the capital of Russia as well as the center of Russia's business, science, culture, and tourism. The first historical mention of Moscow dates back to the year 1147. The city's unique appearance took many centuries to form. Among its incredibly beautiful monuments are the Moscow Kremlin, St. Basil's Cathedral, the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, the Novodevichy and the Donskoy Convents, the Kolomenskoye, Kuskovo, and Ostankino palace and garden complexes. Moscow is a cultural center of worldwide significance. The city has over 70 theatres; among them the Bolshoi is the most famous. Some of the priceless collections of painting and sculpture reside within the walls of almost 100 museums: the famous Tretyakov Gallery and the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts are among them. The entertainment industry is well developed here and the city plays host to numerous cultural events.

The ancient Kremlin, Red Square, the old lanes of the city centre and the super-modern Moscow City business centre, world renowned theatres, museums and picture galleries are among the innu-merable sights to see when you are in Moscow. The Russian capital is one of the centres of world sport. In 1980, Moscow had the honour of hosting the main sporting event of the planet - the Summer Olympic Games. Numerous sports and other buildings were constructed in the city especially for the Olympics; they have been modernised and renovated since then and are in use up to the present day. For twenty years, the most important event in Russia's tennis calendar has been the Kremlin Cup, an international tournament which each year brings together the very best of world tennis.

They are both state-owned and private collections of different items i. e. Russian household articles, Soviet monuments, industrial culture artifacts, etc. Multimedia museum centers and fashionable art clusters occupying former factory or plant shops present contemporary art. They host art exhibitions, film libraries, theaters, lecture halls, animation centers, bookstores, bars and restaurants.

The new Moscow museums are interactive sites interesting for both children and adults. They are not 'art temples' any more. People come there to socialize, experiment and have fun. Interactive installations, per-formances, festivals, museum nights and audio guides make museum displays more comprehensible for visitors.

An image of Moscow without Red Square and the Kremlin would be like Paris without the Eiffel Tower or London without Big Ben. But the Russian capital also includes the Moscow Metro, its historic railway stations, the cosy Arbat, its ancient churches, the monumental Stalinist high-rises, the elegant spire of the Ostankino Television Tower, the mansions of bygone centuries in the central streets and long-established parks with their manors and palaces. Moreover, residents and tourists might have different ideas about what the symbols of Moscow are. For a native-born Muscovite it might be a cosy little courtyard where his ancestors lived and where he himself grew up, while a tourist is more likely to name Red Square. And they would both be right in their way. Because Moscow, like any town or city, is individual to each person. You can look at Moscow through the eyes of a tourist v guide and take snapshots for souvenirs, or you can spend a lifetime walking through it, always looking and learning... Over the past.decades the capital has seen the growth of high-rise business centres, elite residential complexes, modern shopping and entertainment centres, and new bridges spanning the Moskva River. History will be the judge of whether they will become the new symbols of this ancient city.

The well-known tea parties of the Moscow merchants may have given quick meetings over cups of tea in a cafe, but many Muscovites still enjoy urely steam in the banya, taking their time, with no thought of rushing, raditions have also gained a foothold. Young people make a wish by tossing coins ) the new Kilometre Zero flagstone, have their wedding photos taken at Tsaritcino Park, attend festivals and concerts in Red Square and look forward to Moscow .y Day, when the central streets are turned into pedestrian zones and the citys squares become venues for fun fairs and concerts... Muscovites still celebrate finishing their last day at school by greeting the dawn in Red Square, sail along the Moskva River on riverboats, arrange to meet up at the Pushkin Monument, rub the nose of the bronze dog at Ploshchad Revolyutsii Metro Station for luck and on Victory Day file into the city centre or go to Sparrow Hills and give flowers to the veterans, and in the evening welcome the colourful fireworks with cheerful hurrahs!.

Young Muscovites know the time will soon come when they will go to Moscow Zoo with their own children, and then without fail the Tretyakov Gallery, and the theatre, and, taking a walk in Sokolniki Park, looking over to the open-air dance floor for the elderly dancers whose traditions lie far behind them, the whole family will realize that, for them, many are yet to come. * Musical Performance in Vasilievsky Spusk. Photo by V. Kupriyanov There are still plenty of singing and dancing groups in Russia which sing folk songs and dance folk dances wearing traditional garments. Truly folk costumes can be found in museums and in Russian little outof-the-way places. The concert version of folk garments is simplified and stylized, it still produces the impression of national clothing. During national holidays at all concert spots you will certainly see folk performances. 126 ? *

The stylized image of a seagull was presented to A. Chekhov as a gift by famous Moscow architect F. Shekhtel in the honor of the first-night performance of the play Seagull. Since then, from 1898, a seagull has been the symbol of the theatre: you can see it on the curtain, playbills and on the decorative lattice in front of the theatre in Kamergersky Side-street.

Mood of a city

What does the mood of a city and its people depend on? On a slushy winter, hot summer, golden autumn, or early spring? A mood may be good, festive, businesslike, dismal or just plain foul. It can be spoiled, or it may be lifted. The main thing is to have a formula for getting the mood right. You can phone your friends and meet up in a cafe. Go together to see an exhibition that all Moscow is talking about. Or why not go horse-riding in the park, or indulge your passion for horse-racing at the racetrack? If your friends are busy, you can always find a partner for a game of billiards in one of the billiard halls. The citys big (and its more modest) green oases provide Muscovites with a haven from the noise, pollution and traffic, and they are sometimes hidden away from the usual tourist trails. They are no less famous than Moscows architecture, and their names reveal their history: the Hermitage Garden, Patriarchs Pond, the Pharmaceutical Garden (Aptekarsky Ogorod park), the Merry Garden (Neskuchny Sad), Chistye Prudy (Clean Ponds). And they are in the very heart of the city. Here you will be able to relax a little. Or you can go a bit further out - to Izmailovo, Fili or Yasenovo and wander along forest paths, collect mushrooms, feed the squirrels, go skiing and in the summer go swimming and sunbathe. And understand that mood is not dependent on the weather.

Muscovites are a sharp-tongued and observant people. Just one small detail, an unusual decision on the architects part - and a building instantly gains a name with which it goes down in history. The mid-18th century baroque mansion of Count Apraxin was christened the Commode House, the huge building with the clock tower-pipe became the Steam Engine House, architect Konstantin Melnikovs avant-garde house was called the Cylinder House, the longest residential house is called the Boat House and a house without the customary ground floor - on skewed legs" - was christened the Spider House, while one of the architects latest extravagant creations was quickly named the Faberge Egg. Other innovative modern buildings have also been given their own folk names: Penguin House and Ear House. But there are .some details which you cannot see or appreciate on the run, you have to stop and take a good look. For example, the church bell tower that has developed a lean over time, the tiles of the tower chamber whose colours have been miraculously preserved, the openwork cast-iron gate of an old manor house, the sweet smile of a menacing lion, a concealed window... A random ray of sunlight, the reflection of a street lamp, descending fog, snowfall - and it is as if the architecture comes to life, recalling the legends that almost every old house possesses.

Parks of Moscow
The Central Park of Culture and Recreation
Lublino Manor
Moscow Architecture
Circus on Tsvetnoy Boulevard
Luzhniki Stadium
Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts
Moscow Subway
Ostankino Television Tower
Stalin's High-rises
Tretyakov gallery
Novodevichy Convent
Cathedral of Christ the Saviour
Bolshoi Theatre
Lenin Mausoleum
St Basils Cathedral
Kremlin of Moscow
Red Square
The museum of the Moscow Theological academ
Fedor Shalyapin
State Historical Museum in Moscow
Moscow high buildings
Moscow state university
Bourganov's House
Lefortovo Estate
Vorobyovy Gory Metro Station
Dog's nose miracles
Ubiquitous magic
Zero kilometre
Moscow Museum of Animation
Museums of Moscow
Events in Moscow
Stadiums of Moscow