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17 Top Tourist Attractions in Moscow

By Alex Schultz · Last updated on May 4, 2024

The capital of Russia is an incredible place to explore. Visitors to Moscow come away spellbound at all the amazing sights, impressed at the sheer size and grandeur of the city. Lying at the heart of Moscow, the Red Square and the Kremlin are just two of the must-see tourist attractions; they are the historical, political and spiritual heart of the city – and indeed Russia itself.

A fascinating city to wander around, stunning cathedrals, churches, and palaces lie side-by-side with bleak grey monuments and remains from the Soviet state. In addition to its plethora of historical and cultural tourist attractions, Moscow is home to world-class museums, theaters and art galleries.

Renowned for its performing arts, fantastic ballets and amazing circus acts, catching a show while in Moscow is a must. The wealth of brilliant restaurants, trendy bars, and lively nightlife means there is something for everyone to enjoy.

See also: Where to Stay in Moscow

17. Tsaritsyno Palace

Tsaritsyno Palace

Once the summer residence of Catherine the Great, the stunning Tsaritsyno Palace is now a museum-reserve. The architecture is magnificent and there is a lovely park surrounding it for visitors to explore.

Located in the south of Moscow, the palace was commissioned in 1775 and recent renovations mean its lavish interior looks better than ever before with its elegant halls and beautiful staircases.

The exhibits on display look at the life of the empress as well as the history of Tsaritsyno itself. The huge palace grounds are also home to some other delightful buildings with the elegant opera house and wonderful brickwork of the Small Palace being particularly impressive to gaze upon.


Starting out in 1935 as the ‘All-Union Agricultural Exhibition’, VDNKh has slowly morphed over the years into the fascinating open-air museum of today. Remarkably, over 400 buildings can now be found within its confines.

The huge park complex has numerous pavilions representing former Soviet republics on show, such as those of Armenia and Turkmenistan and the distinctive architecture of each of the buildings is always interesting to gaze upon. In addition to this there is the fascinating Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics which is dedicated to space exploration and the fun Moskvarium aquarium even offers you the chance to swim with dolphins.

With lots of eateries scattered about and numerous entertainment options such as horse-riding and zip-lining, there is something for everyone to enjoy; the Friendship of Nations fountain truly is wonderful.

15. Kremlin Armoury

Kremlin Armoury

One of the oldest museums in the city, the Kremlin Armoury has a wealth of treasures; highlights include the ornate Grand Siberian Railway egg, the historic Cap of Monomakh and the stunning Imperial Crown of Russia which often has a crowd of tourists around it, jostling to take a photo.

Once the royal armory, there are loads of fascinating objects on display. Perusing the many sabers, jewelry, armor and more is as interesting as it is educational and entertaining and the swords are so finely crafted that you’ll almost wish you could pick up one and wield if yourself.

Established in 1851, the museum is situated in the Moscow Kremlin.

14. GUM Department Store

GUM Department Store

Standing for ‘Main Universal Store’ in Russian, GUM is stunning. Its wonderful skylights and beautiful facades mean it doesn’t look out of place alongside its illustrious neighbors on Red Square.

With over 200 shops, boutiques and upmarket eateries inside, it is a shopaholic’s heaven and concerned partners will be glad to find more affordable options alongside luxury brands such as Dior and Prada.

The main department store in the city, GUM was opened in 1893. The stunning architecture makes it well worth a visit even if shopping isn’t your thing.

13. Moscow Metro

Moscow Metro

It’s not often that public transport looks like a work of art. So many stops on the Moscow Metro will astound visitors with their beauty and elegance.

Decked in marble and with frescoes covering the walls, the stations are amazing to gaze upon and are part of one of the longest metro systems in the world, with the first stations opened in 1935.

Using the metro is the quickest and easiest way to get around Moscow and braving the crowds of commuters is well worth it for the beauty all around you.

12. Arbat Street

Arbat Street

An elegant yet lively street, Arbat is full of impressive architecture and was once a popular place to live for aristocrats, artists, and academics.

A historic place, it is down Arbat Street that Napoleon’s troops are said to have headed on their way to capture the Kremlin.

Nowadays, there are many cafes, restaurants, and shops, as well as various monuments and statues to former residents such as Alexander Pushkin who was reputed to be a lover of the Russian Empress due to his massive influence in court.

11. Novodevichy Convent

Novodevichy Convent

Drenched in history, the Novodevichy Convent is located in a striking building that was once a fortress. This captivating place is well worth visiting when in Moscow.

Founded in 1524, the convent houses four cathedrals; Smolensk Cathedral is the undoubted highlight due to its delightful 16th-century frescoes.

Wandering around the grounds is like stepping back in time. The Novodevichy Cemetery is where many famous leaders of the Soviet Union are buried, such as Yeltsin and Khrushchev.

10. Pushkin Museum

Pushkin Museum

Despite its name, the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts actually has no connection at all to the famous poet other than that it was named in his honor after his death. A delight to visit, its extensive collection focuses on European art with masterpieces by Botticelli, Rembrandt, and van Gogh all featuring.

Sculptures, graphic art, paintings and more can be found in its beautiful galleries; various sections look at themes and epochs such as the Renaissance, the Dutch Golden Age, and Byzantine art.

Among the many highlights are the clownish characters which can be found in Cezanne’s Fastnacht (Mardi Gras) and the twirling ballerinas who look so elegant in Degas’ Blue Dancers. Picasso’s Young acrobat on a Ball is also well worth checking out for its interesting use of shapes and colors.

9. Christ The Savior Cathedral

Christ The Savior Cathedral

This gorgeous Russian Orthodox cathedral is located on the banks of the Moskva River, just a stone’s throw away from the Kremlin.

The church as it stands today was consecrated in 2000, as the original church that stood here was destroyed on the command of Josef Stalin in 1931 due to the anti-religious campaign.

With its delightful golden dome, spires and dazzling white facades, the Christ the Savior Cathedral is stunning. The interior is just as captivating to wander around, with its beautifully tiled floors and impressive altar.

8. Lenin Mausoleum

Lenin Mausoleum

Opened to the public in 1924, Lenin’s Mausoleum is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Moscow. The red granite structure is located at the heart of the city in Red Square.

Lenin’s embalmed body lies in a glass sarcophagus; it is a somewhat eerie experience walking past the former leader of the Soviet Union but is well worth doing as you understandably can’t do it anywhere else in the world.

After visiting the mausoleum, head to the Kremlin wall right next to it for more graves of important communist figures such as Stalin and Brezhnev.

7. Tretyakov Gallery

Tretyakov Gallery

Home to the most extensive and impressive collection of Russian fine art in the world, the State Tretyakov Gallery is definitely worth visiting when in Moscow for the wealth of amazing art pieces that it has on display.

Having started out as the private art collection of the Tretyakov brothers, there are now over 130,000 exhibits. Highlights include the iconic Theotokos of Vladimir which you will almost certainly recognise despite probably not knowing the name and Rublev’s Trinity which is considered to be one of highest achievements in Russian art.

An absolute must for art lovers, the State Tretyakov Gallery will delight visitors with all that is has to offer.

6. Kolomenskoye


Once a royal estate, Kolomenskoye is now a museum-reserve and lies a few kilometers outside of the city center. A captivating place to visit, there is a plethora of history on show and the site overlooks the Moskva River.

Consisting of four historical sites, there are extensive gardens for visitors to explore, as well as loads of interesting old buildings, the former village of Kolomenskoye itself and the impressive Palace of the Tsar Alexey Mikhailovich – once considered the Eighth Wonder of the World by contemporaries.

Among the many stunning sights, it is the brilliantly white Ascension Church that is the undoubted highlight – dating back to 1532.

5. Gorky Park

Gorky Park

Lying alongside the Moskva River, the huge Gorky Park is a lovely place to visit. Its extensive gardens are home to numerous cultural institutions and visitors should definitely check out the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art and while the eclectic exhibits may not always feature such incredible sights as a balloon-covered rider on a zebra; they certainly always succeed in pushing back the boundaries of art.

Pop-up exhibitions and festivals can be found from time to time in the park itself and there is an open-air theatre and numerous eateries alongside a plethora of leisure activities.

Whether it’s cycling, table tennis or yoga that you are after or beach volleyball and rowing, Gorky Park certainly has it. In winter, there is a huge ice rink for visitors to enjoy.

4. Bolshoi Theatre

Bolshoi Theatre

The Bolshoi Theatre is the main theater in the country. The amazing opera and ballet performances it has put on over the centuries go a long way in explaining Russia’s rich history of performing arts.

While the Bolshoi Ballet Company was established in 1776, the theater itself was opened in 1825. The glittering, six-tier auditorium is lavishly and decadently decorated; it is a fitting setting for the world-class performances that take place on its stage.

Spending a night watching a performance of such classics as The Nutcracker or Swan Lake at the Bolshoi Theatre is sure to be a memorable experience and the beauty all around you only adds to the sense of occasion.

3. Moscow Kremlin

Moscow Kremlin

This famously fortified complex is remarkably home to five palaces and four cathedrals and is the historic, political and spiritual center of the city. The Kremlin serves as the residence for the country’s president. It has been used as a fort, and this fact is made clear by its sheer size. The Kremlin’s outer walls were built in the late 1400s.

Under Ivan III, better known as Ivan the Great, the Kremlin became the center of a unified Russian state, and was extensively remodeled. Three of the Kremlin’s cathedrals date to his reign that lasted from 1462-1505. The Deposition Church and the Palace of Facets were also constructed during this time. The Ivan the Great Bell Tower was built in 1508. It is the tallest tower at the Kremlin with a height of 266 feet (81 meters).

Joseph Stalin removed many of the relics from the tsarist regimes. However, the Tsar Bell, the world’s largest bell, and the Tsar Cannon, the largest bombard by caliber in the world, are among the remaining items from that era. The Kremlin Armory is one of Moscow’s oldest museums as it was established more than 200 years ago. Its diamond collection is impressive.

The Kremlin’s gardens – Taynitsky, Grand Kremlin Public and Alexander – are beautiful. The Kremlin has also served as the religious center of the country, and there is a tremendous number of preserved churches and cathedrals here. The collections contained within the museums include more than 60,000 historical, cultural and artistic monuments. Those who enjoy the performing arts will want to consider attending a ballet or concert at the State Kremlin Palace. Completed in 1961, it is the only modern building in the Kremlin.

2. Red Square

Red Square

Lying at the heart of Moscow, Red Square is the most important and impressive square in the city. It is one of the most popular tourist attractions due to its wealth of historical sights and cultural landmarks.

Drenched in history, the huge square is home to incredible sights such as the Kremlin, St. Basil’s Cathedral and Lenin’s Mausoleum, among others. Consequently, it is not to be missed when in Moscow as it really is home to the city’s most stunning monuments.

It is here that many important moments in Russian history took place; the former marketplace has hosted everything from Tsar’s coronations and public ceremonies to rock concerts and Soviet military parades. Wandering around the massive square is a humbling experience and undoubtedly one of the highlights the city has to offer.

1. Saint Basil’s Cathedral

Saint Basil's Cathedral

Located in the impressive Red Square, St. Basil’s Cathedral is gorgeous; its delightful spires appear as if out of a fairytale. The most recognizable building in the country, the cathedral is very much a symbol of Russia. No visit to Moscow is complete without having taken in its unique and distinctive features.

Ivan the Terrible ordered the cathedral’s construction in the mid-16th century, and legend holds that Ivan put out the architect’s eyes so that he would be unable to build another cathedral more glorious than St. Basil’s. Designed to resemble the shape of a bonfire in full flame, the architecture is not only unique to the period in which it was built but to any subsequent period. For various reasons, both Napoleon and Stalin wanted to destroy the cathedral but fortunately did not succeed.

Known for its various colors, shapes and geometric patterns, St. Basil’s Cathedral houses nine different chapels that are all connected by a winding labyrinth of corridors and stairways. On the lower floor, St. Basil’s Chapel contains a silver casket bearing the body of St. Basil the Blessed.

Throughout the cathedral are many beautiful murals, frescoes, wooden icons and other art works and artifacts. Outside the cathedral is a lovely garden with the bronze Monument to Minin and Pozharsky, who rallied an all-volunteer Russian army against Polish invaders during a period of the late 16th century known as the Times of Troubles.

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15 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions & Things to Do in Moscow

Written by Diana Bocco Updated Dec 23, 2023 We may earn a commission from affiliate links ( )

Moscow is one of Europe's most enigmatic destinations, home to a fascinating history and colorful, awe-inspiring architecture you won't find anywhere else in the world. Moscow might be one of the most populous cities in the world with over 11 million inhabitants, but this hasn't changed its strong cultural and social traditions.

Walk the cobblestone streets of the Red Square or the banks of the Moskva River early in the morning, and it's hard to tell what century you're in.

Tsarist architecture, must-see churches, and glamorous shopping opportunities blend together for a visual experience you won't forget. For ideas on what to see and do while visiting Russia, here's our list of top tourist attractions in Moscow.

1. Marvel at the Size of the Kremlin

2. catch a performance at the bolshoi theatre, 3. shop at the luxurious gum, 4. make your way into lenin's mausoleum, 5. spend an hour (or three) at red square, 6. discover history at the museum of cosmonautics, 7. ride the stunning moscow metro, 8. explore the moscow state integrated museum-reserve, 9. spend a rainy day at the tretyakov gallery, 10. walk up and down arbat street, 11. stop by the vdnkh all-russian exhibition centre, 12. wander around gorky park, where to stay in moscow for sightseeing, map of tourist attractions & things to do in moscow.


Moscow's most recognizable structure is without a doubt the Kremlin, a 15th-century fortified complex that covers an area of 275,000 square meters surrounded by walls built in the 1400s.

The Grand Kremlin Palace -which has over 700 rooms- was once home to the Tsar family and is now the official residence of the president of the Russian Federation, although most heads of state choose to reside elsewhere.

The massive complex also includes many other buildings, some of which are open to the public and can be visited regularly. 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.

Bolshoi Theatre

The Bolshoi Theater is home to the largest and one of the oldest ballet and opera companies in the world . While the theater has undergone several major renovations over the past century-including a recent one in 2011 to restore some of the imperial architectural details-it still retains all of its Neoclassical grandeur.

The Bolshoi Theater you see today opened in 1824, after several older versions burned down. Inside, red velvet, a three-tiered crystal chandelier, and gilt moldings give the place a Byzantine-Renassaince grandiose feel like no other.

Catching a show from the resident ballet and opera troupes is a treat, as the theater often presents a number of classic performances, such as Tchaikovsky's Mazeppa and Rachmaninoff's Francesca da Rimini, both of which originally premiered here.


Moscow's oldest and most upscale shopping center is an architectural marvel. GUM (short for Glávnyj Universálnyj Magazín or "Main Universal Store") was built in the late 1800s in neo-Russian style to showcase a beautiful mix of a steel skeleton and 20,000 panels of glass forming an arched roof.

This was a unique construction at the time, since the glass had to be strong enough to support the snow-heavy Russian winters. The building is just as impressive outside, with all three levels covered in marble and granite.

While GUM is no longer the largest shopping center in Moscow, it's still by far the most beautiful. Home to brands like Gucci and Manolo Blahnik, this might not be the ideal destination for most budget-conscious visitors, but the beauty of the building itself is worth a visit.

On the third floor, there are also great dining options, including a Soviet-style canteen that serves traditional Russian food, and a stand selling ice cream made by hand using an original 1954 recipe originally approved by the Soviet government.

Lenin's Mausoleum

Lenin's Mausoleum, the final resting place of Soviet leader Vladimir Lenin, occupies a central spot in Red Square. His body has been in the mausoleum since his death in 1924-and although the original plan was for him to be buried after a short period of public display for mourning, the plan quickly changed.

After over 100,000 visited the tomb over a period of six weeks, it was decided that a new sarcophagus and a more permanent display space could actually preserve Lenin's body for much longer than expected-and Lenin's Mausoleum was built.

Over the years, the mausoleum and its marble stairs also became the main spot from where Soviet leaders would watch parades and events happening in Red Square.

Lenin's embalmed body can still be seen today, lying down in a bulletproof glass sarcophagus as if he's sleeping. While a visit to the mausoleum is certainly unusual, it has become a must-do for history buffs looking to understand how Lenin's legacy truly changed the nation. Come ready to wait, though -there are usually lines to get in.

St. Basil's Cathedral on Red Square

All of Moscow's main streets start at Red Square, so it's easy to see why this is considered the heart of the city. A massive space of 330 meters by 70 meters, the square is flanked by the Kremlin, Lenin's Mausoleum, two cathedrals, and the State Historical Museum.

In 1945, a massive Victory Parade was held here to celebrate the defeat of Nazi Germany by the Soviet Armed Forces.

St. Basil's Cathedral , one of the most recognizable buildings on the square, was built in 1555. The unique cathedral has architectural details inspired by Byzantine and Asian design, as well as details that resemble those found in famous mosques. There are nine individual chapels inside the church, all decorated with colorful mural art.

Both the square itself and the Kremlin are recognized as UNESCO World Heritage Sites . On weekends, there are sometimes stalls selling souvenirs and traditional items here, such as matryoshka (Russian nesting dolls), at the entrance of the square.

Monument to the Conquerors of Space

At one point, Russia and the US were toe-to-toe when it came to space exploration. While that might no longer be the case, the museum's amazing collection-which includes over 85,000 items-is still awe-inspiring.

Main exhibits include the space capsule used by Yuri Gagarin , the first human to travel into outer space; a USSR flag with moon fragments; a Soviet spacesuit; and a rocket propulsion unit from the 1960s. A special two-story hall showcases sections of the Mir space station interior, and there are also models of the first sputniks and a replica miniature spaceship.

English-language tours are available, and there's also a Cinema Hall showing subtitled short films about the history of space exploration programs and the first manned space flight.

The museum is located inside the base of the monument to the Conquerors of Space, which was built almost 20 years before the museum opened.

Komsomolskaya Station on the Moscow metro

Riding the Moscow metro is an experience all in itself, but even just heading underground to walk through the stations is something no visitor should miss. With 223 stations and 12 metro lines crosscutting through Moscow, however, this can be tricky, so visiting at least a few of the most impressive ones is a good start.

Arbatskaya station was designed by a skyscraper architect, so it's no surprise that it features multicolored granite slabs and impressive bronze chandeliers.

Park Kultury station , located next to Gorky Park, is covered in marble and features reliefs of people involved in sports, while Teatralnaya station is decorated with porcelain figures dancing and wearing traditional Russian costumes.

The metro is open between 5:30am and 1:00am but it's very crowded in the early morning and after 4pm, so it's better to visit in the late morning or early afternoon to really appreciate the architecture without the crowds.

Kolomenskoye Estate

The Moscow State Integrated Art and Historical Architectural and Natural Landscape Museum-Reserve is a cultural open-air museum complex comprised of four different historical sites.

The most important site, the Kolomenskoye Estate, was once the summer residence of Tsars as far back as the 14 th century. The complex, which covers almost 300 hectares, is home to fairy-tale wooden palaces; a tent-roof stone church built in the 1500s; a water tower; fort towers and structures; and the 24-room Museum of Wooden Architecture , which includes the restored dining room of Tsar Alexei I.

Beautiful manicured gardens , riverside picnic areas, and a massive collection of both artifacts and structures make this a great destination to help you see what medieval Russia looked like. English-language tours are available, but you're also free to wander the grounds on your own.

Tretyakov Gallery

The largest collection of Russian art in the world sits here, with over 180,000 paintings, sculptures, and religious art dating back to over a millennia ago. The gallery, built using beautiful red and white colors from classical Russian architecture, is located near the Kremlin and it was built in the early 20 th century.

Significant art pieces include the Vladimir Mother of God; a Byzantine icon of the Virgin and child dating back to the 1100s; Andrei Rublev's The Trinity icon from the 15 th century; and several works by Ilya Repin, the most famous realist painter in Russia.

On the grounds of the museum, there is also an 86-meter-tall statue of Peter the Great, as well as a number of Socialist Realism sculptures.

Night view of Arbat Street decorated for the holidays

Moscow's one-kilometer-long pedestrian street has been around since the 15 th century. Originally a trade route in the outskirts of the city, Arbat Street is now very centrally located, home to posh buildings and lots of places to eat and shop.

Beautiful street lamps and two significant statues-one of Princess Turandot (from Puccini's last opera) and one of Soviet-era poet Bulat Okudzhava-adorn the street, which fills up with both locals and tourists on evenings and weekends.

A great place to pick up souvenirs or sit down at an outdoor café, Arbat Street also offers a chance to visit the former home of poet Alexander Pushkin and the café both Anton Chekhov and Leo Tolstoy used to visit.

VDNKh All-Russian Exhibition Centre and the Friendship of the Peoples Fountain

Although it was originally designed as a general-purpose trade show venue, this park complex now houses amusement rides , ice rinks , and a number of galleries and other attractions for all ages.

The park's most famous landmarks are the Moskvarium, a marine biology center home to over 8000 species of marine animals, the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, and a shopping center selling traditional products from former Soviet countries.

There's even a film museum showing Soviet cartoons or even a full-length film (for an extra fee) and an education center offering masterclasses on everything from becoming a barista to video montage (call or write in advance to find out which ones are English-friendly).

Soviet-era pavilions, sculptures, and fountains abound here as well, including the famous Friendship of the Peoples Fountain, which features statues of women dressed in costumes from different former Soviet countries.

Main entrance gate to Gorky Park

Named after the famous Russian writer Maxim Gorky (who was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature five times but never won it) and sitting right across the Moskva River, Gorky Park covers 120 hectares of beautiful ponds and green spaces.

Popular with both locals and tourists, the park offers a variety of things to enjoy-from sunbeds, hammocks, and drinking fountains to free yoga classes and children's playgrounds. There's free Wi-Fi and sockets for charging your phone, as well as many food stands and plenty of wild animals, including deer, rabbits, and pheasants.

Visitors can rent paddle boats and bicycles to explore the park-and from May to October, there is also an open-air movie theater, as well as scheduled presentations by street performers, musicians, and artists. Gorky Park attracts the young and old, so don't be surprised to see a mix of people exercising, playing chess, and sunbathing.

Luxury Hotels :

  • Lotte Hotel Moscow is one of the top 5-star properties in Moscow offering the largest Royal Suite in Russia. The trendy rooms and suites here all have contemporary style and great city views. On-site amenities are plentiful. There are two restaurants: one serving contemporary Italian fare, and the other Japanese. There is an impressively lit indoor swimming pool, a well-known spa, and a state-of-the-art gym.
  • Another excellent luxury hotel is the Ararat Park Hyatt Moscow . The residential-style property is in the heart of Moscow just next to the Bolshoi Theatre and within walking distance of the Kremlin and Red Square. The rooms and suites have been opulently designed by Tony Chi. The on-site restaurant serves a mix of European and Armenian specialities. There is also a Japanese sushi bar and a rooftop lounge with fabulous city views.
  • The St. Regis Moscow Nikolskaya also has a central location just a few minutes from the Kremlin and Red Square. The 5-star property has a mix of elegant rooms and suites, including interconnecting room options for families with kids. There are multiple restaurants on-site including an Italian bistro. Other amenities include the fabulous Iridium Spa, which does a full range of treatments and has an indoor swimming pool, sauna, and steam room.

Mid-Range Hotels :

  • Palmira Business Club is a top mid-range choice. The contemporary lifestyle hotel offers well-appointed rooms and suites, including options for families. Suites are quite spacious and have kitchenettes. Amenities here include a complimentary breakfast at the on-site restaurant, a hot tub, sauna, and spa. There is also a fitness center.
  • The trendy Mercure Moscow Baumanskaya offers a mix of rooms and suites with contemporary decor. The mid-range hotel can arrange airport transportation and offers baggage storage. Other amenities include a restaurant and room service. The front desk is open 24 hours.
  • Boutique Hotel Brighton is about 10 minutes from the city center in a leafy park area. It offers excellent value for money and has charming rooms and suites with sound-proof windows and doors, as well as blackout curtains. A complimentary breakfast is served, and there is also an indoor swimming pool.

Budget Hotels :

  • Hotel Ibis Budget Moscow Panfilovskaya is about a 15-minute drive from Moscow's downtown, and it's within walking distance from a metro station that will take you there. The soundproof rooms at this budget property are clean, comfortable, and can sleep up to three people. The hotel is pet friendly, has paid parking available on-site, and also has a salon.
  • If you just need a budget hotel near the airport then check out Aviator Hotel Sheremetyevo . Located right at the airport, it has soundproof rooms, including options for families. Amenities include an indoor play area for kids, a sauna and swimming pool, and a free breakfast.

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Exploring Russia: Whether you are interested in history, nature, or architecture, there's much to see in Russia. For a good introduction to some of the most fascinating spots in the country, take a look at our article on the Best Places to Visit in Russia . For more on Russia's second-largest city and all it has to offer, check out our piece on the Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in St. Petersburg .

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Zhivopisny Bridge in Moscow

Searching for a new adventure in Eastern Europe? Consider a trip to Moscow. Russia's capital and largest city, this frigid megacity is known for its political, scientific, and literary pursuits. With traditional Russian architecture, unique cultural traditions, and several world-class museums, Moscow is a city that should be on everybody's bucket list.

With a population exceeding 12 million, Moscow is one of the world's largest economies and one of the richest cities in Europe. Moscow is also a very popular vacation destination and has four international airports, linking the Russian capital with locations worldwide. Check in at a Russian luggage locker, and check out some of the best sights Moscow has to offer. 

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Saint Basil's Cathedral

8 Best Ways To Experience Moscow In 2024

From the Red Square to the Bolshoi Theater to the Red October Chocolate Factory , Moscow is overflowing with unique and diverse attractions as well as endless examples of eye-boggling architecture. Moscow is not just the biggest city in Russia, but one of the largest in the world and has a history covering over eight centuries. For those two reasons alone it makes sense to explore it with people in the know. The companies and guides detailed below will make sure your visit to Moscow is as fascinating and exciting as the Russian capital itself. Don’t forget to drop off your luggage at a Bounce luggage locker in Moscow so that you won’t be carrying more than you need to.

Best Free Tour – The Guide In Moscow

Keep more rubles in your rucksack by taking a free tour of Moscow with The Guide In Moscow . You'll find the guide under the statue of Karl Marx in the Red Square holding a white umbrella. Once the group of the day has gathered, you'll set off to go around all the best sights by foot while the guide narrates interesting facts and anecdotes about the famous landmarks you're seeing.

To find out more details of this free tour of Moscow send an email to [email protected] or call The Guide In Moscow on 79-670-273-002.

Best Food Tour – Moscow With Locals

The best way to learn all about the gastronomy of a city is to experience it with a local. Try a food tour with Moscow with Locals and you'll be amazed at the eateries and dishes they introduce you to. It definitely beats eating in McDonalds every day because you haven't got a clue what the food on the restaurant menus contains. Once you've eaten Russian dumplings, you'll never eat a burger again.

Prepare for a food adventure in Moscow by emailing Moscow With Locals at [email protected] or call them on 79-032-400-786.

Best Sightseeing Tour – Lovely Moscow

There are as many interesting monuments outside of Moscow as there are in it. Head away from the city with a guide from Lovely Moscow and they'll take you on a journey of discovery to see the Kremlin of Suzdal, the Golden Gates of Vladimir, and the monastery in Sergiev Posad. This tour is also a great way of getting to see rural Russia where the landscape is dotted with scenic lakes.

Get ready to explore rural Russia with Lovely Moscow by calling them on 79-267-253-159 or by emailing them at [email protected].

Best Off-The-Beaten-Path Tour – Spasibo Tours

Sometimes doing something totally different from the regular touristy things makes for a more memorable visit no matter where you go. You can take an off-the-beaten-path tour of Moscow with Spasibo Tours that will give you a real insider view of the city. By the time you've finished photographing several metro stations or visited half a dozen vodka museums, you'll feel just like a local yourself.

Plan to do something different in Moscow by contacting Spasibo Tours on 79-036-194-438 or email them at [email protected] for more information.

Best Metro Tour – Maria Moscow Tours

The metro stations in Moscow are an underground world of amazing architectural finesse. Take a tour of ten of them with Maria Moscow Tours and you'll be impressed from the first to the last by the elaborate Art Deco and Baroque designs. There are incredible mosaics, giant marble columns, and even stained glass panels, so plenty of opportunities for some great social media-worthy photos.

Get in touch with Maria Moscow Tours by calling 79-096-903-661 or by emailing [email protected].

Best Private Tour – We Heart Moscow

If your free time in Moscow doesn't coincide with the day of the tour that's caught your eye, take a private tour with We Heart Moscow instead. They have a super range of tours covering all of the city's main attractions and then some. You can choose the pre-organized itinerary that suits your schedule and interests or arrange your own tailor-made tour.

Make the most of your time in Moscow by contacting We Heart Moscow by email at [email protected] or call them on 74-951-667-269.  

Best Cultural Tour – MoscowMe

Moscow is world-renowned for its ballet, theater, and art. To learn more about all three of these aspects of the city's culture, and some food too, go out and about with a guide from MoscowMe . They have in-depth knowledge of the history of the arts in Moscow and enjoy nothing more than sharing their knowledge with interested visitors.

Get arty with MoscowMe by calling them on 79-100-965-565 or email them at [email protected] for more details.

Best Adventure Tour – Travel Real Russia

Forget all about sedate sightseeing and go off-road in a pimped-up UAZ van along mud trails in the Russian forests. You'll ford rivers and go below ground with a session of caving before taking a break while your hosts cook you a big barbecue lunch. This tour is great fun but definitely only for the truly adventurous.

Plan your off-road adventure with Travel Real Russia by emailing them at [email protected] or by calling them on 79-263-614-981.  

Home to several world-famous landmarks and fascinating museums, planning a weekend away in Moscow is no easy feat. Maximize your time by dropping your cumbersome belongings at a Moscow luggage storage service, and head to some of these top attractions in Moscow.

  • Plan a tour of the world-famous St Basil's Cathedral. Constructed in the 16th century under orders from Ivan the Terrible to celebrate military victories over Kazan and Astrakhan, St Basil's Cathedral is one of the finest examples of Russian architecture globally. 
  • Take a stroll through Red Square. Moscow's central plaza is a must-see and is flanked by two of Russia's best-known buildings, the Kremlin and St Basil's Cathedral.
  • Catch a show at the iconic Bolshoi Theatre. Home to the world's largest ballet company, the Bolshoi Theatre is one of the most highly respected venues in the world. 
  • Chow down at one of the top restaurants in the Russian capital. Moscow is home to dozens of classy eateries, including Tkemali, Sabor de la Vida Restaurant, and Dzhumbus.

Moscow lockers

Moscow is a sprawling city, and during icy weather, the chances are you won't want to lug around anything heavy through snow-covered streets. Save yourself any unnecessary hassle by booking a spot at a Moscow suitcase storage service. Bounce provides the best luggage storage services in Moscow , with easy-to-locate and secure facilities across the city. Book online via the Bounce app, and before you know it, you'll have a safe spot to stow your suitcases while you explore the Russian capital. 

Off the beaten path in Moscow

Surprisingly, Moscow is one of the greenest cities in Europe, with around 40% of the city consisting of parks and green spaces. This makes Moscow the perfect place to relax and escape large crowds. Step off the beaten path and check out some of these parks and hidden gems dotted across Moscow. 

  • Take in views of the city from Sparrow Hills. Located 260 feet up on a hill on the banks of the Moskva River, this parkland provides some of the best natural panoramas of Moscow's skyline. 
  • Get some brief respite from the crowded streets at Gorky Park. Moscow's main public park is located at the center of the city, covering over 110 acres along the Moskva River. Challenge your fellow travelers to a game of volleyball, or peruse the park's modern art exhibitions. 
  • Go for a romantic ramble with a loved one through the Apothecary Garden. Moscow University's botanical gardens date back to the 18th century and are meticulously laid out, featuring exotic flora from across the globe.

What to do alone in Moscow

Moscow skyline at night

Travelers who find themselves in Moscow on a Russian road trip or happen to be in town on business may be wondering how to kill time during their visit. Thankfully, Moscow offers a plethora of activities for solo adventurers. Keep your luggage safe by visiting a Moscow storage locker, and add these activities to your itinerary.

  • Climb to the top of Europe at the Ostankino Television Tower. Standing at over 1,700 feet, the Ostankino Television Tower is the highest free-standing building in Europe. Enjoy the best bird's eye views of Moscow from the observation deck, or book a table at the 7th Heaven Restaurant for dinner in the clouds.
  • Pay a visit to Lenin's Mausoleum. The final resting place of Soviet leader Vladimir Lenin, visitors can come face-to-face with the embalmed body of one of the most important political figures in Russian history. 
  • Discover the largest art collection in Europe at The Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts. This massive art museum has a collection of over 700,000 objects, with artworks by the likes of Picasso, Rembrandt, and van Gogh.

The best souvenirs in Moscow

With a unique culture and long history, you'll find plenty of interesting souvenirs to pick up during your travels to Moscow. By far one of the most popular inexpensive mementos you can pick up is a Matryoshka or Russian nested doll. Another great souvenir you can pick up is a fur hat to keep you warm during your vacation and when you return home. 

If you're looking to splash out on something special, pick up an ornate samovar, a type of traditional kettle dating back to the 18th century. Moscow also has plenty of culinary treats that you might want to buy as gifts for folks back home. Muscovites are famous for their love of vodka, and you won't have trouble finding a unique bottle in the capital. Russia is also known for producing world-class caviar, in case you're looking to indulge in the finer things.

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The best things to do and places to visit in Moscow, Russia

Updated On 19th June, 2024

The best places to visit in Moscow

While Moscow isn’t always at the top of everyone’s Europe bucket list , it’s certainly one of the best places to visit in Europe if you’re looking for a more alternative adventure! In this blog post I plan on sharing some of the free things to do in Moscow, as well as the best places to visit in Moscow, so that you can enjoy some of the best things to do in Russia! 

Moscow, the capital of Russia, sits in the European part of the country. It’s an incredibly beautiful city, which I personally found to be more beautiful than Saint Petersburg (which is often people’s preference). The capital is certainly a lot busier, and less laid back than Saint Petersburg , but it’s a much more colourful and vibrant city, full of stunning and unique architecture.

Visiting famous landmarks such as The Kremlin and St Basil’s Cathedral, enjoying some of the green space in Gorky Park, watching a ballet in the Bolshoi Theatre… these are just a few reasons that you should visit Moscow! On top of that, because of visa restrictions (we’ll get onto that later), it’s also one of the most unique destinations in Europe. 

There is a common misconception that Moscow is a dangerous city, but now that I’ve visited, I don’t believe this to be true. I would say the same rules apply here as to other large cities: avoid walking in dark areas alone at night, keep an eye on your belongings on public transport, and be streetwise. There’s no reason to avoid visiting this energetic city and miss out on these amazing things to do in Moscow! 

It would take months if you wanted to truly explore Moscow because it’s a huge city, but I’m going to share some of my favourite things to do in Moscow and places to visit in Moscow so that you can prepare for your upcoming adventure! Even if you’re only there for a few days, you should be able to fit in these highlights from my trip. 

Other blog posts you might be interested in…

  • The best things to do in St Petersburg
  • A 2-week Norway road trip
  • A complete guide to Helsinki
  • A complete guide to Tallinn
  • Europe: the ultimate travel guide
  • The best capital cities to visit in Europe
  • The best things to do in Europe: the ultimate Europe bucket list

Where is Moscow?

If you’re wondering ‘Where is Moscow, Russia?’ then you’ve come to the right place! Moscow in in west Russia, the European part, and it’s the capital city. 

How do you get to Moscow?

Getting a visa for moscow:.

To get into Russia, you need to get a visa. The processing time is approximately 20 days, and you’ll need to have your fingerprints taken at a visa centre in London , Edinburgh or Manchester. You can find out more about getting a visa for Russia here.  

Getting to Moscow:

Once you’ve got your visa, the easiest way to get to Moscow from the UK is by flying. Direct flights between London and Moscow take just under four hours, and with an airport layover you’re looking at a 6-7 hour trip. You can also fly in from many other major European and international cities. 

Top tip: Check out flights to and from Copenhagen on  Skyscanner here.

Check out how to pack a weekend away in a carry-on suitcase here.

Top tip: Getting around Moscow

If you want to get a taxi, use the local taxi app “Yandex” which is similar to Uber. Definitely avoid taxis waiting in tourist spots, as they can charge you ridiculous amounts of money for a very short ride.

16 best places to visit in Moscow

1. st basil’s cathedral.

The most iconic building in Russia and one of the most iconic buildings in the world. St Basil’s Cathedral is one of the best places to visit in Moscow, if not the best! 

St Basil’s is situated on Red Square, where you’ll also find many other popular places to visit in Moscow. In my opinion this still stands out against them all. There’s something about the multi coloured domes against the Moscow skyline that I found quite spectacular. 

Although I’d already been in Russia for several days, it wasn’t until I was at this amazing piece of architecture that I really felt I was in Russia.

The cathedral was built by order of Ivan the Terrible, and apparently after the architect completed it, Ivan blinded him so that he could never build anything more beautiful. Whether or not this story is true, it certainly adds a bittersweet feeling as you stand admiring the beauty of St Basil’s Cathedral.

Inside is a museum displaying many historic items once used at the cathedral, which costs 700 rubles to enter. In my opinion it’s worth the entry fee, as simply seeing the ornate interior walls is a spectacle in itself.

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

2. The Kremlin

This historic fortress that sits on Red Square is probably the largest landmark and one of the most popular places to visit in Moscow. It’s the official residence of the President, although he doesn’t actually live there. It’s been rebuilt many times since it was first constructed in 1147 out of wood, before Ivan III the Great ordered it to be made from stone, which is the Kremlin you’ll recognise today. 

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

This place is huge, and there’s quite a lot to see. The first problem I had was finding where the entrance was. Even though I had a pre-booked ticket, I was then told I still had to visit the ticket office to exchange it for another ticket. I also needed my passport, so make sure you have yours if you plan to visit the Kremlin. After a lengthy queue I finally had a ticket I could use to enter the Kremlin, and had to go through security. The security here is thorough, so make sure you don’t take too much in with you. I had my pockets full, and it was a nightmare emptying them and explaining each item, before I was finally allowed in. Once inside you can pay for extra tickets to visit the various museums, however there’s also quite a lot to see simply on the grounds if you don’t want to spend too much. 

See more tips for travelling on a budget here. 

There’s so much to see here, including The Assumption Cathedral, Ivan the Great Bell Tower Complex, the Grand Kremlin Palace, the Armoury Chamber and Diamond Fund. There is also the Tsar Cannon (a huge artillery cannon), and the Tsar Bell. The Tsar Bell is the largest bell in the world. An incident with a fire and water being poured over the bell caused it to crack and for a slab to break off from it, which can now be seen propped up next to it.

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

As you walk around the grounds you’ll hear the sound of whistles. The guards patrolling the area will blow a whistle at anyone walking where they shouldn’t. Even if it’s just on the grass, or towards more restricted areas. This can sometimes be funny to watch, as often the tourists will be in a world of their own whilst a guard is blowing a whistle at them. Sometimes a guard will be stood face to face with a tourist angrily blowing their whistle before the tourist realises they need to get back onto the main path.

This is perhaps one of the more unusual places to visit in Moscow! Gum is a huge department store situated on Red Square. It’s an interesting department store to walk around, with several levels, although the shops inside are certainly quite pricey. It’s a beautiful building when it’s lit up at night, and it seems to fit in nicely amongst the other famous sights on Red Square. Even if you don’t plan to buy anything here, one of the best things to do in Moscow is to take a quick look inside, although bear in mind there are usually security checks before entering.

4. State Historical Museum

The large crimson building on Red Square is now the State Historical Museum. It was originally the first pharmacy in Russia, and later a University before finally becoming the museum it is today.

Unfortunately I didn’t go inside as my time was limited and there was so much else I wanted to see, but if you have the time I think it would be one of the best things to do in Moscow. There are items dating back to the 6th century, and maybe even further. There’s also a library inside storing many ancient manuscripts and the largest coin collection in Russia. 

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

5. Bolshoi Theatre

Bolshoi means big in Russian, so it roughly translates to large theatre. The Bolshoi Theatre is one of the foremost ballet companies in the world. The exterior of the building is an impressive sight, one of the most beautiful places to visit in Moscow, and it’s certainly worth admiring from the outside. There are guided tours of the interior, but if you really want to experience the theatre, one of the best things to do in Moscow is to watch a ballet here.

I was torn between booking a seat, but the ballets were very expensive. I’d have liked to have seen “Swan Lake”, (as at least I may have recognised some of the music). Unfortunately there were no performances on the days I was in Moscow, so I decided to pass. But if I return to Russia, then watching a ballet will be on my list of things to do.

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

6. Sparrow Hills

If you want a good view of the city, then Sparrow Hills is one of the best places to visit in Moscow. It’s a bit of a trek outside of the centre, but if you have the time then it offers an escape from the hustle and bustle of the busy city. There’s a viewing platform here which gives you fantastic panoramic views of Moscow.

Nearby you’ll see the magnificent Moscow State University building, which is one of the seven sisters of Moscow.

7. Seven Sisters

Whilst in Moscow, you’ll no doubt notice these magnificent soviet skyscrapers dotted around the city. At the time of construction they were the tallest buildings in Europe, Moscow State University being so until 1997. There are, as the name suggests, seven in total, which are: Hotel Ukraina, Kotelnicheskaya Embankment Apartments, the Kudrinskaya Square Building, the Hilton Moscow Leningradskaya Hotel, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Moscow State University, and the Red Gates Administrative Building.

If you visit Sparrow Hills, then you’ll come across Moscow State University, but I’m certain as you explore the city, you’ll see more of these giants against the Moscow skyline. One of the best things to do in Moscow is to see if you can locate all seven as you wander round the city! 

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

8. Nikolskaya Street

The start of this street is found by Red Square. It’s one of the most prominent pedestrianised streets in Moscow, filled with shops, restaurants and bars, so one of the best places to visit in Moscow if you’re looking for a bite to eat or some souvenirs!

What makes this street extra special are the thousands of bright lights in the sky above. After dark it looks simply magical with the many colourful lights overhead as you walk beneath them. One of the best things to do in Moscow is to visit Nikolskaya Street after dark and see them for yourself. It almost feels like Christmas in London!

There is another street nearby which also features similar lights, “Kuznetskiy Most”, which is also quite beautiful, but I thought “Nikolskaya Street” was ever slightly more impressive.

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

9. Izmailovo Kremlin and Izmaylovskiy Bazar

Did you know that The Kremlin in Red Square is not the only Kremlin in Moscow? Kremlin actually means a type of fortress, so there are many in Russia.

The Izmailovo Kremlin is a fairly new addition to the city, having been built in 2007 as a cultural centre. With its multitude of colours and historic style, it has a real fairytale feel to it. There are several small museums here for you to explore, devoted to subjects such as Russian folk art, vodka and bread (yes, bread). Visiting these is definitely one of the more unique things to do in Moscow! 

It’s a little way out of the centre, but it’s an interesting place to visit in Moscow to see something a little bit different, and it won’t be as overcrowded with tourists. 

Next to the Izmailovo Kremlin is the best market in Moscow for souvenirs. You’ll find good and poor quality items, but you’ll certainly pick up a bargain if you take your time and haggle for a good price. Many of the items here you’ll get for half the price you would in souvenir shops in the city centre. It’s here that I picked up several Matryoshka dolls for a very good price. I think I’d have paid more than double, or possibly even triple if I’d have bought them elsewhere.

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

10. Izmailovsky Park

Not too far from Izmailovo Kremlin you’ll find this huge park, one of the prettiest places to visit in Moscow. It’s easy to get lost here, so try to make sure you keep track of where you entered if you plan to go back the same way. There’s a lot to see in this park, a round pond, ferris wheel, playgrounds and sports grounds, shooting galleries, cinemas and a skate park.

There are often festivals, concerts and exhibitions at the park, on top of firework displays and dance parties.

The main reason I chose to visit the park was to find the painted trees. A local artist “Yevgenia Khlynina” has been painting on trees in this park, and one of the best things to do in Moscow is to explore the park looking for them. One of the most famous pieces of hers is the “Hedgehog in the Fog” from a famous soviet cartoon.

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

11. Gorky Park

The most famous park in Moscow is named after the writer “Maxim Gorky”. Although it’s likely you’ve heard it mentioned in the song “Wind of Change” by “The Scorpions”. 

There’s lots to do and see in the park with sports facilities and exhibitions. During the summer months this is one of the best places to visit if you’re looking for things to do in Moscow; there are often open air concerts and an open air cinema. There are many statues and sculptures in the park, including a small sculpture park area which features many interesting pieces.

One piece of advice: don’t visit Gorky Park or any other parks on 2nd August if you’re in Russia. 2nd August is Paratrooper day, which usually encourages a lot of drinking in the park, which is not always very welcoming.

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

12. Arbat Street

One of the oldest and busiest streets in Moscow, and the most famous pedestrian street in the city. Arbat is one of the most popular places to visit in Moscow. There are several shops including many dedicated to souvenirs, but although these will have a good range of goods, they will be quite expensive . You may see street performers and buskers, and there are often poets reciting famous works, if not their own works.

It’s within walking distance from the Kremlin, which should only take around 10 minutes.

There are actually two streets with this name, Old Arbat Street and New Arbat Street. Old Arbat Street is where you’ll find the pedestrianised area. New Arbat Street is a separate street which runs alongside a main road, filled with many bars and restaurants.

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

13. Metro station art

The best way to get around Moscow is by using the metro, and the metro is a tourist attraction in itself.

Although I obviously didn’t visit every metro station, I believe that every single station is unique in its own beautiful way. Many of the stations I passed through were impressive, quirky or simply jaw dropping. You’ll more than likely pass through many of them on the way to other sights, but I’d recommend the following:  Komsomolskaya, Novoslobodskaya, Mayakovskaya, Teatralnaya, Arbatskaya, Prospekt Mira and Ploschad Revolutsii (be sure to pet the dog statue for good luck).

There are of course many others for you to explore, but these are the ones I considered to be some of the most impressive places to visit in Moscow (even if they’re only metro stations!).

The best things to do in Moscow: my favourite places to visit in Moscow

VDNKh is an exhibition centre with many monuments and museums. Now that it’s combined with the Botanical Garden and Ostankino Park, one of the best things to do in Moscow is to spend the day at this recreational centre enjoying a mix of nature and culture. The most popular museum in the complex which you shouldn’t miss on your trip to Moscow is the Museum of Cosmonautics.

15. Lenin’s Mausoleum

Despite requesting to be buried with his mum in St Petersburg, it is at the foot of the Kremlin on Red Sqaure that you will find Lenin’s Mausoleum, where Vladimir Ilych Lenin has been frozen in time since 1924. It’s only open for a few hours a few times per week. Photography is not allowed, and you should line up on the western corner of the square (near Alexander Garden) to wait you turn to see the embalmed body. 

16. Novodevichy Convent

Novodevichy Convent, on the UNESCO World Heritage List, is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Moscow. Located south west of the centre you’ll find this stunning monastery. Inside you’ll find a cathedral and several churches, surrounded by high walls and 12 towers.

Where are your favourite places to visit in Moscow?

What about the best things to do in Moscow? Anything you’d add?

Love as always and happy adventuring…

Martin Taylor

I’m Spike! Solo traveller, cultural explorer and world adventurer! With 57 countries under my belt, I live and breathe travel. I never plan to stop exploring new destinations and experiencing new cultures.

Did you find this post helpful? I’d love you to share it for me.

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The best places to visit in Moscow




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The Top Things to Do in Moscow

Statue of Kuzma Minin and Dmitry Pozharsky in front of St Basils Cathedral

As a vibrant capital and Europe’s largest city, Moscow is a powerful mix of history and edginess, full of world-famous sites. Russia ’s capital was just a small town when it was first recorded 800 years ago, but there is enough here today to keep you busy for months. Here’s the ultimate first-timer’s list of things to do in Moscow, from exploring the Kremlin and St Basil’s Cathedral to getting a cable car from Sparrow Hills or skating in Gorky Park.

Did you know – Culture Trip now does bookable, small-group trips? Pick from authentic, immersive Epic Trips , compact and action-packed Mini Trips and sparkling, expansive Sailing Trips .

The heart of Russia’s capital, Red Square is surrounded by striking sites including the Kremlin, St Basil’s Cathedral and Lenin’s Mausoleum, and is where so much of the country’s history has unfolded. What was once a humble market square has become known as the place where rebels have been executed, protests staged and military strength put on show throughout Russia’s tumultuous history.

St Basil’s Cathedral

However long you’re visiting Moscow for, you must set aside some time to soak up the archetypal image of Russia’s capital with the glistening rainbow roofs of St Basil’s Cathedral. The onion-shaped domes were designed to make the building look like flames on a bonfire. The cathedral was commissioned in the 1500s by Ivan the Terrible and according to legend, the Tsar thought it so beautiful he ordered that the architect be blinded so they would never surpass this creation.

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Lenin’s Mausoleum

The love-it-or-hate-it of Russia attractions, Lenin’s Mausoleum houses a glass sarcophagus containing the embalmed body of the legendary Russian revolutionary, Vladimir Lenin. First opened to the public in August 1924, the Mausoleum attracts around 2.5m visitors a year, who presumably don’t mind queueing and going through a thorough search to enter Lenin’s presence.

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Moscow Kremlin

The biggest active fortress in Europe , Moscow’s Kremlin offers a week’s worth of attractions on its own. Once you get behind the 2,235m (7,332ft) of walls, there are five squares to wander around, various buildings to explore, 20 towers to learn the names of, and the world’s largest bell and cannon to see.

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State Historical Museum

An attraction in its own right, the State Historical Museum, founded in 1872 by Ivan Zabelin and Aleksey Uvarov, was once the principal medicine store, also containing antiquaries owned by the royal family. It now houses an impressive collection, which includes relics of prehistoric tribes that once inhabited the territory of present-day Russia, the country’s largest coin collection, as well as 6th-century manuscripts and artworks collected by the Romanov dynasty, among other treasures.

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Russia’s main department store, GUM’s stunning interior houses a variety of high-end boutiques. Built between 1890 and 1893 and known as the Upper Trading Rows until the 1920s, the legendary store is now home to over 100 boutiques selling a variety of brands: from luxurious Dior to the more affordable Zara. Even if shopping is not on your list of what to do in Moscow, the GUM is still worth a visit; the glass-roofed arcade faces Red Square and offers a variety of classy eateries.

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Arbat Street

An elegant, pedestrianised street right in the historic city centre, Arbat is one of Moscow’s most touristy spots. With lots of cafes and restaurants , live music performers and caricaturists, as well as souvenir shops and tattoo parlours, monuments and a theatre, Arbat draws crowds of visitors every day.

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Tretyakov Gallery

Built between 1900 and 1905, Tretyakov Gallery started as the private collection of the Tretyakov brothers, who were 19th-century philanthropists. Designed by Viktor Vasnetsov, the gallery is home to one of the largest collections of Russian art in the world. Here you can see icons including Rublev’s Trinity, and pre-revolutionary masterpieces such as Girl With Peaches by Valentin Serov, Demon by Mikhail Vrubel and The Rooks Have Come Back by Alexei Savrasov.

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Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts

The largest foreign art museum in Moscow comprises three branches housing a collection of incredible works by masters of ancient civilisations, the Italian Renaissance and the Dutch Golden Age. The main building contains masterpieces by Botticelli, Tiepolo, Veronese and Rembrandt, some of which had never been displayed before. The Gallery of European and American Art, located next door, stores an incredible collection of impressionist and post-impressionist paintings.

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Moscow’s premier green space, Gorky Park offers entertainment for every taste: outdoor dancing sessions, yoga and fitness classes all summer, as well as beach volleyball and ping-pong, rollerblading, skateboarding and cycling opportunities, along with Segway and boat rentals. In winter, half the park turns into one of the city’s biggest ice skating rinks. The park is also home to an open-air movie theatre and one of the less obvious places to visit in Moscow for art lovers, the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art.

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Sparrow Hills

If you take a walk from Gorky Park along the Moscow river embankment, you’ll end up in the city’s other legendary park, Sparrow Hills. Although the park doesn’t offer as many activities as its hip neighbour, here you can take a closer look at the tallest of the seven Stalinist skyscrapers (the Moscow State University), admire the view from the observation deck or get a cable car ride.

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Bolshoi Theatre

Opened in 1856, the legendary Bolshoi Theatre is one of the pest places in Moscow for an evening of entertainment. It’s the home of Bolshoi Ballet and the Bolshoi Opera – among the oldest and most famous ballet and opera companies in the world. Alongside the classics, the theatre also stages contemporary works by young international composers and choreographers. The theatre’s imperial decor was restored in a six-year refurbishment that finished in 2011.

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VDNKh All-Russian Exhibition Centre

The enormous VDNKh contains about 400 buildings and is said to cover an area bigger than Monaco. The centre started out as the all-Soviet agricultural exhibition in 1935, and now serves as an open-air museum of Soviet architecture. With the iconic fountain at its entrance, the park complex is home to a number of museums, shopping pavilions, multiple eateries , a massive oceanarium, a zip-line, a horse-riding rink and a Russian space shuttle. In winter a skating rink opens – the largest in Europe.

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Tsaritsyno Museum-Reserve

The former summer residence of Empress Catherine the Great was commissioned in 1775, and succumbed to deterioration during the Soviet era. The whole of Tsaritsyno Museum-Reserve has been fundamentally renovated since the 1980s to look even brighter than the original. With its opulently decorated buildings, gardens, meadows and forests, Tsaritsyno Park is the perfect place for a green respite in Moscow.

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Mostly known for the city’s largest flea market, the district of Izmaylovo is home to a maze of shops where you can get just about anything: from handmade items to Soviet antiquities. It’s also one of Moscow’s largest green spaces, where you can hide from the city buzz.

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Ostankino TV Tower

Built in 1967, Ostankino TV Tower was the tallest free-standing construction in the world at the time. Now it’s still the best observation deck with a glass floor and 360 degree views. So be sure to book one of the hourly tours; the speedy elevators will take you 337m (1,105ft) in no time.

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A 10-minute metro ride from the city centre will take you to Kolomenskoe Museum-Reserve, where you can get an idea of what Medieval Moscow looked like. Here you’ll find ancient churches (one dating back to the 16th century), the oldest garden in Moscow and a favourite estate of Tsar Alexey Mikhailovich, father of Peter the Great.

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Novodevichy Convent

Founded in 1524, the Novodevichy Convent is a place steeped in history. Behind the walls that once served as a fortress, there are four cathedrals with a fascinating icon collection and a venerable cemetery. Back in the day it was common for women from noble families to retire in monasteries, and the Novodevichy Convent had some notable residents such as Princess Sophia and Eudoxia Lopukhina, both related to Peter the Great (and imprisoned by him). The former was his half-sister who claimed the throne; the latter was his first wife, who stood in the way of his marriage to Catherine I.

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Cathedral of Christ the Saviour

One of Russia’s most visited cathedrals, Christ the Saviour is a truly remarkable site. The grandiose cathedral was built in the 1990s where a 19th-century church of the same name stood before it was demolished in 1931 by the Soviet authorities. Designed to look like its predecessor, the modern building also contains the icon Christ Not Painted by Hand by Sorokin, which survived the demolition of the original cathedral. The cathedral was the site of feminist punk collective Pussy Riot’s 2012 protest that led to the imprisonment of several members.

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Moscow City

Home to Europe’s tallest office building, Moscow City, also referred to as Moscow International Business Centre, is one Russia’s most ambitious engineering projects of recent years. With its various high-rises, the business district is where you should come for great crowd-free shopping and the best panoramic views of the city.

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Izmailovsky Market

For those on a budget, ditch window shopping at the exclusive GUM and take a foray into the bustling world of Izmailovsky, Russia’s best flea market. Delve into the bargains, rifle through the artisan crafts, admire the local handiwork and be tempted by the silky smooth traditional fur hats. Expect walls of matryoshka dolls, fascinating Soviet memorabilia, and glittering hand-crafted jewellery. Head up to one of Izmailovsky market’s cafes for a warming mulled wine before continuing your shopping spree.

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Our immersive trips , led by Local Insiders, are once-in-a-lifetime experiences and an invitation to travel the world with like-minded explorers. Our Travel Experts are on hand to help you make perfect memories. All our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

All our travel guides are curated by the Culture Trip team working in tandem with local experts. From unique experiences to essential tips on how to make the most of your future travels, we’ve got you covered.

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See & Do

Top 7 historical places around moscow only locals know about.

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Guides & Tips

Stay curious: experience moscow from your living room.

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The 7 Best Day Trips From Moscow

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The best restaurants in moscow.

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The Best Shopping Malls in Moscow

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A Weekend in Moscow with Curator Catherine Borissoff

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The Best Clubs in Moscow, Russia, for Partygoers

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How To Make the Most of 24 Hours in Moscow in Winter

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The Best Restaurants in Moscow's Tverskaya

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How To Spend a Summer Day in Moscow, Russia

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The 7th Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art

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Film & TV

‘killing eve’ – konstantin’s world.

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Must-see attractions in Moscow

The crown of Tsar Mikhail Fyodorovich in the Armoury in the Kremlin, Moscow. 21/06/2003. (Photo by Jeff Overs/BBC News & Current Affairs via Getty Images)

The Armoury dates to 1511, when it was founded under Vasily III to manufacture and store weapons, imperial arms and regalia for the royal court. Later it…

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Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts

Arbat & Khamovniki

This is Moscow’s premier foreign-art museum, split over three branches and showing off a broad selection of European works, including masterpieces from…

St. Basil's Cathedral in Red Square, Moscow, Russia

St Basil's Cathedral

At the southern end of Red Square stands the icon of Russia: St Basil’s Cathedral. This crazy confusion of colours, patterns and shapes is the culmination…

Exterior of Water Tower at Kremlin.

Moscow Kremlin

The apex of Russian political power and once the centre of the Orthodox Church, the Kremlin is the kernel of not only Moscow, but of the whole country…

Mausoleum on Red Square, Moscow, Russia; Shutterstock ID 64158388; Your name (First / Last): Josh Vogel; Project no. or GL code: 56530; Network activity no. or Cost Centre: Online-Design; Product or Project: 65050/7529/Josh Vogel/ Destination Galleries

Lenin's Mausoleum

Although Vladimir Ilych requested that he be buried beside his mum in St Petersburg, he still lies in state at the foot of the Kremlin wall, receiving…

Bridge Over River Against Sky During Sunset


Moscow's main city escape isn't your conventional expanse of nature preserved inside an urban jungle. It's not a fun fair either, though it used to be one…

Moscow's Red Square

Immediately outside the Kremlin’s northeastern wall is the celebrated Red Square, the 400m-by-150m area of cobblestones that is at the very heart of…

State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow, Russia; Shutterstock ID 192471953; Your name (First / Last): Josh Vogel; GL account no.: 56530; Netsuite department name: Online Design; Full Product or Project name including edition: Digital Content/Sights

State Tretyakov Gallery Main Branch

The exotic boyar (high-ranking noble) castle on a little lane in Zamoskvorechie contains the main branch of the State Tretyakov Gallery, housing the world…

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Hermitage Gardens

All the things that have improved Moscow parks no end in recent years fill this small, charming garden to the brim. Today, it is possibly the most…

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Garage Museum of Contemporary Art

The brainchild of Moscow art fairy Darya Zhukova, Garage is one of the capital's hottest modern-art venues. In 2015, the museum moved to spectacular new…

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19th & 20th Century Art Gallery

This branch of the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts contains a famed assemblage of French Impressionist works, based on the collections of two well-known…

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Novodevichy Convent

The Novodevichy Convent was founded in 1524 to celebrate the taking of Smolensk from Lithuania, an important step in Moscow’s conquest of the old Kyivan…

Statue of Tsar Alexander II at Cathedral of Christ the Saviour.

Cathedral of Christ the Saviour

This opulent and grandiose cathedral was completed in 1997 – just in time to celebrate Moscow's 850th birthday. The cathedral’s sheer size and splendour…

A room at Bulgakov House Museum at 10 Bolshaya Sadovaya Street in Moscow, where the Soviet writer Mikhail Bulgakov used to live.

Mikhail Bulgakov Museum

Author of The Master and Margarita and Heart of a Dog, Mikhail Bulgakov was a Soviet-era novelist who was labelled a counter-revolutionary and censored…

Exhibition in Moscow Planetarium.

Moscow Planetarium

The planetarium has become one of the biggest and brightest stars on the Moscow museum circuit, now incorporating all kinds of high-tech gadgetry,…

Park Pobedy (Victory park) at Poklonnaya hill in Moscow, Russia.

Park Pobedy

The Great Patriotic War – as WWII is known in Russia – was a momentous event that is still vivid in the hearts, minds and memories of many Russian…

Winzavod Center for Contemporary Art

Meshchansky & Basmanny

Formerly a wine-bottling factory, this facility was converted into exhibit and studio space for Moscow artists in 2007. The post-industrial complex is now…

Exterior of Assumption Cathedral, Kremlin.

Assumption Cathedral

On the northern side of Sobornaya pl, with five golden helmet domes and four semicircular gables, the Assumption Cathedral is the focal church of pre…

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Kolomenskoe Museum-Reserve

Set amidst 4 sq km of picturesque parkland, on a bluff above a bend in the Moscow River, Kolomenskoe is an ancient royal country seat and a Unesco World…

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Art Muzeon & Krymskaya Naberezhnaya

Moscow's answer to London's South Bank, Krymskaya Nab (Crimea Embankment) features wave-shaped street architecture with Scandinavian-style wooden elements…

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Tsaritsyno Palace

On a wooded hill in far southeast Moscow, Tsaritsyno Palace is a modern-day manifestation of the exotic summer home that Catherine the Great began in 1775…

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Jewish Museum & Centre of Tolerance

Occupying a heritage garage, purpose-built to house a fleet of Leyland double-deckers that plied Moscow's streets in the 1920s, this vast museum, filled…

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Museum of Soviet Arcade Machines

Growing up in 1980s USSR was a peculiar, but not necessarily entirely bleak experience. Here is an example – a collection containing dozens of mostly…

The cupola of Moscow's Church of the Lesser Ascension

Ascension Church

Overlooking the river, the Ascension Church, sometimes called the ‘white column’, is Kolomenskoe Museum-Reserve's loveliest structure. Built between 1530…

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New Tretyakov Gallery

Moscow's premier venue for 20th-century Russian art, this branch of the Tretyakov Gallery has much more than the typical socialist-realist images of…

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Central Museum of the Armed Forces

Covering the history of the Soviet and Russian military since 1917, this massive museum occupies 24 halls plus open-air exhibits. Over 800,000 military…

Golden statue in Friendship of the People Fountain at VDNKh (trade fair and amusement park).

Palaces for workers! There is no better place to see this Soviet slogan put into practice than at VDNKh, which stands for Exhibition of Achievements of…

Lantern detail at Cathedral of Christ the Saviour.

Archangel Cathedral

The Archangel Cathedral at the southeastern corner of Sobornaya pl was for centuries the coronation, wedding and burial church of tsars. It was built by…

The Lubyanka Building, the headquarters of the FSB (former KGB) on Lubyanka Square in Moscow, Russia.

Easily the most feared edifice in Russia, looming on the northeastern side of Lubyanskaya pl is the brain centre behind Stalin's genocidal purges and the…

Close up view of Annunciation Cathedral cupola

Annunciation Cathedral

The Annunciation Cathedral, at the southwest corner of Sobornaya pl, contains impressive murals in the gallery and an archaeology exhibit in the basement…

Stone monument in Borodino field, Russia.

Borodino Field

The entire battlefield – more than 100 sq km – is now part of the Borodino Field Museum-Preserve, its vast fields dotted with dozens of memorials to…

The main wooden arch with light and walking people in Sokolniki park, Moscow,  Russia.

Changed beyond recognition in recent years, Sokolniki park is criss-crossed by cycling paths, and blends into a proper forest bordering on Losiny Ostrov…

Donskoy Monastery

Donskoy Monastery

Moscow's youngest monastery, Donskoy was founded in 1591 as the home of the Virgin of the Don icon, now in the Tretyakov Gallery. This icon is credited…

Zaryadye Park with modern amphitheater, Moscow, Russia.

Park Zaryadye

Moscow's first new park in 50 years, Zaryadye was inaugurated in 2017 and occupies a prominent site along the Moscow River, wedged into historic Kitay…

Facade of Narkomfin building.

The model for Le Corbusier’s Unité d’Habitation design principle, this architectural landmark was an early experiment in semicommunal living. Designed…

Moscow State University building

Moscow State University (MGU)

Head to the hills south of the city for one of the best views of Moscow. From the square in front of Moscow State University, most of the city spreads out…

The information pavilion dome in Zaryadye Park, Moscow, Russia.

Park Zaryadye Pavilion

This glass-dome pavilion was the first element of Park Zaryadye to open to the public. A creation of Sergei Kuznetsov, the pavilion was designed as an …

Grave of actor Yuri Vladimirovich Nikulin in Novodevichy Cemetery.

Novodevichy Cemetery

Adjacent to the Novodevichy Convent, the Novodevichy Cemetery is one of Moscow’s most prestigious resting places – a veritable who’s who of Russian…

The Moscow Museum of Modern Art.

Moscow Museum of Modern Art

A pet project of the ubiquitous artist Zurab Tsereteli, this museum is housed in a classical 18th-century merchant’s home, originally designed by Matvei…

Entrance to the Museum of Decorative & Folk Art in Moscow.

Museum of Decorative & Folk Art

Just beyond the Garden Ring, this museum showcases centuries-old arts-and-crafts traditions from around Russia and the former Soviet republics. Of the 40…

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15 reasons you must visit Moscow

Home / Russia Travel Experiences / 15 reasons you must visit Moscow

Home to almost over 12 million souls, Moscow is many things to many people, and everyone finds their own reasons to visit Moscow. There is an infinite number of reasons to visit Moscow and its attractions. To make it easier for travellers, we created a list of the crowd’s top fifteen reasons and attractions everyone should visit when in Moscow.

Table of Contents

1. Indulge in countless historical and modern artworks

Whether you are just dipping your toes into the art world or you know everything about arts, Moscow is a must-visit for every self-proclaimed or certified art connoisseur and historian. The city has numerous historical and contemporary museums and art galleries and they are essential in the list when you visit Moscow. Among the plethora of galleries and museums is The State Tretyakov Gallery  holding the world’s foremost collection of Russian fine art. Another is the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts which showcases artworks from the ancient times to this day such as the paintings of Rembrandt, Botticelli, Van Gogh, and Picasso. The Moscow Museum of Modern Art , on the other hand, displays artworks created in the 20th and 21st centuries.

Moscow tours Russia

Moscow is not only home to famous historical paintings, the city also showcases modern, educational, and multimedia arts. The Moscow Planetarium is one of the biggest planetariums in the world. It is an interactive museum that educates everyone with their scientific resources. The openness of Russia to new forms of arts can be seen in the Multimedia Art Museum, Winzavod (Wine Factory), Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Lumiere Brothers Photography Center . These art galleries unite all forms of media, arts, and modern culture.

For the love of art, moreover, they have converted former industrial areas to unique art spaces. ARTPLAY Center of Design and Flacon Design Factory are two of the known art spaces for local organisations and artists to express their creativity, host their own workshops, lectures, design festivals, concerts, performances, and exhibits. 

TIP: Open Museum Day in Moscow offers free day-time admission in most city museums every third Sunday of the month. Forty museums and art galleries are participating including the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics , and State Museum of Ceramics and Kuskovo Estate of the 18th Century.

If you’re craving for more museum adventures, we have created a list of the best museum to visit in Moscow and St. Petersburg.

2. Step onto the mighty Red Square

Walk onto the uneven cobblestones alongside the throngs of bustling citizens and you’ll see centuries of Russian (and world) history reflected in the architecture of Red Square. It is the epicentre of Russia. The country’s major highways and Moscow’s main streets all originate from the Red Square. However, it is not only the heart of Russian streets but is also the heart of Russian history and culture where most of the biggest Russian events and changes unfolded such as high-profile executions and military parades. The city square also served as the main marketplace and site for national public ceremonies and festive processions. Being considered as a sacred place, it is absolutely a must-see when you visit Moscow.

Moscow tour Red Square Russia

Official commemorations and parades today are still mostly held in the square. The surrounding buildings of the Red Square also add great significance to why you should include the beautiful square on your bucket list when you visit Moscow. Some of these famous attractions are iconic:

  • St. Basil’s Cathedral
  • Lenin’s Mausoleum
  • The Kremlin
  • Kazan Cathedral
  • The historical GUM Department Store
  • State Historical Museum
  • The Iberian Gate (also known as the Resurrection Gate and Chapel

3. Visit the Moscow Kremlin

The Kremlin , together with Red Square was recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1990. UNESCO included this architectural ensemble not just because of its outstanding design but also because of its rich historical and political linkage. That is why you should not miss this when you visit Moscow. It is located on Borovitsky Hill just above the Moskva River, on the west side of the magnificent Red Square. It serves as the Russian President’s residence and treasure houses such as the Armory Chamber Museum and the Russian Diamond Fund . Two Royal Cathedrals, the Secret Garden, and Ivan the Great Bell Tower are some of the attractions you can visit inside the Kremlin. Also, along the Kremlin wall is where you can see the gravestones of most Soviet leaders -including Stalin’s.

Moscow tour Russia

TIP: The Kremlin is open every day except on Thursdays and tickets for each establishment inside the Kremlin are sold separately. They also limit the number of daily visitors. May to September of every year is considered as the peak season.

4. Awaken your senses in the Bolshoi theatre

The Bolshoi Ballet Company is one of the most enduring symbols of Russia’s esteemed cultural traditions, and Moscow’s Bolshoi (Big) Theatre is the association’s fittingly elegant headquarters. Moscow’s oldest theatre has been painstakingly restored and renovated in recent years. It is a must-see day or night with their world-famous opera and ballet performances when you visit Moscow. Taking in an evening performance of a classic Russian ballet like Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker is one of the city’s most captivating cultural experiences.

Moscow tour Russia

Aside from the Bolshoi Theatre, there are around 170 theatres in the city; each of which features unique performances. It is the sole reason why Moscow is coined as the “City of Theatres”.  No matter what genre, as long as it is in Moscow it will be surreal.  No wonder the city attracts all theatregoers around the globe. To name a few, here are the must-visit theatres around the city: (1) Maly Theatre which showcases classic traditions of Russian Theatre, (2) Moscow Art Theatre combines classical and modern drama traditions, and (4) Theatre of Nations and (5) Gogol Centre further popularized modern arts such as post-drama and comedy production.

Russian ballet

TIP: Most people have been planning to witness a performance (especially in Bolshoi Theatre) for years. Remember to check and purchase tickets ahead of time before getting excited to watch the spectacular performance. Also, wearing your best evening dress won’t hurt.

5. Enjoy the ambiance of Moscow parks

While Moscow’s attractions are usually known as a mixture of extravagant Tsarist architecture and stern Soviet buildings, much of Moscow is actually surprisingly green and the city’s parks have grown into its pride and joy over the years. Take a break from walking around historical establishments and rest in these well-groomed green areas. These parks provide some of Moscow’s best people-watching spots and offer various activities you can do with your group or with the locals from playing sports and board games on the pavement to simply enjoying the outdoor cafes.

St Petersburg tour Russia

Slow down from the hectic pace of the city life by having a stop-over in the most popular green spaces when you visit Moscow. Gorky Park has its own telegraph and clinic, Park of Arts Museum often hosts music festivals, art fairs and exhibits, and lastly, Sokolniki Park and Izmailovsky Park have bike rentals and small amusement parks that are perfect for family day-outs.

6. Experience the magnificent Moscow Metro

Apart from being an extremely handy way to get around the city,  Moscow’s metro system  is a striking feat of engineering. Opened in 1935, it is one of the largest and oldest underground railway systems in the world. Its grand stations are remarkably beautiful. With their grandiose architecture, intricate mosaics, and dramatic sculptures, it has turned many metro stations into picturesque tourist attractions. There are 12 lines and a total of 200 stations. Elektrozavodskaya, Arbatskaya, Kievskaya, Komsomolskaya, and Mayakovskaya are just a few of the magical stations that seems to be like an underground palace.

Moscow tour Russia

Visit Moscow grand stations during “dead hours” —11 am to 2 pm or after 10 pm in order get the most out of the spectacular metro stations. And for the sake of courtesy and respect, always give your seat to Babushkas or the beautiful Russian grannies on the train. Train tickets can be shared and you can buy them for 1, 2, 20, 40, and 60 trips. Unlimited Metro travel for 1, 3, and 7 full days are also available from 210 to 800 rubles. Alternatively, you can purchase a Troika Card which costs 50 rubles and allows you to travel on all public transportation in Moscow.

7. Be amazed by the beauty & grace of Moscow’s churches

In Moscow, the majority of religion belongs to the Russian Orthodox Church which has 320 of total parishes in Moscow alone. Thus, it is not surprising that Orthodox churches and its unique architecture are one of the must-sees when you visit Moscow. Onion domes had long been known as the classic design of Orthodox churches in Russia. Below, we will mention some of the iconic churches you shouldn’t miss seeing in the city.

Moscow tour Russia

The Cathedral of Vasily the Blessed or St. Basil Cathedral is perhaps the most popular and most unusual church in the country. It is located at the Southern end of the Red Square. Built in 1555, it is originally called the Intercession Cathedral  to commemorate Ivan the Terrible’s victory over the Tatars. The bonfire-flame-shaped-cathedral has nine towers full of colours, shapes, and patterns. It was designed like a maze as a whole while each way leads to nine chapels with creatively decorated interiors. The magnificent cathedral is open every day except for the first Wednesday of every month.

With its golden onion domes, the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour  is the largest cathedral of all Russian Orthodox Church and has the capacity of over a thousand devotees. However, there is another known cathedral with golden domes —the Cathedral of the Assumption. What makes this cathedral different is that its domes are not just gold, but  they  are also light-reflecting sitting inside the Kremlin. Lastly, we would like to feature a church with neo-gothic architecture –the Moscow Immaculate Conception Catholic Cathedral.  It  is the largest Catholic building in the country. To this day, masses and Catholic religious services are still being conducted in different languages in the cathedral.

8. Visit Moscow streets and the monumental architecture

The beautiful architecture of museums and churches, makes each city street a sight to behold. For sure you’ll have a jaw-dropping moment at least once when you visit Moscow. The streets around the Red Square are a good start for you to stroll and have them as background for your OOTD photos. 

Russia tours Moscow

Tverskaya Stree t is known as Moscow’s fashion street and main street. This street is also one of the most expensive streets in the world, basing from the commercial rental fees. Another fashion district, Kuznetsky Most (literally translates to Blacksmith’s bridge)is where popular shops such as “Kuznetsky Most 20” – a famous concept store and “House of Foreign Books” (which is the best foreign-language bookshop) are located. Ulitsa Varvaka claims to be the oldest street and has the most churches in the city; it also shows the more medieval side of Moscow. If you are looking for high-end souvenirs, take a look at the shops on Arbat Street . Just do not forget to negotiate with the vendors and ask for discounts! Also, you get a chance to taste local vodkas as they offer free samples on the street.

9. Enjoy Moscow street food and fine dining restaurants

Moscow can surprise even the most demanding gourmands with the variety of foods , flavours and dining scenes the city has to offer. Russian cuisine is famous for exotic soups and rustic, hearty dishes like pelmeni (meat dumplings), pancakes with different fillings, and last but not the least, caviar. Sweets are also a big thing in the Russian kitchen and they are incomparable with other confectioneries that can be bought outside the country. “RotFront” soya bars , Chak-Chak Sticks and Kozinaki are just a few of the most popular sweet snacks in Moscow.

Russian food

Great food is everywhere, 24 hours a day in the city. Yar , one of the oldest restaurants in Russia has been serving local Russian cuisines for nearly a century now in Moscow. Another restaurant, Praga , which opened 150 years ago is known for its European and Russian dishes in addition to their pastry shop on the ground floor. Cafe Pushkin , a three-storey restaurant is open 24 hours a day. Each floor has its own menu and theme: the Pharmacy, Library, and the Fireplace Room. The Library floor is said to have the best view of the Tverskoy Boulevard during breakfast. However, if you want to time travel, find the secret door of Mari Vanna and experience what it is like to live in a Soviet home 50 years ago. Watch old Soviet channels and look through old bookcases and photos while having traditional Russian stews and pies. And oh, do not forget to book for tables!

Russian Food Guide Moscow Restaurants

But there’s so much more to Moscow’s modern gastronomic landscape. From sophisticated new takes on old-school cooking to cosmopolitan eateries offering refined cuisine from around the world, Moscow is also boasting with street foods. Chebureki or cheburechnaya, as what some cafes call them, are fried triangle-shaped thin dough stuffed with minced meat and spices. On the other hand, Blini is a better option for those who have a sweet tooth. They are crepes that can be filled with, cheese, jam, honey, ham, condensed milk, or red caviar. Today, Blini are famously made and sold in Teremok — a popular fast-food chain. Another fast-food chain has popularised a Russian local snack: Kroshka-Kartoshka . Although the name translates to “tiny potato”, they serve enormous baked potatoes with cheese, pickled mushrooms, butter, and other fillings. And lastly, pirozhki, which means pie seems to be the symbol of Russian street foods. Just look around the streets and try the four local snacks that we’ve mentioned and you’ll realise that every food is stuffed and/or filled with something. Now it is your turn to stuff your belly with Moscow street food!

10. Shop till you drop in Moscow boutiques

Muscovites are mad-shoppers and once you see the brands and collectives in each shopping centre, you might become one of them. From the most glamorous high-end fashion brands, art and design pieces, to antiques and traditional handicrafts, the opportunities for a hardcore spree are endless. Make sure to drop by the two most famous shopping centres, GUM and TSUM when you visit Moscow. They are must-visits even if you are only there to admire (or baulk at) their stupendous swankiness.

Moscow tour

GUM is on the east side of Red Square. It is a former State Department Store. The building’s architecture will instantly give you an extravagant feeling. However, along with its luxurious interior, comes the most luxurious brands and prices. It is open for twelve hours each day from 10 am to 10 pm. On the other hand, TSUM , a six-story historical gothic building is the largest high-end department store in Eastern Europe. There is a luxury supermarket which is open for twenty-four hours on the ground floor.

More affordable options are in the city’s many bustling flea markets, or in beautiful old boutique stores. Tsvetnoy Central Market and Kuznetsky Most 20 are just two of the known markets in the city where both hot and hippy street brands can be found. Local creative contemporary designers and high-end creatives are also housed in both markets.

11. Earn bragging rights with the perfect Instagram snap

Up your Instagram and Facebook feed with these views and different angles of the city. Shamelessly share your food and shoes with the streets and floors you’re walking into with your virtual friends. Or take a snap of the random streets of Moscow depicting their rich cultures. Also, do not forget the big picture! Which literally means photos of the whole city.

Moscow tour

Did you really visit Moscow if you don’t have any photo of the Red Square and Moscow Kremlin? Stand at the centre of Red Square and Kremlin, take the most iconic shot and show the world that you were actually in Moscow. We’ve listed three buildings that have the best top views of the city. The (1) Federation Tower which also has the highest restaurant in Moscow, (2) The Moscow State University has a panoramic view of the city inside The Museum of Geography on its top floor and (3) Cathedral of Christ ’s observation deck have the most breathtaking top views of the city.

The Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Garage Museum of Contemporary Art , GUM, ARTPlay , and Moscow Metro stations are just some of Moscow infrastructures perfect for your channel your inner artsy persona.  While walking around the Moscow CBD, do not forget to look up and take photos of the skyscrapers as far as your eyes and camera can reach. However, if you want to take a break from all the spectacular man-made architecture, take a stroll in Patriarch’s Pond , where you can feel like a real Muscovite and nature-lover.

12. Moscow never sleeps

>Let it be known: Russians love to party! And Moscow is undoubtedly the party capital of Russia. The capital city has an incredible array of nightlife options and a scene for everyone. Whether you’re keen to catch a live Russian rock band or slink into a smoky jazz club, Moscow is there for you. Go clubbing till the break of dawn or just lounge around with a beer and an endless array of fine local vodka. We have listed our top five bars and clubs to help you decide which one to go to. Go ahead and get your body moving along the music while drinking with Muscovites. In that way, you can actually experience Moscow.

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Propaganda , or Probka as what regulars call it, is opened in 1997 and has about the same age as the Moscow club culture. Aside from local drinks and world-class DJs, the club is also boasting with cheap sandwiches and steaks. On Thursdays, they hold dance parties and gay parties on Sundays. Nauka i Iskusstvo (Science and Art) is for you if music is the sole reason for your night out. The club is said to host the best electronic and hip parties. Noor Bar, nonetheless, is known for their classic cocktails which can be best enjoyed on Fridays and Saturdays while listening to their DJ sets. Just make sure to go there early to secure a spot. Another two famous nightclubs are located in Artplay: Pluton and Rodnya . Pluton promotes all kinds of music and art-performances while Rodnya is a rooftop club where you can enjoy dancing while waiting for the sun to rise in Summer.  Squad 3/4  is one of the most bizarre nightclubs in Moscow. It is located at the basement of the former Central Baths building and often hosts bohemian raves.

13. Take a Moscow River Cruise

Cruising along the Moskva River is one of the best ways to see and visit Moscow. Ticket pricing of the cruise depends on the size of the boat; the bigger the boat, the more expensive and smoother its sailing will be. For 800 rubles, you can board the most famous tour boat in Moscow: the yellow Lay’s boat. It plays loud Russian pop music as you sail the river. Bigger boats cost 1,100 to 2,000 rubles per person. These cruises on bigger boats often offer cozy lunch and dinner on top of the cruise itself.

Moscow River Cruise

TIP : There are two main boarding piers: Hotel Ukraine and Park Kultury. If you want to save money, buy your tickets online and make sure to arrive earlier as it is hard to find the pier where your boat is at. However, if you do not mind spending more for tickets, you can purchase from street hawkers. They will personally guide you on where to find your boat and where to get off. Also, make sure to bring extra clothes even in the summer season.

14. White Christmas in Moscow

Visit Moscow and bring all your thick but light-weight clothes and experience Moscow’s white winter. The average weather in December is around -10 to 0 degrees Celsius with an average of 17-30 days of snowfall. Witness snowfall on the Red Square which transforms into a Christmas market and the biggest ice skating rink in December. Celebrate with Muscovites during the Russian Winter Festival and watch live performances, eat street foods, and play games from mid-December to mid-January in Manezh Square.

Moscow winter tour Russia

15. Explore the Medieval towns of Golden Ring

There is always more to see beyond the capital city of a country. And in Russia’s case, outside Moscow is the ancient region called the Golden Ring . The region’s name is derived from the golden onion-shaped domes of the churches around the towns and from the ring-like route in which 1967 art historian and journalist Yuri Bychkov travelled.

Golden Ring tour Russia

The Golden Ring is comprised of eight main cities:

  • Yaroslavl is where the Transfiguration Monastery (now a museum) and Ioann Vasiliyevich — a Soviet-themed hotel and restaurant.
  • Vladimir boasts its Golden Gate and the Cathedral of the Dormition of the Mother of God.
  • Suzdal is a thirty-minute drive from Vladimir, it has five monasteries, thirty churches, and a market square (Torgovaya Ploshchad) where you can local berries and honey.
  • Sergiev Posad is known to be the location of the Trinity Lavra of St Sergius — one of the largest monasteries in the world.
  • Pereselavl-Zalessky is where you can enjoy windsurfing and ride hot air balloons.
  • Rostov Velikiy or Rostov the Great is boasting its colourful churches and unchanged kremlin architecture.
  • Ivanovo is known for its huge textile industry, it is also known as the city of brides since there more women than men in the area.
  • Kostroma is where the town of Bui — a town of cultural heritage, and Trinity-Ipatiev Monastery can be explored.

Visit Moscow and experience and see in the Golden Ring afterwards. We have carefully crafted  tours  for every traveller like you.

Just as a cherry on top, here is an awesome video clip of this magnificent city, Moscow:

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The Present Perspective

Moscow Travel Guide: Best Things to Do + More [2023]

· everything to know about visiting moscow, including the best things to do and how to get around. ·.

the red st basils church in moscow on a white winters day

Moscow is Russia’s vibrant capital city, and it also happens to be the largest city in all of Europe. The city’s long and infamous history makes it one of the most unique places we have ever visited.

The architecture ranges from centuries-old palaces to uniform, gray concrete buildings. The people range from cold and private to warm and welcoming. Moscow is a city is strong juxtapositions, and we learned a lot during our time there.

This post will break down all you need to know about visiting Moscow, including the best things to do, how to get there, how to get around, and more.

man and woman standing in front of main church in moscow

The Best Things to Do in Moscow

1. explore the red square.

The Red Square is the heart of Moscow. Most of the city’s top attractions can be found here, including just about everything on this list. The Kremlin, St. Basil’s Cathedral, and Lenin’s Mausoleum are all located here, and the State Historical Museum and GUM are not far from here, either.

The Red Square is a common home for parades, protests, and seasonal celebrations. There are massive Christmas celebrations here, with food vendors and carnival rides set up in numbers.

red orthodox church in moscow russia red square on a winter day

2. Check Out the Ziferblat

The Ziferblat is a café in Moscow that is unlike any café we have ever been to. While most cafes charge you for your drinks and food, the Ziferblat charges you for your time.

Upon arrival, you are given a clock. When you leave, the barista calculates how much time you spent in the café and charges you accordingly. This concept was created to help visitors to be more intentional with their time, and the cafe itself is incredibly charming.

For a detailed look at everything you need to know before you visit, make sure you read my post about visiting the Ziferblat Cafe in Moscow .

white lcocks on a table

3. Marvel at St. Basil’s Cathedral

St. Basil’s Cathedral is one of the most iconic churches in the world, and it was the single thing we were most excited to see while in Moscow. Built almost 500 years ago, St. Basil’s Cathedral is recognized by its colorful domes and whimsical style. The church is of the Russian Orthodox faith, and the inside is just as wondrous as the outside.

St. Basil’s Cathedral is located on the edge of the Red Square, making it incredibly convenient to visit. Entrance for non-worshippers costs 800 rubles, and tickets can be bought at the church

woman in winter jacket standing in front of St Basils Russian Orthodox in moscow on a winter day

4. Explore the Kremlin

The Kremlin is the largest active fortress in Europe, and it is the site of most of Russia’s government affairs. In addition to government buildings, the Kremlin Complex is filled with courtyards, towers, and museums that are open to the public. If you have the time, you could spend a couple of days fully exploring all that there is to see in the Kremlin.

selfie of man and woman pointing to the Kremlin in Moscow

5. Walk Through Lenin’s Mausoleum

Vladimir Lenin is one of the most important figures in Russian history, and his body is located perfectly embalmed in a mausoleum in the Red Square. The Mausoleum is open to the public to visit, and as long as you are willing to go through a few security checks, it is easily one of the best things to do in Moscow. Its convenient location in the Red Square makes it a can’t miss attraction.

There is absolutely no photography allowed inside the Mausoleum. Do not test this rule.

red exterior of lenins mausoleum in moscow russia

6. Wander Along Arbat Street

The Arbat is a very popular street in Moscow that is lined with stores, cafes, and other touristy attractions. It is one of the oldest streets in the city, dating back to the 1400s. This street is both quaint and trendy, and there are many walking tours that introduce tourists to the neighborhood’s wonders and highlights.

man in sinter jacket standing in arbat street moscow at night with glistening white lights strung from the buildings

7. Catch a Show at the Bolshoi Theatre

As a lover of the arts, it is hard to think of Moscow and not think of ballet. Russia has always been a top dog in the world of fine arts, and Bolshoi Theater is one of the best places to catch a performance. We were lucky enough to attend an Opera here, and it is a venue that you don’t want to miss out on if you enjoy opera, ballet, or orchestral performances.

8. Visit the State Historical Museum

The State Historical Museum is one of the most respected museums in Moscow. Despite its name, it is not really focused on the history of Russia as a nation. Rather, it contains a collection of artifacts from all throughout Russia’s history.

The museum’s collection is very broad in nature. It houses some items from indigenous tribes that used to occupy the region, pieces collected by the Romanov family, and more.

9. Wander Around GUM

GUM is an absolutely massive mall within walking distance of the Red Square. It isn’t just the size that draws visitors here; it’s the sense of luxury. The mall is so beautiful inside, much like the metro stations.

While visiting a mall might not sound like it belongs on a bucket list, this mall does. You will not want to miss out on visiting GUM while in Moscow.

people walking inside GUM mall in russia with christmas lights

10. Admire the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour

While St. Basil’s Cathedral is the most iconic church in Moscow, it isn’t the only one. The Cathedral of Christ the Saviour is absolutely stunning, with massive golden domes. It is the tallest Orthodox church in the world, and it is the seat of the Orthodox Patriarch of Moscow.

It is located just about a mile from the Red Square, just south of the Kremlin Complex. You can walk to it from the Red Square in about 20 minutes.

How to Get to Moscow

Flying to moscow.

Moscow has three major international airports: Sheremetyevo (SVO) , Domodedovo (DMO) , and Vnukovo (VKO) . All three of them are directly connected to downtown Moscow by the Aeroexpress trains, which leave every 30 minutes throughout the day. By Aeroexpress train, you can expect to get to the city center in 25-45 minutes depending on the airport that you fly into.

Sheremetyevo is the biggest and busiest of the three airports, and it is the one you are most likely to fly into – especially if you are coming from outside of Europe or the Caucus region. We flew into Sheremetyevo on a direct flight from New York City.

I usually provide backup airport options, because flying right into the city isn’t always the cheapest way to get where you’re going. Unfortunately, when it comes to Moscow, don’t really have a choice other than to fly right into Moscow. It is a very remote city, and it is usually the cheapest place to fly into in Russia as a whole.

Since Sheremetyevo is so busy, you will probably find a great flight option anyway. I wrote in  my post about finding cheap flights  that using hub airports will lead to more affordable airfare, and the same logic applies here. Even though Russia’s national airline, Aeroflot, is no longer a member of the SkyTeam Alliance, Moscow is still a major hub connecting passengers from all over the world.

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Train or Bus to Moscow

Trains and buses are one of the most popular ways to get around Europe. However, they’re of very little use when you’re trying to get to Moscow.

Moscow is hundreds of miles from the nearest major cities. The only major European city that can even be reached within 8 hours on the ground is St. Petersburg, and even the Baltic capitals of Riga, Vilnius, and Tallinn are over 12 hours away.

If you want to get to Moscow, the best option is almost always to fly. While the train routes to Moscow are scenic, they simply take forever.

How to Get Around Moscow


Moscow has one of the most memorable metro systems in the world. Its metro lines are very deep underground, and the stations are absolutely stunning. Each station has its own unique style, but all of them contain escalators that seem to go on forever.

turned-on chandelier on ceiling of moscow metro

The system was built in an effort to showcase the power of the Soviet Union and its bright future. The plans were a form of propaganda, but they resulted in what is still one of the most visually appealing subway systems on earth.

Moscow’s metro system isn’t just pretty. It is also very useful and accessible. The system has 17 lines that connect the city and its surrounding area.

But wait; there’s more!

The Moscow metro system is also incredibly affordable, with each ride costing less than a dollar. The metro is by far the best way to get around Moscow, as it is almost impossible to beat the connection times and the low cost to ride.

Tickets can be bought at electronic, English-speaking kiosks in stations, or directly from ticket counters at certain larger stations. There are also day passes available, which are a very solid option if you plan on riding the metro several times per day.

long gray escalator in moscow russia

The metro is by far the best way to get around Moscow.

In addition to the metro system, Moscow also has a network of buses, trams, and trolleys. This system is nowhere near as convenient or well-connected as the metro, though, and is likely of little use to you during your trip. There is no Uber in Moscow, but a similar app named Yandex is available if you need a ride in a pinch.

How Many Days Do You Need in Moscow?

Moscow is the biggest city in all of Europe, and it is absolutely loaded with things to do. You could spend weeks in Moscow and still find new things to do. Of course, most travelers don’t have that kind of time to spend in one place!

I recommend spending no less than three full days in Moscow, and ideally closer to five or seven.

Moscow is very spread out, and it can take some time to get from one major point to another. There are also so many places that are nice to just sit back and relax, which is hard to do when you’re in a hurry trying to cram activities into just a few days.

If you only have a week to visit Russia, I’d advise spending all of the time in one city. If you decide to split your time between Moscow and St. Petersburg, I recommend not trying to squeeze in any day trips beyond those two cities.

moscow bridge at night with lights

When Is the Best Time of the Year to Visit Moscow?

There are two different ways to approach this question. Personally, I think the best time to visit Moscow is around Christmas and New Year’s Day. While the weather will be absolutely freezing, Moscow is a surreal winter wonderland in December and January.

We were in Moscow right before Christmas. While it was very cold, you can always bundle up. Exploring the Christmas markets and pop-up ice skating rinks throughout Moscow is one of my favorite memories from anywhere I’ve traveled, and I dream of going back to do it again.

If you aren’t fond of the cold, Moscow is beautiful in the summer. It tends to get pretty cold in the shoulder seasons, so if you want warm weather, you should plan to visit in the summer. Moscow actually gets pretty warm in July and August, and there are a bunch of fantastic places to soak up the sun within the city.

The best time to visit Moscow is either around Christmas or from late May to August.

group of people walking in moscow red square at night with christmas lights everywhere

Is Moscow Safe to Visit?

While Moscow is a truly wonderful city, there’s no denying that visiting Russia comes with risks. As the country is run by an infamous communist dictator, concerns about visiting are valid. While we didn’t experience any sort of threat or negative treatment during our time in Moscow, we visited in a peaceful time.

In our experience, Russia doesn’t seem to detain normal Americans or Westerners to use as pawns. As a regular person, as long as you don’t commit any crimes, there is a slim chance you will run into any issues. However, Russia will not hesitate to enforce its laws against foreigners, and illegal behaviors will likely land you in a very compromising position.

Russia will not hesitate to enforce its laws against foreigners, and illegal behaviors will likely land you in a very compromising position.

To make matters worse, Russia has a bad reputation for gang violence. While the Russian mafia has very little interest in normal Western tourists, they won’t hesitate to pick a fight with anyone who ventures into their sphere of influence. If you seek out illegal substances or activities, you could be a target of the mafia.

If you seek out illegal substances or activities, you could be a target of the mafia.

Finally, since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, things are all very different. Russia is currently at war, and there are battles raging within 8 hours of Moscow. While it is still relatively safe to visit, that could change at any time as the war with Ukraine continues.

Is Moscow Worth Visiting?

Without a doubt, Moscow is worth visiting. It is one of the most unique major cities we have ever visited, and we hope to make it back one day. The Russian Orthodox churches are stunning, the city’s history is unlike any other, and the food is to die for.

While many visitors prefer St. Petersburg to Moscow, I think Moscow deserves a lot of hype of its own. Moscow is the beating heart of Russian culture and history, and it’s a place I highly recommend checking out if you have the chance.

woman in head scarf hugging bronze statue of angry bear

That’s all we have for you about Moscow! I hope this post was helpful as you plan your trip to Russia’s capital.

Have you been to Moscow? Or is this your first time visiting? Comment below if you have anything to add to our travel guide!

Hi, I'm Greg. I'm an avid traveler who has traveled to over 50 countries all around the world with my wife and kids. I've lived in Italy, Mexico, China, and the United States, and I dream of moving abroad again in the future. With this blog, I provide my audience with detailed destination guides to my favorite places and pro-tips to make travel as stress-free as possible.

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Wagner troops storm Rostov-on-Don as Putin calls for ‘inevitable punishment’

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Armoured vehicles have been spotted on the streets of Rostov-on-Don as Russia investigates Wagner chief for 'armed mutiny'

Wagner forces have called for an armed rebellion against Russia ’s military leadership as president Vladimir Putin warned the group there will be ‘inevitable punishment’.

In an extraordinary escalation of the war late on Friday night, security was stepped up in Moscow after the head of Wagner Yevgeny Prigozhin accused the Russian military of launching a deadly missile strike on his Wagner troops.

Putin decried the ‘betrayal’ and ‘treason’ of the Wagner group following the challenge to his military power in an address to the nation this morning.

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He said Russia’s future is at stake, describing the actions of mutineers as a ‘stab in the back’.

Without specifically mentioning Wagner group boss Prigozhin, Putin said the high ‘ambitions’ of some have led to ‘high treason’.

He added some Russians have been ‘tricked into a criminal adventure’ – again without referring to rebellious Wagner fighters.

Prigozhin has since responded in an audio message posted on Wagner’s Telegram channel this morning.

A male voice resembling that of Prigozhin can be heard saying: ‘About treason of motherland, the president was deeply mistaken.

In this handout photo taken from video released by Russian Presidential Press Service, Russian President Vladimir Putin addresses the nation in Moscow, Russia.

‘We are patriots of our motherland. We have been fighting and are fighting now.

‘And nobody is going to – as demanded by the president, the FSB (Russia’s security service) or anyone else – to admit our guilt.

‘Because we don’t want our country to live anymore in corruption, lies and bureaucracy.’

Anti-terrorism measures have been stepped up in the Russian capital to reinforce security in the city.

The Mayor of Moscow, Sergey Sobyanin, wrote on Telegram: ‘In connection with the incoming information, anti-terrorist measures are being taken in Moscow aimed at strengthening security measures.

‘Additional control on the roads has been introduced.

‘It is possible to limit the holding of public events. Please consider the measures taken with understanding.’

The Wagner troops have also entered the Russian city of Rostov-on-Don where Prigozhin claims they were allowed past by border guards.

In a warning to citizens, the city’s governor Vasily Golubev, wrote on Telegram: ‘The current situation requires the maximum concentration of all forces to maintain order.

‘Law enforcement agencies are doing everything necessary to ensure the safety of residents of the area.

‘I ask everyone to stay calm and do not leave the house without the need.’

Yevgeny Prigozhin speaking inside the headquarters of the Russian southern military district in the city of Rostov-on-Don.

The M4 highway connecting Moscow and Rostov has been closed at the border between Lipetsk and Voronezh regions, the Lipetsk governor confirmed.

BBC sources are reporting Wagner fighters have taken control of all military facilities in the city of Voronezh, a halfway point between Rostov-on-Don (where Wagner also claims it’s in charge) and the capital Moscow.

Voronezh city officials are yet to publicly comment on the claim.

Footage on local Telegram channels appear to show armed forces surrounding a government building in Rostov-on-Don.

Reuters news agency confirmed the location as the police headquarters building where armed men in uniform were seen walking around the building’s perimeter, as armoured vehicles surrounded it, including two tanks with their guns trained on it.

Video footage posted on the channel appears to show Prigozhin inside Russia’s southern military headquarters in Rostov-on-Don.

In one video Prigozhin says his troops will blockade the city and move on to Moscow unless Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu and General Valery Gerasimov come to meet them.

Fighters of Wagner private mercenary group are deployed in a street near the headquarters of the Southern Military District in the city of Rostov-on-Don, Russia.

‘We have arrived here, we want to receive the chief of the general staff and Shoigu. Unless they come, we’ll be here, we’ll blockade the city of Rostov and head for Moscow,’ he says.

In separate footage posted to a pro-Wagner channel, Prigozhin is seen sitting between two generals, the Army Lieutenant-General Vladimir Alekseyev who had earlier posted a video urging the Wagner boss to stand down.

Governor Golubev warned people to avoid the city centre and wrote on Telegram: ‘In connection with the current situation, I ask you to refrain from traveling to the city center and, if possible, not to leave your homes.’

He added citizens in the city should avoid travelling south because of increased security measures in the region.

Russia’s defence ministry has denied the missile strike and demanded Prigozhin halt ‘illegal actions’.

A fighter of Wagner private mercenary group flashes a victory sign in a street near the headquarters of the Southern Military District in the city of Rostov-on-Don, Russia.

Security across the whole of Russia has now been tightened and the internet restricted as military trucks have been spotted on Moscow’s streets.

According to internet usage tracker NetBlocks, Google News is currently unavailable across Russia.

It shows a drop in usage across the entire country since Wagner made its announcement.

The Kremlin has confirmed Prigozhin is now being investigated for inciting mutiny, Russia’s Tass news agency confirmed.

Prigozhin has hit back at Russia’s military leadership in some explosive messages of Telegram, branding it ‘evil’ and vowed to ‘march for justice’.

In other audio recordings on Telegram Prigozhin says his mercenaries were ’embraced’ by border guards as they passed through Russia’s border with Ukraine earlier today.

Wagner group military forces. ontanks.

‘Today they carried out a rocket strike on our rear camps, and a huge number of our comrades got killed,’ he said.

‘They have treacherously cheated us,’ he added.

Prigozhin then said his troops would oust Shoigu, and called on the Russian army to stand aside.

‘This is not a military coup, but a march of justice,’ he said.

‘The evil embodied by the country’s military leadership must be stopped,’ he shouted.

In a fresh entry on Telegram, Prigozhin also claimed his forces shot down a Russian helicopter.

Wagner group militia next to an armoured vehicle.

He claims the helicopter ‘opened fire on a civilian convoy’ – although he did not give details as to where this incident is alleged to have happened.

Earlier he released a video saying Russia had had no reason to invade Ukraine and the war had been a disaster.

‘But if anyone stands in our way, we will destroy everything that’s in our way… We are moving forward, we’ll go all the way,’ Prigozhin added.

And this morning he added: ‘All of us are ready to die. All 25,000, and then another 25,000,’ adding the action was being taken ‘for the Russian people’.

Putin acknowledged the situation in Rostov-on-Don remained ‘difficult’ as residents in the city have been told to stay calm and remain indoors.

According to Russian local media, ‘Operation Fortress’ has been activated in Rostov-on-Don.

wagner troops by a tank

It is a plan for personnel to be in ‘full readiness’, reported.

Russia’s secret service are now looking to detain Yevgeny while senior generals have called on Wagner fighters to stand down in what is being called a Russian ‘civil war’.

As the news broke, the US confirmed it is monitoring the situation and said: ‘We are monitoring the situation and will be consulting with allies and partners on these developments.’

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at [email protected] .

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