Exploring Moscow: A journey through time

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Exploring Moscow: A journey through time

Sunday, 16 June 2024 | Divya Bhatia

Exploring Moscow: A journey through time

Moscow is a city that captivates the senses and enriches the soul, offering a journey through history, culture, and modern marvels. Whether you’re exploring its grand landmarks, indulging in its vibrant festivals, or simply soaking in the atmosphere, Moscow promises an unforgettable adventure writes DIVYA BHATIA

Moscow, the pulsating heart of Russia, is a city where history and modernity dance together in a spectacular ballet. From the majestic Kremlin to the lively boulevards, every inch of Moscow whispers tales of its storied past and bustling present. My exploration of this enigmatic city was nothing short of magical, packed with cultural delights and historical wonders that left me spellbound.

Moscow greets its visitors not just with its iconic landmarks but also with a vibrant cultural scene. The Moscow Tea Time project, for instance, offers a taste of local tradition with its distinctive red and gold porcelain teapots, serving up an array of tea blends and traditional pastries. It’s a cozy experience that warms you from the inside out. Meanwhile, the Moscow Estates project hosts festivals in historic estates, offering a chance to immerse yourself in Russia’s rich heritage through everything from ancient games to modern concerts. These experiences transform a visit to Moscow into a journey through time, leaving you enriched and enchanted.

Moscow’s storied past breathes life into its present

Moscow, the capital of Russia, boasts a rich history that continues to shape its vibrant, modern identity. First mentioned in 1147, Moscow began as a modest settlement but quickly grew into a significant trade and political hub. By the late 13th century, it became the centre of a principality, eventually transforming into the heart of the Grand Duchy of Moscow. Its rise continued solidifying Moscow’s status as the capital of a centralized Russian state. Despite Peter the Great shifting the capital to St. Petersburg in 1712, Moscow remained crucial, playing a key role in Russia’s national identity and resilience, particularly during the Napoleonic Wars in 1812.

Following the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917, Moscow resumed its role as Russia’s capital and became the epicentre of the Soviet Union. The city experienced vast industrialization and became a symbol of Soviet power, marked by landmarks such as the Kremlin and the Lenin Mausoleum. Post-Soviet Moscow, emerging after 1991, embraced economic transformation and cultural revitalization, becoming a dynamic metropolis that intertwines historical richness with contemporary life.

Moscow’s history is vividly present in its architecture, such as the Kremlin and St. Basil’s Cathedral, and its cultural institutions like the State Historical Museum and the Bolshoi Theatre. Monuments and public spaces commemorate significant events and figures, creating a living narrative that enriches the daily lives of Muscovites. Historical districts like Kitay-Gorod preserve the city’s heritage while coexisting with modern development. Through its streets, buildings, and public events, Moscow’s past remains an integral part of its vibrant present, making it a city where history and modernity coexist harmoniously.

Moscow is a traveller’s paradise

Moscow today is a vibrant and welcoming city that offers a rich blend of history, culture, and modernity, making it a friendly destination for visitors from around the world. The city’s efficient public transportation system, including its world-renowned metro with opulent stations, ensures easy navigation through its many attractions. Tourists can explore iconic sites such as the Kremlin, Red Square, and Saint Basil’s Cathedral, while also enjoying the city’s diverse culinary scene, which ranges from traditional Russian fare to international cuisines. Moscow’s green spaces, like Gorky Park and the Moscow River embankments, provide tranquil settings for relaxation and recreation. Additionally, the city’s hospitality industry offers a wide array of accommodations, from luxurious hotels to cozy boutique options, all known for their warm service. The cultural landscape is rich with theatres, museums, and galleries that cater to a variety of tastes, ensuring that every traveller finds something to marvel at. Whether one is drawn to the grand architecture, the bustling arts scene, or the vibrant nightlife, Moscow is a city that warmly embraces its visitors, making it a must-visit for any avid traveller.

Must-See Attractions

The Moscow Kremlin and Red Square

The Kremlin and Red Square are the heart and soul of Moscow, a UNESCO World Heritage site that dazzles with its grandeur and historical significance. From the moment you lay eyes on the Kremlin’s ruby stars and ancient tiles, you’re transported back in time. The Tsar Cannon and Tsar Bell greet you as you enter, relics of Russia’s imperial past that stand as a testament to its powerful history. The Armoury Chamber, brimming with treasures like the Fabergé eggs and royal regalia, offers a glittering glimpse into the opulence of the czarist era.

Red Square

No visit to Moscow is complete without a stroll through Red Square, where the whimsical domes of St. Basil’s Cathedral create a fantastical skyline. Lenin’s Mausoleum, where the Soviet leader rests, adds a poignant touch to the experience. The Historical Museum and the Cathedral of the Intercession of the Most Holy Theotokos on the Moat add layers to the rich tapestry of Russian history.

Zaryadye Park

Just a stone’s throw from Red Square, Zaryadye Park blends natural beauty with futuristic architecture. This modern park offers breathtaking views of the Kremlin and the Moskva River, making it a perfect spot for a leisurely afternoon.

Church of the Ascension in Kolomenskoye

Venturing beyond the city center, the Church of the Ascension in Kolomenskoye stands as a marvel of Russian architecture. Built to commemorate the birth of Ivan the Terrible, this church is one of the first hipped roof temples in Russia and offers a serene escape from the city’s hustle and bustle.

Kolomenskoye Museum-Reserve

Even with the Church of the Ascension under restoration, the Kolomenskoye Museum-Reserve provides a rich array of historical treasures. The palace of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich, the Falcon Court, and the beekeeper’s estate are just a few of the attractions that make this verdant park a delightful retreat.


Don’t let the acronym fool you-VDNKh, or the Exhibition of Achievements of National Economy, is a must-see. This sprawling complex is a testament to Soviet and Russian progress, featuring exhibitions that span from agricultural innovations to space exploration. Pavilion 75, with its focus on the diverse regions of Russia, and the Cosmonautics and Aviation Centre, with its detailed exhibits on space travel, are particularly captivating.

The Moscow Eye

For a panoramic view of Moscow, the Moscow Eye is unbeatable. This Ferris wheel provides a bird’s-eye view of the city, offering a unique perspective on its sprawling urban landscape and architectural marvels.

Kolomenskoye Estate

This former royal estate is a beautiful blend of gardens and ancient structures, offering a tranquil escape steeped in history and charm.

Activities to Enjoy Crave Theatre

In the heart of Moscow, Crave Theatre stands as a beacon of contemporary theatrical arts. Known for its innovative and avant-garde performances, this intimate venue is a must-visit for culture enthusiasts. Be sure to book in advance, as tickets sell out quickly.

Shopping in Moscow

Moscow is a shopper’s paradise, offering everything from high-end boutiques to traditional markets. Explore GUM and TSUM for luxury brands, or head to the “Made in Moscow” shop for unique local goods. The Tsvetnoy department store is perfect for cutting-edge fashion, with regular events and pop-up markets that attract the city’s fashionistas.

Boat Trip on the “Erwin River” Yacht

An evening cruise on the Moskva River offers a magical view of Moscow’s landmarks. The yacht provides a luxurious setting to enjoy the cityscape, from the Kremlin to the modern skyscrapers of Moscow City, all bathed in the glow of sunset.

Where to Stay

Baltschug Kempinski Hotel

Located along the Moskva River, Baltschug Kempinski Hotel offers a blend of historical charm and modern luxury. With stunning views of the Kremlin and Red Square, it provides an ideal base for exploring Moscow.

Lotte Hotel Moscow

Situated in the city center, Lotte Hotel Moscow combines elegance with convenience. Its spacious rooms, excellent dining options, and top-notch amenities make it a standout choice for both leisure and business travellers.

Visa Information

Getting a visa for Moscow is a straightforward process, and there are plans to introduce visa-free group tourist exchanges soon. For more details, visit https://electronic-visa.kdmid.ru/index_en.html

Traveling Within Moscow

The Moscow Metro is a marvel in itself, with ornate stations that are a joy to explore. Each station is a work of art, reflecting the grandeur and cultural heritage of Russia. From the neoclassical splendor of Komsomolskaya to the sleek elegance of Mayakovskaya, traveling on the metro is an experience in its own right.

Dining Delights

Tajj Mahal Restaurant

For a taste of India in Moscow, head to Tajj Mahal on Arbat Street. The restaurant offers a delightful blend of Indian flavors that feels like a slice of home.

SIXTY Restaurant

Perched high in the Federation Tower, SIXTY offers panoramic views of Moscow along with an unforgettable dining experience.

Pushkin Restaurant

Known for its traditional Russian cuisine, Pushkin Restaurant is a must-visit. Themed rooms like the Garden Setting and Library add to its unique charm.

Briquette Market Food Court

Located in the vibrant Tsvetnoy Boulevard area, this food court offers a variety of gourmet options, including delicious Indian cuisine.

“Vse Len’” Restaurant

Within the VDNKh complex, this restaurant is a beautiful spot surrounded by natural beauty, offering a perfect midday break with delightful dishes.

BAGEBI Restaurant

For an authentic Georgian dining experience, BAGEBI in Moscow is the place to be. With warm hospitality and traditional Georgian dishes, it’s a culinary gem not to be missed.

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