Top 20 Moscow tourist attractions

If you are visiting Moscow for the first time, follow this guide around the city’s main attractions to make sure you cover all the must visit locations.

Red Square

If you haven’t visited the Red square, then you haven’t been to Moscow! This is a comment regularly made by Moskovites, and many agree. An enormous 400 by 150 metres, the cobblestone Red Square is in the heart of Moscow and on its four sides stand the architectural stunners – the Kremlin, GUM Department Store, State Historical Museum and St. Basil’s Cathedral – centres of government, commerce, history and religion.

It used to be a market square until the end of the 15th century separating the Kremlin from a historic merchant quarter known as Kitai-gorod. There are many versions as to how the square got its name. The most popular, however, is that the word Red (translated into Russian as ‘Krasnyi‘) used to mean ‘beautiful’ in old Russian.  

 

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Публикация от Sergey Sukhov (@sergeysuxov)

Lenin’s Mausoleum

First opened to the public in August 1924, the Mausoleum attracts around 2.5 million visitors every year. None of them mind standing in line and going through a thorough body search to get into the illustrious building housing a glass sarcophagus with the embalmed body of Vladimir Lenin, known in history as the father of the Russian revolution that took place in 1917.

Opening hours: 10.00 to 13.00 except Mondays and Fridays

 

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Публикация от Martin Svrx (@msavereux)

State Historical Museum

The State Historical Museum in a neo-Russian style was founded in 1872. This is a museum of Russian history, conveniently located between the Red and Manege squares.  Once occupied by the baroque style Principal Medicine Store (built by order of Peter the Great), several of its rooms housed royal collections, while other rooms were occupied by the Moscow University, founded by Mikhail Lomonosov in 1755. Nowadays, the museum houses a vast collection of artifacts that tell the history of the Russian lands from the Paleolithic period to the present day, as well the country’s largest coin collection, 6th-century manuscripts and artworks collected by the Romanov dynasty, among other treasures.

 

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Публикация от Исторический музей (@state_historical_museum)

St Basil’s Cathedral

St. Basil’s cathedral is one of the most well known Russian landmarks in the world. Completed in 1560, it was built on orders from Tsar Ivan the Terrible to commemorate the capture of Kazan and Astrakhan from the Mongols. This infamous architectural landmark is now a museum of the Russian Orthodox church. Here you will find impressive church artifacts and icons, dating as far back as the 15th century.  St. Basil’s Cathedral has an astonishing array of differently shaped and brightly coloured domes that make it one of Russia’s unforgettable landmarks and the view from the top of the cathedral is simply breathtaking.

 

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Публикация от Stay ‘classic (@pimnara_w)

GUM

Built in the 1890s, GUM (pronounced goom) is a consumer and architectural mecca of Moscow tourists. Catherine II of Russia commissioned Giacomo Quarenghi, a Neoclassical architect from Italy, to design this huge trade center. After the Revolution in 1917, GUM was nationalised and served as a State Department Store. At the end of the Soviet era, it was fully privatized. Its glass-roofed arcade has successfully retained most of its original interiors. With it capacious, architecturally stunning hallways and over 200 of upscale boutiques like Burberry, Joop!, Hermès and Moschino, GUM also offers a variety of great eateries, a Soviet-style grocery store – Gastronom №1 and amazing seasonal exhibitions.GUM is best appreciated at night, when the entire building becomes lit with hundreds of thousands of little lights, making it look like a modern day fairy tale, in the center of the city that never sleeps.

 

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Публикация от Сережа (@part1ro)

The Kremlin

The headquarters of the Russian government and an architectural, administrative, historical and cultural complex. It’s the biggest active fortress in Europe offering a week’s worth of attractions. Inside, there are five squares and 18 buildings to explore, 20 towers to learn the names of, and the world’s largest bell and cannon to see. Ivan the Great, Ivan the Terrible, Lenin, Stalin, Gorbachev and Yeltsin all held sway here, casting their indelible marks on the pages of history.

The two places you absolutely have to visit in the Kremlin are the Armory Chamber and the Diamond Fund.  The Armory Palace is situated in the building constructed in 1851 by the famous architect Konstantin Ton. The museum’s astonishingly vast collection includes ancient State regalia, coronation crowns, the largest collection of gold and silverware made by Russian craftsmen, faberge eggs, West European silver, ceremonial arms and armours, and carriages.

The Diamond Fund  is one of the 3 most valuable collections in the world, along with the British Crown Jewels and Imperial Crown Jewels of Iran.

 

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Публикация от Laky (@vulnerable2018)

State Tretyakov Gallery

Often referred to as the Old Tretyakov to differentiate it from the annex next door, the gallery was built between 1900 and 1905 and started as the private collection of the Tretyakov brothers, who were 19th-century philanthropists. Today the gallery is a home to the world’s largest collection of Russian art – it has 62 rooms and 100,000 works charting the development of Russian visual art from the 10th to the end of the 19th century, as well as the largest collection of icons.

 

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Публикация от Natalia Novikova (@_cestmoi_)

Old Arbat Street

The most famous and elegant historic street located in the city center was once home to many of Russia’s artistic elite. Stretching 1.25km from Arbatskaya Square to Smolenskaya Square, it is one of the oldest streets in the city and was first mentioned as early as 1493. With lots of cafés and restaurants, live music performers and caricaturists, as well as souvenir shops and tattoo salons, monuments and a theatre, Arbat draws crowds of visitors every day.

 

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Публикация от Инника Кетлер (@innikaketler)

Pushkin State Museum of Visual Arts

The largest foreign art museum in Moscow with three branches housing a collection of incredible works – paintings, sculpture and applied art from ancient history to the present day. The main building is home to the Ancient Civilization and ‘Treasures of Troy’ exhibits, as well the museum’s greatest treasures – Renaissance, Dutch masterpieces and the collection of European art from 1600, particularly of French impressionists and post-impressionists in the Gallery of European & American Art, located next door. Here you will find Picasso’s early works, such as Girl on a Ball, Blind Beggar with a Boy, and The Saltimbanque, as well as some of the legendary works of Gauguin, Matisse and Van Gogh.

 

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Публикация от AntonG (@rayoflight222)

Bolshoi Theatre

Opened in 1925, the legendary Bolshoi Theatre is one of the greatest theatres in the world. An evening at the Bolshoi truly is an essential part of a visit to Moscow. Designed by Joseph Bové, this architectural stunner has two stages, hosting both ballet and opera performances. The Bolshoi is the second biggest opera house in Europe (after La Scala), and grandeur and artistic strength are combined in everything from the impressive statue of Apollo that crowns the facade to the ballet’s famously muscular style of choreography.

 

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Публикация от Отель “Пушкин”. Москва (@hotel_pushkin)

Gorky Park

Laid out in 1928, this was the first park of its kind and the prototype for hundreds of others across Russia. Stretching along the banks of the Moscow River the park is divided into two parts. One offers various types of outdoor entertainment: dancing sessions, yoga and fitness classes, as well as beach volleyball and ping-pong, rollerblading, skateboarding and cycling; and in the winter transforms into one of the biggest skating rinks in the city. The other, older, half of the park is more conservative with formal gardens and woodland. You can not only stroll through the park and take part in all kinds of entertainment activities, but also take a cruise around the Moscow river from here to enjoy some of the stunning landmarks like the Cathedral of Christ the Savior, Peter the Great monument, and the Novodevichy Convent from the river side. The park is also home to an open-air movie theatre and the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art.

 

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Публикация от Москва лучше (@bestmoscow)

Tsaritsyno Museum-Reserve

Commissioned in 1775,  it was once a summer residence of Empress Catherine the Great. During the Soviet era the place deteriorated, but subsequently underwent extensive renovation, and is now one of the most beautiful Museum-Reserves in Moscow. . Tsaritsyno Park is the perfect place for a green respite in Moscow offering its visitors opulently decorated buildings, gardens, meadows and forests.

 

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Публикация от Интересная Москва (@i.moscow)

Kolomenskoe Museum-Reserve

The village of Kolomenskoe was founded in 1237, although archaeological traces have been found here of pre-Slavic civilizations dating back over 2,500 years. A 10-minute metro ride from the city centre and close to one of the city’s most industrialized areas, the park and its awe-inspiring buildings are so steeped in history that not even the Kremlin itself can quite so well evoke the history of Russia: ancient churches (the oldest one dates back to the 16th century), the oldest garden in Moscow and a favorite estate of Tsar Alexey Mikhailovich, father of Peter the Great.

 

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Публикация от Сергей Тиньков (@tinkovsergey)

Novodevichy Convent

Founded in 1524 by the Grand Duke Vasily III, the Novodevichy Convent in south-western Moscow is one of the most beautiful sights to visit. Apart from the stunning architecture, its location on the banks of the Moskva River allows for excellent views. The convent was directly associated with the political, cultural and religious history of Russia, and closely linked to the Moscow Kremlin. It used to serve as a final home to many women of the Tsar’s family and the aristocracy, back in the day, when it was common for women from noble families to retire in monasteries. The convent is also famous for its New Cemetery, which became the most prestigious in the city in the last century and the final resting place for members of the Tsar’s family and entourage, as well as for a number of great cultural and political figures, including Anton Chekhov and Dmitry Shostakovich.

 

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Публикация от Лилия💙#Москва (@li_li_liliya)

Cathedral of Christ the Saviour

One of the most visited cathedrals in Russia, the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour is a must see. The grandiose cathedral was completed in 2000. It was built on the exact same spot where its predecessor was demolished in 1931, by the Soviet authorities, to make room for an outdoor swimming pool. For 50 years the place had been home to the world’s largest outdoor swimming pool, until the country’s new government decided to rebuild the sacred place in a $360-million reconstruction project. The new cathedral is loosely based on original designs, but constructed with modern materials and fitted out with all mod-cons including air conditioning, telecommunications facilities, elevators and underground parking. Entrance is open to all, however, certain parts of the Cathedral including the 40-meter-high observation platform are accessible only as part of an organized tour.

 

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Публикация от Moscow (@topmoscowphoto)

Vorobievy Gory (Sparrow Hills)

The Vorobievy Gory viewpoint is a green balcony with a phenomenal panoramic view of Moscow. It’s a part of the diverse parklands and nature reserves, created in the 1950s. Although the park doesn’t offer as many activities as the neighboring Gorky Park, here you can take a closer look at the tallest of the seven Stalin skyscrapers, called Seven Sisters – the Moscow State University – admire the view from the observation deck or get a cable car ride.

 

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Публикация от ✨ БЕСПЛАТНАЯ МОСКВА ✨ (@moscow.free)

VDNKh All-Russian Exhibition Centre

VDNKh (short for All-Russian Exhibition Centre) started as the all-Soviet agricultural exhibition in 1935 and was recently renovated. It is an enormous complex housing a number of museums, shopping pavilions, multiple eateries, a massive oceanarium, a zip-line, and a horse-riding rink. In winter, there’s a skating rink, which is said to be one of the largest in Europe.

One of the main reasons most people visit VDNKh is to see the famous People Friendship fountain, constructed in the 1950s. The fountain displays 16 gold-plated female figures, each representing a former Soviet Union republic. The figures, dressed in their respective national attires, majestically form a circle around a gold-plated, copper wheat sheaf. The bowl that encircles the monument is made of red granite and is powered by 8 water pumps, supplying 800 jets that spray water ensure stunning and ever-changing displays of beauty.

 

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Публикация от ВДНХ (@vdnh_russia)

Ostankino TV Tower

Constructed in 1967 and standing 540 meters tall, it’s currently the highest free-standing structure in Europe and 11th tallest in the world. Now, it has a fantastic observation deck with a glass floor and a breathtaking 360-degree view you can enjoy while having a meal at the rotating 7th Heaven restaurant.

 

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Публикация от DEN BYCHKOVSKY / Photographer (@denbych)

Moscow City

Moscow City is also referred to as the Moscow International Business Center. It’s the latest addition to the city’s skyline with a complex of modern business and residential buildings and home to Europe’s tallest tower – the Mercury City Tower, as well as the 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 9th tallest buildings in Europe. It’s one Russia’s most ambitious engineering projects over recent years bringing together everything required for 21 century lifestyle: accommodation, business, shopping and recreational areas. With 16 buildings scattered over a surface area of 1,000 hectares, the Moscow City is where you should come for some great shopping and the best panoramic views of the city.

 

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Публикация от МоскваСити/Россия (@moscow_city20)

Izmaylovo

Located near Izmaylovsky Park, Izmaylovo Market is mostly known for the city’s largest flea market. It is here that you can find all those Russian souvenirs you’d like to take home. From handmade items to Soviet antiquities, matryoshka dolls to fur hats to lacquer boxes, Izmaylovo Market has it all. It’s also one of Moscow’s largest green spaces, where you can take a break from the city buzz.

 

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Публикация от Измайлово (@izmaylovo_district)

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