Yekaterinburg’s Red Line route is a guided tour through the city’s historical center, named so because of the colour of the road — red. The 6.5 km walk will take you through the centre and bring you back to where you started! The tour features 35 noteworthy landmarks, all of which are marked by numbers on the route’s map. These include houses, squares, streets, monuments, sculptures and other interesting sites.
Our tour begins at the oldest square in Yekaterinburg — the 1905 Square (#5), which is easy to reach via the metro. This popular area of the city has had many different names over time, such as Church Square, Cathedral Square, Trade Square, Main Square and finally, the Clerical Square. In 1919, it received its current name and later, in 1954, its main architectural decoration — an iconic five-story building with a spire and chiming clocks. It is now the home of the city parliament (the Duma) and municipal administration. The arch in front of the building displays a mural called Victory Salute, which is definitely a must see.
Our next stop on the Red Line route is Plotinka, the area in which the city originally grew from in 1723. A major landmark of this area is the monument dedicated to Vasily Tatishchev and General de Gennin — the founders of the city (#7).
Take some time and walk along the river Iset, its waters form the city pond and run down to the Historical Square (#5). The now old factory buildings supported industrial production up until the 1970s; however, only the old Water Tower now remains functional (#6). Once servicing the railway workshops and the Mint, now it serves as a museum.
At the embankment you can enjoy a lovely view of the business complex of Yekaterinburg and other impressive buildings on the right bank. This part of the city is famous for its old houses that once belonged to the prominent residents of Yekaterinburg. Among them is the magnificent mansion owned by the Major Master of the Ural mining plants, the far more modest house of the merchant Pshenichnikov, and the splendid, richly decorated Sevastyanov palace on the left bank (#12), visible from afar. Last, but not least, you can see the beautiful merchant Tarasov’s house, further down the street (#13), this is now serves as the Governor’s residence.
Go down Ulitsa Gorkova, turn right to Ulitsa Pervomayskaya, and then left to Ulitsa Proletarskaya. You will pass Pushkin’s Monument and reach the Literature Quarter (#14). Here you will find the Ural Writers’ Museum, memorial houses of the local writers Reshetnikov and Mamin-Sibiryak and a lovely park, where you can take a little break.
The park takes you to the Royal Quarter, named so in honor of the last Russian tsar Nikolay Romanov and his family, who spent their last days there. The Quarter features a museum and the Temple-on-the-Blood (#15), built on the site of the infamous Ipatiev house that once stood there. The basement of the now demolished Ipatiev house was where the members of royal family spent their last days, before their execution in 1918.
Across from the temple there is a small garden with a monument to the Saint Peter and Saint Fevronya Muromsky. The Holy Saints are Russian’s symbols of true love and fidelity. A picturesque view of the Yekaterinburg City business complex and some modern buildings is a bonus.
After crossing Ulitsa Karla Libknekhta, you’ll pass another eye-catching and luxurious mansion that once belonged to the Rastorguev-Kharitonov family on Vosnesenskaya Gorka, a true masterpiece of classical architecture built between the 18th and early 19th century (#16).
Other noteworthy sites along this route include the photography museum, located in Metenkov’s House (#18), the bell tower of the Church of the Ascension of Christ, built in 1801, and the Historical Museum of Yekaterinburg (#19) — a restored old mansion constructed in 1836. For approximately $6, you can dive into the recent past by exploring local artefacts, documents and photos.
When nearing Prospect Lenina, you can take a shortcut and go further down Karla Libknekhta to Ulitsa Malysheva, or turn left and walk a block until you reach the University building (#22), cross the street. Here you can admire the magnificent building that houses the city’s Opera and Ballet Theater (#23). Your next stop in this case will be the monument to Vladimir Vysotsky on Ulitsa Krasnoarmeiskaya (#24), located close to the museum on Malysheva that’s devoted to his life and creative work.