Nov
12
2011

A Blend of History & Culture: Moscow, Russia Events

A Blend of History & Culture: Moscow, Russia Events

There is plenty for you to enjoy when it comes to Moscow, Russia events. There are festivals that take place in this city that date back to the times of the Czars and those that have more modern roots. Many of the Moscow, Russia events take place in Red Square. Moscow is the largest city in Russia and there are many historical hotels where you can stay that are close to this capital.

Kremlin Tours

One of the Moscow, Russia events that you will not want to miss when you visit Russia is a tour of the Kremlin. This building, which used to be closed to the public, is now available for touring for those who wish to visit this capital city of Russia. The Kremlin must be seen to be believed and the best time to see this site is in the late summer months when the weather is warm.

Gorky Park Theater

During the last weekend in August, there is live theater in Gorky Park. There is no charge to view this amateur theater display which is really very impressive. Russian theater is known throughout the world as being top notch, but getting a chance to see the park theater is something that everyone will enjoy. There are even plays for children as well as puppet shows during the late summer months in Gorky Park.

Russia Dance Week

Experience Russian Dance in Red Square when you visit Moscow. This is an event that takes place yearly right in Red Square during Fridays in September. If you have not yet seen traditional Russian dance, this is your chance to enjoy this event and see it at its finest right in Red Square. Some of the dances that you will see are traditional Russian dances that have been practiced for hundreds of years. If you want to see authentic Russian culture, this is your chance to see it for free – right in the heart of Red Square.

Russian Authors Week

The first weekend in May in Russia is Russian Authors week where bookstores and other shops celebrate the writing of famed and up and coming Russian authors. If you are in Russia during the first weekend in May, check out the local bookstores and you are likely to see authors who are engaged in signing books. The Russian Authors Week also pays tribute to the famous Russian authors of the past who are no longer with us, but whose novels and works live on.

There are many fairs and festivals that take place in the summer months and early autumn in Red Square as well as in Gorky Park. During the winter months, most of the Moscow, Russia events are indoors, in shops or in theaters. Russia is a country that has bred many talented artists and writers and also boasts of a wonderful theater and ballet. During the winter months when visiting Russia, be sure to take in the theater or ballet. When you visit during the warm weather, head to Red Square to partake in the annual Moscow Russia events that take place in this area every year.

Nov
11
2011

Ride the Legendary Moscow Metro

Ride the Legendary Moscow Metro!

Moscow metro…there is so much to tell! It is surrounded by astonishing facts, mysteries, and urban legends. Built in 1935, it’s the second most heavily used transit system in the world! Almost 9 million people use it every day!

During the earlier years, the metro was built mainly by Komsomol volunteers. Thanks to their determination, the project was a success. You see, Soviet Union missed both knowledge and experience in the field. Many foreign specialists said it would be impossible to accomplish the task. And yet-here it is.

Some of the stations are a work of art. When you get off the train, don’t be surprised if you see beautiful statues, mosaics and carvings.

Here is a short list of stations you should visit:

  • Kurskaya
  • Ploschad Revolutsii
  • Arbatskaya
  • Smolenskaya

I just love their grim, “Citizen Kane” kind of style. Reminds me of giant zeppelins, kitchen robots and rocket cars.

Oh, and I didn’t mention talking computers.

Many of the earlier built stations are deep. Very deep. That’s because comrade Stalin wanted them to be giant shelters in case the Bomb fell. In many places, especially in the passages, there are built-in steel sections. They actually cover blast doors that would quickly seal off the station in case of emergency.

Older stations are not the only ones suited for fallout survival. For example, in Savelovskaya station, there is a built-in decontamination camera right by the entrance! I doubt it works, but this relic is a gloomy reminder of the Communist times.

The Cold War myths and facts

It’s time for some urban legends. I won’t speak about obvious nonsense, such as ghosts and giant rats. But one mystery is worth mentioning. It’s the so called “Metro-2”. The myth says that Moscow metro contains a secret tunnel network. It connects the Kremlin, Ministry of Defense, bunkers, command posts and other strategic objects.

These tunnels run for tens of kilometers (and far out of Moscow!). They allow quick evacuation of Russian leadership. And they lie much deeper than usual metro. It seems hard to believe, but here is another fact. “Metro-2” is not the only secret object in Moscow. There is a whole underground city built by the military during the Cold War. It’s hard to estimate the amount of money invested in creating this colossal hideout.

A piece of advice

Some tips on using the Moscow metro.

1) Try to have a local guide by your side. Not all Muscovites speak English. If you have some problem – the guide will help you out.

2) Watch your belongings closely. Pickpockets are a pain, especially during peak times. Which brings us to…

3) Avoid rush hours. Try to use the metro between 12 and 2 PM. Otherwise you risk getting stuck in a crowd.

4) Learn your route well. Unfortunately,the signs are mostly in Russian. So make sure you know the number of stations you have to go, all of the passages, etc. See point 1 also.

5) Get ready for noise. The trains are loud, so prepare to tolerate some acoustic disturbance.

Moscow metro is a major cultural and historical landmark. It will greatly enrich your travel experience, so try to visit it.