Moscow (Russia) in 4 days

Aaron/ March 28, 2016/ Russia, Singapore to Europe Overland/ 7 comments

While often overshadowed by St Petersburg as the cultural capital of Russia, Moscow is nonetheless a colourful and vibrant cosmopolitan city with much to offer. A guide to spending 4 fun-filled days in northernmost megacity on Earth

 

After almost 50 days on the road, I was finally approaching my last stop, the westernmost (and terminal) stop of the Tran-Siberian Railway, Moscow. On one hand, it seemed like a pretty long way up overland from Singapore, but on the other, it felt like my journey had barely began. Nevertheless, thoroughly enjoyed my short stay in Moscow, exploring the historical attractions, cultural icons,  and unique quirks. I also managed to catch up with some friends I met earlier on the trip and made a few more, before it was time to go home.

 

The Kremlin, Red Square, and St Basil's Cathedral. 4 day Moscow (Russia) itinerary.

The Kremlin, Red Square, and St Basil’s Cathedral.

 

Day 1: Kitay Gorod and the Moscow Metro

Arrived in Moscow on an overnight train from St Petersburg. I had a good rest. Air conditioning was good and there weren’t many disturbances through the night, despite it being in third class.

Moscow Passazhirskaya/ Leningradsky railway station. Moscow, Russia.

Last stop of the trip, Moscow! At Leningradsky railway station in Moscow.

 

From out of the station, Moscow gave a different impression from St Petersburg. St Petersburg felt more olden European, while Moscow gave a slightly more modern, cosmopolitan feel.

Komsomolskaya Square (Ploshchad Komsomolskaya). Moscow, Russia.

First impressions at the Komsomolskaya Square, right outside the station.

 

Took the metro, crossed a couple of roads and bridges, and got to the hostel to drop off my bag.

Overlooking the Red Square. Moscow, Russia.

Moscow, old and new.

 

With a much lighter load (practically none without the heavy backpack), I headed to Kitay-Gorod, historic district in central Moscow, for the ‘free’ walking tour.

Kitay-Gorod. Moscow, Russia.

Kitay-Gorod, historic district in central Moscow.

 

Start of the walking tour, at Eastern end of Ulitsa Varvarka. Some interesting and historical sights around the neighborhood, such as 500 year old city walls and wooden churches.

Monument to Cyril and Methodius, Slavyanskaya Square. Moscow, Russia.

Monument to Cyril and Methodius, Slavyanskaya Square.

 

Old churches along Ulitsa Varvaka. Moscow, Russia.

Lots of old churches along Ulitsa Varvaka.

 

Along Ulitsa Varvaka. Moscow, Russia.

Old building with nice wooden roof. I forgot what this was but I suppose it was something important, as with the Romanov Chambers somewhere around it.

 

After Ulitsa Varvaka, the walking tour proceeded straight towards the Red Square, definitely one of the things I have been looking forward to on this trip.

Red Square. Moscow, Russia.

Could hardly hide my awe as I stepped on to the Red Square (which isn’t actually red). Not that great weather for photographs, though.

 

Across the Red Square from the Kremlin, GUM, now a large high-end shopping mall, once the Soviet State department store, and before that the largest shopping center in Europe. Sitting directly across the Red Square from Lenin’s mausoleum, how appropriate.

GUM. Moscow, Russia.

GUM.

 

Ulitsa Nikolskaya. Moscow, Russia.

Ulitsa Nikolskaya, pedestrian street stretching out from the Red Square.

 

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, along the Kremlin Walls. Moscow, Russia.

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, along the Kremlin Walls, dedicated to Soviet soldiers killed in WWII.

 

Fountains at the Alexandrovsky Gardens, along the western side of the Kremlin walls. Moscow, Russia.

Fountains at the Alexandrovsky Gardens, along the western side of the Kremlin walls.

 

Nice tour around Kitay-Gorod and the sights around the Red Square and Kremlin. It was about time for lunch then, and I had to try out Teremok, a fast food chain selling Russian crepes, as recommended by an expat living in Moscow I met in Irkutsk, and the tour guide in the morning. It wasn’t mind blowing, but it was interesting.

Russian crepes, or blini, at Teremok. Moscow, Russia.

Lunch at Teremok, a fast food chain selling Russian crepes, or blini. ₽225.

 

With lunch done, I further explored the vicinity on my own, First to the famous Bolshoi Theatre, but unfortunately not to catch any ballet or opera. Maybe next time.

Bolshoi Theatre. Moscow, Russia.

Not too far away, the historic Bolshoi Theatre.

 

Then back in the direction of the Red Square. One of the more prominent buildings around the Red Square is the State Historical Museum, a beautiful, historic building clad in red.

The State Historical Museum. Moscow, Russia.

The State Historical Museum, from outside the Red Square.

 

Security on the Red Square seemed to be stricter on the first day I was in Moscow, possibly due to the book fair that was being held on it, the first ever to be held on the square.

Saint Basil's Cathedral. Moscow, Russia.

Saint Basil’s Cathedral, built on orders from Ivan the Terrible in the 16th century, looking imposing across the Red Square.

 

In the afternoon, I met up with a friend I made in Irkutsk with whom I travelled the Trans-Siberian till Yekaterinburg. We did a self guided tour of the metro, with help from his guidebook. The Moscow metro was similarly elaborate as the St Petersburg metro, but had a different feel to it.

Krasnye Vorota Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Then went on a subway tour.

 

Krasnye Vorota Metro Station.

Krasnye Vorota Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Krasnye Vorota Metro Station, one of the first stations of the entire system to begin operations, in 1935. It employed a then untested structural design, but has fortunately withstood the forces of nature till present day.

 

Inside a Moscow metro train.

Inside one of the older trains.

 

Komsomolskaya Metro Station (Sokolnicheskaya Line).

Komsomolskaya Metro Station (Sokolnicheskaya Line). Moscow, Russia.

Komsomolskaya Metro Station (Sokolnicheskaya Line). Also one of the stations to open in 1935. It has a unique upper platform to handle rush hour crowds.

 

Komsomolskaya Metro Station (Koltsevaya Line).

Komsomolskaya Metro Station (Koltsevaya Line). Moscow, Russia.

Komsomolskaya Metro Station (Koltsevaya Line). Probably one of the most opulent.

 

Novoslobodskaya Metro Station.

Novoslobodskaya subway station. Moscow, Russia.

Novoslobodskaya Metro Station. Nice use of stained glass. Kinda trippy.

 

Belorusskaya Metro Station.

Belorusskaya subway station. Moscow, Russia.

Belorusskaya Metro Station.

 

Belorusskaya Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

“Belarusian Partisans”, sculpture on the transfer passageway between the two platforms at Belorusskaya.

 

Mayakovskaya Metro Station.

Mayakovskaya Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Mayakovskaya Metro Station, with a futuristic look, despite build built almost 80 years old.

 

Novokuznetskaya Metro Station.

Novokuznetskaya Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Novokuznetskaya Metro Station.

 

Novokuznetskaya Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Sometimes I look up and wonder how much resources was spent building the metro system, especially in the earlier stations such as these. Apparently this station was opened in the middle of WWII. The decorations depict soldiers in combat, reflecting the era in which it was built.

 

Ploshchad Revolyutsii Metro Station. Among the most famous of stations, featuring 76 bronze sculptures depicting the people of the Soviet Union.

Ploshchad Revolyutsii Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Ploshchad Revolyutsii Metro Station.

 

Ploshchad Revolyutsii Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Bronze sculptures on every pillar.

 

Ploshchad Revolyutsii Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Stepping back in time, to 1938.

 

Arbaskaya Metro Station. The original station was damaged by German bombing in WWII and this replacement was built parallel to the old one.

Arbaskaya Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Arbaskaya Metro Station.

 

Arbaskaya Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

A different perspective.

 

Kiyevskaya Metro Station (Arbatsko – Pokrovskaya Line). Featuring frescos depicting life in Ukraine.

Kiyevskaya Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Kiyevskaya Metro Station.

 

Kiyevskaya Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Beautiful frescos lining the station.

 

Kiyevskaya Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Mural at the end of the station.

 

Park Pobedy Metro Station, the deepest station in Moscow, at 84m. We resurfaced to check out an interesting park, where a hill overlooking the whole of Moscow once stood. Now an open air museum commemorating the military victories of Russia stands in its place.

Park Pobedy Metro Station. Moscow, Russia.

Another mural at Park Pobedy Metro Station. Many other amazing stations but didn’t manage to check them all out, so that’s it for now.

 

Park Pobedy (Victory Park) on Poklonnalya Hill. Moscow, Russia.

Park Pobedy (Victory Park) on (what was once) Poklonnalya Hill.

 

Park Pobedy (Victory Park) on Poklonnalya Hill. Moscow, Russia.

Nice park for a walk, with impressive sculptures. Mostly recent additions.

 

The Triumphal Arch, Park Pobedy. Moscow, Russia.

The Triumphal Arch, built to commemorate Russia’s victory over Napoleon, against the backdrop of downtown Moscow.

 

Returned to the metro to visit another park a short ride away.

Moscow metro escalator.

Back into the metro, to Gorky Park.

 

Kiyevskaya subway station. Moscow, Russia.

Met with the rush hour at Kiyevskaya station.

 

Gorky Park metro station. Moscow, Russia.

In some stations the touches got a little more subtle. Just a little.

 

I arrived at Gorky Park to the slowly setting sun, a nice change from St Petersburg, where the sun never seemed to set. The weather was much better by then.

Gorky Park. Moscow, Russia.

Walking towards Gorky Park.

 

The park was a nice place to take a walk or chill. After having some snacks, I headed along the Moskva river back towards the Red Square.

Gorky Park. Moscow, Russia.

Gorky Park, along the Moskva River.

 

Gorky Park. Moscow, Russia.

Flowers in early summer.

 

Along the way, a huge monument almost 100m tall rose from the river, the Peter the Great Monument. Apparently some controversy surrounding this tribute to the man who gave up Moscow as  the capital of Russia in favour of St Petersburg in the 16th century.

Peter the Great Monument (Pamyatnik Petru I), on the Moskva River. Moscow, Russia.

Peter the Great Monument (Pamyatnik Petru I), on the Moskva River.

 

Another unmissable icon along the river, Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, across the Moskva river. First built after Napoleon’s retreat, demolished during Soviet times, and rebuilt after the dissolution of the union.

Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, across the Moskva river at sunset. Moscow, Russia.

The imposing silhouette of Cathedral of Christ the Saviour across the Moskva river at sunset.

 

Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, from the Patriarshiy Bridge. Moscow, Russia.

Another side of the Cathedral, from the Patriarshiy Bridge.

 

 

Downtown Moscow at dusk.

Downtown Moscow.

 

The Pashkov House. Moscow, Russia.

The Pashkov House, once home to Moscow’s first public museum.

 

After the nice long walk along the river, I found myself back at the Red Square. Looked quite different from it was in the day.

The Kazan Cathedral. Moscow, Russia.

The Kazan Cathedral, at a corner of the Red Square.

 

Spasskaya Tower along the Kremlin walls, and St Basil's Cathedral. Moscow, Russia.

Red Square by night. Spasskaya Tower along the Kremlin walls, and St Basil’s Cathedral.

 

Memorial to opposition leader Borris Nemtsov. Moscow, Russia.

Memorial near where opposition leader Borris Nemtsov was assassinated just a few months back. On the Bolshoy Moskvoretsky Bridge, overlooking the Red Square.

 

It was a tiring but satisfying day spent walking around the huge capital. I was glad to be back at the hostel after the long day, for a nice shower and good rest.

 

Day 2: The Red Square, The Kremlin, and Arbat Street

My second day in Moscow was also the 50th since leaving Singapore on a bus. I spent the day exploring the key attractions in the Russian capital, the Red Square, the Kremlin, and Arbat Street. Too many things to see and do at these attractions, so it was a slightly brief one.

Spasskaya Tower and St Basil's Cathedral, Red Square. Moscow Russia.

Spasskaya Tower and St Basil’s Cathedral from the Red Square. Great weather in Moscow this morning.

 

The first ever book fair to be held on the Red Square ended the day before, and the square was largely cleared by the time I was back on it.

GUM, Red Square. Moscow Russia.

Packing up after the book fair.

 

I decided to make a stop at the historic departmental store and check out the legendary ice cream.

GUM. Moscow Russia.

Inside GUM.

 

GUM. Moscow, Russia.

Impressive structure built to withstand snowfall accumulation, yet provide sky light.

 

Couldn’t really afford anything there, except for the legendary ice cream, which every tourist went for. Supposedly retains the recipe since Soviet times.

"Eskimo" ice cream at GUM. Moscow, Russia.

On my first queue, the popular one which everyone went for was sold out, so I settled for an “Eskimo” (₽50 rubles), vanilla ice cream in a hard chocolate shell on a stick.

 

GUM ice cream. Moscow, Russia.

Not long after, the popular/ traditional/legendary one was back in stock, so I got myself another ice cream (₽50 rubles).

Still wasn’t sure what a Soviet taste was, but it was a nice way to cool off in the rising temperatures.

 

After a leisurely morning stroll, got inside the Kremlin (₽500 rubles). Very interesting place, exploring the (really) old churches, and some strangely enormous stuff, like this cannon.

The Tsar Cannon, in the Kremlin. Moscow, Russia.

The Tsar Cannon. Largest cannon (by caliber) in the world.

 

And this bell.

The Tsar Bell, in the Kremlin. Moscow, Russia.

The Tsar Bell. Largest bell in the world, weighing over 200 tonnes.

 

The churches were just as spectacular. No photography allowed inside though, but might be a good thing, as the beauty inside might not be replicable on photographs – come visit it!

Cathedral of the Annunciation, Kremlin. Moscow, Russia.

Cathedral of the Annunciation, over 500 years old.

 

Cathedral Square, Kremlin. Moscow, Russia.

No photography was allowed inside the amazingly well-maintained churches, so here are more shots of the outside.

 

Ivan the Great Bell Tower, Kremlin. Moscow, Russia.

Ivan the Great Bell Tower, tallest tower in the Kremlin.

 

Gilded domes on the Church of the Nativity, Kremlin. Moscow, Russia.

Gilded domes on the Church of the Nativity.

 

Cathedral Square, Kremlin. Moscow, Russia.

Cathedral Square.

 

Inside the Kremlin, over the Moskva River. Moscow, Russia.

Inside the Kremlin, over the Moskva River.

 

After a few hours exploring the churches and cathedrals, exited via the Spasskaya Tower back onto the Red Square.

Guard outside the Spasskaya Tower. Red Square, Moscow.

Standing guard outside the Spasskaya Tower.

 

About time for lunch.

Blini at Teremok for lunch. Moscow, Russia.

Lunch at Teremok again, this time with a different blini (₽235 rubles).

 

It was a decent lunch, but I was still a little hungry. Filled the rest of my stomach with snacks from the supermarket. Got the job done, and went in the direction of Arbat Street.

Buildings of contrasting eras down the street. Moscow, Russia.

Buildings of contrasting eras down the street.

 

Shortly after, arrived at Arbat Street. Arbat Street is one of the oldest streets in Moscow. Now a lovely place for a walk/ people watching, with various artists plying their trade down this pedestrian street.

Arbat Street. Moscow, Russia.

Arbat Street, popular tourist spot, with artists plying their trade.

 

Arbat Street. Moscow, Russia.

Kinda crowded with tourists.

 

Arbat Street. Moscow, Russia.

The spray paint artist got the largest crowd. And the man on the wall looks on intently.

 

Arbat Street, Moscow.

Other sorts of performance arts.

 

Arbat Street, Moscow.

Alone in Moscow.

 

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia building from Arbat Street, one of the seven Stalinist skyscrappers in Moscow.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia building from Arbat Street, one of the seven Stalinist skyscrappers in Moscow.

 

The ‘Seven Sisters’ refer to a group of distinctive Stalinist style skyscrapers in Moscow. Quite a few of them can be found in the pictures in this post, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs building being one. Which others can you identify? There were supposed to have been two more which were never built, one of which was supposed to stand where the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour now stands. It would have been the tallest of them all, if it had been built.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia building. Moscow, Russia.

Got to the front of the impressive facade but it was too huge to fit into the picture, so here’s an alternative perspective.

 

Next, walked to the European Mall not too far away, near Kiyevsky Railway Station, hoping to get some souvenirs.

Vorobyovy Gory metro station. Moscow, Russia.

Vorobyovy Gory metro station, built on a bridge spanning the Moskva River.

 

Downtown Moscow.

Downtown Moscow.

 

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia building. Moscow, Russia.

Managed to get the Ministry of Foreign Affairs building into the frame, some distance away.

 

Huge ad opposite the European Mall. Moscow, Russia.

Opposite the European Mall.

 

Spent some time in the European Mall getting some Russian groceries and printing some Instagrams from a vending machine, then got into this time travel tube to get back to the hostel.

Moscow metro. Russia.

Not for the claustrophobic.

 

It’s nice staying at a hostel not too far from the Red Square. Gives me an excuse to pass it every day/ night. Major sights (such as the Bolshoi Theatre) are nearby too.

Bolshoi Theatre at dusk. Moscow, Russia.

Bolshoi Theatre at dusk.

 

Between the Bolshoi Theatre and the State Historical Musuem, the Four Seasons Hotel Moscow. Modelled after Hotel Moskva, which previously stood at the same plot (and had an interesting story about its peculiar facade- though probably more myth than fact).

Four Seasons Hotel Moscow, Russia.

Four Seasons Hotel Moscow.

 

Red Square/ St Basil's Cathedral, with the packing up almost done. Moscow, Russia.

Red Square/ St Basil’s Cathedral, with the packing up almost done.

 

Day 3: VDNKh and Sparrow Hills

Having travelled quite abit, I found that recommendations by people for places to visit, by people who have actually been there, are almost always good. I learnt that first (or first few times) in Pai. For places to visit in Moscow, I received 2 strong recommendations, one to visit the VDNKh, from an expat living in Moscow, whom I met in Irkutsk, and the other, to visit the Sparrow Hills, from a Muscovite living at the same hostel. And those were the top of my agenda for the day.

 

But back on to the topic of the Seven Sisters (a term not used by locals), there was one not too far from the hostel I had stayed in, the Kotelnicheskaya Embankment Building,

Kotelnicheskaya Embankment Building. Moscow, Russia.

Kotelnicheskaya Embankment Building, another of the seven Stalinist skyscrapers in Moscow.

 

Kotelnicheskaya Embankment Building. Moscow, Russia.

Sculpture on the skyscraper.

 

Early morning rush in the metro. Moscow, Russia.

Early morning rush in the metro.

 

VDNKh metro station. Moscow, Russia.

The VDNKh metro station, opened after Stalin’s era, was far less richly decorated than the earlier stations, owing to mounting criticisms of the earlier excesses.

 

VDNKh metro station. Moscow, Russia.

Nevertheless, still looked amazing.

 

VDNKh subway station. Moscow, Russia.

The entrance to the metro station in front, and the 110m, titanium clad Monument to the Conquerors of Space at the back.

 

Along Cosmonauts Alley, a park and walkway leading from the metro station to the Museum of Cosmonautitcs.

Along Cosmonauts Alley, a park and walkway leading from the metro station to the Museum of Cosmonautitcs. Moscow, Russia.

Cosmonauts Alley.

 

Statue of Konstantin Tsoilkovsky, probably one of the first (real) rocket scientists in the world. Behind him, the Museum of Cosmonautics, beneath the Monument to the Conquerors of Space.

Statue of Konstantin Tsoilkovsky. Moscow, Russia.

Statue of Konstantin Tsoilkovsky.

 

Beyond the museum, the entrance to the VDNKh (or All Russia Exhibition Center), huge Soviet era amusement and trade park showcasing achievements of the Soviet Union, with a huge entrance gateway to match. Free entry.

Entrance to the VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Entrance to the VDNKh.

 

The Central Pavilion, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

The Central Pavilion.

 

The Central Pavilion, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Everything in Soviet-proportions.

 

Soviet emblem.

Soviet emblem.

 

Druzhba Narodov- Friendship of the People, fountain at the VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Druzhba Narodov- Friendship of the People.

 

Other than spectacular gardens and fountains, there were also pavilions representing the various regions of the Soviet Union.

Pavilion of Karelia, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Pavilion of Karelia.

 

Pavilion of Armenia, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Pavilion of Armenia.

 

Druzhba Narodov- Friendship of the People fountain and the Central Pavilion. VDNKh, Moscow.

The Druzhba Narodov and the Central Pavilion.

 

Pavilion of Uzbekistan, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Pavilion of Uzbekistan.

 

Gardens at the VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Lots and lots of neatly maintained gardens …

 

Fountains at the VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

and fountains …

 

Gardens at the VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

and gardens …

 

Fountains at the VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

and fountains.

 

Pavilion of Ukraine, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Pavilion of Ukraine.

 

And one of the highlights (at least for me), the Space Pavilion!

The Space Pavilion, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

The Space Pavilion. To infinity and beyond!

 

Upside down house, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Reminded me of The Twits.

 

Yak-42 passenger jet and the Vostok rocket (replica), VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Yak-42 passenger jet and the Vostok rocket (replica).

 

Prototype of the Buran space shuttle. A similar one performed the first ever unmanned space shuttle flight and a landing in full automatic mode.

Buran space shuttle, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Buran space shuttle.

 

A replica of the Vostok rocket. Similar rockets fired the first ever artificial satellites into orbit and the first manned spacecraft into space.

Vostok rocket, VDNKh, Moscow, Russia.

Vostok rocket.

 

Sukhoi Su-27, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Sukhoi Su-27 on display.

 

Space Pavilion, VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Started to drizzle a little. I thought it added a nice effect to the Vostok.

 

Entrance to the VDNKh. Moscow, Russia.

Like walking on a mirror.

 

It was a great morning spent at the VDNKh, felt like being transported through time. Then again, if it were during the Soviet Union I’d probably not be allowed here. The rain started to lighten up, and I carried on to my next stop, Sparrow Hills.

Moscow metro escalator.

Many Moscow metro stations were built in anticipation of possible nuclear attacks, probably during the Cold War, which is possibly why they are so deep.

 

Vorobyovy Gory (Sparrow Hills) metro station, interesting stop built across the Moskva river, and the only metro station with windows.

Vorobyovy Gory station. Moscow, Russia.

Inside Vorobyovy Gory station, the metro station on the river seen from the other bridge the previous day.

Took a walk at Vorobyovy Gory, or Sparrow Hills, as recommended by the Muscovite I met at the hostel I was staying in. A little quiet and a brief respite from the bustling city.

Vorobyovy Gory or Sparrow Hills. Moscow, Russia.

Relaxing walk through Vorobyovy Gory.

There was a mini bird park/ zoo on the hill. Most animals didn’t look too comfortable in their small enclosures.

Mini bird park/ zoo at Vorobyovy Gory/ Sparrow Hills. Moscow, Russia.

What a place to find a peacock! On Sparrow Hills!

 

Then continued my walk.

Vorobyovy Gory/ Sparrow Hills. Moscow, Russia.

Winding paths through the hills.

 

I got a feeling I might not have been in the side of Vorobyovy Gory that was recommended, but it was decent nonetheless.

View from Vorobyovy Gory/ Sparrow Hills. Moscow, Russia.

Weather wasn’t great, but there were great views of the city.

 

Spent some time winding my way around the hills and ponds. After making my way out of the park, I found myself at a huge roundabout with a tall monument right in the middle of it. It was the Monument to Yuri Gagarin, first person to ever reach space.

Monument to Yuri Gagarin, first person to reach space. Moscow, Russia.

Monument to Yuri Gagarin.

 

It was getting late, and I was getting tired after all that walking, so I headed for the metro and ended the day slightly earlier than normal. Turned out to be a good choice though, as I got to meet some friendly travellers back at the hostel, and we had a good chat.

Novokuznetskaya metro station. Moscow, Russia.

Novokuznetskaya, for the train back to the hostel.

 

Day 4: Free and Easy

All great journeys eventually have to end, and going home is ever so bittersweet. Last day of my longest trip yet (excluding the year spent on exchange, I’ve never been on the move for this long before). Spent my last day in Moscow (and of this long, long trip) pretty much chilling and shopping for some souvenirs (vodka mostly) before the mad rush to the airport (almost late as usual) before heading home to a new job, new life, and with a renewed perspective of the world. Didn’t take much shots of the shopping, so here’s some shots on the way home :’)

Crossing between platforms at interchange stations, right over the tracks. Moscow metro, Russia.

Crossing between platforms at interchange stations, right over the tracks.

 

Moscow metro escalator.

Don’t know when I’ll be on my way down one of these long escalators again.

 

Vnukovo International Airport. Moscow, Russia.

Waiting for the Turkish Airlines flight at Vnukovo International Airport. I was a little late, but the plane was later. It was a bit of a concern though, as my connecting flight was not long after the first leg was due to land. In the end, had to do a mad dash through Ataturk as my connecting flight was on last call by the time I arrived.

 

Flying from Moscow to Istanbul.

Honestly, hadn’t taken this into account. It was barely a year after the Malaysian Airlines plane got shot out of the sky over restive east Ukraine so I was a little nervous after seeing the flight path. On a trip of many firsts, this the closest I’ve ever gotten to a conflict zone (Donetsk just around the corner).

 

Turkish sweets on board Turkish Airlines.

These awesome Turkish sweets did help to calm me down a little though.

 

Singapore to Moscow in 50 days: An adventure complete, a new one begins?
Was feeling quite sick on the way back, probably something to do with the food in the last few days. Nevertheless, I was glad and at the same time a little sad that the long trip was over. I had planned to extend my trip further into Europe when I just left Singapore, but made the decision to end it at Moscow after receiving a job offer I could not refuse. Times are getting tough, and it was probably my best bet if I would want to be able to continue travelling in future, so I was pretty happy taking up the offer. Now, almost 9 months later, I’m glad I made the choice, and I hope to hit the road again soon!
Moscow Budget (4 days)

Actual travel dates: 28 June 2015 – 1 July 2015
Accommodation: ₽1200 (3 nights)
Food: ₽2375 (snacked too much)
Attractions: ₽600
Transport (within Moscow): ₽330
Moscow expenses: ₽4600 (~S$110/ US$85 at June 2015 rate) 

Train to Airport: ₽470 (~S$12/ US$9 at June 2015 rate)

 

4 days in Moscow. Budget backpacking in the capital of Russia.

7 Comments

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  5. Such an amazing trip. I love all the pictures as well. Everything is so grand.

    1. Hi Gary, glad you liked it! Moscow is an amazing city.

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