Sokolniki Park (Outer North, Sokolniki Metro Station) is twice as large as Gorki Park and contains lots of sports facilities. On weekends, afternoon and even near dawn on frigid winter morning, you can see elderly and middle-aged couples waltzing and doing the charleston in this wooded park. In the winter it is a popular place to skate and cross-country ski.

Boulevard Ring (embracing Pushkin Square) is a park-like road that begins on the Moscow River and loops around through the middle of downtown Moscow and ends on the Moscow river. The road is about eight kilometers long and has a 20-meter wide strip of park. It is good place for taking walks. Patriarch Pond (Inner Northwest) is a nice quiet spot near Boulevard Ring where domino players gather. The benches are filled with people relaxing, drinking and playing classical music instruments,

Ostankino Park (North Moscow, 1.7 kilometers from VDNKh Metro Station, between Moscow’s city centre and Sheremetyevo Airport) embraces 540-meter-high Ostankino Tower, Ostankino Palace and Park Complex, the Main Botanic Garden of the Russian Academy of Sciences, VDNH Exhibition Center (the All-Russian Exhibition Centre) and part of the Yauza River, Ostankino Park was installed in 1793 under design of the architects A, Mironov and P. Argunov as the park by the Counts Sheremetiev mansion. The two-hundred years oak forest is now part of the Main Botanic Garden of RAS, which also holds lime trees, elms, maples and more than 100 other types of tree. Burial mounds of the Slavic settlements dated to 11th to 13th centuries survive at the park. An 11-heactre park with a pond adjoins Ostankino Palace and Park Complex and includes a garden with a parterre and geometrically right-arranged paths and big landscape park with a stage, a dancing floor, reading room, billiard hall, and sports grounds and ski station.

Patriarch’s Ponds (near the Garden Ring, northwest of the city center, Barrikadnaya Metro Station) features a kitschy statues inspired by the works of the anti-Stalinist Mikhahial Bulgakov, author “The Master and Margarita.” the inspiration for the Rolling Stone’s song “Sympathy for the Devil.”. There are statues of Bulgakov’s Jesus Christ walking on the water of the pond, and the Devil’s collection of evil spirits that includes a mangy cat and a “shameless maid,” wearing only an apron. Some have described the sculptures as “ugly beyond belief.”

There were plans to a place a Disneyland on a 80-acre site outside of Moscow. Later developers who owned the site, led by Chechen businessman, changed their mind and said they wanted to make a US$50 million Biblical theme park instead, where visitors could order food from a Last Supper menu, watch dancers on a tele of Canaan and visit miniature versions of the Red Sea and Dead Sea. For children the was to be a replica of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. This park, too, never made it off the drawing board.

Moscow River

Moscow River (Moskva River) is murky and heavily polluted river that winds through Moscow like a snake. About 200 people drown in the Moscow River every year. Most of them are drunk men who pass out. A diver who fishes out the bodies told the Washington Post, "The typical thing is for people to drink, swim, and decide to 'take a rest.’”

Canals link the Moscow River to the Volga River. The river is also linked through a network of canals and rivers to the White Sea in the North, the Baltic in the west and the Caspian and Black Seas in the south. There are ferries and boats that run between the rivers, canals and lakes north of Moscow. Destination that can be reached from the Northern River Station (Rechnoy Vokzal Metro Station) include Chivero (21 kilometers away), Axakovo (32 kilometers) and Tishkovo (36 kilometers).

Travel on the Moscow River is offered in motorboats and hydrofoils. The latter are futuristic, cigar-shaped boats that are passenger workhorses of Russia's waterways. With a cruising speed of over 40 miles per hour these boats skim above the surfac, with wings that lift them out of the water.

There are two main routes for summer season ferries on the Moscow. 1) The main one runs through the heart of the city between Kievsky Vozkal landing (Kievskaya Metro Station) and Novospassky Ost landing (one kilometer from Prolearskaya Metro Station), with nine stops including ones at Lenin Stadium, Gorky Park and the Kremlin. Motorboats and hydrofoils pull into the stops about every 30 minutes. 2) The second route is between Gorky Park and Kolomenskoe on Saturday and Sunday only and leaves only three times a day in the late morning and afternoon. It is possible to take the ferry one way and the Metro another.

Parks and Embankments Along the Moscow River

Zaryadye Park (next to the Moscow River and the Kremlin) opened in 2017 on the site where Rossiya, the once-largest hotel in the world, used to stand. In addition to the park recreation area created by leading landscape designers, there are also many educational pavilions that blend neatly in the natural landscape, the philharmonic hall, florarium, ice cave and the park’s main attraction — the Floating bridge over the Moscow River. On weekends, the park is very crowded.

Crimean Embankment (on the Moscow River near Gorky Park) is a large and interesting pedestrian zone close to the Peter the Great Monument, It embraces the Central House of Artists with the branch of the Tretyakov Gallery and has Soviet period sculptures, an open-air cinema, a variety of cafes, free Wi-Fi, "dancing "fountains and the largest art market in Moscow with a pavilion for artists. The main architectural element is an artificial "waves" environment made up of hiking and biking trails in the form of waves. At night the area is lit up with decorative lamps, mounted in groups on the hills. Under the bridge there are glowing benches made of wood and artificial stone. The Crimean embankment marks the beginning of a large pedestrian area that connects the Sparrow Hills, Boring Garden, Gorky Park and Boulevard Ring.

Park Arts Muzeon (on the Moscow River within the Crimean Embankment) is a large green area with an open-air museum of sculpture and creative workshops, regarded as a center of contemporary art, music and film in Moscow. The Muzeon collection features more than 1,000 sculptures and monuments, including works by Eugene Vucetic, Vladimir Lemport, Sergei Merkurov and Vera Mukhina. Over the past three years "Muzeon" has become an important cultural area of the capital. It regularly hosts concerts and has been the site of international film festivals, educational projects in the field of art and design and book and theater festivals.

Krymskaya Embankment (on the Moscow River near tthe Church of Christ the Savior) can be reached from Tretyakov Gallery or along the Patriarchal Bridge from the Church of Christ the Savior. It features bicycle paths, a linden alley, dancing fountains, flower beds, oddly shaped benches, an amphitheater, and an artists vernissage. This is where you can find the Red October factory, the new building of the Tretyakov Gallery, and a monument to Peter the Great by Zurab Tsereteli. From here you can walk along the Moskva River through Gorky Park, Neskuchny Garden all the way to the Sparrow Hills. Along the promenade there are places you can rent bicycles and electric scooters.

Gorky Park

Gorky Park (Inner South, near Krymsky Bridge, Oktyabrskaya Metro Station) is the most popular of Moscow's parks. Covering 275 acres and stretching along the Moscow River for almost three kilometers, it contains a fairground, an amusement park, two rollercoasters, a massive ferris wheel, a funhouse with mirrors, a lake with black swan pedal boats, a 200-seat German beer hall, exhibition halls, cultural pavilion, tennis courts, decorative pool, a special camp for children.

Muscovites gather in the park to smooch, hang out, relax and get drunk in the summertime and skate, take horse-drawn sleigh rides and cross country ski in the wintertime. Many skate on the pathways which are flooded and allowed to freeze over. The park regularly holds large public events and exhibitions. The auditorium that hosts both pop concerts and scholarly lectures.

Gorky Park welcomes about 20,000 people a day during the week and more than 100,000 a day on weekends and holidays. The first park of culture and recreation in Russia was opened in 1928 with the objective of “conducting a broad politico-educational and cultural-educational work among the working people, to be an organizer of leisure.” In 1932, the park was named after the writer Maxim Gorky. Since the 1950s the park has undergone extensive reconstruction.

In 2013, "Sparrow Hills" was attached to the territory of Gorky Park. Now Park the park has a total area of 200 hectares and includes old Gorky Park (68.9 hectares) Neskuchniy Garden (40.8 hectares) and "Sparrow Hills" (86 acres). The park can be entered for free. Free Wi-Fi zones have been created.

Places Within Gorky Park

Neskuchny Garden (“Not Boring” Garden) is Moscow's oldest park. Situated on the right bank of the Moscow River within Gorky Park, it extends from the Green Theater to the Third Ring Road. Park was established in 1834 through the merger of the three estate gardens that date back to the 17th century. Architectural monuments found the the gardens include the house of Count Orlov (1796, now with a library and a reading room), a house with a rotunda on the banks of the Elizabethan pond and a three-span stone arch bridge. There are also hills, marshes and bridges over ravines. The garden has a collection of 2,000 different kindsa of plants, stone greenhouse with palm trees and plants from tropical countries, and a large pond and aviary with rare birds and animals. Some of the greenhouses are used for the cultivation of pineapples and grapes and seed germination.

Pushkinskaya Embankment , named after the great Russian poet, is one of the most charming quays in Moscow. It goes along the Gorky Park and is a place where people of all ages and interests relax and meet with friends and family.. There ais also entertainment, and nooks. On the waterfront there are two white stone pavilions, designed by the architect M.F. Kazakova, a beautiful staircase leading to the water, and comfortable benches. Between the Pushkin foot bridge and Olive beach with sun beds and umbrellas like as beach resort. Nearby is an open-air disco, the famous Green Theater and moorings for pleasure boats.

Buran (within Gorky Park) was a 33-meter-long, 24-meter-wide Russian space shuttle leased by the company Kosmos-Zemlya (Space-Earth) and converted into a flight simulator. Visitors led by hostesses in red-white-and-blue spacesuits entered a white bubble module for a simulated medical test modeled on the one given real cosmonauts. Electrodes were placed on the wrists to provide a diagnosis of the body's "functional state," "biological rhythm" and "psycho-emotional stability. Visitors then passed through a tunnel to the shuttle itself and then a through an airlock second module for a 45 virtual reality flight in which they float weightlessly and ate cosmonaut food. Buran means "Snowstorm." Buran opened in 1998. US$1.25 million was invested it. The project lost money. The number of visitors dropped every year. It closed down in 2000.

Sparrow Hills

Sparrow Hills (Outer South, along the Moscow River, Lapinskie Gory Metro Station) are a series of bluffs that rise up from the Moscow River formerly known as Lenin Hills. Laced with trails and covered with birch and maple trees it is one of Moscow's largest parks, following a fairly long section of the Moscow River. Birdwatchers, couples and mushroom gatherers come here. Many newlywed couples have their pictures taken here. There is a ski jump and lots of cross country ski trails that are used on the winter. For kids, there is a Children’s Palace.

The bluffs, which rise as high as 80 meters above the river, offer great views of the Moscow. Below them. the busy river curves dramatically in the shape of a "U". Among the Stalinist skyscrapers and drab concrete apartment building and office you can make the Kremlin, “Ukraine” Guest House, House of the Government of Russian Federation, the “White House”, the skyscrapers of “Moscow-City” and the bulbous domes of Novodevichiy Convent. Donskoy Monastery and Novospasskiy Monastery. Nearby you can also see Lenin Stadium, Moscow State University buildings — the greatest of the Stalin skyscrapers — and Mosfilm, the Soviet Unions's largest film studio.

Sparrow Hills is also called Vorobyovy Gory in Russian. Vorobyov is the name of a village that had been located here since the 14th century. The village was owned by boyars named Vorobyovs. Among the sights in Sparrow Hills are The Cathedral of Life-Giving Trinity, built in 1453 and St. Andrew’s Monastery in Plennici. The observation platform is free and Not far away is ropeway that also offers great views. In winter Sparrow Hills hosts the GRM Group Luge World Cup. In the summer are car racing and mountain bike competitions.

Izmailovo Park

Izmailovo Park (Outer East, 10 kilometers east of the Kremlin, Izmailovsky Park Metro Station) is large undeveloped park with woodlands and open spaces. It features a popular weekend flea market that began as open-air fair in glastnost and peristroika period, when unofficial artists and craftsmen were first allowed to display their work. Some artists still display their work here.

In 1571-1585 the area occupied by the park was part the manor Boyar NR Zaharina, St. George. In 1663 it became a fiefdom of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich, where his vast country residence was built. Using water from the Serebryanka River pond was constructed as a water ring with a large island in the middle, where a palace and courtyard was built that remained until 1855.

The estate of Alexei Mikhailovich had several gardens (Grape, Chemist, Mulberry). In addition, berries, vegetables and hops were planted. Other buildings included an apiary, a mill, a greenhouse, a glass factory and flax factory. The garden complex of the tsars was worked by both Russian and foreign masters. In addition to fruit trees and shrubs, ornamental species and flower gardens were planted. Peter the Great installed amusement games and partially preserved earthen redoubts.

The huge flea market, known as Vernisaj Market, cover the size of a football field and features more than 500 vendors selling Azerbaijani carpets, antique icons, World War II helmets, copper samovars, Soviet crystal, old books, American team baseball hats, matryoshka dolls, Chinese thermoses, amber necklaces, and lacquer boxes. You can also get porcelain tea services, fur hats, padded vests, quilts, antiques, handcrafts, fake icons, musical instruments, heavy iron church keys, Soviet period kitsch items, hand-painted tin soldiers, wooden toys, carved chess sets, Lenin and Stalin posters, Soviet watches, and T-shirts.

Kremlin in Izmailovo is a unique center of culture and entertainment, based at the famous Izmaylovo Vernissage. Built in the architectural style of Old Muscovite Russia, it features colorful, Russian-style ornamentation and wooden architecture intended to be an imitation of Moscow based on sketches from the 14th-17th centuries and drawings of Russian fairy tales. This complex is used for weddings as it has a wedding palace, cafes, restaurants, banquet halls and bars. It is also an 'Old Russia' amusement area for children.

The Kremlin in Izmailovo — also known as the Complex "Kremlin and Vernissage in Izmailovo" — is located next to Silver-Grapes pounds. It hosts city festivals, fairs and festivals and contains the Church of St. Nicholas — the tallest active wooden church in Moscow. The famous "Vernissage" (private exhibition) is one the world's largest trade fair objects and features fine examples of decorative arts, folk arts and crafts and antiques. Among the attractions here are the Russian Costume Museum, Bell Museum, Museum of Russian Fairy Tales, Museum of the History of Vodka and the Museum of Russian Toys. There are also blacksmiths’ yard and the Danila-Master school of folk arts and crafts", where you can learn to work a potter's wheel, paint objects, make toys and practice weaving.

VDNH Exhibition Center

VDNKh (North Russia, VDNKh Metro station on the orange line, near Ostankino Tower) is the largest cultural and exhibition center and public park in Moscow. VDNKh stands for The Exhibition of Achievements of the People’s Economy. It is now formally called the All-Russia Exhibition Center (VVTs) and is spelled both VDNKh and VDNH.

VDNKh occupies 1-x-2-kilometer, 535-acre rectangle and resembles a former world's fair. It was built in the 1950s and 1960s to showcase the Soviet Union's technological and economic achievements and is comprised of pedestrian avenues and pavilions devotes to education, health, science, history and art. There are exhibits on everything from egg laying to computers, atomic energy to milking cows. Many of the pavilions reflect Russian architectural styles over the centuries as well as architectural style from all 13 former republic. There are many grand Socialist Realist monuments, many of them covered in layers of gold. It is estimated that over 10 million people walk past the gilded peasants in the Friendship of People's Fountain every year. Since the break up of the Soviet Union, funds for upkeep have been reduced and the exhibition looks a little careworn.

Jim Heintz of Associated Press wrote: VDNKh “is perhaps the ultimate example of Soviet propaganda kitsch.” Ir is a “500-acre spread of huge, elaborately decorated pavilions begun during Stalin's time. Although many are less than 60 years old, the pavilions' architecture is rooted in styles from centuries past, resembling pashas' palaces and Egyptian temples; one even seems to combine elements of mosques and cathedrals. But look closer and see the hammers-and-sickles entwined in the filigree; the friezes and statues are not of gods and mythical heroes, but of workers. The anachronistic architecture reflects the conservative, even reactionary, strain within Soviet authorities' claims to be boldly pushing into the future. Instead, the future came to VDNKh and worked strange changes.After the Soviet collapse, most of the pavilions were stripped of their propaganda exhibits and turned over to small vendors. [Source: Jim Heintz, Associated Press, October 12, 2009]

“The central pavilion — a classic Stalinist Gothic tower — still contains a Russian ethnographic exhibition, but it's difficult to find amid the kiosks selling cheap watches, glow-in-the-dark panties and other cheerfully tacky goods that would have given a dour apparatchik a fit. None of these sites can replicate the Soviet experience for more than a few moments, but for many visitors that's more than enough."I don't think I would have liked it here then," said Assumpta Abondo, a visitor from Dubai doing some desultory shopping at a souvenir stand.For her companion Yasmin Mazouzi, the problem isn't that the Soviet experience is hard to find, but that it still seems so prevalent."The people are rude, policemen stare at you," she said. "You're a bit scared, really."

VDNH is official known as the All-Russia Exhibition Center (VVTs) though its Metro stop retains the old name. To reach the park from the Metro station take the northern escalator out of the station and follow the crowds that are always headed for the site. In the summer, VDNH opens as an amusement park. Pedestrian spaces became playgrounds for roller skaters and cyclists. Outdoor concerts and performances are held at the Green Theater. In winter, the exhibition becomes the capital's main ice rink, covering 20,000 square meters. Ice skates and roller skates can be rented. There are also indoor and outdoor cafés, restaurants and food stands. The toilets

Museums and Attractions at VDNH Exhibition Center

VDNH has been described as a cross between an open-air museum and an amusement park. Flowerbeds are laid out along the alleys, exhibitions are organized in the pavilions, music blasts from speakers, and guests take pictures of fountains, the most famous of which are the Stone Flower and Friendship of Peoples fountains. The alleys are used for roller-skating and biking in summer and ice-skating in winter. Some of the most noteworthy places include: The Cosmonautics Museum, the Moskvarium Aquarium, the Polytechnic Museum, models of the Vostok launch vehicle and the Buran spacecraft, an urban farm. A little further away is the Worker and Kolkhoz Woman sculpture group. A short walk through the Ostankino park will take you to 540-meters-tall Ostankino television tower.

VDNH opened as an exhibition in August 1939 to showcase the achievements of the Soviet national economy and demonstrate the conviviality and vibrancy of life and work in the USSR. The exhibition has been a city-park from its inception. Each Union Republic had its own pavilion with colorful architecture in the traditional style of that republic with crafts and works by the republic’s its artists, jewelers, weavers, and wine makers. The sculpture Rabochiy i Kolkhoznitsa (Worker and Kolkhoz Woman) by Vera Mukhina was brought here from the 1937 World Fair in Paris and has been the symbol of VDNH ever since. During the World War II, the exhibition area housed workshops for assembling motorcycles for the war front and an intelligence school. The cult movie Svinarka i Pastukh (They Met in Moscow) was shot here in 1941. The movie was full of rosy images of the happy life of the Soviet people and their willing labor performed for the benefit of the motherland.

In old and new pavilions at VDNH are displays of culture, space, engineering as well as international book fairs and exhibitions. There is an interactive museum inside the Buran spaceship model, where visitors can walk its corridors and compartments and even land a rocket at the Baikonur Cosmodrome. One can swim with dolphins and view rare fish at VDNH's Moskvarium, one of the largest aquariums in the world. Pavilion 75 has contains an architectural model of Moscow with 9,000 buildings, streets, and squares.

Ostankino Palace (North Moscow, 1.7 kilometers from VDNKh Metro Station, between Moscow’s city centre and Sheremetyevo Airport) is a pink-and-white, stucco-covered wooden mansion built by Count Sheremetev, one of the richest aristocrats in Russia in the 18th century and owner of hundreds of thousands of serfs. As you might expect it has a lavish interior. Visitors are required to remove their shoes and put on cloth slippers so they don't damage the inlaid floors.

Inside the palace are rooms filled with ornate furniture and paintings. The main attraction is a theater-ballroom used for performances by the aristocrat’s 250-member serf theater troupe. The Count built it for his wife, a former serf, who was a famous actress. During the Soviet era the palace, known as Sheremetev Palace, was filled revolutionary posters and visitors were told awful stories about Count Sheremetev. The estate includes an ornamental lake, hedge-lined alleys, a ruined greenhouse covered in vines and a garden graced with classical statues. Here ordinary Russians gather to stroll, sun themselves, drink beer and vodka and play cards in surroundings that once only the aristocracy could enjoy.

Oceanarium “Moskvarium”

Oceanarium “Moskvarium (North Russia, VDNKh Metro station on the orange line, near Ostankino Tower) opened in 2015 and is one of the largest aquariums in Europe. Covering 53,000 quare meters, it houses 80 aquariums with 12,000 species of sea and river aquatic life, including skates, sharks, crocodiles and reef fish.

Visitors can watch water shows in a complex that can accommodate 2300 people and has pool which depth is 14 meters. There are shows with seals, walruses, whales and dolphins. There is also a facility for swimming with dolphins with seven pools on the fourth floor of the complex. On the second floor are exhibition halls and observation windows for pools with beluga, dolphins and killer whales.

On Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday at 6:30pm people can stand witness the feeding piranhas. On Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 2:00pm in Aquarium No. 73 are sharks are fed. People can visit Oceanarium individually. There are discounts for large group. Audioguides are available.

Sports in Moscow

Spectator sports in Moscow include hockey, football (soccer), and basketball. A large number of international tournaments and championships, including games from the 2018 World Cup soccer tournament and the 2013 World Track and Field Championships. Moscow is home to five soccer clubs and five hockey clubs. Some sports events are held in the Lenin Stadium complex. The tickets are cheap and stadiums and arenas are rarely full. Watch out for hooligans. There is also harness racing, and troika racing in the winter.

Moscow Swimming Pools should be checked if you visit the city during the winter time. The outdoor heated pools are open even during the sub-zero days when the hair on the heads of swimmers freezes solid. To avoid the shock of being out in the open air swimmers enter the water through submerged opening in the dressing rooms. The Olympic Aquatics Center Moscow is where swimming and diving events were held for the 1980 Olympic. It is a modern complex of indoor and outdoor pools. The Pool SC Olympic is another large swimming pool sports complex.

Spartak Stadium (Spartak metro station) is the home ground of Spartak Moscow Football Club and is now called the Otkrytie stadium after its sponsor, the Otkrytie bank. Opened in 2014, the stadium covers 53,758 square meters and is 53 meters tall, and has 48 VIP boxes. By the pitch, next to the stands, there is a monument to the great footballers, the Starostin brothers. The area in front of the stadium is decorated with a monument to Spartak's outstanding midfielder Fyodor Cherenkov, and a statue of a gladiator. The stadium host some 2018 World Championship matches. Tours of the stadium are available. Visitors can see the vestibule of the Western Stands, the home changing rooms of the Spartak players, the referee's room, the players” tunnel, the trainers” positions and the substitutes” bench. There is also a Spartak FC club museum and a large fast-food area.

Central Moscow Hippodrome is one of the biggest racecourses in Russia and the oldest in Europe, founded in 1834. Trotter races are held on the weekends, featuring races with Russian, Orlov and American breeds. The main and the most expensive races in Russia are held here. Among them are the the Big All-Russian Prize (Derby), Russian prize "Leopard" prize "Elite" prize "Peony," "large outdoor" prize for mares, and the "Central Moscow imppodroma". Also on the CMR is a raffle sponsored by the French Trotter Association ( "Days of France"), with European and domestic riders, and winter and summer triples competitions. To entertain the audience in between the competitions, there are camel races, greyhound races, a dog sled race, pony competitions, performances by trained horses and ponies, and trick riding performances. The hippodrome is also the site of a riding school and testing ground and research, experimental base for the Research Institute of Horse Breeding.

Other major sports facilities in Moscow include the 1) Sports Complex Olympic, used for many major international sporting events; 2) Stadium Dinamo, the home ground of the football team Dynamo; 3) Locomotive Stadium, opened in 2002, and featuring a roof that rests on rigging stretched between four reinforced concrete pylons; 4) Arena Khimki, a small, cozy and very modern stadium located a few hundred meters from the Moscow Ring Road; and 5) Sports Palace Megasport, a unique facility that meets the requirements for holding many sporting events.

Luzhniki Olympic Complex (Lenin Stadium)

Luzhniki Stadium (Inner Southwest, near a bend in the Moscow River, Sportinaya Metro Station) used be called Lenin Stadium and was once the largest stadium in Europe. Opened for a youth festival in 1956 and used in the 1980 Olympics, it seats more than 100,000 people and was built in a low area filled in by pumping material from the nearby Moscow River.

Luzhniki Stadium is the main building of the Luzhniki Olympic Complex and is also called the Great Sports Arena (GSA). Built in 1956 in record time — in just 450 days, the famous stadium where the most important sporting events take place. The design of stadium is aimed at universality. The stands are oriented in exact accordance with the four cardinal directions — North, West, East and South — and this is supposed to link it with all parts of the world. The central arena has a nearly elliptical shape.

Luzhniki is the largest stadium in Russia. It can accommodates more than 80,000 spectators. The Great Sports Arena is equal in height to an eight-storey building and has four floors. Under the stands is a whole sports city, 15 training halls, a medical and sports center and even a hotel and a cinema. In 1957, the Museum of Sport opened here.

For the 22nd Summer Olympic Games in 1980, the area under the Western Stand was equipped according to international standards with rooms for honorary guests and a large main press center. Under the Eastern platform, there is a rehabilitation functional diagnostic center, service points for athletes and doping control centers.

In 1995 the stadium was given a major overhaul so it was in accordance with UEFA requirements for international football matches. A roof was placed over the stadium that was 63.5 meters wide and weighed 15,000 tons. Matrix displays, better lighting, sound and acoustics and locker rooms for players according to FIFA standards were installed. In late 1998, GSA was included in the list of UEFA's 5-star European football stadiums. In preparation for the 2018 World Cup in Russia, Luzhniki stadium once again experienced a large-scale reconstruction.

Ice Rinks in Moscow

Enea Rink is the main ice skating rink in Russia and the largest rink in Europe, with a total area of 57,300 square meters and an area of ice cover of 20,510 square meters. The rink can accommodate up to 4,500 skaters and has a wide ice track, fantastic lighting, a hockey box, playground, lovers alley , extreme sports park, convenient infrastructure with spacious locker rooms and ice skate rentals.

A refrigeration pipe system with plastic pipes and ice-mats, a powerful group of pumps and refrigeration equipment are used too create ice for the complex and make it so the rink can operate in any weather and season. The main attraction of the rink are its lights, which flash on the facades of buildings, fences, pedestrian bridge and even the ice inside. The total area of the ice illumination is about 5,000 square meters. Daily at 5:00pm the ice surface is transformed into one large mediaekran, which broadcasts until midnight different subjects.

Other ice skating facilities in the Moscow area include: 1) Ice Palace Arena Mytishchi. a modern sports and leisure center-class that can accommodate 9,000 people; 2) Sports Palace Dynamo in Krylatskoye, opened in 2006 and used for training and competition; 3) Specialized Ice Palace Dream, designed for those fond of skating with various programs for children; 4) Ice Palace Sokolnik, one of the most popular areas of Moscow for many fans of hockey and figure skating; 5) the GUM-skating rink (open every day from November to March), an outdoor skating rink on Red Square with an area of 3000 square meters, a capacity of 500 people and warm dressing rooms, a café and skate rental and sharpening services; and the 6) Sports Complex Krylatskoye, a huge ice rink with great ice, locker rooms and a café


Kolomenskoe (Outer South, Kolomenskaya Metro) is lovely area of park land that covers four square kilometers on a bluff above a bend of the Moscow River. A popular weekend picnic destination, it embraces stands of trees, lawns, garden and a number of historical buildings including the 17th-century Saviour Gate, the Kazan Church and St. George Bell Tower.

The main attraction is the Ascension Church. Built between 1530 and 1532 to celebrate the birth of Ivan the Terrible, it is regarded as a forerunner of St. Basil's cathedral because it incorporated wooden architecture elements such as onion domes into stone for the first time. It’s canopied top clearly visible from any point at Kolomenskoe.

Kolomenskoe contained the Moscow summer home of the tsars. The 17th century central Kazan cathedral was not damaged by Stalin or in World War II. St. John the Baptist Church was built by Ivan the Terrible in mid 1500s. Around the park are a number of relatively small wooden buildings, including a cabin where Peter the Great lived while a fort and ship was being built at Arkangelsk.

History of Kolomenskoe

According to legend, Kolomenskoye was founded by residents of the city of Kolomna, fleeing from the Mongol Khan Batu, who burned their city in 1237. In 1339, the great Tsar Ivan Kalita mentioned a village named Kolomenskoye in his will as his own. Later the manor became the fiefdom of Moscow’s grand dukes and tsars. kings.

Vasily III — Ivan the Terrible’s heir — in constructed tent Church of the Ascension in 1528-1532 to honor Ivan the Terrible. In November 1649 Our Lady of Kazan was built and consecrated. Since then, many people have celebrated the feast day of the Kazan Icon of Our Lady here, which now falls on November 4th. [Source: Russian Tourism Official Website]

The most famous landmark at Kolomenskoye is the Church of the Ascension. Inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List, this unique church was built in 1528-1532 during the reign of Basil III. Located next to the church is the Bell Tower of St. George, built in the 16th century and used during the Time of Troubles (1598—1613) events. It is in Kolomenskoye that Lzhedmitry stopped before his ceremonial entrance to the capital in 1605. A year later, the leader of the peasant uprising Ivan Bolotnikov and his army built a fort and began to call to arm the poor against the rich. But he was forced to leave after some time under the pressure of the people.

Vodovzvodnaya Tower appeared in the second half of the 17th century. A foreign The exposition of the tower reveals many interesting pages in the history of water supply. After that a front gate complex was built. . Located there is the most complete exposition of the history of this unique place, an introduction to archaeological finds, household items, interior, arms. Even the opportunity to go inside this ancient construction is of great interest.

Buildings at Kolomenskoe

Buildings and places of interest at Kolomenskoe include many museums dedicated to a variety of topics; the house of Peter I; an open-air museum of wooden architecture; the refectory of the church of St. George; the foundations of outbuildings at the Prince's court; and the Church of the Kazan Mother of God, built in 1649-1653.

The Kolomenskoe museum-reserve embraces the former village of Djakovo, the home of another legendary architectural monument — the Church of the Beheading of John the Baptist. The founder of the church is considered to be Ivan the Terrible, but the exact date of the construction has not been confirmed. In 1924 the church was closed. Vodovzvodnaya Tower houses a display on the history of water supply. The front gate complex contains an exposition of the history of Kolomenskoe, with an introduction to archaeological finds, household items, interior, arms.

Kolomna Palace is a recent addition built based on surviving drawings of the Palace of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich Romanov (son of Mikhail Fedorovich). The original palace stood in front of the Kazan Church, which was originally a home church, and was connected to it by a covered walkway. The original palace was destroyed after its condition deteriorated beyond the point of repair The halls of the rebuilt palace are filled with a variety of exhibits, many related to the life of the tsars and the royal family.

Kolomna Place is divided into male and female halves with separate areas for the king, princes, queen and princesses. The Observation Deck on the Tower of the Palace of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich in Kolomna opened in December 2014. It is located on one of the towers of the palace of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich. From it you can see 26 of towers of Kolomna, The towers vary in height from two to six stories. Visitors can "try on" the images of historical figures who lived in the palace chambers.

Church of the Kazan Icon of the Mother of God was originally built of wood as the home church of the royal family during the reign of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovic. Located opposite the famous wooden palace, the church was connected to it by a covered walkway. After the demolition of the dilapidated palace it became an independent building. In The Soviet era, the temple was not closed, except for a short period in 1941-1942. The church is the home church of the miraculous Icon of the Mother of God "Reigning". Found in the basement the nearby Ascension Church it honors the 17th century Kazan icon of the Mother. It is believed that Church of the Kazan Icon of the Mother of God was built in honor Moscow’s deliverance from the Poles.

Dutch House of Peter the Great is a copy of the house of Peter the Great lived in while he lived in the small Dutch city of Zaandam. The original house is still in Zaandam. In the two small rooms of 42-square-meter dwelling, visitors will see parts of the original house: fragments of the interior; a fireplace lined with Delft tiles, a bed used by Tsar Peter and unique piece of 17th century forged window hinges. On display are graphic works of Peter the Great and his wife, Catherine I and the icon of Our Savior (the icon accompanied Peter in military campaigns). On the desktop, which Peter used, for studying marine science and shipbuildinf, are drawings and books on ships, maps and a layout of a Dutch vessel.

Church of the Ascension at Kolomenskoye

The Church of the Ascension at Kolomenskoye is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. According to UNESCO: “ The Church of the Ascension was built in 1532 on the imperial estate of Kolomenskoye, near Moscow, to celebrate the birth of the prince who was to become Tsar Ivan the Terrible ('the Terrible'). One of the earliest examples of a traditional wooden tent-roofed church on a stone and brick substructure, it had a great influence on the development of Russian ecclesiastical architecture. [Source: UNESCO]

“The church is now situated near the centre of Moscow on the steep slope that descends to the floodplain of the Moscow River. The church represented a new stage in Russian architecture. It is the first tent-roofed church to be built in stone. The remarkable tent roof rises from an octagonal base crowned by small kokoshniks; the base itself also rises from a larger base formed by a series of tiered kokoshniks. Galleries reached by steps at various levels surround the church. In the eastern altar part of the gallery, facing the Moscow River, there is a "royal pew" in the form of a throne with a white-stone ciborium above it. Because of this specific construction, the walls are 2.5 to 3 meters thick, making the interior very small, although the 41-meter high ceilings create a feeling of spaciousness.

“The church is of great importance for town planning, dominates the surrounding architectural structures and landscape, and provides visual unity to all the elements of the estate. The Church of the Ascension is unsurpassed in its marvellous beauty and elegance of form and was built in spite of the strict canons of ecclesiastical architecture in the 16th century. Its one-pillar construction differed from the usual five-domed structure on four pillars, making it more like a memorial sculpture with architectural features that incorporated the best of the Byzantine, Greek, Roman, Gothic and ancient Russian traditions. The example of the Church of the Ascension in Kolomenskoye then became widespread all over the country until the middle of the 17th century. The tent-like style was important and decisive for Russian architecture, as it later became the embodiment of the Russian national architectural tradition.” Currently, the basement of the church is open to visitors. There is a museum there.


Kuskovo (Outer East, 13 kilometers east of the Kremlin, buses from Ryazansky Prospect Metro Station) is a former country estate owned by Count Sheremetev, an aristocrat who owed 1,200 villages and 200,000 serfs. The main mansion was built in the 1770s near a pond where mock naval battles were held. Other buildings include an open-air theater where the serf troupe performed, a Dutch House with Delft tiles, an Italian villa and a one-sided grotto with "sea caverns."

Kuskovo is one of the most famous architectural landmarks in the east of Moscow. First reference of the estate dates to the beginning of 17th century. At that time the main part of the land in the area of the present-day estate belonged to the Chancellor of Russian Empire, Cherkassky. A small piece of land (“kusok” in Russian) was owned graf Boris Sheremetiev. His son and heir married the chancellor daughter and the whole estate became a possession of his family and was called “Kuskovo.”

In 1774, a classical-style palace designed by the architects Fedor Argunov and Alexey Mironov was built together with a French-style garden and a big palace pond. The Palace was notable for its luxury interior and noble decorations. Exquisite molding, carved wood and elegant forging were used. Rooms follow each other; the doors are aligned. Both the exterior and interior of the palace for the most part have retained their original appearance.

Near the palace in the park are several pavilions that were constructed for entertaining the public. The most famous and oldest one is the Holland House, built to honor the era of Peter the Great. As of continuation of this theme the nearest pond looked like a Dutch channel and had a tulip garden. The Italian-style pavilion included a grotto and small house.

Museum of Ceramics in Kuskovo opened at Kuskovo in 1938. It is the only one of its kind in Russia and one of the world's largest private ceramics collections with more than 30,000 works of ceramics and glass from different countries from antiquity to modern times. Its includes outstanding examples of Italian majolica, Venetian, English and Russian glass and Meissen, Sevres and Oriental porcelain. The special pride of the museum is a unique collection of 18th century porcelain from Russian factories

Image Sources: Wikimedia Commons

Text Sources: Federal Agency for Tourism of the Russian Federation (official Russia tourism website ), Russian government websites, UNESCO, Wikipedia, Lonely Planet guides, New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, National Geographic, The New Yorker, Bloomberg, Reuters, Associated Press, AFP, Yomiuri Shimbun and various books and other publications.

Updated in September 2020

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