Around Moscow are historic palaces and museums, surrounded by gardens and parks. Many small towns and places of interest lie within a day's drive of Moscow, including: 1) the old monastery town of Sergiyev Posad (formerly Zagorsk); 2) Yasnaya Polyana, Tolstoy's home; and 3) the Borodino battlefield, site of the greatest battle of Napoleon's 1812 invasion of Russia. Further afield are the charming towns of Vladimir and Suzdal.

Many of these places can be reached by suburban train from Moscow. The suburban trains are generally much easier to deal with than long-distance trains. You don't need reservations. The ticket-buying is straight forward and all the train cars are the same (there aren’t different classes). If you can get together two, three or four people, you can hire a car and driver for the day for a relatively cheap price. You can reach St. Petersburg, Tallinn, Riga, Vilnius, Kiev, and many other interesting cities by overnight sleeper train.

Rublyov (about 12 kilometers southwest of Moscow) is named after the Rublyov Highway, which in turn is named after a famous icon painter. This is where many of Russia's rich and elite live in guarded mansions. Here you can find US$10 million homes with fancy turrets, indoor pools, and private chapels. One of the more outrageous ones has a motorboat grotto. Yeltsin, Gorbachev and Solzhenitsyn retired in comfortable dachas here. Putin lives here. Stalin and Brezhnev lived here. Among the people that have large houses here are pop stars, government officials, and business executives. Many of them travel between their homes and downtown Moscow is Mercedes sedans with flashing rooftop lights. Signs into the area tell buyers that if the buy a house the real estate company will throw in a helicopter for free.

Serebryanyi Bor Beach (on the banks of the Moscow River west of Moscow) is popular summer bathing area with a sandy beach. In the summer it attracts thousands of people after work during the white nights and on weekends. It has lots of trees and picnic areas. Every summer dozens of people here get drunk and drown. Dhukovia is an another area outside of Moscow where many of the rich and powerful have dachas. It has been called the “East Hampton” of Moscow.” Nikoo-Arkhangelskiy Crematorium (east Moscow) is the world's largest crematorium. Completed in 1972, it covers 519 acres.

Pushkin Reserve combines two estates:Zakharov and Vyazemy.Zakharov is where the the great Russian poet Alexander Pushkin spent his childhood from 1805 to 1810 years, before entering the Lyceum. This is the only place connected with Pushkin’s childhood. Vyazemy is a manor that belonged to distant relatives of Pushkin.

Mosfilm Military-Technical Kinobaza (in Alabino, 60 kilometers southwest of Moscow) features tanks used in making films. All the T-55 tanks are combat-ready, with a "native" units. These 36 tons combat vehicle move up 80 percent of maximum speed and have wide steel tracks and produce a load roar when the engine in gunned. It is possible to not to just ride in a tank but also fire blank cartridges from the barrel of an authentic T-34-85. The military-technical kinobaza at the "Mosfilm" was formed in the early 1990s by a disbanded military unit and today accommodates more than 200 units of armored vehicles. For a fee you can arrange a crash test and crush an old car with a tank. One can also shoot a ZIS-3 divisional gun, heavy machine guns and DSHK PTRD anti-tank guns.

Moscow Oblast

Moscow Oblast is a center of Russian Christian Orthodox culture. It is home to holy sites such as the Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius and the New Jerusalem Monastery. There are kremlins in Zaraysk, Dmitrov, Mozhaysk, and Volokolamsk. In Kolomna you can try apple marshmallow and feel the atmosphere of the 19th century. Among the famous arts and crafts from the region are Gzhel ceramics, Pavlovoposadsky scarfs, and Fedoskino lacquer miniatures. [Source: Russian Tourism Official Website]

Moscow Oblast is like a large a suburb of Moscow. Muscovites come here to escape from the city and walk in the parks, to swim in the rivers and lakes, enjoy dacha life and breath fresh air. Tourists are attracted by the region's historic landmarks: churches, fortresses and estates.

Podmoskovye is like an entire country onto itself. In winter, Podmoskovye opens its ski resorts, most of which are located along the Dmitrovskoye Highway: in Yakhroma (Sorochany, Volen, Stepanovo) and Shukolovo. Ice rinks and tubing tracks have been set up here. In the summer, the banks of Podmoskovye reservoirs — Ozerninsky, Pirogovsky, Ruzsky and Istrinsky — offer swimming, boating, fishing and other recreation opportunities.

E105 is part of the International E-road network and one of the main roads in Europe. Begins in Kirkenes, Norway and follows the M18, M10 and M2 in Russia and the M18 in the Ukraine, ending in Yalta, Ukraine. Some cities on its route include Kirkenes, Murmansk, Kandalaksha, Saint Petersburg, Novgorod, Tver, Moscow, Kharikiv, Simferopol and Yalta. The road may be closed due to heavy snows or rains. Long delays may occur at the border crossing. On Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, the road is closed to vehicles with a foreign registration

Accommodation and Transportation in Moscow Oblast

While traveling around Moscow Oblast, you will come across quite a few accommodation options, from economy mini-hotels to grand suburban hotel complexes. Some of these facilities are, by themselves, landmarks worth visiting. La Ferme de Reve is located in a safari park 26 kilometers away from Kolomna. The hotel's additional services include bicycle rental in summer and ski equipment rental in winter, horse riding, a river beach area, fishing, and a playground.

Taezhnaya Sloboda hotel near Zvenigorod offers cabins equipped with fireplace, as well as traditional baths and craft workshops right on-site. It is expensive, but very atmospheric. Tsargrad Hotel is a resort located on Oka River bank nearby the Prioksko-Terrasny Nature Reserve and the city of Serpukhov: the hotel has a river beach area, ski slopes, tennis courts, a zoo, a tubing track, a bath complex and a swimming pool.

The Yurtovyy Kompleks ecological hotel is a glamping for those who want to spend time alone with nature, in an unusual setting, while still retaining the comfort. There is even a treehouse on the hotel's territory. The hotel is located west of Moscow, in Ruzsky District of Moscow Oblast.

Traveling by bus or by train is quite convenient in Moscow Oblast. While the railways branch away from Moscow in all directions, the directions of bus routes are much more diverse. You can combine these two modes of transportation in order to avoid traffic jams. Traveling by car is the most convenient, once out of the Moscow area. Most of the roads are in fairly good condition.


Peredelkino (25 kilometers west of Moscow, reached by suburban train) is an artist and writers colony where Boris Pasternek lived during the last years of his life and finished “Dr. Zhivago” and learned he had won the Nobel Prize for Literature. The modest brown dacha where Pasternek lived has been preserved. It has white trim and bay windows and remains much as it was the day he died in 1960. You can see his deathbed as well as his coat, scarf, cap and boots. the house is surrounded by dense forest of pine and firs.

Peredelkino began as an estate belonging to the Leontievs (maternal relatives of Peter the Great). After a railway passed through the village in the 19th century, it was renamed Peredelkino. In 1934, Maxim Gorky suggested handing over the area to the Union of Soviet Writers. Within several years, about fifty wooden cottages were constructed in Peredelkino by writers to German designs. Among the writers who settled in Peredelkino were Boris Pasternak, Korney Chukovsky, Arseny Tarkovsky, Ilya Ehrenburg, Veniamin Kaverin, Leonid Leonov, Ilya Ilf, Vsevolod Ivanov, Nikolay Zabolotsky, Boris Pilnyak, Lilya Brik, Konstantin Simonov, Alexander Fadeyev, and Mikhail Bakhtin.

The Turkish poet Nâzım Hikmet spent the early years of his self-imposed exile in the Soviet Union at Peredelkino. More recently, Yevgeny Yevtushenko, Andrei Voznesensky, Bella Akhmadulina, Robert Rozhdestvensky, and Zurab Tsereteli moved into the area as well. The arrest of author and playwright Isaak Babel, one of the most notorious events of Joseph Stalin's Great Purge, took place in Peredelkino in May 1939. Babel was then taken to Lubyanka Prison where he was tortured, and shot by the NKVD.

Peredelkino Cemetery is where many former Communist and cultural leaders have been buried. In the cemetery Pasternek is buried under gravestone that features a profile of the author and his broken nose. The writers Korney Chukovsky and Arseny Tarkovsky are also buried here. Many rich and powerful had dachas here. In the town you can also visit the dacha of Brezhnev's daughter.

House-Museum of Boris Pasternak

House-Museum of Boris Pasternak (in the Moscow suburb of Peredelkino) is where the writer Boris Pasternak, who lived here from 1936 until his death in 1960. Russia's most well-known 20th century writer, Pasternak, was awarded the Nobel prize in literature in 1958 primarily for “Dr. Zhivago,” a historical novel that portrayed the Bolshevik Revolution in somewhat negative terms. Pasternak was pressured by the Communist government to decline the award. of 70.

Dr. Zhivago was published abroad in 1957 but was banned in the Soviet Union until 1988. It is great epic novel in the tradition of Tolstoy whose backdrop was the Bolshevik Revolution. It was made into an acclaimed, academy-award-winning film starring Omar Sharif and Julie Christie. Although known mostly for Dr. Zhivago, Pasternak was also an accomplished romantic poet who translated many foreign authors into Russian. Boris Pasternak lived and wrote Dr. Zhivago in a blue house on ulitsa Lenina near the corner of Golgova in the Siberian town of Perm. The town Yuryation in the novel is really Perm.

While in Peredelkino, Pasternak lived in two houses. At first he had a large country house with a large amount of land, but the writer did not like it, so in 1939 he moved to a smaller house on a small piece of land with pine trees. Friends wrote that the poet was very fond of this place and liked gardening there. At this dacha Pasternak finished "Doctor Zhivago" in 1941, created a cycle of poems called "Peredelkino" and translated English and German classics by Shakespeare and Goethe. Here learned that he won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1958.

Pasternak’s wife Zinaida lived with him in the house. Among the the literary figures that came to visit him there were Akhmatova, Chukovsky, Voznesensky and Yevtushenko. Pasternak died here in his home in Peredelkino and was buried in the cemetery in Peredelkino. After his death the house was occupied by his wife, son and daughter Natalia Leonid. Visitors show up at the house and were sometimes given tours by family members and poets in the town. In 1984 the house was taken away from Pasternak’s family because it was not their property, but belonged to the Writers' Union, and at that time Pasternak was still disliked by the Communist government.

Thanks to the efforts of the scholar Likhachev and poets Yevtushenko and Voznesensky, Pasternak’s Peredelkino dacha was opened as an official house-museum in February 1990, the centenary of the writer’s birth. The poet's relatives an friends helped recreate the original atmosphere of the place. Walls were decorated with paintings of the poet's father, art scholar Leonid Pasternak, known for illustrating the works of Leo Tolstoy. The painting hung in the house said be the same ones hung there when Pasternak was alive.

During tours of the house-museum visitors not only get acquainted with the lifestyle but also the music he liked and his poems. For a long time the director of the museum was Natalia Pasternak, the wife of Pasternak’s youngest son. She led the museum for more than twenty years. Currently The custodian of the house-museum is her daughter, the granddaughter of the poet, Elena Pasternak. Regular visitors are only allowed in the house for about 15 minutes. If you book a tour, you get to stay about an hour. Check the website of the house- museum. It house regularly hosts music and poetry readings.

Arkhangelskoye Estate

Arkhangelskoye (22 kilometers west of Moscow, reached by bus and Metro) is a grand, 18th century estate located on a great bend in the Moscow river. Owned by a Nikolay Yusupov, a fabulously rich nobleman with thousand of serfs and 300 mistresses, the main mansion contains halls decorated with Yusupov's extensive collections of paintings, tapestries, porcelain and glass.

Arkhangelskoye also features a serf theater and an multi-leveled Italian-style garden with 18th-century copies of classical statues. The mansion unfortunately has been closed since the early 1990s for repairs and restoration, and it is not clear when it will reopen. Even if its isn't open the grounds are lovely and nice place to enjoy a picnic. Events held at the estate include classical music concerts on weekends, a jazz festival on the first weekend of summer and the annual celebration of Maslenitsa. Beginning of the 19th century, fashion and costume shows have been held in May.

The layout of the estate's park, which is a popular spot for wedding photo shoots, was based on Peterhof and Oranienbaum in St. Petersburg. Apart from the Grand Palace, the estate's vast territory also houses the Gonzaga Theater, the Church of Archangel Michael, a colonnade, an outbuilding, the Kapriz small palace, a tea house, a fountain, several pavilions and other architectural objects. There are numerous sculptures and monuments in its valleys. The cost of an entrance ticket to the fenced part of the estate is about US$5 or US$10 for the estate and museum.

Arkhangelskoye estate provides convincing evidence that a famous noble family's residence could rival those of grand ducal families. At various times, the estate belonged to such famous families such as the Golitsyns and the Yusupovs. It is believed that Arkhangelskoye reached its architectural heyday when owned by the Golitsyns; who hired the French architect Chevalier de Gern to design their luxurious, classical-style palace. The Yusupovs were one of the richest families in Russia. They managed to create a manor complex of unprecedented beauty, which could compete with the best noble residences of St. Petersburg.

Most of the buildings in Arkhangelskoye have survived to this day. Today, the Arkhangelskoye Museum Estate, the former home of the Yusupovs, is a favorite destination for Muscovites and one of the main tourist sights in Moscow Oblast. Visitors to Arkhangelskoye can admire numerous buildings of the estate complex, visit museums and take a stroll through its vast territory, which is stylistically divided into three parks: English, French, and Italian. The estate regularly serves as a venue for various cultural events, and a large number of tourists come here daily.

Getting There from Moscow: 1) by bus from Tushinskaya Metro station; 2) by train to Pavshino railway station, then by bus; 3) by car (about 20 kilometers) along the Volokolamskoye and then the Ilyinskoye highway.


Istra (50 kilometers west of Moscow) is where the Patriarch Nikon attempted to create a little piece of the Holy Land in Russia with a monastery he called New Jerusalem. The Church of the Resurrection, inside the monastery, is modeled after the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. Patriarch Nikon’s tomb is in the monastery. Istra can be reached by suburban train. The monastery is reached by bus.

Museum of Wooden Architecture in Istra is located in the Garden of Gethsemane among the old cedars and pines and is part of the New Jerusalem complex at the foot of monastery hill not far from the monastery. The museum includes a 17th-century church, 18th-century houses, a 19th-century peasant home. granaries and a windmill.

The a museum of wooden architecture was opened in 1981 and began to form in the 70s, when there was a surge of interest in the old days the Soviet Union, when and similar museums began to pop ip all over the USSR. The windmill dates to the second half of the 19th century. The Kokorin peasant hut dates to the 1830s-1840s and was brought to the museum from the village of Vykhino.

New Jerusalem Monastery

New Jerusalem Museum and Exhibition Complex (in Istra) is under the control of the New Jerusalem Monastery, founded by Patriarch Nikon in the second half of the seventeenth century "in the image and likeness" of the Middle East’s the main Christian shrines. Its rich collection of Christian objects was gathered from other sources: when estates were nationalized and churches and monasteries were closed and their possessions were confiscated.

The New Jerusalem site was chosen for its resemblance to the Holy Land, with the River Istra representing the Jordan River. One nearby hill was named Zion, another, Mount of Olives, and a third, to the north Tabor. The main temple of the monastery, the Resurrection Cathedral, resembles the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Other buildings of the complex are the Church of the Nativity of Christ, the Gate Church of the Entry of the Lord into Jerusalem and the Church of St Constantine and Helena. The monastery is surrounded by a wall, and there is now an architectural and ethnographic museum on the place of the former Garden of Gethsemane in the Istra river bend. The main exhibits of the museum include peasant houses, a chapel and a mill.

Patriarch Nikon recruited a number of monks of non-Russian origin to populate the monastery, as it was intended to represent the multinational Orthodoxy of the Heavenly Jerusalem. A female monastery was founded nearby with the New Testament name of Bethany. In the 17th century, the monastery had a rich collection of books in its library: genealogical books, printed books of worship, ancient Svyatoslav's Collection of 1073, the 12th-century Yurievskiy Gospel, as well as manuscripts from Athos monasteries with early Christian texts. There was also a printing house at the monastery that Nikon had moved there from the Iver Monastery.

Most of the buildings were unfinished when Patriarch' Nikon died in 1681. The royal family, in particular Tserevna Tatyana and Regent Sophia, then oversaw the building work and ensured the mostly wooden buildings completion, finalised with its consecration in 1685. In the 17th century, the New Jerusalem Monastery owned a large library, compiled by Nikon from manuscripts taken from other monasteries. By the time of the secularization of 1764, the monastery possessed some 13,000 peasants. The monastery was a major pilgrimage site in the second half of the 18th century and continued to be so in the 19th and 20th centuries. Before World War I it was visited by about 35,000 pilgrims a year..

New Jerusalem Museum

In 1918, the New Jerusalem Monastery was closed down. In 1920, a museum of history and arts and another of regional studies were established on the premises of the monastery. In 1941, the German army ransacked the New Jerusalem Monastery and blew up its unique great belfry. The towers were demolished; the vaults of the cathedral collapsed and buried its famous iconostasis, among other treasures.

The New Jerusalem Monastery, also known as the Voskresensky Monastery, was re-established as a religious community in the 1990s. The main buildings within the walled circuit are: 1) The katholikon of the Resurrection (1656–1685), a massive rotunda patterned after the Church of the Holy Sepulchre with a wooden dome and a cluster of neighbouring chapels; 2) The seven-story 17th-century belltower reaches a height of 58 meters and has 15 bells, the largest weighing about four tons (the tower was destroyed in 1941 and rebuilt in the 2010s; 3) Patriarch Nikon's residence (1658); 4) the stone wall and towers (1690–1694); and 5) the Church of the Holy Trinity (1686–1698), like other major buildings, finished with majolica and stucco moulding.

The New Jerusalem Historical and Architectural Museum is the largest museum in Moscow Oblast. Its collection contains more than 183,000 objects. Among them are archaeological items from the Neolithic, Bronze and Iron Ages, ethnographic and documentary materials; manuscripts and rare printed books; architectural materials, rare coins and banknotes, furniture, household utensils, glass, ceramics, pottery, costumes from the 17th to early 20th centuries, and handicrafts.and art work such as castings, icons, pictorial and ornamental embroidery, sculpture, painting, drawing and crafts Russian and Western European secular art of the 17th to 20th centuries. The museum’s collection is now housed is new museum and exhibition complex, about 350 meters from the monastery, with in 10,000 square meters of exhibition space.

Getting There from Moscow: 1) by bus from Tushinskaya Metro station; 2) by train from Rizhsky railway station; 3) by car (about 40 kilometers) along the Volokolamskoye or Novorizhskoye highway (M9 highway).

Star City: Museum of the Cosmonaut Training Center

Star City (40 kilometers northeast of Moscow) is officially known as the.Yuri Gagarin Museum of the Cosmonaut Training Center and was called Shchelkovo-14 in the Soviet era. Star City was built as a military settlement in 1965 asn was set up to train cosmonauts.

Just showing up at Star City will not work. You need to fill out a provisional application and submit passport data of members no later than five days before the desired date of the tour. The waiting period is often longer as many Russians as well as foreigners want to go on the tour. Prices for tours starts at 500 rubles per person for the citizens of Russia for the standard program. A visit to the planetarium, meeting cosmonauts, trying the centrifuge, taking a dip in the buoyancy and other amenities cost extra. At the café you can taste real space food.

By decision of the Chief of the Air Force in 1962, the Center has been tasked with duty of collecting and storing objects related the space programs of the Soviet Union, Russia and and foreign countries. In the museum there are over 21,000 items, of which 2,000 are on display in four exhibition halls. Among the things you can see are the first space simulator "East", the lander spacecraft "Soyuz-4", heat-shielding suits, flight suit and the dress uniform and awards of Yuri Gagarin, the first cosmonaut and man in space.

Sergiev Posad

Sergiev Posad (70 kilometers north of Moscow) is town of 110,000 people located around the Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius, one of the most important religious centers in Russia, and where the Patriarch had his residence until the late 1980s. Lying in the Central Russian plain, it is a popular day trip destination from Moscow and a pilgrimage site among religious Russians. In the Soviet era Sergiev Posad was known as Zagorsk. Sergiyev Posad is the closest city to Moscow that is included in the Golden Ring of Russia.

Sergiev Posad is known for its numerous gardens, gold embroidery and wood carvings. The monastery there is currently a center of a religious revival. Every year thousands of pilgrims, tourists come to Sergiev Posad to visit the Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius, to venerate the relics and icons, attend the services in local churches.

Sergiev Posad Museum was established in 1920. It has a collection of ancient art treasures from the Trinity-Sergius Lavra, including icons, embroidered curtains and linen cloths, vestments of clergy, manuscripts and printed books, church and secular utensils — a total of about 10,000 objects. Today, the museum consists of four rooms in the historic part of Sergiev Posad. This main building (ave. Of the Red Army, 144), Local Lore Museum Department (ravine per., 9a), the museum complex "Stables" (str. 1st Shock Army, 2a) and the Sacristy (on the territory of the Trinity-Sergius Lavra) .

Getting There from Moscow: 1) by train from Yaroslavsky railway station; 2) by bus from VDNKh Metro station; 3) by car (about 70 kilometers) along the Yaroslavskoye highway.

Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius

Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius (in Sergiev Posad) is largest monastery in Russia and the burial place of tsar Boris Godunov and the setting of many Russian films. Founded in 1340, it is one of the most important monasteries in Russia and one of the few monasteries that remained active in the Soviet era when it was the home of Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church. The Patriarch has had his official residence in Danilov Monastery in Moscow since 1988.

Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius is surrounded by a thick white fortress wall that was built to keep out the Mongol and Tatar hordes. Inside are many churches. Some have golden helmet domes. Trinity Cathedral is the most important building in the monastery. Built in the 1420s, it contains the tomb St. Sergius and many icons painted by the famous Russian artist, Andre Rublyov. The most famous icon, the Old Testament Trinity, in the iconostasis is a copy. The original is in the Tretyakkob Gallery in Moscow.

The monastery is situated in the city center, and you can be entered at any time for free. A ticket for all four buildings of the museum (the Sacristy, Konny Dvor museum complex, the Local History Building and the Main Building) costs RUB 600. Please note: the monastery is a religious object, entry is permitted only to appropriately dressed visitors, no shorts, miniskirts or shirts are allowed. Female visitors should have a headscarf with them. Travelling tip: if the purpose of your trip is to see the remains of Sergius of Radonezh in the Trinity Cathedral, it is best to arrive in the city as early as possible, in order to avoid hours-long lines.

Trinity Sergius Lavra in Sergiev Posad: UNESCO World Heritage Site

The Architectural Ensemble of the Trinity Sergius Lavra in Sergiev Posad was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1993. According to UNESCO: This is a fine example of a working Orthodox monastery, with military features that are typical of the 15th to the 18th century, the period during which it developed. The main church of the Lavra, the Cathedral of the Assumption (echoing the Kremlin Cathedral of the same name), contains the tomb of Boris Godunov. Among the treasures of the Lavra is the famous icon, The Trinity,by Andrei Rublev. [Source: UNESCO]

“The Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius is a world famous spiritual center of the Russian Orthodox Church and a popular site of pilgrimage and tourism. Being situated in the town of Sergiev Posad about 70 kilometers to the northeast from Moscow, it is the most important working Russian monastery and a residence of the Patriarch. This religious and military complex represents an epitome of the growth of Russian architecture and contains some of that architecture’s finest expressions. It exerted a profound influence on architecture in Russia and other parts of Eastern Europe.

“The Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius, “the pearl” of the Russian church architecture, was founded in the first half of the 14th century (1337) by the monk Sergius of Radonezh, a great abbot of Russia and one of the most venerated orthodox saints. Sergius achieved great prestige as the spiritual adviser of Dmitri Donskoi, Great Prince of Moscow, who received his blessing to the battle of Kulikov of 1380. The monastery started as a little wooden church on Makovets Hill, and then developed and grew stronger through the ages.

“The Trinity Sergius Lavra Monastery complex represents the fusion of traditional Russian architecture with that of Western Europe, creating an Eastern European tradition with a strong influence on architectural developments in a large area of Eastern Europe.The Lavra is an outstanding and remarkably complete example of an active Orthodox monastery complex with a military function that is characteristic of the period of its growth and expansion from the 15th to the 18th century.”

Story of St. Sergius

Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius is associated with the name of Saint Sergius of Radonezh. According to legend, in his early years Sergius, who bore the lay name of Bartholomew, and his brother decided to become monks. After finding a solitary place in the forest, they built a monastic cell and a small church in the name of the Holy Trinity. Soon after, his brother went to the Moscow Epiphany Monastery and Sergius stayed behind alone.

Humility, patience, and a strong work ethic were among the distinguishing merits of Sergius of Radonezh. Striving to achieve the ideal of holiness, the hermit bravely overcame temptations and did not spend a single hour in sloth. A rumor about an ascetic living in Radonezh forest spread in towns and villages. Monks began to come to Sergius. This is how the monastery gradually appeared around his settlement. At the emphatic request of his disciples, Sergius became a priest and the abbot of the monastery he founded. People came from afar to have a word with the Reverend, and Trinity Monastery became a spiritual center of the Moscow lands.

Reverend Sergius passed away on September 25, 1392. Before his death he gave in commandment to the brethren to keep the purity of the Orthodox religion, to preserve the purity of soul and body, to practice unfeigned love, and to strive for humbleness and hospitality. In 1422, during the construction of the Trinity Church inside the monastery, holy relics of the Reverend Sergius were discovered and became the main sacred items in the church.

Early History of Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius

The monastery is said to have been founded in 1337, but some historians place it at a later date. In 1422, the first stone building of the monastery, Trinity Cathedral, was laid on the location of the old wooden church. Prominent icon painters took part in decorating the temple. Andrei Rublev painted the famous Trinity for the cathedral's iconostasis. The Trinity Cathedral was venerated by Moscow's dukes. Agreements were verified through kissing the cross, and heirs to the throne were baptized here.

Over the centuries a unique ensemble of more than 50 buildings and constructions of different dates were established. The whole complex was erected according to the architectural concept of the main church, the Trinity Cathedral (1422), where the relics of St. Sergius may be seen. The White Church of the Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles decorating the Cathedral Square was built in 1476-1477 years by Pskov craftsmen. The church combines unique features of early Muscovite and Pskovian architecture. A remarkable feature of this church is a bell tower under its dome without internal interconnection between the belfry and the cathedral itself.

The construction of the Assumption Cathedral started in 1559, and its history is linked with the name of Ivan the Terrible. The Cathedral of the Assumption, echoing the Cathedral of the Assumption in the Moscow Kremlin, was completed in 1585. The frescoes of the Assumption Cathedral were painted in 1684. At the northwestern corner of the Cathedral, on the site of the western porch, in 1780 a vault containing burials of Tsar Boris Godunov and his family was built.

In the 1540s, the construction of white stone walls around the monastery began. In the 1550s a belt in the form of an irregular quadrangle with the length of about 1.5 kilometers was built. At the same time, hammer ponds were built in ravines adjacent to the monastery, and on the southern side a large pond was dug. The monastery had become a powerful fortress. The six meters high and 3.5 meters thick defensive walls proved their worth during the 16-month siege by Polish-Lithuanian invaders during the Time of Trouble. In the middle of the 17th century, fortifications were strengthened and the monastery took its present day shape.

Later History of Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius

At the end of the 17th century, a chapel was built over a spring discovered in 1644 during repairs of a porch in the Assumption Cathedral. According to legend, its healing water cured a blind monk, and the afflicted started to come to the miraculous spring from all over Russia. In 1699, a gate church was built at the expense of wealthy patrons, the Stroganovs. This is the temple where now sacrament of penance is performed for many devotees and where confession is held for pilgrims who come each morning to the temple.

The monastery attained the title of Lavra in the 1740s. Empress Elizabeth often visited, accompanied by fireworks and luxurious meals. A recreational palace surrounded by greenhouses was built beyond the walls of the monastery. A court architect designed a new monastery bell tower, the same one for which the Tsar Bell was cast. The five-tier bell tower, the highest one in Russia, occupies a central position in the architectural ensemble of the Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius.

Many buildings of the Lavra were supposed to have been rebuilt. A massive fire, which in 1746 destroyed all the wooden buildings of the monastery, encouraged the renovation works. After comprehensive reconstruction, the appearance of the monastery buildings began to resemble the interior of palaces. The walls were painted in bright colors, decorated with gilded stucco works, and the interiors were lavishly decorated. Inside the monastery, white stone paths appeared, as well as a walkway decorated with wrought iron grills. An obelisk with medallions narrating the history of the monastery was built on the main square.

Cathedral of the Assumption and Other Buildings at Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius

The Cathedral of the Assumption has a navy blue dome with golden stars. It was built in 1585 with money donated by Ivan the Terrible after he became overcome with guilt over the killing of his son. Outside the west door is the burial place of Boris Godunov. Other building include the Refectory Church of St. Sergius, with it "wallpaper" painting; the Church of the Descent of the Holy Spirit, with a belltowers under the dome; the tsar's chambers; a treasury full of jewel-covered vestments, gold chalices and tapestries; and an art museum with 14th century paintings and icons and folk art. It is possible to walk on part of the walls. There is a good view from Kalichya Tower. The theological seminary today is working overtime to prepare priests in a land that has has awaken from atheism with a hunger for religion. The Museum of Russian Toys feature an exhibit of the famous Russian Matrioshka nesting dolls.

According to UNESCO: “After the Upheaval of the 17th century a large-scale building programme was launched. At this time new buildings were erected in the northwestern part of the monastery, including infirmaries topped with a tented church dedicated to Saints Zosima and Sawatiy of Solovki (1635-1637). Few such churches are still preserved, so this tented church with a unique tiled roof is an important contribution to the Lavra. [Source: UNESCO]

“In the late 17th century a number of new buildings in Naryshkin (Moscow) Baroque style were added to the monastery. Following a devastating fire in 1746, when most of the wooden buildings and structures were destroyed, a major reconstruction campaign was launched, during which the appearance of many of the buildings was changed to a more monumental style. At this time one of the tallest Russian belfries (88 meters high) was built.

“In the late 18th century, when many church lands were secularized, the chaotic planning of the settlements and suburbs around the monastery was replaced by a regular layout of the streets and quarters. The town of Sergiev Posad was surrounded by traditional ramparts and walls. In the vicinity of the monastery a number of buildings belonging to it were erected: a stable yard, hotels, a hospice, a poorhouse, as well as visitor and merchant houses. Major highways leading to the monastery were straightened and marked by establishing entry squares, the overall urban development being oriented towards the centerpiece - the Ensemble of the Trinity Sergius Lavra.

“The Parish churches situated within the territory of Sergiev Posad, which were originally wooden and later rebuilt in stone, formed a ring of domes echoing those of Lavra. Being smaller and located apart from other buildings, they only emphasize more the supremacy of the Lavra. Thus, the Architectural Ensemble of the Trinity Sergius Lavra includes both buildings and constructions inside the wall and a complex of buildings near the monastery. It represents the key element of town-planning of Sergiev Posad.”

Dmitrovsky Kremlin

Dmitrov Kremlin (75 kilometers north of Moscow) has witnessed tremendous upheavals: of princely feuds, invasion by the Polish troops of Jan Sapieha and, according to legend, Marina Mniszek, dressed in men's clothes, urging soldiers to fight. Inside the Kremlin is the majestic Assumption Cathedral, the main shrine of Dmitrov, an Elizabethan church and a complex of buildings, including a prison, where museum exhibits are located today.

Assumption Cathedral was built in 1509-1533, and rebuilt several times in the 17th-19th centuries. The Bell tower near the cathedral was built in the late 18th century. The design of the cathedral is somewhat similar to the design of the Archangel Cathedral in Moscow Kremlin. Researchers believe that Italian architects participated in its construction. The iconostasis of the cathedral, assembled in the 17th century, contains icons more than 500 year old.

Very close to the Dmitrov Kremlin is a wide street, which used to be called Noble. It is now a open air museum with historical merchant houses. Sometimes people dressed in costumes as aristocratic couple, a pilgrim journeying to the holy sites, and a modest girl gardener walks the streets. The Museum "Dmitrovsky Kremlin" was founded un 1918 and is spread over twelve buildings. It contains over 40,000 objects, including oil painting, icons, graphics, porcelain, weapons, fabrics, furniture, books and documents. Museum staff conduct entertainment programs such as "Night at the Museum", "My Soul Pancake," "Trinity," and "Apple Feast".

Kubinka Tank Museum

The Historical Museum of Armored Vehicles in Kubinka (65 kilometers west of Moscow) is the world's largest museum of armored vehicles and weapons, with more than 300 tanks alone, from different countries. The museum consists of open-air and indoor permanent exhibitions of with many famous tanks and armored from 1917 to the present day and boasts many unique and one-of-a-kind military vehicles, such as the Nazi German Panzer VIII Maus super-heavy tank, Troyanov's Object 279 Kotin heavy tank and a Karl-Gerät heavy self-propelled artillery. If you visit in the cold months you advised to dress warmly as the hangars that house the tanks are not heated.

Tanks and armored vehicles occupy seven halls of the museum. The Soviet and Russian tanks and armored vehicles occupy four of these hangars, and are divided into the following categories: 1) heavy, medium tanks and armored personnel carriers, 2) infantry fighting vehicles, 3) light tanks and 4) assault machines. Among the interesting vehicles here are the A) T-35 tank (the only one in the world, nicknamed the "Front", depicted on the medal "For Courage"); B) the T-80 (the famous "flying" tank, the fastest fighting machine in the world); 3) "Mouse", the heaviest tank in history, weighing is 188 tons. The latter was designed by Ferdinand Porsche, founder of car company bearing the same name. Only two of these machines were made.

In the pavilions with tanks from other countries you can see the Japanese "Ka-Mi" amphibious tank, the English "Centurion" the American "Sherman", the French "Renault" and the Italian "Fiat". Some of the tanks here were involved in fighting in Korea, Vietnam, Cuba and the Middle East. On the holidays of February 23, May 9 and on the Day Tank Crew, the second Sunday of September some of the tanks are started up and driven around. In an open area of the museum technicians and engineers organize the reconstruction of the tank battles. There are also two tanks that children can climb on well as wagon trains, wedgies and caterpillar technics used during the Chernobyl disaster.

Klin: Where Tchaikovsky Spents His Last Years

Klin (100 kilometers northwest of Moscow, reached by suburban train) is where Tchaikovsky lived from 1885 to 1893, the year of his death. The house where is lived and wrote the operas "The Queen of Spades", “Pathetique” and "Iolanta", the ballets "Sleeping Beauty" and "The Nutcracker", his Fifth and Sixth symphonies and numerous piano pieces and songs. His estate is open to the public and is pretty much as it was when the composer died. The Becker grand piano used by the composer is sometimes played by famous pianists.

The Tchaikovsky Museum (the Museum-Reserve PI Tchaikovsky) was founded in 1894 by the composer's brother, M.I. Chaikovsky. The oldest memorial music museum in Russia, it is located primarily in Maidanova Frolovskoye, the house where Tchaikovsky spent the last eight years of his life, a concert hall, a memorial park with a manor buildings and the nearby manor "Frolovskoye" and "Demyanovo" where Tchaikovsky visited.

About 80,000 people visit the museum annually. On display are belongings of the composer, his library, works, autographs, letters, diaries, notebooks, as well as a collection of works of art, photographs and documents — over 200,000 historical and music-related items. The museum organizes and conducts conferences, exhibits and exhibitions both in Russia and abroad. The museum is also one of the founders and organizers of the famous Tchaikovsky. International Youth Competition held every four years and famously won by Van Cliburn. Kiln regularly hosts concerts.

Borodino: Site of the Biggest Battle of Napoleon’s Russian Campaign

Borodino (130 kilometers west of Moscow) is where the famous battle between the Russians and Napoleon’s army took place in 1812. The entire battlefield, covering 100 square kilometers, is a state park. There is a museum with an illuminated model of the battle and some monuments erected for generals and divisions involved in the battle.

The Battle of Borodino was the biggest battle of Napoleon’s Russian campaign. It took place on September 7, 1812. The French lost 43 generals and 28,000 out of 120,000 soldiers. The Russian lost 43,000 men. Napoleon called the battle his "most terrible." Napoleon Russian campaigns were immortalized in Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture and Tolstoy's War and Peace.

Napoleon’s army and the Russian army each possessed 500 cannons which they fired at one another for eight hours, producing an incredible wall of sound that was so loud soldiers were forced to communicate with hand signals. "A massacre," one Russian general called it. "Forty thousand men died. A mass of blood and flesh. And one can only wonder: Was it a defeat or a victory for the Russian Army...Personally I think it was Kutuzov's victory. He retreated to Moscow, but the Russian army was not destroyed. And as he retreated again from Moscow, he gained reserves, while Napoleon as he advanced, was losing both men and supplies." Afterwards Napoleon entered Moscow, which the Russians famously burnt down, forcing Napoleon to limp back to France, exposing his forces to attacks by Cossacks and other Russian units all the way home.

Borodino Museum-Reserve was awarded the UNESCO Prize for the preservation and management of cultural landscapes in 2007. The world's oldest battlefield museum, it was founded in 1839 and embraces more than 110 square kilometers, containing more than 200 monuments and places, including ones for the field command posts of Napoleon and the heroic Russian general M.I. Kutuzov. There are monuments that show the locations of Russian and French troops, the Spaso-Borodino monastery and church in the village of Borodino, the only building still standing that existed at the time of the battle.

There five permanent exhibitions in the museum, which includes displays of personal belongings of the generals, weapons, military uniforms, trophies and findings from the field of battle, portraits and battle pieces. The museum also houses a rich collection of archeological artifacts, 19th century printing equipment. Among the themed displays exhibited at the museum are "Borodino - Battle of the Giants," "Borodino During the Great Patriotic War", "Milestones," "Military Art Toys" and "Leo Tolstoy and the Battle of Borodino — War and Peace." Events held annually held at Borodino include the military-historical celebrations of "Victory Day", "The Steadfast Tin Soldier", "Borodino Day" and "Moscow for Us — 1941. "

Gorki Leninskie: Where Lenin Died

Gorki Leninskie (32 kilometers southeast of Moscow) is a charming manor house where Vladimir Lenin spent most of his time after his stroke. He died here on January 21, 1924. Built in the 1830s, the rooms have been left pretty much untouched since Lenin's death. The clocks stand at 6:50 (am), the time he died.

Lenin first came to Gorki in 1918 after an assassination attempt. He needed a place to rest. Gorki was ideal because it was located in beautiful nature, Moscow was nearby and the building was well-maintained. He liked the place so much he often spent here weekends and holidays there, and also came after work. Dmitry Ulyanov wrote: “Vladimir Ilyich loved Gorki most of all, he loved this place, loved the very house. He liked high location of the house, these wide horizons opening up before him... He generally liked picturesque places with a wide horizon; and here there are open high places that he liked.”

According to Dmitry's recollections, before dinner or in the evening in summer, Lenin liked to go swimming in Pahra, but he was so keen on fishing. The Bolshevik Timofei Sapronov wrote in an article entitled “Lenin in Gorki” that while at Gorki Lenin was supposed to rest and stay protected and safe, things that Lenin himself opposed. Vladimir Ulyanov. Lenin’s guard said: “It was very difficult to guard Vladimir Ilyich for a very simple reason that he did not like security, to put it mildly. Comrade Lenin escaped from the guard: he would hide in the bushes, in the forest, and that's it. There, here, he's out. One had to find comrade Lenin, but do it so that he does not guess.”

Beginning in May 1923, after his stroke, Lenin lived full time at Gorki constantly. He died eight months later. Immediately after his death, Gorki became a sort of pilgrimage site do it was so it was decided to turn estate into the house-museum of V. Lenin in Gorki. But the decision to do that was not made until 1938, and the museum didn’t open until 1949. Today the museum-reserve “Gorki Leninskiye” in the Gorki estate includes the museum-estate of Gorki and the manor park, as well as the museum “Cabinet and apartment of V.I. Lenin in the Kremlin”, the scientific and cultural center of “Museum of V.I. Lenin . Visitors cab see Lenin’s Rolls-Royce with skis on the front wheels, on which Lenin traveled back and forth between from Moscow and Gorki. The Museum of Peasant Life in the village of Gorki is also a part of the museum-reserve.

Melikhovo: Chekhov’s Home

Melikhovo (60 kilometers south of Moscow) is the country house where Chekhov moved with his family in 1892 and lived for eiht years. It was a rundown estate house when he bought it but he quickly whipped into shape made it comfortable. The current house is an authentic looking replica built in the 1940s. The original was torn down in the 1920s. Much of the furniture is original. It was saved by local peasants when the house was destroyed and returned when the new house was built. Reached by suburban train to the town of Chekhov. There are occasional buses that run 12 kilometers to Melikhovo.

After his tiring trip to Sakhalin Island and two years of life in a rented flat in Moscow, Chekhov was ready for a change. He bought Melikhovo based on a newspaper ad and moved there with family and his father Paul Ye, his mother Eugenia Yakovlevna and sister Maria Pavlovna. In Melikhovo Chekhov seemed to enjoy life’s simple pleasures listening to starlings and making cherry jam. He wrote: "Flowers bloom on my honor," "We have grown very tasty potatoes and cabbage ... marvelous Russian summer is best...Cherries have so many, we do not know what to do. Gooseberry nobody to collect." He wrote more than 40 works there, including the play "The Seagull" .

In 1900, Chekhov sold the mansion and moved to Yalta in the Crimea to seek treatment and better air to combat tuberculosis which he had contacted. He died in 1904. After he left Melihovo fell into disrepair. The Anton Chekhov District Museum was established in Moscow in 1944. In 1950 work began to restoring Melihovo, which opened as a museum in 1960 to mark the centenary of the writer's birth. Among the things you can find here are an "ambulance" and letters written by Chekhov urging friends to come visit him. In the "Apothecary garden" you can find sun valerian, thistle and calendula, which Chekhov himself grew. The museum has theater school and theater studio. Melikhovo also hosts a theater festival called "Melikhovo Spring".

Another museum, the Museum of Letters A.P. Chekhov opened in 1987 in an old post office building, which was opened on the initiative of the writer in 1896 at Lopasnya station, 12 kilometers from Melikhova. This museum contains numerous correspondence — Chekhov's letters from publishers, manuscripts and proofreading works — as well as post office stuff. In 1996 the museum was transferred to the main manor house Lopasnya-Conception,

Prioksko-Terrasny Nature Reserve: Where the European Bison Roam

Prioksko-Terrasny Reserve (120 kilometers south of Moscow) is a 50-square-kilometer animal reserve on a flood plain of the Oka River, a tributary of the Volga, which contains around 60 European bison, an animal that was brought back from the brink of extinction after World War II. The bison come into a nursery around at 7:00am and 7:00pm to be fed. The reserve is difficult to get to by train or bus.

European bisons, as well as several American bisons, live in the bison kennels in conditions replicating their natural habitat in huge fenced off “pens”. In summertime, these animals sometimes wander rather far off, so sometimes the reserve's visitors are not able to observe them up close. In winter, however, the bisons stay closer to their feeders, not far from the path for visitors.

The Prioksko-Terrasny Nature Biosphere Reserve is 93 percent covered with woods. Pine, spruce, linden, birch, and oak are the most well-known of more than 960 species of plants growing here. About 140 species of birds, eight species of fish, 10 species of amphibia, and 56 species of mammals live in the reserve. There are many foxes. Elks usually come to spend the winter in the reserve. There are also boars, deers, roes, moles, hedgehogs, hares, martens, beavers, squirrels, rats, and mice.

The European bison arrived in 1948, when the Bison Breeding Centre was created, and were brought from the Białowieża Forest in Poland, the last refuge of these bison, at that time. European bison are the largest ungulate animal in Europe and have remained virtually unchanged for 1.5 million years and have lived at the same time as saber-toothed tigers and mammoths. The bison is also one of the few species is bred captivity and released into the wild. Wild European bison were totally exterminated in the 1920s and brought back through hard work by biologists and conservationists.

Adult bisons and their calves live in special enclosures, separated by wire-mesh fencing. Usually each enclosure is occupied by one family that consists of one male, several females and calves. When a bison is 10 months old he is separated from his parents and moved to a separate enclosure. The bisons brought up in the reserve are gradually released into the wild. They are sent to other regions of Russia as well as to Belarus, Ukraine, the Baltic States and other countries. In the Prioksko-Terrasny Nature Biosphere Reserve there are usually about 60 bisons of different age.

A walk around the reservation takes about an hour and a half. During this time visitors cover a distance of about 1.5 kilometers. There is a nature museum where one learn more about the flora and fauna of the south of the Moscow region. For children there are special programs including a visit to the house of Leshy (a spirit of the woods in Slavic legends) and a game near an anthill. The price of a ticket to the kennels is RUB 400 (as part of a group tour). To get there from Moscow: 1) by train to Serpukhov from Kursky railway station, then take a bus or a minibus to the village of Danki; 2) by car (about 120 kilometers) along the Simferopol highway (M2 highway), before turning to Danki village.

Kolomna and Its Kremlin

Kolomna (115 kilometers southeast of Moscow) is one of the oldest cities of Moscow oblast. Located at the confluence of the Moscow and Oka rivers, it primary tourist sights are the city's Kremlin and the Kolomna Pastila Museum. Kolomna Kremlin was built in the 16th century. Unfortunately, only some sections of the ancient walls and only seven of the Kremlin's 16 towers have survived to this day. The Kremlin's territory can be visited free of charge. Ticket are required to enter certain museums and churches. The most famous buildings of old Kolomna are the Assumption Cathedral and Novo-Golutvin Holy Trinity Monastery. At the heart of Kolomna Kremlin lies the Cathedral Square.

The Kolomna Kremlin occupies an area of 24 hectares and is a magnificent example of fortification architecture of the 16th century. Before that, the Kremlin was made of wood, but looked no less monumental: it is said that the stone walls were built on the exact place of their wooden predecessors.Kolomna Kremlin suffered most at the hands of the Tatars: almost all of the Golden Horde campaigns ended with an attack on Kolomna and the destruction of the Kolomna Kremlin. After the walls were rebuilt, no-one managed to take the fortress by force again.

The stone Kremlin in Kolomna was erected under Vasily III, in 1525-1531. It took six years to build, compared to 10 years for the Kremlin in Moscow. Up until the 19th century, the walls of the fortress were gradually destroyed by the “endeavors” of the local population: people simply took bricks for their own use. It was only in the early nineteenth century that a special law was issued to put an end to this. However, it was too late, as only two sections of the wall remained by that time.

Inside the Kremlin, you can see Brusensky Assumption Nunnery and Holy Trinity New Golutvin Convent, the Kolomna Museum, and the Organic Culture Museum, which exhibits the works of contemporary artists from the 20th and 21st centuries. The unusual Housing Services and Utilities Museum, which tells the history of the origin and development of urban services, is housed in the former water tower building. The exhibition area is in a cylinder-shaped space with a miniature copy of the Shukhov Tower in Moscow in the middle. Not far from the Pyatnitsky Gate stands the Museum of Russian Photography.

The old houses and estate villas add a special charm to the Kolomna Kremlin. They include Lozovsky's house, the Petrovs” manor estate, and the houses of Mozgov and Lukovnikov. Inside the Kolomna Kremlin you will also see Kuprin's house, where the writer's sister lived. He often visited her and stayed here, and it is where he wrote a number of his works. Kuprin’s house has survived almost unchanged to the present day.

You can book individual or group tours around the territory of the Kremlin (RUB 300 an above per person or RUB 1,500 and above per group). In summertime, there are bicycle tours around the Old Town and its historical surroundings (the cost of the tour starts at RUB 1,000 and bike rental is RUB 600 per day). Kolomna also houses the Pastila Museum (RUB 400 and above for a dramatized guided tour with tasting), a crafts school (RUB 200 and above for an interactive program), the Kalach Museum (RUB 500 for a dramatized guided tour). You can also visit Kuznechnaya Sloboda (entry is free of charge, but donations are accepted).

Getting There from Moscow: 1) by suburban electric train, REX express train or an express train from Kazansky railway station to Ryazan; 2) by bus from Kotelniki bus station; 3) by car (about 100 kilometers) along the M5 highway (also known as the Ural Highway); 4) Oka river cruise ships stop in Kolomna serveral times per season.

Zaraysk Kremlin

State Museum-Preserve Zaraysk Kremlin (120 kilometers southeast of Moscow) is one of the oldest museums of the Moscow region. The small Kremlin was built in 1531 by order of the Grand Duke of Moscow Vasily III, to deflect the Tatar raids. A century later it played a crucial role in fending off the army of False Dmitry II. The most prominent building of the Kremlin — the Cathedral of St. Nicholas — is a snow-white five-domed church, built on the orders of Tsar Fedor Alekseevich for housing the icon of St. Nicholas Zarazskogo.\

Museum "Zaraysk Kremlin" has a rich collection of of glass and bronze art, fabric, furniture, Russian, Western European, Chinese and Japanese porcelain, merchant and noble portraits of the Golitsyn, Olsuf'ev, Wielhorsky and Shakhovskys family and paintings by Russian and Western European artists such as Ivan Shishkin, V. Sokolov, L. Bakst, F. Rizinera and A. Manglyara. The largest collection of the museum is archaeological. Among the interesting items in the in the Zaraiskaya Upper Paleolithic collection Zaraysk are bone and stone tools, jewelry, bone jewelry engraving and masterpieces of primitive art, works of fine sculpture.

The children’s history game programs includes "Kremlin Tales", "what to play in Russia" and "Secrets of Zaraysk Kremlin." The museum runs interesting excursions to the historical part of Zaraysk: former merchants' houses built in the 18th-19th centuries and beautiful churches. In the gallery of the Kremlin can learn about architectural features and defensive properties of the fortress. There are wonderful views of the krmelin and surrounding from the battlements of the upper tier of Karaulnaya tower.

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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