St Basil's Cathedral
Beautiful religious art
After travelling for a day and a half we arrived at Domodedovo Airport south of Moscow and after the usual airport confusion purchased a ticket on Aeroexpress train to Paveletskaya station where we ended up taking a taxi to our accommodation near the Botanichesky Sad metro station. The "hotel" is more like a hostel with small private rooms in an old appartment building but it is quiet and cheap and has a small supermarket and bar next door.
Our first attempt at the metro was successful but daunting, there are no English signs anywhere so trying to orientate is difficult and few people here seem to speak English either, this country will certainly be a challenge. We travelled from our closest metro Kitay-Gorod where we were immediately confused but after getting instructions found our way to the Belarus embassy via a McDonald's only to find it closed for a holiday. This may have major ramifications for my trip to Belarus as time may make it difficult for me to get the required visa.
We then walked down to Red Square passing the iconic GUM department store before visiting stunning St Basil cathedral a very colourful hodgepodge of a building
Gulag History Museum
Watch towers and barbed wire
near the Kremlin walls. The religious murals decorating the walls were very colourful. Next we walked down toward the National Museum checking out Lenin's Mausoleum and the Kazan Cathedral before setting off in search of the Gulag History Museum which was small but facinating.
We then walked to an English Pub near Kitay-Gorod station for a drink before braving the metro back to our accomodation, I was asleep by 8pm.
Next morning we set out to explore the subway visiting some of those amazing 1930's works of art before heading to the Kremlin for breakfast. Soon we were inside the walls visiting some stunning Tsarist architecture, unfortunately there was an ugly Soviet monstrosity right slap dab in the middle. We entered some of the old churches but missed some of the other buildings because the authorities make purchasing tickets difficult.
We then walked completely around the Kremlin walls before setting off to visit St Clements Church a short metro ride away, the church was attractive but there was nothing much else to see in that area.
Next we headed to Arbat Street where we sat for hours people watching and enjoying some good food and drink.
The Bolshoi Theatre
Home of Russia's famous ballet company
I am hardly what anyone would call a trendy dresser but Russians generally have no idea I spent much of the afternoon laughing. It was time to head home around 5pm, I am getting really good at navigating the subway.
Had more than 12 hours sleep last night, today we visited more of Moscow's stunning metro stations before going in search bunker 42 a cold war underground bunker system which we did find but didnt see as the tour was in Russian and we couldnt see the point in paying for something when we couldnt understand its significance. On returning to our room we packed up and headed to Shemetyevo airport for our flight to Vladivostok.
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