From Moscow to St Petersburg

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Europe » Russia
October 3rd 2007
Published: October 5th 2007
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Moscow hit us like a ton of bricks. It always comes as a shock when you come from the countryside to a huge bustling city. The language barrier (Cyrillic alphabet) makes it even more challenging. We hit the usual touristy spots such as the Kremlin (Armoury; Annunciation Cathedral; Assumption Cathedral); Red Square and St Basil's Cathedral; Church of the Saviour; Sparrow Hills; Kolomenskoye (Tsars' parkland retreat); and the beautiful Moscow metro stations (works of art in themselves, and packed with commuters at all hours). Also did a half-day trip to Sergiev Posad, which is one of the holiest Russian sites. I think you only need 2 days maximum to see the best of Moscow.

Then it was back on the train to St Petersburg. It's a bit of a lottery with the trains; you never know what to expect. The one we had was revolting and the filthiest one of the lot. Thank goodness we were only on it overnight. We were met at the station by our guide Paul at the ungodly hour of 5.30am. After a refreshing brekky Paul took us for a 5-hour city orientation tour until we could check in to our hotel at 12pm.
Red SquareRed SquareRed Square

Showing the wall separating the Kremlin & Red Square with Lenin's Mausoleum below

St Petersburg is a gorgeous city and a breath of fresh air after Moscow. Everyone loved it. A great city just to stroll around, and to soak up the great arts and cultural scene.

We visited the Peter and Paul Fortress (contained the tombs of the Romanov emperors and empresses); Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood; St Nicholas Naval Cathedral; Aurora Cruiser; Peterhof (Peter the Great's summer palace, which looks like Versailles); and caught a hydrofoil across the Gulf of Finland from Peterhof to the fantastic Hermitage Museum.

Our last group night was spent attending a Russian folk show which everyone enjoyed immensely. The group shouted me dinner as a 'thank you', which was a lovely gesture. I also had a few days after the tour ended which I spent walking around the City, and taking a relaxing cruise along the Neva River and canal system. The final day was spent visiting the Russian Museum, and attending a ballet production of "Swan Lake" at the Hermitage Theatre. A perfect end to a brilliant Trans-Siberian railroad trip.

Additional photos below
Photos: 30, Displayed: 23


Kremlin SenateKremlin Senate
Kremlin Senate

Office of President Putin
Is Spongebob the 4th Ninja Turtle?Is Spongebob the 4th Ninja Turtle?
Is Spongebob the 4th Ninja Turtle?

Extremely strange sight opposite our hotel (Cosmos) and the Worker's Triumphal Arch.
Space MuseumSpace Museum
Space Museum

That's a real rocket on top in the glowing moonlight.
Matrioshka dollMatrioshka doll
Matrioshka doll

It fits 30 dolls inside. You can hardly see the smallest one.
Moscow metroMoscow metro
Moscow metro

They're located deep underground as they used to double as nuclear bunkers.
Ploshchad Revolyutsii metro stationPloshchad Revolyutsii metro station
Ploshchad Revolyutsii metro station

Life-sized bronze statues. The dog's (polished) noses are rubbed by passengers for good luck.
Arbatskaya metro stationArbatskaya metro station
Arbatskaya metro station

Not even peak hour yet
Kievskaya metro stationKievskaya metro station
Kievskaya metro station

With mosaics of Ukrainian history and scenes of happy times and hard-working folk
Komsomolskaya metro stationKomsomolskaya metro station
Komsomolskaya metro station

Beautiful chandeliers and wonderful ceiling mosaics
Lenin mosaicLenin mosaic
Lenin mosaic

Making a speech in Red Square
Sergiev PosadSergiev Posad
Sergiev Posad

Home to the Trinity Monastery and considered one of Russia's most important religious and historical landmarks
Beef stroganoffBeef stroganoff
Beef stroganoff

You can eat the bread pot as well.
Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood, St PetersburgChurch of the Saviour on Spilled Blood, St Petersburg
Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood, St Petersburg

Built on the site where Tsar Alexander II was murdered (blown up). Looks like St Basil's in Moscow.
Romanov family remainsRomanov family remains
Romanov family remains

Remains of the murdered family and servants of Tsar Nicholas II in the Cathedral of the Saint Apostles Peter and Paul. Two of the children's remains (Marie and Alexis) have not yet been located.

6th October 2007

Wonderful pics!
I really enjoyed your blog entry. It was like taking a trip there because you included such a variety of pics!
25th October 2007

Change of Plans
Not sure where you are now Gus, but wanted to let you know that our Xmas party is now on Fri 30/11 at our fav. Goan restuarant. Give us a call if you can come.

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