The Kremlin has long served as headquarters for Moscow's many rulers – Ivan the Terrible and Stalin once issued their orders from here and today, the Kremlin’s walls protect some of the country’s most precious treasures.
Outside the Kremlin microcosm lies Russia in constant flux. Since Gorbachov introduced perestroyka (restructuring) in 1985, the Communists have given way to a new generation of business-minded men and women, hungry for progress. However, old traditions are being honoured and kept alive – excellent performative arts (ballet, opera, and instrumental music), beautifully restored Orthodox churches, Soviet architectural and cultural heritage, and the national cuisine are only a few of the things modern Moscow has to offer.
Moscow might be one of the world's most exciting cities, an embodiment of the intricate fusion of the old and the new. You will definitely be able to fill your time here with history, art, culture, and great food. Visit the many churches and cathedrals, enjoy a show at the Bolshoi Theatre, or go for a walk in one of the city's many parks – Moscow certainly has many ways to enchant you.
It is truly an adventure to go out for dinner in Moscow. The city teems with extravagant themed restaurants where one is transported through both time and space. You may suddenly find yourself in Thailand, on a farm or in the past century. If you want to have good food and spend less, you can go to some of the city’s many Georgian and Armenian restaurants. There are also food chains such as Moo-Moo and Yolki-Palki, where you can serve yourself inexpensive, simple Russian fare. For most restaurants, it is recommended to book a table in advance.
Discover some of the best restaurants in Moscow, Russia:
Moscow is a city teeming with cafes that suit all tastes and wallets. In the summer, city parks turn into visitor magnets with abundant outdoor cafes - the recently re-conceptualised and ever-evolving Gorky Park being one of the main summertime hot spots. Outside of parks, there are multiple cafes at nearly every corner, ranging from local and international coffee shop chains to quirky themed establishments.
Here are some of the best cafes in Moscow, Russia:
The nightlife scene in Moscow is varied, and long gone are the days when the only kind of venues in operation were luxury establishments guarded by stern-looking bouncers. Although some places still enforce FC/DC, many are now leaning towards a more casual approach to entry - the recent decade has seen a rise in the number of casual bars modelled after hip urban haunts of West European capitals. Wine bars, craft breweries, bohemian cafes, indie bars, and glitzy nightclubs are all to be found in abundance, spread throughout the city's many neighbourhoods.
And here are the best bars and nightclubs in Moscow, Russia:
In order to satisfy the wishes of Moscow's well-off upper middle classes, many chic designer stores have opened their stores in Moscow. Today there is definitely a risk that tourists will return home with considerably more expensive souvenirs than fur hats and Russian "matryoshka" dolls, which are readily available throughout - a good place to start browsing for these is the souvenir market right next to the Red Square.
Vnukovo International Airport
The city's third and most compact airport, Vnukovo is located approximately 28 kilometres southwest of the city centre. The air hub is best reached by Aeroexpress trains departing from the Kievskaya Railway Station. Several mini-buses also run here from Yugo-Zapadnaya metro station (south end of the red line).
Phone: +7 495 937-55-55
Sheremetyevo International Airport
The largest international airport in Moscow is Sheremetyevo International Airport, located 30 kilometres from the city centre.
The easiest and fastest way to reach any of Moscow's three major airports is by Aeroexpress - a fast train designated for air travelers (train departs from Belorussky Railway Station). The train ride takes 35 minutes.
Another way to get here is by taxi. At the airport you can order taxis at the operator desk. You can usually book a taxi in advance through the hotel or travel agency when going to the airport.
Alternatively, there are different bus routes. The buses take about 30-70 minutes depending on the route and your final destination. When traveling by car or bus, do keep in mind that rush hour traffic may sometimes be very dense, and significant delays are possible.
Address: Sheremetyevo International Airport, Moscow
Phone: +7 495 578 65 65
Domodedovo International Airport
Another large airport in Moscow is Moscow Domodedovo Airport. The airport is located 22 kilometres away from the city.
You can also reach the airport from Domodedovskaya underground station by mini-bus or bus and from Paveletsky railway station by train. The train from Paveletsky railway station takes 40-50 minutes going on the Aeroexpress train, and 1 hour and 10 minutes on the commuter train. The express buses and shuttles from Domodedovskaya underground station take 25-30 minutes and leave every 15 minutes. Buses run from 6am-12am.
Taxis can be ordered at the domestic and international arrivals hall.
There are car rental services at the airport.
Address: Moscow Domodedovo Airport, Moscow
Phone: +7 495 933 6666
Moscow has one of the world’s most beautiful underground railways which operates very efficiently. If you carry big luggage on the metro, make sure you buy a special luggage ticket. Tickets can be bought at station entrances - either at vending machines or special staffed kiosks.If you plan to use the metro multiple times during your stay, it makes sense to purchase a top-up card called "Troika".
Phone: +7 495 688 02 93
In Moscow there are also buses, trolley buses and trams apart from the beautiful metro. Tickets can be bought from the kiosks in the street or from the driver and validated once aboard.
Phone: +7 495 950 4204
In Moscow the easiest way to get a taxi is the traditional way: to stand in the street and hold out your arm. Civilian cars like to operate as taxis, it is therefore recommended to only use professional taxi services. Taxi meters are not always used, so agree on a price before travelling. English-speaking taxi services in Moscow:
+7 499 922 06 74
+7 495 204 21 34
There are many post offices around town. If you want to send a letter you can drop it of in one of the dark blue post boxes.
Main Post Office:
Address: Ul. Myasnitskaya 26, Moscow
Phone: +7 495 623 67 01
Medical care may be very expensive if you do not have insurance. Hotels often have their own doctor, so start there if you need help. There are dozens of pharmacies all throughout the city, and many work 24/7.
15/43 Arbat, Moscow
25 str 1A Zemlyanoy val, Moscow
National code: +7
Area code: 495/499
220 volt, 50 Hz