Tourism in Russia
Russia is the largest country in the world, and it is larger than life! Other than the large area it occupies, it is a country where traditions and culture varies across different timezones. Every city is a different experience, so add Russia to your bucket list, pronto!
In light of Covid-19 pandemic, there has been a halt on an upward trend in tourism to Russia. Now the Russian tourism industry reportedly wants the government to help it recover by making it easier for visitors to get a visa – by offering visas valid for multiple visits, over a period of up to five years.
So let us get started:
In a large country like Russia, we must not forget to visit the capital, in this instance – Moscow.
Russia’s capital is everything you can wish for – nature, impressive and colorful architecture as well as lots of historical gems.
Visitors to Moscow should visit the Kremlin, Red Square and the St. Basil’s Cathedral. GUM, a famous shopping mall with the glass and steel roof, is also a popular destination – it is a great place to enjoy authentic Russian food even if you can’t afford the hefty price tag of the luxury brands that they carry.
Museums are not for everyone, but Moscow has several excellent options, including The State Tretyakov Gallery (which only displays Russian art); the Pushkin Museum (international pieces); and last but not least, the Kremlin Armory Museum – to have a look at certain unique items such as the ivory throne of Ivan the Terrible and gold-covered imperial carriages. Moscow is also home to one of the largest ballet and opera theaters in the world, The Bolshoi Theatre, which is worth a visit if you are able to get tickets.
The best attractions in Moscow require some walking to be properly enjoyed, such as the pedestrian shopping street Stary Arbat and the boardwalk along the River Moskva.
The Metro stations in Moscow are well decorated with porcelain relief, crystal chandeliers and unique mosaic artworks that make these places basically look like subterranean palaces, which is worth a visit.
Although it is smaller than Moscow, St. Petersburg is still pretty large and it’s impossible to explore everything in a day. In comparison to Moscow, St. Petersburg is more European with its fine art and exquisite design which blends in perfectly with its history at every corner. To examine the architecture up close, you can view the city on foot or get on a cruise to explore certain areas of the 300 kilometers long trail of canals that cut across the imperial city.
Tourists usually visit Yusupov Palace, where Rasputin was killed and the Neoclassical, 19th century St. Isaac’s Cathedral that the most spacious cathedral in the city. Last but not least, the Hermitage Museum St. Petersburg’s must not be missed as is possibly the most famous tourist attraction in St. Petersburg. It is the second biggest art and culture museum in the world and boasts a collection of over three million items – anything from prehistoric art (including articles from the nomadic tribes in Altai) to Impressionist and Post-Impressionists collection.
About 25 kilometers on the outskirts of St. Petersburg is Peterhof Palace. Built in the early 1700s as a summer residence for Peter the Great, it greatly resembles the Palace of Versailles in France. It will take longer than a day, so be prepared.