Cheap flights to Moscow
Moscow tells its intriguing story through striking architecture and a rich cultural scene. From the mighty Kremlin complex, towering over the Moskva River, to the vibrant shows of the Bolshoi Ballet, there’s never a dull moment in its tale.
At the city’s centre, the Red Square has seen battles, military parades and the collapse of the Soviet Union on Victory Day. Walk the cobbles of the traffic-free square today and capture on camera the scenic Kremlin Towers and St Basil’s Cathedral. You’ll witness modern developments grow alongside the old city including the Federation Tower, set to be the tallest building in Europe.
If you’re a culture vulture you’ll be amazed by brilliant ballet and opera performances at the Bolshoi Theatre and awesome acrobatics of the Moscow State Circus. Plus, Moscow’s lively nightlife can keep even the most energetic party people entertained. Back in daylight, enter a world of excess and wander the lavish halls of Moscow’s two main shopping centres GUM and TSUM. Or, escape the bustle of the city and peek into 1930s Russia with a trip to Patriarshy Prudiy (Patriarch's Pond).
Most visitors travelling to Russia will need to obtain a Visa prior to departure.
The process can take up to several weeks. The lead time for visas can vary depending on your nationality and the purpose of your trip. Please make sure to check with the relevant Russian authorities well in advance, or click here for more information on visa requirements.
IMPORTANT: you will not be allowed to fly if you are not in possession of all the necessary documentation.
Maslenitsa, or Pancake Week, bids farewell to the harsh long days of winter and celebrates the arrival of spring the week before Russian Orthodox Lent. This week-long festival features folk music, sledges, games, concerts and the much loved blinis, thin pancakes topped with sour cream, caviar, jam or berries, whose round shape symbolises the heat of the sun and the advent of warmer days ahead.
Taking a ride on Moscow's Metro leaves quite an impression. Each station is unique with marble floors, grand columns and stained glass windows, all better examples of Soviet architectural flair. Mayakovskaya and Novoslobodskaya stations are particularly beautiful examples. A trip on one of the older Metro trains, which have hanging lamps and tend to throw everyone about as they roar along, can be quite the joy ride.
Russia Day is celebrated on 12 June, when the country emerged as an independent state following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Don't miss the concerts and fireworks in Red Square.
Victory Day, on 9 May, marks the 1945 Nazi surrender and the end of the USSR's Great Patriotic War, or WWII. Younger generations honour veterans by giving flowers (usually red carnations) and wreaths are laid at war memorials. The celebration culminates in a military parade in Red Square with rolling tanks and soldiers in historic uniforms.
The main building of Lomonosov Moscow State University is as imposing as it is inspiring, a huge Stalinist tower that shoots into the sky and looks over the city. Nearly everything at the university, from dorms to classrooms, is housed here. Walk through the gardens to the end of the square for magnificent view of diverse Moscow: golden orthodox spires, billowing factories and gleaming skyscrapers await.
Nestled in the south-west of the capital, this is one of Moscow's most beautiful cloisters. The grounds are home to four cathedrals, including Smolensky Cathedral with its four onion domes dating back to 1524. Make sure not to miss the nearby cemetery, the resting place of illustrious figures including Mayakovsky, Gogol, Eisenstein, Khrushchev and Yeltsin.
1 Novodevichy Proezd, novodevichye.com
9 Ulitsa Krymsky Val, tel: 495 995 0020
Get your skates on and glide over the frozen paths of Gorky Park, on Europe's largest ice rink. It offers over 5,000 square metres of smooth ice dotted with cafes, restaurants, pavilions and even a hockey field. Skaters show off their moves to energetic music from the rink's surround-sound system.
Izmailovsky Market is a souvenir-hunters paradise (Partizanskaya Metro station). On two floors, this wooden maze of little stalls is stacked with rows and rows of traditional matryoshka dolls, old Soviet posters, classic watches, fur hats and even the odd kalashnikov. The vendors know how to work a tourist, so be prepared to haggle hard for just about anything.
Located 198km north of Moscow, the picturesque Golden Ring town of Suzdal makes for the perfect day trip. The quaint streets are dotted with wooden houses and pretty 17th- and 18th-century onion-domed churches. Visiting the city by carriage makes for a particularly memorable experience.
An easy stroll around Novodevichy Cemetery (7 Luzhnetsky) is the perfect way to escape the general roar of Moscow city. Peruse around hundreds of graves of Soviet leaders, artists, writers, scientists and even clowns, each tombstone more elaborate and unique than the last. There might be crowds around Yeltsin and Khrushchev's graves, but you can steal a moment in the quieter corners.