"Moscow is the Heart of Russia" Moscow by WorldPassenger

Moscow Travel Guide: 4,070 reviews and 9,282 photos

Faced with unrelenting news feeds of Russian woe, it is somewhat difficult to form an accurate picture of life inside what is the world's largest country.

In reality, that picture is extremely diverse.

Russia is itself a country of many countries. Home to over 100 different nationalities and ethnic groups, it is the same one territory which holds together the megapolis of Moscow, imperial capital of St Petersburg, behemoth industrial towns in the Urals and tiny wooden homes, tucked away in the breathtaking reliefs of the Siberian far east.

Russia is also changing. There is a new economy, with great potential and real successes. In the realms of the arts and the sciences, a generation of talented professionals are re-interpreting Russia's rich heritage with an insatiable appetite for renovation and reform.

And Russia is huge, Its natural geography has arguably done more than any tsar or politician to shape the character of its people. Writer Maxim Gorky put the point simply: “we Russians live diffused over a land of such vastness that, the more we grasp the immensity, the smaller we come to appear in our own eyes”.

Spread over 11 time zones and all climatic zones with the exception of tropical, Russia includes more than 100 different nationalities and leisurely contrasts city and countryside, opulence and modesty. Russia is also home to some of the world’s most awe-inspiring nature.

While the economic and political hub of the country remains within the two historical capitals, Moscow and St Petersburg, one of the legacies of the Soviet era is the extent to which much of the country’s creative dynamism lies within its multiethnic regions.

But this is a page about Moscow. If St. Petersburg is Russia's imperial crown, Moscow is its familial heart. It is a city in which one comes face to face with all that is finest and all that is most frustrating in Russia. The gregarious geniality of its people is as evident as the extreme tensions of a city coming to terms with the confusions of rapid social change. More than anywhere else in the country, it is in Moscow where the Soviet past collides with the capitalist future. Lenin's Mausoleum remains intact, but today it faces the newly chic GUM (pronounced goom), which is becoming ever more akin to Macy's or Harrod's.

One of the world's great cities, Moscow (Russian Moskva) is the capital of Russia. Since it was first mentioned in chronicles of 1147, Moscow has played a vital role in Russian history; indeed the history of the city and of the Russian nation are closely interlinked. Today Moscow is not only the political centre of Russia but also the country's leading city in population, in industrial output, and in cultural, scientific, and educational importance.

For more than 600 years Moscow has been the spiritual centre of the Russian Orthodox Church. Although many places of worship were closed, converted into museums, or destroyed after the Revolution, Moscow retained a number of functioning Russian Orthodox churches in addition to a few other Christian churches and Jewish and Muslim places of worship. The Russian Orthodox patriarch has a residence in Moscow ( St.Danilov cloister).

I hope you enjoy my photos of Moscow and its surrounding countryside.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Vibrant, energetic, lots to see and do, friendly, beautiful women
  • Cons:Cryllic alphabet, expensive hotels, traffic congestion
  • Last visit to Moscow: Oct 2006
  • Intro Updated Jan 6, 2007
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