A wealthy city
Moscow, Russia’s capital city has a lot to offer. It is a cosmopolitan city with wealth like no other. It has the most billionaires and is one of the most interesting cities in the world.
Designer items are plentiful – and notoriously pricey – in Moscow, with streets like Petrovka bul'var positively glittering with luxury outlets, and the majestic arcades of GUM (Red Square) still attracting waves of high-spending locals and tourists. For something quirkier, the Tsvetnoy Central Market (Tsvetnoy bul'var) showcases hip fashion and lifestyle brands. Elsewhere, visitors in search of quality souvenirs can check out the deluxe chocolates at the beautiful Eliseevsky Store (Tverskaya ulitsa 14) or head to Izmailovsky Market (73 Izmailovskoye shosse) for everything from fur hats and amber to Russian dolls and lacquerware – try to visit over a weekend.
Food & Drink
Mosocw’s cosmopolitan restaurant scene means that traditional Russian cuisine – often far more flavoursome that it’s given credit for – is just one of various options. You don’t have to spend a fortune to eat well. Moderately priced Chinese, Vietnamese and Uzbek grub are among the offerings, while cafés like Etazh (Tverskaya ulitsa 14, buidling 1,2) and Grabli (Prospekt Mira 99) are good places to sample local fare. Top-end restaurants, meanwhile, are unsurprisingly prevalent – Cafe Pushkin (Tverskoy bul'var 26a) is near-legendary for its superior Russian dishes, while the palatial Turandot (Tverskoy bul'var 26/5) serves excellent fusion food.
This theatre festival is held each spring and incorporates drama, ballet, opera and various other forms of theatrical art. Performances in the main festival programme are nominated for the Golden Mask Award itself.
The week running up to Lent sees Muscovites (and Russians in general) consuming large quantities of pancakes, as well as indulging in traditional games, costumed events and other outdoor celebrations. It’s also known as “Pancake Week” or “Butter Week”.
Victory Day Parade
Marking the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany in WWII, Victory Day is marked every year on 9 May – expect firework displays, a parade of military vehicles and numerous massed bands.
Moscow International Film Festival
One of the key events on the cultural calendar, Moscow’s premier film festival has been running for more than three decades and has a programme ranging from international blockbusters to short art house films. There are usually a few big-name stars in attendance.
Moscow Autumn Festival
Bringing performers to Moscow from around the globe, this international festival of contemporary music is a chance to catch high-class performers appearing live. Admission to all events is free, and a variety of different venues are used.
Moscow’s reputation for imperial opulence goes before it, meaning plenty in the way of lavish five-star hotels. Among them, the stylish Radisson Royal Hotel (Kutuzovsky Prospekt 2/1 building 1) is notable for occupying one of the city’s seven neoclassical Stalin-era towers, while the iconic Hotel Baltschug Kempinski Moscow (Baltschug ulitsa 1) draws attention for its plum location across the river from The Kremlin. The city’s not just for high-flyers, of course – good-quality three-star accommodation can be found at the likes of Ibis Moscow Paveletskaya (Shchipok ulitsa 22 building 1) and the 10-room Hotel 45 (Semenovskaya Naberezhnaya 3/1 building 6).