The big and dynamic metropolis of Moscow is a modern city, very different from St-Petersburg, as it is less a museum-city a more looking towards the 21st century, unlike its historic rival.
Train from St-Petersburg to Moscow
An exciting journey to the Russian capital!
The politic and economic center of the country
Once I get my train ticket, the receptionist of my hotel in St-Petersburg writes on a paper where is the train station, the number of my train, the hour of departure, my sleeping couch… indeed everything is in Cyrillic language, so very difficult to get all these information, but I don’t want to miss my train! I can imagine how a transsiberian journey can be complicated and why western tourists prefer to book everything with an agency 🙂 the language barrier is unfortunately a relevant problem in such situations.
Finally, after several problems, I find my sleeping couch in the train! Departure at 00h00 to reach Moscow at 8.00am the next morning. Being the only one not Russian in the train, it is not that easy to communicate with other people, so I choose to have a good (or not…) sleep to arrive fresh and dynamic the morning. But some time to prepare my belongings and keep an eye on them…
Well arrived at 8.00am, and after few complications to reach my backpacker in Moscow downtown (notably because of the subway network map in Cyrillic only again), I can rest, check I haven’t lost anything after the train and subway transports and do a quick cleaning! And now time to enjoy! Night train was fun in someway, not used to it, and also a good way to save on hotel pricing. And as long as you prepare your trip carefully, the Cyrillic language, although disconcerting at the beginning, is not a huge problem. Now time to discover the Red Square and the Kremlin, not too far from my hotel! Clearly less things to see here than in St-Petersburg, Moscow is more modern and more dynamic, less oriented towards its past. Impressive traffic jams (sometime you need to go underground to walk across a crossroads as traffic is too heavy). But except that, let’s enjoy the Red Square.
Wonderful and symbolic architecture at the Red Square
Visiting Moscow is not that difficult and provided you stay in the traditionnal touristic spots in the quite small historic center, you won’t get lost, with roadsigns sometimes in our language as well. But if you want to visit everything, including the suburbs, better be prepared.
The visit of Moscow, as I didn’t have much time, has been limited to this very touristic center, but it was worth going there! The very good weather in June undoubtedly was a big bonus. A warm and lovely weather, and the visit must be completely different if you visit this town in winter, -20 degrees! In Moscow, my visa has been checked several times by the police, nothing special but you will see quite a lot of soldiers and policemen in the streets. Obviously, I was travelling individually.
One of the important moment of this visit was the Lenin mausoleum, always impressive to see the real body of the father of the Russian revolution, as he was dead yesterday..Very much like Ho-Chi-Minh mausoleum in Hanoi, Vietnam, you are obviously not allowed to take any pictures. Very dark room, many soldiers to protect it, you have to go, see him and leave quickly in order to limit the oxygen which is coming into the room. Very impressive indeed. So the architecture and the Russian culture make Moscow a must see town for anyone who likes travelling, although some preparation, basis in Cyrillic language and passion for Russian history and culture are important to get to fully enjoy this trip.