Moscow – Among the World’s Top Tourist Destination
The capital of Russia, Moscow serves as the cultural, economic, political, scientific and financial capital of the country. Spreading on an area of 2,511 km2, Moscow is the 9th largest city in the world, 16th largest urban area, the 13th largest metro and 17th largest agglomeration in the world. According to Mercer, Moscow is the 9th most expensive city in the world and among the world's largest urban economies. Located on the Moskva River, the city is home to 12.2 million residents, making it the world's most populated inland city. The city is exceptionally popular for its historical as well as modern architecture. An Alpha global city as declared by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network, Moscow is one of the faster growing tourist destinations in the world, according to MasterCard Global Destination Cities Index. While 40% of the city is covered by greenery Moscow also houses largest forest in an urban area within its borders, thus, making it one of the greenest capitals and major cities in Europe. The Third Rome, The First Throne and The Whitestone One are among the many epithets that are used to describe the city. Russian is the official language spoken by the majority of people.
Sheremetyevo International Airport, Domodedovo International Airport, Vnukovo International Airport and Ostafyevo International Airport are the four primary airports that currently serve Moscow. Sheremetyevo International Airport is the most important international airport and handles more than 60% of the international flights. Moscow experiences humid continental climate which is categorized by very long and cold winters and warm summers. The months from March to April are the warmest months of the year and the best time to visit the city. The city continues to remain warm from June till August and this is the peak tourist season. The city is liveliest during these months and the princes of hotels are generally higher. Winter starts to creep in from September onwards and till October tourists can plan a visit as the cost of the hotels starts coming down. Proper winter grips the city form November and winter in the city is not for the faint hearted. Average temperatures normally drop to approximately −10 °C. Usadba Jazz Festival in June, Moscow International Film Festival in June, New Year' from December 3-January 2, Russian Orthodox New Year on January 13, Russian Fashion Week during March-April Russian Fashion Week in October, Labor Day/Spring Festival on May 1 and 2 and Victory Day on May 9 are the major international festivals.
The city boasts of numerous religious, historical natural as well as modern attractions that will surely satisfy tourists of all ages and budget. The architecture of Russia is world famous and the Saint Basil’s Cathedral is masterpiece of Russian architecture. Having onion shaped domes; the cathedral was built in the middle of the 12th century. Nikulin circus on Tsvetnoi Bulva and the New circus near the University are two of the most popular circuses in Moscow and their tickets are affordable. Traverse Red Square is the landmark attractions in Moscow.
Obraztsov Puppet Theatre and Novaya Opera are also a must visit in Moscow. Kva-Kva Water Park, Hot air balloon ride, Kremlin (1-sq-km space housing the most important offices in the country), Assumption Cathedral (another striking Orthodox church), Armoury (museum housing weapons, imperial arms and regalia from the royal court), The State Museum (displaying vast collections from Russian empire dating back to of the Stone Age), Ice Sculpture Gallery (The first-ever year-round Ice Sculpture Gallery) and Gorky Park (a perfect place for relaxing and amusement options), Moscow Zoo and Moscow Ballet are among the attractions tourists should visit in Moscow.
Eating and Shopping
Eating in Moscow can be termed as an expensive experience, especially if you are a foreigner. The traditional food of Russia is an amalgam of the multi-cultural population that thrives in the city. Boasting of a diverse food culture, some of the most popular dishes you should try is Russia are - Okroshka, Tyurya, Botvinya,Kholodets, Pelmeni, Kholodets, Kotlety, Shashlyk, Pirozhki and Vatrushka. Vodka, sbiten', kvass, medovukha and mors are among the traditional drinks in Russia. While the city has numerous fast food chains like McDonald's, vast range of specialized restaurants offering international cuisines can also be found. The people of Moscow love to drink, which is evident by the numerous bars, pubs and nightclubs speckled all over the city.
This hi-tech city is filled with swanky mall, branded stores and luxurious outlets. If you re brand conscious then Moscow is the best place for shopping as every top brand has its store in the city. Aviapark (Europe largest shopping mall) and Okhotny Ryad (underground shopping mall) are among the most popular malls in Moscow. If you are travelling on budget the do not miss visiting Izmaylovo Market, which is a one-stop venue where hundreds of sellers sell everything that you could possibly look for. Matryoshka dolls, lacquer boxes, jewellery, fur hats, blankets and delicatessens are some of the many things that the city is famous for.
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