Moscow Travel Guide

 What you need to know about travelling to Russia


Russia has always been on the very top of my travel wish list.

Castles in the Sky


I know most people, including my mother, would much rather go to Barbados than scary cold Russia, but for me I honestly can't think of a more exciting place to visit.



For years I pestered my family continuously to go to Russia but the pleas fell on deaf ears until I had booked to go in December for New Years and the trip fell through. On the bright side my parents took pity and offered to take me there for my birthday, yup my parents are awesome!


Cathedral of Christ the Saviour

I jumped on this offer instantly just incase anyone was tempted to wriggle out of it and so finally in early June I found myself in MOSCOW!! HELLO MOTHER RUSSIA!

One of Stalin's Seven Sisters



I promise to go into greater detail about what I did in later posts but for now I thought I would write a mini guide as word on the street is that Russia is a rather difficult and odd place to go on holiday, and I want to dissuade that thought instantly!



Moscow was fantastic, it should be on everyone's wish list, GO GO GO!
*Note: nobody paid me to say this.

Gardens in the Kremlin

How to get a Russian Visa:

Most countries including those in Western Europe and America require a visa to enter Russia. The visa process can be daunting at first but I have done it twice now and it's really not that bad.

Step 1. Book a hotel
Step 2. Contact hotel and ask for a tourist voucher (most hotels don't charge for this service but they do require a credit card authorization at this point as they will charge you if you cancel your booking).
Step 3. Fill out the online Visa Application Form and include details of your travel/health insurance (you need health insurance that is valid in Russia.
Step 4. Print off application form and drop it off along with your tourist voucher from the hotel, your passport and a recent passport photo to the Russian Embassy in your country.

GUM


Russian Visa Fees:


This varies country to country but there are two options. In Ireland if you allow 20 working days the fee is €60 and if you don't want to be without your passport for that long then you can pay €100 and have done within 3 working days.

Breaking it down in Gorky Park

I know this information is all online but sometimes when I read government sites I feel terrified that I have missed some crucial detail.

Kremlin

Where to Stay in Moscow:


I stayed in the Savoy Hotel in Moscow. The Savoy is a lovely 5 star hotel fashioned in ornate traditional Russian style.

Savoy Hotel Moscow


The location was brilliant, it was right next to an upmarket shopping street and a 5 min walk to Red Square, it also felt perfectly safe to walk around this area at night.

Savoy Hotel Moscow

There were plenty of hotels in this area and I would recommend checking out Booking as they have great rates and they have a neat little map feature where you can compare the location of all the hotels (stay close to the Red Square!).


Peter the Great


 What to do in Moscow:

  1. Pose for photos in Red Square
  2. Visit the Kremlin and the Cathedral Square – tickets are 500 roubles
  3. Check out GUM shopping mall - the interior is beautiful but don't plan on buying anything unless you have just won the lotto
  4. Jump on a hop on hop off boat tour – if possible try find one in the language you actually speak … we had a fabulous tour completely in Russian.. ah well
  5. Go for a stroll in Gorky Park – you will be joined by half of Moscow, which I guess is a reassuring sign that this is the place to be!
  6. Book tickets to the Bolshoi – expensive but so worth it.
Red Square




Where to eat and drink in Moscow

  1. White Rabbit – I can't rave about this place enough, it was fantastic; great food, incredible view, fun atmosphere, and good service.
  2. O2 Lounge – Rooftop bar overlooking the Red Square, it's pricey but you can't beat the location.
  3.  Café Pushkin – ok so I didn't actually go here but my friend Dmitry who recommended the White Rabbit also recommended here and since the White Rabbit was fabulous I thought I would pass on the info. Café Pushkin is not a café at all but a formal restaurant serving traditional Russian food.
The burger is from none of the above, it is actually for a street stall in Gorky Park

Liakada

21 comments:

  1. Definitely saving this post. Russia is somewhere I have always wanted to visit the architecture is amazing and steeped in history. The tops are really useful, looking forward to your future post on your birthday trip Lucy x

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    1. It was really lovely Lucy, I would so recommend you go. They have done a terrific job of preserving their history.

      Ash | Liakada

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  2. What a great round up of tips, I'm yet to visit Moscow but it's somewhere that I've always been fascinated by

    Suze | LuxuryColumnist

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    1. Thank you so much Suze, it is well worth a trip!

      Ash | Liakada

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  3. Wow, Moscow looks absolutely beautiful. I've never been but I can tell it's an amazing place to visit. Beautiful photos.

    Kia / The House of KTS
    www.houseofkts.com

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    1. Thanks so much Kia, it is such a beautiful city!

      Ash | Liakada

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  4. Loved this mini guide! Moscow is such an interesting city and definitely on the wishlist - I will look forward to the next posts :-)

    Polly xx
    Follow Your Sunshine

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    1. Thanks so much Polly! It was so good to see somewhere that is so different than the rest of Europe, really an interesting place!

      Ash | Liakada

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  5. I'd love to visit Russia at some point. Looks like there's loads to see and do!

    Corinne x
    www.skinnedcartree.com

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    Replies
    1. I would totally recommend it, it was such a cool city!

      Ash | Liakada

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  6. Your choice of hotel to stay it was spot on, what a beautiful base to return to each day after exploring the area! I'm so keen to visit Russia, however like you described your parents views, everyone I know seems to be determined to steer clear of the place. There's plenty of time in the future to visit though thankfully! :)

    Gabrielle | A Glass Of Ice
    x

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    1. I know it gets such bad press! I have decided to start a one person campaign to get everyone to go, it was such a beautiful city and in the part that we went to I didn't find it sketchy or dangerous at all!

      Ash | Liakada

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  7. Such lovely photos! It looks like the weather was perfect when you went :) xx

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    1. It was so hot! I even got a bit sunburnt, definitely a far cry from most of the pictures you see of Russia covered in snow :)

      Ash | Liakada

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  8. Looks so amazing! Take me with you next time :)

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  9. I really like the pics of palace it looks amazing. I love to join you on your next trip, and thanks for exploring the RUSSIA
    Condorny.com

    ReplyDelete