Moscow, the beautiful and powerful Russian capital with a thousand domes, the political heart of a gigantic Russia, is full of treasures. The largest city in Europe, often called "the third Rome", is a city of contrasts where are gathered many mythical places.
It was originally only a river, the Moskva, and its meanders in the Russian plain. But in 1147, the destiny of Moscow takes a new turn, when the Prince of Kiev, Yuri Dolgoruky, decides to build a Kremlin there which still remains the heart of the city and the country. It is in the shadow of these high red walls that the Russian and Soviet tsars and rulers have almost always decided the fate of Great Russia.
In the 13th century, while the Principality of Muscovy was founded, the region fell under the Tatar yoke. It was only during the reign of Ivan III that Moscow freed itself from Mongol suzerainty and gradually became the capital of Russian territory. The city then has several cathedrals that are now famous in Moscow. The most striking example is of course Saint-Basil, an international emblem of Moscow and Russia, built to celebrate the conquest of Kazan and whose explosion of shapes and colors of bulbs never fails to fascinate and charm the guests of the capital.
Later, Moscow continues to grow under the first two Romanov czars, one of whom builds a sublime wooden palace in the huge Kolomenskoe country estate, where it is always a pleasure to stroll around. In 1712, Peter the Great built St. Petersburg and made it the new Russian capital. If Moscow loses its political influence, it remains a bustling economic, industrial and intellectual center and sees many cultural buildings such as the monumental Bolshoi Theater and the huge Lomonosov University.
The city continues to expand over the years and stands out as the industrial heart of the country. After regaining its status as capital, Moscow is the centre of immense modernization work. This is how big avenues are created and the metro has its roots in the bowels of the new capital of the USSR. Moscow's underground transport network is today considered to be the most beautiful in the world thanks to the luxurious decoration of its resorts.
From 1992, the municipality, under the leadership of Yuri Luzhkov, multiplies the identical reconstruction of buildings destroyed under the previous regime. Among the best known, the imposing Cathedral of Christ the Savior overlooking the Moskva, built in the nineteenth century to celebrate the victory over Napoleon and destroyed by Stalin in the 30s.
This gigantic and fascinating metropolis of more than 12 million inhabitants crossed by the Moskva, is a city with many faces that one never tires of discovering monuments, alleys and boulevards. Vibrant activity and intense cultural life make it a must-see European destination.
Come admire the treasures of the Red Square and the Kremlin during a trip to Moscow, or discover all our travel offers for the capital!