Top highlights in host cities

Mar 6, 2018

Discover the best places in 11 host cities
from Kaliningrad to Ekateringurg

Saint Petersburg

Nevsky Prospekt

is the main street of St.Petersburg. Despite the bombings and shell attacks during the Great Patriotic War, the historical built-up environment of the street has been preserved: literally, every house in Nevsky is unique and has its own legend.

The Hermitage

is the museum famous not only in Russia but also abroad. It is on a par with the greatest museums in the world like the Louvre, the British Museum or the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It has a rich collection of over three million exhibits. According to an estimation, one will need as many as eight years – having spent only one minute in front of each exhibit – in order to see the entire Hermitage collection.

Peterhof

The palaces and gardens of Peterhof are not by chance on the list of UNESCO cultural heritage: it is a residence of Russian emperors, built by the initiative of Peter I. Today, the Great Peterhof Palace is a unique museum of history and art with the collection of around three and a half thousand exhibits including paintings, furniture and drapery items, lamps and tableware that met the tastes of the royal masters of the palace. Besides Peterhof, one can also visit some other residences of Russian tsars in the suburbs of St.Petersburg: Ekaterinhof, Pavlovsk, Oranienbaum, Gatchina, etc.

The Church of the Spilled Blood

is one-of-a-kind cathedral with so rich mosaic decoration. The mosaic ornament was being created by 40 master workmen during 12 years.

The Saint Isaac's Cathedral

is one of the tallest dome structures in the world. The main dome from inside was painted by Karl Bryullov; Vassily Shebuyev, Fedor Bruni, Ivan Vitali and many other famous artists and sculptors also worked on the interior decoration of the cathedral.

The Russian Museum

is for those who want fully immerse themselves in the world of Russian arts: the museum collection contains about 400,000 exhibits and embraces all historical periods.

The Kazan Cathedral

in St.Petersburg is the Cathedral, which keeps the icon of the Virgin of Kazan – one of the most worshiped icons in Russia. It’s also a monument of Russian military glory. The closest in time and style prototype of the Kazan Cathedral is St. Peter's Cathedral in Rome.

Admiralteysky Island

is one of the islands in the center of St.Petersburg; the famous Bronze Horseman, the Senate Square, where the Decembrists’ Rebellion took place, and St. Isaac's Cathedral are situated here. It is named after the Admiralty building located here, originally built as a shipyard for the construction of warships. Now it is the Naval Forces Headquarters. There is an interesting wind spinner at the top of 72.5 meter spire. According to a legend, its silhouette repeats the contour of the first ship that entered the port of St.Petersburg soon after the city foundation.

The summer Garden

During about one and a half centuries, the Summer Garden was a tsar residence and only since the times of Nicolas I, the garden became an open walking place. The garden is famous for its statues – each of them enveloped in its own mythology.

The Palace Square

is the main square of the city. Here one can see the major sight seeings of St.Petersburg: The Hermitage, the Headquarters Building and the Alexander’s Column.

Kunstkamera

is famous for its “special” collection of anatomic rarities and anomalies.

Moscow

The Red Square

is the main square of the country, the main tourist attraction of the capital and the most recognizable view of Moscow in the world.

The Kremlin

is not just a symbol of the Russian Government, but also a huge museum complex with hundreds of thousands artifacts telling about the history and culture of Russia.

Lenin’s Mausoleum

is a monument, a museum, but in essence – the tomb of Vladimir Lenin in the Red Square.

The State History Museum

will provide full information about Russia’s history and even more: the museum collection includes some 5 million museum items and over 14 million sheets of documentary materials.

VDNKh

(the Exhibition of Economic Achievements) is a huge open exhibition complex. Many architectural masterpieces, big and small park structures including unique fountains can be found on its territory. And next to it, there is one of the most interesting museums – the Museum of Astronautics having a model of the first Soviet sputnik and even staffed Belka and Strelka dogs.

Moscow City

is a business quarter that gives tourists a chance to look at Moscow from the top: the observation platforms are located on the 58th and 87th floors of Empire and Federation towers.

The Ostankino TV Tower

Another observation platform is on the Ostankino TV Tower, which is a symbol of Russian television and a tallest free-standing structure in Europe – 540 meters. It is the only place that allows seeing all the sites of the capital at the same time.

The Victory Park

The Museum of Great Patriotic War is a central object of the Victory Park. It consists of a military history exposition showing the chronicle of the war years and of an art exposition. The main attraction of the museum is its diorama with six compositions, each of them devoted to one of the most important battles in Russia’s history.

The GUM Department Store

is not only a fashionable shopping and entertainment center but also a real art object and just a very beautiful place both in its interior and exterior. It takes a whole quarter with the main facade overlooking the Red Square.

The Tretyakov Gallery

is the main and most famous museum of Russian national art. The works by well-known artists like Aivazovsky, Levitan, Vrubel, Shishkin and many other are presented here.

Arbat

is one of the oldest streets in Moscow. It is not a petrified historical monument but a continuously changing space. The street is fully pedestrian. It is a traditional place for street actors and artists drawing their cartoons, plentiful paintings and traditional Russian souvenirs for sale, as well as for located there museums and monuments.

Kazan

The Kazan Kremlin

includes several historical and architectural complexes spread over the territory of 1,500 square meters. It is the Kremlin territory where the main landmarks are located. In 2000, it was entered in the List of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage by UNESCO.

The Kul-Sharif Mosque

is the main mosque of Tatarstan. First of all, it is attractive by its architecture: the windows of the mosque dome are cut in the shape of tulips; the complex has 4 principal minarets, each 58 meters high.

The National Museum of the Republic of Tatarstan

besides its special architecture (the museum occupies the former bazaar building), is known as one of the oldest museums in Russia.

The Temple of All Religions

One of the most unusual buildings in the city the Temple of All Religions has in its architecture the elements of all religions, civilizations and cultures.

The Kazan Family Center

is a wedding registry office with unique architecture reminding a Kazan (a traditional large cooking pot) over an open flame. However, the tourists use it as an observation platform in the first place – the bird’s eye panorama opens the view to the Kazan Kremlin, big roads and the mirror-like surface of the world famous Volga River.

The Suyumbike Tower

is a “sister” of famous leaning Pisa Tower. The history of the tower is folded with various myths, which are very interesting when told by the local residents.

Sviyazhsk and Bulgar

Apart from Kazan, the Republic of Tatarstan can also boast of some other special touristic centers, like Sviyazhsk city-island founded by Tsar Ivan the Terrible, and Bulgar, one of the biggest cities of the Golden Horde and the northernmost monument of medieval Islamic art of building.

Sochi

The Olympic Park

In 2014, Sochi became not just a sea resort but the center of Olympic Games. The main sports structures of the winter Olympic Games are concentrated in the Olympic Park. The competitions in figure skating, ice-hockey, speed skating, curling and other types of sports were held here. The Olympic Village hosted sportsmen, coaches and team assistants.

Rosa Khutor

Round-the-year resort Rosa Khutor is a ski resort of world class. Apart from the high-profile skiing zone, it offers comfortable modern hotels on two levels of the mountain and own infrastructure including a picturesque embankment of the Mzymta River, built in the style of old European cities.

The Observation Tower on Akhun Mountain

is the main observation platform in Sochi. Amazing views open from the top of the mountain: the snow-capped Caucasus Mountains in the north, the town of Adler stretching in the east and Sochi – in the west. With binoculars, one can see Abkhazia and even Turkey.

Sochi Arboretum

The Sochi Arboretum is a unique green corner of Russian subtropics. The plants for the park’s collection were brought from the gardens of Crimea, Germany, some species were brought from the park of the Prince of Oldenburg Palace in Abkhazia.

The Sochi Oceanarium

is the biggest oceanarium in Russia. It creates an illusion of walking over the bottom of the ocean – the tourists are enclosed with water on three sides. There are also over thirty aquariums in the oceanarium, with hundreds of various types of sweet-water and sea species.

Rostov-on-Don

The Embankment of Rostov-on-Don

shows the real colors of the city. It is the place of public festivities, city events, all possible types of performances and local master classes. Cruisers and pleasure boats set off the pier of the embankment of Rostov practically round the clock.

Tachanka

is a monument devoted to the legendary First Cavalry Army of the Civil War. The Rostov region steppes were the place of some most sanguinary battles, and it is one of the monuments in commemoration of those events.

The Cathedral of Nativity of the Most Holy Mother of God

is the main cathedral of the Rostov Eparchy. The cathedral is a smaller copy of Christ the Savior Cathedral in Moscow.

The Rostov Zoo

is one of the largest in Russia, both by its area and by the number of animals. The tourists are fond of the three Asian elephants, pink flamingos, red-crowned cranes and white-tailed eagles.

Kaliningrad

Königsberg Cathedral

Kaliningrad is inextricably linked with Immanuel Kant, so Gothic-style Königsberg Cathedral hosting the great philosopher’s burial-vault has become the central feature of the city. The Cathedral is situated in Kneiphof - a historical district of the city, also referred to as “Kant Island”, which is one of the insular parts of the former Prussian city of Königsberg.

The Museum of the World Ocean

is the central maritime museum of Russia. A tourist can observe vessels “Vityaz”, “Kosmonavt Viktor Patsayev” (which was one of the vessels of the Space Research Service), submarine B-413, as well as a cachalot’s skeleton.

The Kaliningrad Amber Museum

is the only museum in Russia, showing all the splendor of this “sunstone”. Its collection includes over 10,000 specimens of amber with inclusions, that are of great scientific interest. The museum is housed in a fortress - in particular in its Dohna’s tower.

Fishing Village

Ethnographic and handicraft center “Fishing Village” is a reference to the German past of Kaliningrad. In terms of architecture, the district resembles a German fish market.

Friedland Gate

is the so-called “museum of found items”. The collection for this museum was not compiled purposefully, unlike collections of ordinary museums - it consists of all the old things people find (and have already found) while cleaning the city.

The Curonian Spit

is a thin sand spit going along the Baltic Sea between Kaliningrad and Lithuanian city Klaipeda, a nature reserve. It is often called a museum of terrestrial ecosystems. Such nickname was given to the national park because of its sensitive cultural landscape formed under the influence of the sea, wind and human activities. There, one can find miniatures of several different worlds at a time, with landscapes varying from birch forests to sand dunes.

Volgograd

The Motherland Calls

The main sight of Volgograd - former Stalingrad - is located on Mamayev Kurgan. It is monument “The Motherland Calls”, which astounds with its size. By the way, it is one of the largest tourist attractions in the world, with the height of 52 meters. The location of the monument was chosen for a reason - this “Height 102.0” was severely fought for in the Great Patriotic War, since any part of the city could be fired at from that point. The very ascent to the top up the paths resembles a ritual and leaves a long-lasting impression on everybody.

Panoramic museum “Battle of Stalingrad”

is a memorial complex of an unusual shape, which comprises a museum and depository at the ground level and circular panorama “The Defeat of German Fascist Forces in Stalingrad” at the first level.

Pavlov’s House

is one of the major symbols of Soviet people’s heroism in the Great Patriotic War. Though Pavlov’s house was the first building in Stalingrad reconstructed after the war, the warriors’ exploit was immortalized for descendants in a half-destroyed wall constructed from original bricks and covered with bullet and shell traces.

The Volgograd Memorial and Historic Museum

is the first building one sees at the square in front of the railway station. In 1993 its ideological implication became less prominent and it is now a museum depicting the city history of the XX century - not only of the war times but of the peaceful times, too, and first of all, those before the Revolution.

The Volga–Don Canal History Museum

is a depository of unique documents on the legendary construction process and builders as well as today’s state and prospects of the grand hydrotechnical structure. Lenin Volga–Don Shipping Canal links the Volga River and the Don River at their closest points near Volgograd. The creation of the canal was one of the largest Soviet constructions.

Saransk

The Cathedral of St. Theodore Ushakov

is one of the most beautiful buildings in Saransk. The cathedral iconostasis is made of valuable wood species and covered with gold.

The Mordovian Erzia Museum of Visual Arts

possesses the largest collection of works by Stepan Erzia, an outstanding sculptor of the XX century.

The Memorial Museum of Military and Labor Feat of 1941-1945

is a young museum of Mordovia, but it has already won the love of the republic’s residents and visitors. This monumental modern building is different from such museums in other cities since it has a special national color.

The Contemporary Museum of Monument and Sculpture Copies

All the Saransk sights are presented in the Contemporary Museum of Monument and Sculpture Copies. 20 Saransk sculptures duplicated in a smaller scale (1:10) present the entire city in one hall.

Samara

The Samara embankment of the Volga River

One of the most beautiful places in the city is definitely the Samara embankment of the Volga River. It is the longest and one of the most picturesque embankments in Russia. In summer, several comfortable beaches operate there.

Stalin’s Bunker

is the most powerful bunker disclosed by today. It is 37 meters deep, which is the height of 12-storeyed building. It is so well-equipped that it could house the Headquarters of the Supreme Commander in Chief of the USSR Armed Forces, if necessary. Today, there is a civil defense museum in the bunker.

The Zhigulevsky Brewery

A tour of the Zhigulevsky Brewery enjoys popularity - it allows observing the whole beer production process starting from the brewhouse.

The Samara Art Museum

Local merchant and artist Konstantin Golovkin founded the Samara Art Museum which has become a platform for exhibiting works of Samara artists. Today, there are several permanent exhibitions: icon-painting, Russian painting, Russian avant-garde and Eastern art of V-XX centuries.

Museum and exhibition center “Cosmic Samara”

The facade of museum and exhibition center “Cosmic Samara” is decorated with a real “Soyuz” rocket which is the only assembled launch vehicle in Europe set in the vertical position.

National Park “Samarskaya Luka”

is a unique area formed by a bend of the largest European river Volga at the middle and the Usa Bay of the Kuibyshev Reservoir. The northern part of the area is occupied by the Zhiguli Mountains with the highest peaks of up to 370 meters. To the south the elevation decreases and the relief turns into a plain. The park has a number of archaeological sights – the Murom Town, Bronze and Iron Age Hillforts. In 2006, the park was included into the UNESCO Middle Volga Biosphere Reserve.

Nizhny Novgorod

The Nizhny Novgorod Kremlin

The two-kilometer wall of the Nizhny Novgorod Kremlin was fortified with 13 towers and had to protect the city from Tatars’ raids. According to a legend, the casemates of the Kremlin hide Ivan the Terrible’s famous library brought from Byzantium by his grandmother.

The Chkalov Stairway

The Chkalov Stairway consists of 560 stairs and has an unusual shape resembling figure eight.

The State Bank

In terms of architecture, the building of the State Bank is unusual for a financial institution, and that is interesting about it. The surroundings hide a small clock tower, called “chasozvonya” in Russian. According to a legend, it was built in a night before a visit of the Emperor Nicholas II to conceal one of the balconies of a neighboring building since its residents were not modest enough.

Bolshaya Pokrovskaya Street

is abundant in shops, restaurants, cafes. There, one can also buy artistic works of local craftsmen and - what’s more important - feel the mood of the city.

The Nizhny Novgorod Cableway

connects Nizhny Novgorod with Bor – a city lying on the opposite bank of the Volga. Though the main purpose of the way is to serve as public transport, it is the best way for tourists to enjoy the panoramic view of the city.

Ekaterinburg

Plotinka

The Dam or Plotinka, as it is lovingly called by the city residents. Today, this is the heart of modern Ekaterinburg and the major venue for all the city celebrations and events. At first, it was necessary for the development of the local factory which gave rise to the city.

The Church on Blood

is one of the most famous Orthodox temples in Russia. It was constructed on the site of the dismantled Ipatiev’s House where the Tsar Romanov family was assassinated on the night of July 17, 1918.

Ganina Yama

In the Russian history, Ganina Yama is famous as the place where the remnants of the Tsar family were buried in 1918.

Open viewing point

An open viewing point is located at the 52 floor of the “Vysotsky” Business Center - at the height of 186 meters. It opens a fantastic view - the panorama of Ekaterinburg and the Ural Mountains extends on 25 kilometers.

Yeltsin Center

is a popular public place, modern cultural and educational center. Its main part is Boris Yeltsin’s Museum dedicated to the modern political history of Russia and the personality of the first President of Russia.

Vainera Street

is one of the most popular places among visitors of the Urals capital. It is one of the few pedestrian streets of the city, the so called Ural Arbat. The major attractions of the street are not the shops and boutiques but numerous sculptures depicting generalized images of citizens from different walks of life and certain historical figures. City residents attribute certain omens and beliefs to each of them.