Do you miss traveling? Dream to see be get a photo in front of the Colosseum in Rome, relax on a Greek island, walk through the Red Square in Moscow, and drink a Guinness in Dublin? Me too!
I would have hardly considered a virtual tour before this pandemic hit. I like wandering on the streets on my own, getting lost in a new city, and discovering special places around the next corner. Anyway, after some postponed trips, canceled plans, and lost plane tickets, I was slowly reconsidering my position about virtual tours.
Luckily, I’ve been invited by Slava at Moscow Private Tours to take part in a virtual tour of Moscow. I can say that it definitely changed my mind on the subject.
Before getting on with the tour, let me tell you how it goes. We met our guide, Julia, in front of the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow. I say ‘met’ because it’s a live tour, where the guide walks and live streams the tour. She talks about each place you visit and you can ask every question you can think of. It’s just as interactive as a classic walking tour.
Moscow Tour Itinerary
Let me walk you through Moscow, on our itinerary.
The Bolshoi Theater – as I said, we met in front of the most famous Opera and Ballet Theater in the world, the Bolshoi. Across the street is another theater focused on drama performances. “Bolshoi” means big, the Big Theater and the other one is the Small Theater.
The Revolution Square – communists still gather to the square for various events in front of Karl Marx’s statue with red flags and red carnations.
A Metro Station – Moscow has great network coverage so we were able to visit Revolution Square Metro stop. Metro stations in Moscow are grand, the one we visited had lots of statues. It looks like a museum or a hotel lobby perhaps. Not your usual metro stop, I can tell you that.
Further on, as we were getting close to the Red Square, we started to see some of the famous red buildings of Moscow.
The Museum of 1812 and The State History Museum – two impressive red buildings, just outside the Red Square.
Alexander Garden – is a popular place for a walk into the public park built by Tsar Alexander I. The park stretches along the western Kremlin wall.
After that, we went into the most famous attraction of Moscow, the Red Square.
The Red Square in Moscow
The Red Square is home to the most famous symbols of Moscow:
- The Resurrection Gate – the double passage is the main gate into the Red Square in Moscow. Just outside the gate, a bronze plaque marks the zero-kilometer of the Russian roads system. This is also a popular spot where locals and tourists take photos and throw a coin over one shoulder to make their wishes come true.
- The Kremlin in Moscow is the most noteworthy of the 22 remaining Kremlins in Russia. A Kremlin means a fortress or a citadel. It is the official residence of the Russian President. The Kremlin wall and its 20 towers surround the palaces and the cathedrals of the Kremlin.
- St.Basil’s Church – for me, this is the most iconic building in Moscow, though I might say in Russia as well. The onion-shaped colorful domes look like lit candles. There is also a practical reason, the shape of the dome makes the heavy snow slide down easily. A detail that has to be considered in Moscow’s climate.
- The Kazan Cathedral in the northeastern corner of The Red Square was the first rebuilt church. Stalin had destroyed the original cathedral in 1936 by Stalin in his efforts to build an atheist state.
- The GUM – the building looks like a palace or a grand hotel from the outside but is, in fact, a shopping center. However, it’s a beautiful building and a great refuge for a little warmth in the cold Moscovite winter.
The Red Square and the Kremlin have been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1990.
Impressions about the virtual tour of Moscow
Besides seeing the most famous landmarks of Moscow and learning something of a local’s view about them, the tour we talked about local superstitions and some Russian history. Practical advice and tips about the best time of the year to visit Moscow were part of the conversation too.
Moreover, I learned about the must-try dishes in Moscow, a piece of information you know I had a keen interest in. I love a good food tour, what can I say?
What I liked most about the live tour was that it felt very much like a walk through central Moscow and not like a documentary. Julia is very knowledgeable and accommodating. She also answered every question and talked about a lot of aspects of Moscow.
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Did you ever try a virtual tour? Do you plan to visit Moscow? Tell me all about it in the comments below.