Quick Answer is no but you can see a lot! We have done our best and gathered information from many travel bloggers who have explored and researched Moscow and provided you with many itinerary options so you can find the right things to do on your short trip. If your interested to learn more about Russia, check out our fun facts about Russia page.
The capital city of the world's largest country is vast and fascinating, much like the country itself. Moscow is the second largest capital in Europe in terms of population, making the city highly diverse and multicultural. The old communist capital of the world is also famous for its architecture, history and arts. Stopover in Moscow during your multi-city tour and find out what makes this city unique, among others.
Best things to do in Moscow
This large city has many attractions and activities. Out of them, here are our picks for the must-do thing during a Moscow stopover.
- Red Square
Red square is arguably the most iconic and significant sight in Moscow. The place has other top attractions of Moscow, such as the Kremlin and St. Basil's Cathedral.
Surprisingly, it is named red square, not due to the red colour or its direct connection with the communist party. The name came from the Russian word "Krasnaya," which means "red" and "beautiful" in old Russian. Head over during an evening to see the red bricks glow from setting sun.
- St. Basil’s Cathedral
Another recognizable sights in Moscow are the St. Basil's cathedral. Its colourful dooms of the cathedral look like a fairy tale building. It is as bright inside as it is from the outside. The cathedral was built in the 16th century by Tsar Ivan the Terrible. During the Soviet days, the cathedral served as a museum. An entrance ticket will cost around $7 - $10.
Kremlin is the home of the Russian president. The fortification walls of the Kremlin were built in the 14th century, making it one of the oldest complexes in Moscow. The facility has some of the oldest churches in Moscow. It was also the residence of Tsars until Peter the Great changed the capital city to St. Petersburg. Nowadays, the facility is highly secured, and only a part of it is open for visitors.
Best places to eat and drink in Moscow
A diverse and multicultural city like Moscow has many restaurants for classic Russian foods and other kinds of cuisines. Stolovaya no 57, which is on the GUM department store's top floor, is a beautiful place to visit for authentic Russian foods. Ellis of the "Back Pack Adventures" blog suggests they offer good for reasonable prices compared to other restaurants in the city. Café Pushkin is an excellent choice for your breakfast. The architecture of the five-star restaurant gives you Hogwarts kind of vibes.
Elle of the "Elle Croft" blog recommends the restaurant for breakfast as dinner is a bit expensive.
If you are going for street foods, don’t forget to try Shashlik. It is a BBQ kind of meat on sticks.
Best neighbourhoods to visit in Moscow
The second most populous city in Europe has some vibrant neighbourhoods. If you are looking for some suggestions, here are the best neighbourhoods to visit.
Kitay-Gorod is one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Moscow. It is walking distance from other major tourist attractions in the city, and it is home to many exotic restaurants, museums and architectural sights. Kitay-Gorod is also famous for nightlife with many clubs and bars.
These neighbouring districts are trendiest neighbourhoods in Moscow with many trendy cafes and bars. It is where the unconventional nature of the city and modern features come together. The neighbourhood also has many luxury shops, boutiques and museums to keep you occupied.
If you are travelling on a budget, Presnensky is the best neighbourhood. The neighbourhood has many affordable hotels and also famous for its nightlife. Moscow zoo, Planetarium, Ryabushinsky Mansion (Maxim Gorky's house) are some other popular attractions of the neighbourhood.
Off the beaten trail in Moscow
There are many places and activities in Moscow often overlooked by the majority of tourists. Here are some of the best off the beaten places and events in Moscow.
- Novodevichy Cemetery
Novodevichy Cemetery is the final resting place of many famous Russian politicians, writers and celebrities. Situated next to the UNESCO world heritage site, Novodevichy Convent, it has graves with incredible statues and tombstones.
Bunker-42 is a secret hideout constructed during the Cold War era. The shelter supposed to serve as a safehouse for top Russian officials in case of a nuclear attack. The bunker also used to control atomic weapons of the Soviet nation. It is open for visitors from 1:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. daily.
- Russian Banya (sauna)
Visit a Russian sauna for an authentic Russian experience. In Russia, going to these bathhouses is kind of a social event. Sanduny bathhouse is perhaps the most popular with its long history and architecture, and the place is a bit expensive as well. However, there are many other Banyas in Moscow with different price ranges and services.
Best museums to visit in Moscow
Moscow has a vast number of museums to visit during a stopover. However, here are some of the best to visit.
- The State Historical Museum
This museum is the perfect place to learn about Russian history, from pre-historic, Mongol invasions, Tsar era to the Bolshevik revolution. A general ticket will cost around $7, and the museum opens from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
2. Kremlin Armoury
Kremlin armoury is one of the oldest museums in Moscow. It was the royal arsenal and was involved in producing and storing weapons and jewellery of the Tsars, which are displayed today for the visitors.
Best places for shopping in Moscow
If you are planning to go shopping during your Moscow stopover, here are some suggestions.
- GUM Department Store
The GUM department store is worth the visit for shopping as well as for its architecture. The shopping mall mostly has high-end shops.
2. Izmailovo Market
Izmailovo Market is the best place in Moscow to buy souvenirs. Russian handicrafts, paintings and handmade items are popular among visitors. Make sure to visit early to avoid huge crowds.
It is vital to have a well-planned itinerary before visiting a city like Moscow. You need to cover all must-dos and make the best out of your stopover. Check out the following itineraries before planning yours.
24 hours in Moscow
Spending 24 hours in a populous city without a proper itinerary can be overwhelming. Ellie Croft is a South African travel blogger and a freelance social media specialist who shares her 24-hour Moscow adventure in her blog "Elle Croft." Read their itinerary here,
2 days in Moscow
Vivian is a Malaysian student who lives in Russian to complete her medical degree. She likes to travel during her vacation and spare time to explore the world. In her blog, "Miss Happy Feet," she shared a well-planned 2-day Moscow itinerary. Read her itinerary here,
3 days in Moscow
"Travel Passionate" is the blog of tourism management graduate, Chrissy. She has a passion for travelling and shares her travel adventures through her blog. You can read a 3-day Moscow itinerary in her blog with other useful information. Find out how she spent 3 days in Moscow here,
4 days in Moscow
4 days are more than enough for a traveller to experience most of the Moscow city. Dutch cultural anthropologist, Ellis has been travelling for more than 20 years to over 50 countries. In her blog, "Backpack Adventures," she shared a 4-day Mosco itinerary with useful tips on restaurants, accommodation and many more. Read her Moscow adventure here,