Hello Fellow Travelers:
Welcome to our world of business information, museums, adventure, birding, botanical gardens, good eating and fine wines. This newsletter provides you with “The Welge Report for Moscow.
Please share it with your friends, customers and associates. You can also access more than 100 cities on our website plus lots of other helpful travel tips at: thewelgereport.com/
Recognition: We extend special thanks to the people who manage and/or own the institutions, museums and restaurants featured in our guides. In some instances we have relied on their descriptions and photos.
Birding Opps: Info for our birding friends. In and near Moscow you can see these species: Fieldfare, Azure Tit, Chaffinch, Nuthatch, Tree Sparrow, Bullfinch, Wood Warbler, Citrine Wagtail and Cuckoo.
Check out Andy & Helen’s Birding Exploits (http://driftingbirder.wordpress.com/2012/05/08/db1-moscow-birding-june-2011-june-2012/)
Every Trail (everytrail.com/browse.php?activity_id=39&country=Russia&state=Moscow) provides guides and trips.
The Fat Birder (http://fatbirder.com/links_geo/europe/russia_central_russia.html) gives you areas and species that you are likely to observe.
Alcoholic Beverages: Beer used to be a food, but since January it’s alcohol. Vodka is still # 1.
PublicTransportation: This is your site for public transportation (waytorussia.net/Moscow/GettingAround.html).
The Moscow Metro is world famous for its beautiful artistic stations. It operates from 5:20 AM to 1 AM. Below is one of the stations.
Shopping: GUM – Daily: 10-10, Krasnaya ploshad, 3, is the name of the main department store in Moscow. Izmaylovo Market – Su-F: 9-9, Su: till 5, Измайловский бул., 58, 7 495 965 38 48 is your one-stop shop for souvenirs and handicrafts in Moscow.
Business Information: Here is help in regard to your business: (local-life.com/moscow/articles/business).
Exchange Rates (http://www.x-rates.com/)
Day One: Your first stop is Red Square – named as such from the word Krasnaya meaning red or beautiful and originally referred to Saint Basil’s Cathedral and subsequently was used to describe this space.
Red Square was meant to serve as Moscow’s marketplace as well as a forum for public ceremonies and proclamations.
In 1990 Red Square and the Kremlin were added to the UNESCO World Heritage Site list. Today it’s used for concerts, political and military events.
The Kremlin – F-W: 10-6, 7 495 695-37-76 site has been inhabited since the 2nd century BC and survived the vagaries of time and politics.
Italian builders erected the existing walls and towers in the late 15th century including the Cathedral Square.
The Kremlin museums include the Armoury Chanber, the Assumption Cathedral, the Archangel’s Cathedral, Annunciation Cathedral and several other museums.
Lunch at a favorite Georgian spot Duhan Chito-Ra – L & D: Daily, Kazakova St., 10/2, 7-499-265-78-76.
Their signature dish is “hinkali” dumplings filled with ground meat and spices. The nut filled eggplant rolls and gooey cheese bread are also favs.
Beer only but no objection to BYO if you have a receipt.
Saint Basil’s Cathedral – Krasnaya ploshad, 7 495 698-33-04 is probably the most photographed site in Russia.
Dmitry Shvidkovsky states that “it is like no other Russian building”. Nothing similar can be found in the entire millennium of Byzantine tradition from the fifth to the fifteenth century.
St. Basil’s was built to commemorate the capture of the Tatar stronghold of Kazan in 1552. It consists of nine chapels. The color and shapes seen in St. Basil’s Cathedral is unmatched anywhere else in the world.
There are eight domed chapels symbolizing the eight assaults on Kazan.The interior is a maze of galleries winding from chapel to chapel and level to level via narrow stairways and low arches. The walls are painted in floral and geometric patterns.
In a garden at the front of the cathedral stands a bronze statue commemorating Dmitry Pozharsky and Kuzma Minin, who rallied Russia’s volunteer army against the Polish invaders during the Time of Troubles in the late 16th and early 17th centuries.
Take a peek at the Bolshoi Theater – Box office open daily: 11-8, Lunch break: 3-4, English tours: M,F: 12:30, Театральная пл., 1 m, 7 (495) 455-5555.
On March 28, 1776 Catherine II granted Prince Pyotr Urusov the privilege of staging theater performances of all kinds for a period of 10 years. This grant established the origin of the Bolshoi Theater.
The Bolshoi is one of Moscow’s main sights.
Dinner is at Café Pushkin – B,L,D: Daily, Тверской бул., 26А, 7 495 739-00-33.
Your starter is the herring and hot potato salad or the jellied pike and salmon fillets with horseradish. A splurge is the beluga caviar and blinis. Homemade pickles are a specialty.
Dumplings are a staple in Moscow and you can order a variety of fillings.
The duck breast is served with a cherry risotto and foie gras raviolis and the veal cutlet comes with mashed potatoes, onion rings and vegetables.
The ’10 Monti Garbi Valpolicella Superiore is a good wine choice. Dessert is the pistachio crème brulee with cherries.
Day Two: Tarras Bulba – B,L,D: Daily, ул. Петровка, 30/7, 7 495 694-60-82 is your place for breakfast.
You can start with coffee or tea. They have pancakes, cheesecakes, rustic cottage cheese, scrambled eggs with toast, scrambled eggs, cereals with fruit, toast with smoked salmon and caviar.
To gather some knowledge about Moscow you’ll visit the State Historical Museum – W-M: 10-6, Krasnaya ploshad, 1, 7 495 692-40-19.
Its exhibits range from relics of prehistoric tribes that lived on the territory of present-day Russia through priceless artworks acquired by members of the Romanov Dynasty.
Highlights include Scythian gold figures, funerary masks from the Altai and the Turmanskiy Sarcophagus, a unique mixture of Hellenic architecture and Chinese decoration.
Other displays focus on the history of Russia’s rulers, with a number of historical paintings, court costumes, thrones and Carlo Rastrelli’s silver death mask of Peter the Great.
The State Tretyakov Gallery – Tu-Su: 10-6, 10, Lavrushinsky Lane, 7 499 230-77-88 is not to be missed.
This collection of Russian art includes masterpieces that span a thousand years.
The Gallery was founded by the Russian merchant and patron of the arts, Pavel Tretyakov. He donated his collection to the city of Moscow in 1892.
It contains more than 170,000 works by Russian artists from early religious paintings to modern art ranging from Theotokos of Vladimir.
and Andrei Rublev’s Trinty to the monumental Composition VII by Wassily Kandisky and the Black Square by Kazimir Malevich.
Enjoy a special luncheon at Ragout – B,L,D: Daily, Bolshaya Gruzinskaya St., 69, 7-495-6626458.
The spinach and seaweed salad has a honey and mustard sauce and the chicken lettuce salad has a blue cheese sauce.
For your second course the red caviar and crayfish risotto or the pasta carbonara are both special.
Your main is the duck breast with figs and arugula or the sea bass with a green onion and potato cream sauce.
Your wine is the ’10 Moulin-a-Vent and dessert is ice cream and beetroot Borodino bread.
A branch of The State Tretyakov Gallery at Krymsky Val – Daily: 10-7:30 10, Krymsky Val, was opened to showcase their modern art.
The Gallery’s building at Krymsky Val houses the only permanent exhibition of 20th century Russian art in the country.
It displays works by Russian avant-garde masters from the 1900s such as Malevich, Kandinsky, Chagall, Filonov and Popova.
These works were followed later by Socialist Realism during the 1930s-1950s.
The grounds have a collection of Socialist Realism sculpture that includes Yevgeny Vuchetich’s Iron Felix, the Swords into Plowshares, the Young Russia monument and Zuurab Tseretell’s 86 meter statue of Peter the Great.
You’re off to Bar Strelka – B: M-F, L & D: Daily, 14 Bersenevskaya Embankment Bldg 5, 7 495 771 7416 for an elegant dinner and a great view.
Start with the eggplant croquette with tarragon ailoi, the smoked salmon spring rolls or the bruschetta with smoked pork.
For your entree the grilled seabass, the lamb moussaka or the paella are good choices.
The ’01 Chateau Soutard Saint Emillion Grand Cru is a good wine selection. Dessert is their chocolate truffle.
Day Three: Breakfast is at Correa’s – B,L,D: Daily, Gasheka St., 7/1 (several locations), 7 (495) 933 61 57.
You can start with their excellent espresso (free refills) or a cup of their leaf tea. You won’t be disappointed with the eggs benedict, omelets or pancakes.
Next you’ll want to see The Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts – Tu-Su: 11-8, Th: till 9, Volkhonka street 12, 495 697-74-15.
The Soviet government transferred thousands of works from St. Petersburg’s Hermitage Museum and the collection of Western art from the Museum Roumjantsev to the Pushkin providing a nucleus of art for this museum.
Later Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings by van Gogh, Gauguin, Picasso, Dufrenoy, Derain and Matisse were added from the State Museum of New Western Art.
Several years after WWII art appropriated from the Dresden collection was returned to East Germany, however, Troy’s Priam’s Treasure gold hoard that was taken by the Red Army from the Pergamon Museum in Berlin is here. This collection had been removed from Troy by the German archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann.
Armenian cuisine at Noah’s Ark – L & D: Daily, пер. Малый Ивановский, 9, 7 495 917-07-17 is your lunch spot.
Cousin Aram likes the fried calf’s liver with onions, coriander and spices or the beef tenderloin garnished with onions, peas and asparagus.
Then to the kebobs – lamb with onions, coriander and sumac or the sturgeon filets with pomegranate sauce. A signature dish is the veal tenderloin marinated in honey, black pepper and olive oil wrapped in grape leaves and grilled.
Your wine is the ’00 Nuits Saint Georges 1er Cru. Dessert is their Armenian pastries served with strawberry, raspberry or chocolate sauce.
Cousin Yuri suggests a visit to the Museum of Astronautics – Tu-Su: 11-7, Th: till: 9, Mira Ave., 111, 7 495 682-57-60.
Walking through the Space Museum you’ll see the first Russian space explorers Belka and Strelka plus many exhibits including space vehicles, information on the cosmonauts, interactive computer systems and multimedia programs.
Outside the Museum the “Conquerers of the Cosmos” monument is very impressive.
It’s fun to see the All-Russian Decorative-Applied and Folk Art Museum – W-M: 10-6, Th: till 9, Sa: till 7, STR. Delegatskaya 3, 7 499 973 3187.
This is the only museum in Russia that deals with decorative and folk art. The exhibits include a collection of traditional Russian toys, famous hand-painted lacquered boxes, unique pieces of furniture, porcelain and glassware from famous Russian factories and many others.
Until next time, best wishes and happy travels,
Dick & Dee Welge
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