MOS 2 – With the visit at Red Square (Красная площадь)

Yess it’s THIS Red Square (Красная площадь, Krasnaya Ploshchad)!  : )

Red Square in Moscow is a historic city centre as well as the pure heart of the capital. It’s there where the most famous and symbolic objects of Moscow are located and where all tourists come in the first place. St. Basil’s Cathedral with the Monument of Minin and Pozharsky, The State Historical Museum, Lenin’s mausoleum, GUM (Glavnyi Universalnyi Magazin), Kremlin’s walls, Kazan Cathedral (Kazanskyi Sobor), Ressurection Gate, Manege Square (Manezhnaya Ploshchad) and Gardens of Tsar Alexandr I (Aleksandrowsyi Sad)  are the closest ones and definite must-sees.

The Red Square mapSource: flickr.com

The history of Red Square comes back to the middle ages, when the place was commonly used for marketing and trading purposes. The first Red Square was built of wooden logs, however, they were replaced with the stone bricks after an order from Tsar Ivan III in year 1493.  Over the centuries the status of the Square increased and it became also a place of public celebrations and royal coronations.

The name “Red Square” does not have any communist references and it was adopted around XVII century. The original name (Krasnaya Ploshchad) comes from the word “krasnyi”, which ages ago stand for “beautifull” rather than “red”, which is today’s meaning of this word.

 

The trading tradition of the Red Square is still maintained by the State Department Store (GUM – Glavnyi Universalnyi Magazin), located on the left hand side of the square and being the most prestigeous and expensive shopping gallery in the whole Moscow (perhaps also in all Russian Federation).

 

St. Basil’s Cathedral is definitely the most well-known sacral object in Russian Federation and one of few symbols of Moscow. The colorful and extraordinary cathedral occupies the central place of the Red Square. Just in front of it, there is a monument of  Minin and Pozharsky, commemorating the victory of Russians against Polish-Lithuanian army in year 1612. Yes, there was a time when Polish nation ruled Moscow ; ), but these times are obviously highly disliked in Russia, being called “times of the great grief” (smutnoye bremyia) due to the political chaos and famine.

 

The right hand side of the Red Square is protected by the high walls of Kremlin, with one more turist attraction – Lenin’s Mausoleum. It’s very hard to find an ocassion to see former Russian commander, as most of the time he is under renovation. Hovewer, those of you who have missed this fascinating opportunity should not be highly disappointed. To get to the gate of the mausoleum – even without the big queue of visitors – one has to wait aroung one hour and suffer numerous checks due to the safety reasons. The visit itself takes no more than one minute, as police officers ensure the constant move of the crowd. And Lenin… looks exactly the same as on the pictures one can find on the Internet.

The other mentioned historic monuments are placed outside, but in the close neighbourhood of the Red Square. Coming back towards Tverska Street, after crossing a Ressurection Gate one finds himself on the Manege Square (Manezhnaya Ploshchad). There are few more attractions that may be reached from this place.

Fist of them, reffering to the name of the square, is a Manege (Manezh) – a historical building that used to belong to the Russian army and  be a place of military trainings. Right now Manege is a famous exhibition hall.

The other attractions that may be found on Manege Square are the small park of fairy-tale characters and  shopping center Ahotnyi Riad. Also, from the square it is possible to enter famous Gardens of Tsar Alexandr I (Aleksandrowsyi Sad), pretty nice leisure park where the parts of old, oryginal Kremlin walls may be seen.

The Red Squre with its surroundings has to be called a very enjoyable part of the city and popular destination of visits both locals and turists. What is more, quite often it is a place enriched with an extra events: season markets, ice rink (katok) or all kinds of entertainment events. Definitely needs a <tick> on your list! : )

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~ by jumikao on January 3, 2014.

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