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Public Parks and Estates

Public Parks and Estates
Moscow is one of the world’s greenest cities, with green spaces covering almost one third of its total area Whilst the number of parks is not numerous, they are extremely vast, and each park is interesting in its own way. Moscow’s parks and mansions are a remarkable cultural phenomenon. They are popular places to relax outside, learn about Moscow’s history and participate in one of the many events and public festivals. In Moscow, there is a park suitable for everyone’s taste, including lovers of leisurely strolls and botanists (for instance, Serebryany Bor and the Main Botanical Garden), fans of historical architecture (Kolomenskoye, Tsaritsyno and Izmaylovo Parks) and families with children, who will find a wide variety of family entertainment in any park - the Zoo and the Sokolniki Park are favourites.

Small gardens and parks, such as the Alexander Garden and the Zaryadye Landscape Park are located in unusual places - beneath the Kremlin’s walls. If you feel like getting away from the bustling city, Gorky Park, Sparrow Hills and Victory Park, just behind the Garden Ring, are great places to go
The Gorky Central Park of Culture and Leisure, located across the Moskva River, is Moscow’s most popular park. There are larger parks in the city, but this is truly a park for everyone. It boasts places of entertainment for the whole family, open-air concert and theatrical venues, sporting areas and shady alleys. The Garage Contemporary Art Centre is situated here, too. The Gorky Park holds a huge number of events, lectures and classes.
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A former royal residence, the Kolomenskoye Historical and Architectural Conservation Area is one of Moscow’s best-known country estates. Here, you will see unique Russian architectural monuments dating back to the reign of Ivan the Terrible, churches, towers and palace pavilions. The park features numerous archeological monuments, a wooden architecture museum and exciting historical exhibitions. Large-scale festivals, fairs and concerts are held here in summertime.
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Relaxing in the City Centre

If you are tired of visiting museums and wandering around the stone-paved streets, there are several quiet places you can retreat to. If you are happy to leave the centre of the city, you could visit the Bauman Garden, which is a stone’s throw from the Garden Ring. There is also a new Children’s Park (Russian: Детский парк) in the Tagansky District.

Hermitage Garden.

Situated on Karetny Ryad Street, not far from Pushkinskaya Square, this romantic garden is focused on the arts, with three theatres located inside. Unsurprisingly, it is very popular with art lovers. Theatregoers, however, are not the only ones fond of the Hermitage Garden, since it is a great place to stroll under the shade of the trees, visit cafés and admire historical buildings.
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Ekaterininsky Park.

A visit to this park will make you feel as if you have travelled back in time. Charmingly old-fashioned, it is almost untouched by the modern world. The park boasts a carefully tended 300-year-old willow and a great many century-old oaks. In summer, boat rides are available on the park’s ponds.
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Krasnaya Presnya Park.

Adjacent to the Moscow City Business Centre, this park is deeply steeped in history. It was founded in the 1930s on the site of Studenets, an old manorial estate. Today, the park features ancient gazebos and alleys, as well as state-of-the-art recreation facilities. Youth festivals are also held here on a regular basis.
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Historical and Architectural Park Areas

Moscow boasts so many historical and architectural parks and former manorial estates that admirers of authentic living history have a wide selection to choose from. It’s hard to say which Moscow country estate is the most well-known. Kolomenskoye, a former royal residence, is undoubtedly among the most celebrated, but the Izmaylovo Open-Air Museum is well worth a visit, too.

Kuskovo Estate.

Located in the east of Moscow, this picturesque country estate used to be the summer residence of the Sheremetev Counts in the 18th century. Today, visitors can visit the French formal park, featuring sculptures and magnificent ponds, a stylish Grotto and Hermitage Pavilions, the Greenhouse, as well as the Holland and Italian Lodges.
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Lefortovo Park.

One of the most popular places to stroll, the Lefortovo Palace and Park is one of Moscow’s oldest parks, dating back to the reign of Peter the Great. Among its landmarks are the Catherine Palace, the great Rastrelli Grotto, the rotunda-surrounded ponds, and much more.
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Vorontsov Park.

18th- and 19th-century buildings are the focus of Vorontsov Park, which is located in the southwest of Moscow. Once owned by Boyar Vorontsov, this country estate is now a park boasting century-old oak and linden trees, as well as a picturesque cascade of ponds which give rise to the Ramenka River.
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Victory Park.

Russia’s tallest Monument to Victory (141 m) is located in this park on Poklonnaya Hill. This place is much loved by roller skaters and bikers. Among the Park’s landmarks are the Victory Museum, which hosts an exhibition dedicated to the Great Patriotic War, and the Memorial Synagogue accommodating a museum devoted to the Holocaust.
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Fans of botany

Those interested in botanywill find much of interest in Moscow, including the Main Botanical Garden and the Apothecary’s Garden. Situated in the city centre, the latter is Russia’s first botanical garden, founded in 1706. . Interestingly, a larch planted by Peter the Great himself is said to still grow in the garden. The beautiful Lilac Garden (Russian: Сиреневый сад), situated in the northeast of Moscow, is a park centered round a lilac arboretum.

The Main Botanical Garden

Situated in the north of Moscow and affiliated with the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Main Botanical Garden boasts unique botanical collections (over 800 plant species), landscaping, an arboretum and an exhibition of tropical and subtropical plants. There is even a Japanese garden, which is especially popular among visitors in May during the cherry blossom season, a rose garden and a large glass greenhouse that is open to visitors who join a tour.
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Zaryadye Park

A newpark, Zaryadye, was opened in September 2017. The park displays all of Russia’s ecosystems, including polar zones, grasslands, steppes and much more. Under the “Glass Bark” is the garden with its evergreen subtropical plants - visitors can learn more about the Artic and get a feel for the nature found there in the “Ice Cave” Pavilion. The park is located in the historic part of Moscow in Kitai-Gorod, near the Red Square.
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Becoming One with Nature

Situated in Moscow’s northeast, the Losinoostrovsky Urban Forest is Moscow’s largest urban forest; - it also forms part of a national reserve. The Bitsevsky Forest is a huge forest in the southwest of Moscow. It is the second largest historical park in the area, famous for its 200-year-old oaks and linden trees.

The Ostankino Museum and Estate is located in the northeast of Moscow. The inside of the former palace of the Sheremetevs is currently being reconstructed, so visitorshave to make do with admiring the palace from outside. The park has paths for horseback riding, a pond with fountains, a theatrical sculpture park and a boathouse.
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Sparrow Hills.

The wild landscape has been perfectly preserved in the Sparrow Hills Natural Reserve and visitors can enjoy a panoramic view of the city from Moscow’s most popular viewing platform. The Reserve features eco paths and themed events are regularly held here.
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Serebryany Bor.

This is another natural reserve in the northwest of Moscow, boasting the city’s most popular beaches. It contains zones dedicated to research, recreation and hiking.
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The Most Visited Parks

Moscow’s most visited parks are incredibly diverse. Theyinclude historic sites, parks for outdoor activities and picturesque country estates. In wintertime, parks often have ice rinks and slides available for use, and in summer they host festivals and concerts.

Alexander Garden.

This park, located right beneath the Kremlin’s walls features cozy alleys, interesting fountains and historical monuments, as well as the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier with an eternal flame, near which the honor sentinels from the President’s Regiment stand on guard.
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Muzeon Park of Arts.

The Muzeon, a true open-air museum situated on a scenic embankment of the Moskva River is becoming increasingly popular. Visitors to the park are welcome to wander around and enjoy the work of numerous Soviet and post-Soviet sculptures.
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Tsaritsyno Estate.

There are neo-Gothic palaces here, nestled in an atmosphere reminiscent of the glorious reign of Catherine the Great - this park was founded by Catherine herself. Located in the south of Moscow, this palace museum and park reserve is steeped in history.
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Sokolniki Park.

In the Sokolniki Park, one can not only have a leisurely stroll, but also participate in sporting events, ride a bike, visit the great amusement park and the Museum of Calligraphy and have a bite to eat in a cozy café. In winter, a skating rink appears and skate rentals become available.
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Family Recreation

These days, every park has child-friendly facilities. In Gorky Park, an ice rink is available in winter, and the Green School and the Popular Observatory, where kids can learn many exciting facts about the Universe, are open in summer. In Sokolniki Park, there are playgrounds, aviaries and even a Creativity House especially designed for children.

Zoo.

Any child would enjoy a visit to the Moscow Zoo, the second largest zoo in Europe. Over 1,000 animal and bird species inhabit its vast territory in the heart of Moscow. It’s a bit crowded here on weekends during the summer months, so it’s best to come here on weekdays.
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VDNKh.

a huge trade show and amusement park and a fine sample of Stalinist architecture, accommodates the Moskvarium and stages interactive kids’ shows and tours to the Robostantsiya (Robostation) Museum. The park also contains playgrounds, including a safe playground for children with disabilities.
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Izmailovo Park.

The Izmaylovo Park is a great place for strolls with children. There is a boathouse, an adventure park, the Czar’s beehive, rides and an equestrian club. In Izmaylovo, you can take a ride on the Ferris wheel or just walk in the scenic Serebryanka river valley.
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Don’t speak Russian?

Strolling around urban parks and estates is a great way to relax if you don’t speak Russian. You won’t need any accompanying texts to enjoy the beauty of nature and architectural landmarks. Visitors to the Moscow Zoo can get booklets in English and all of the signs there are both in Russian and English. Some parks offer guided tours in foreign languages, but that’s rare to find.

Moscow’s Most Romantic Places

When it comes to romantic places in Moscow, the Bolotnaya Square immediately springs to mind. One of Moscow’s most popular wedding places, a curved pedestrian bridge spanning the Obvodny Canal, is located here. It is locally known as the Kiss Bridge (Russian: Поцелуев мост) or the Love Bridge (Russian: мост Любви). The area around the Patriarch’s Ponds is romantic in its own way. Open-air celebrations don’t often take place here, but the mysteriousness described in Bulgakov’s work is present in these Moscow neighbourhoods.
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Park Tours

The Tsaritsyno Open-Air Museum offers tour guides and guided tours, available in 15 languages (English, German, Japanese, Farsi, Hebrew, Finnish and more). Tours in foreign languages are also available in the Izmaylovo Kremlin, located on the premises of the Izmaylovo Park (make sure, however, that you bookin advance), and in Gorky Park.
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GALLERY

A pedestrian alley along Patriarch's Ponds
Water activities in Sokolniki Park
Vorontsovsky Park. Pond
Vernissage in Muzeon Park
Summer entertainment in Bauman Garden
Ostankino Pond
Neskuchny Sad. Shady alleys
Monument to V. Bazhenov and M. Kazakov in Tsaritsyno Park
Lefortovo Palace
In the Botanical Garden
Ice rink at VDNKh
Heart of Love in Hermitage Garden
Grotto in Kuskovo Estate
Entrance to the Moscow Zoo
Entrance to the Ekaterinensky Park
Central Museum of the Great Patriotic War in Victory Park
Cable railway in Sparrow Hills
Bolotnaya Square
Beach in Serebryany Bor
Alley in the Krasnaya Presnya Park
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