european heritage travel

World Heritage Journeys of Europe

Go deeper into European culture and history and get inspired for your next trip through UNESCO’s World Heritage sites in the European Union.

Together with National Geographic and co-funded by the European Union, the World Heritage Journeys of Europe let you discover the most stunning, mysterious, and beautiful heritage sites in Europe. From the 350 World Heritage Sites across the European Union, we handpicked 34 for you to explore in-depth. Immerse yourself in the places that embody Europe’s ancient history, let yourself flow through romantic moments and legends from the European past, feel like a true royal and visit castles, gardens, and palaces of Europe’s heritage, or go even deeper and find out what life and culture awaits you in the hidden underground depths of Europe.

We encourage you to travel differently, and travel deeper. Start exploring now!

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European Heritage & Culture Tours

Join our tours and explore Europe's fascinating heritage and culture! Our selection of guided & independent tours depart from cities like London, Paris, and Amsterdam, taking you to major cultural sites across Europe.

From Roman and Viking remains to ancient monuments such as Stonehenge, spectacular cathedrals, and the tragic modern history of the D-Day landing beaches, there is something for everyone! Take a look at our heritage and culture tours , or contact us to discuss your future European vacation.

Explore our Heritage & Culture tours

european heritage travel

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european heritage travel

How this works

1. find your dream tour.

Choose from our selection of tours — or discuss the options with our travel specialists.

2. Request your booking

Complete the online process — add extra nights and experiences and combine tours. 

3. Prepare for your journey

Book your flights, receive your travel documents and get ready for an experience of a lifetime.

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European Heritage Guided Tour

One Month Multi-Destination Europe Tour

24 days, 9 countries and 21 cities

Accommodation

23 Breakfasts, 8 Dinners

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Encounter centuries of heritage as you travel to Europe's top historical sites. See Joan of Arc's battlegrounds and the birthplace of Mozart, with visits to the glamorous seaside capitals of Barcelona, Biarritz and the French Riviera. You’ll discover the treasures of Ancient Rome, cruise the canals of Venice to St. Mark’s Square and explore the free-thinking Dutch capital of Amsterdam. 

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Deals, savings and exclusive private touring options available plus if you need a different date or itinerary change contact us for more details

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DAY BY DAY ITINERARY

24 days itinerary trip from Paris to Amsterdam visiting 9 countries and 21 cities

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Included sightseeing.

View the Champs-Élysées, Arc de Triomphe and Eiffel Tower on your sightseeing tour

Loire Valley

View Château d'Amboise

Visit this seaside resort

San Sebastián

View the beautiful Bahia de la Concha beach

See the Royal Palace, Cibeles Fountain and Retiro Park on a sightseeing tour with a Local Specialist

See the Ramblas, Paseo de Gracia and Gaudi's Sagrada Família Cathedral with your Local Specialist

South of France

Drive through Provence

Visit the sophisticated film festival city

Visit the Principality

Visit the Square of Miracles to view the Leaning Tower

Visit the Renaissance city

Visit St. Peter's Basilica, view the Colosseum and see the ancient sites with your Local Specialist

Cruise by private boat to St. Mark's Square and visit a traditional glassblowing workshop

See the Opera House, Hofburg, Parliament and Imperial Boulevards with your Local Specialist

Visit this charming city, the birthplace of Mozart

View the Golden Roof and the Hofburg Palace

Liechtenstein

Visit the capital, Vaduz

Visit the Lion Monument and view the Chapel Bridge

View the castle

Rhine Valley

Cruise the romantic Rhine

Orientation tour and an excursion to Volendam

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european heritage travel

Europe + Heritage programme

Heritage can be both tangible and intangible: it includes natural heritage, built and archaeological sites, museums, monuments, artworks, historic cities, literary, musical and audio-visual works, and the knowledge, practices and traditions of citizens.

DutchCulture supports sustainable heritage cooperation between the Kingdom of the Netherlands and Europe by supporting and facilitating (international) expert meetings and exchanges while underlining the European context of heritage. We identify trends and opportunities and are in close contact with the heritage field. Please keep us up to date on your tangible and intangible heritage projects with and within Europe by sending us an email.

The Europe + Heritage Programme is designed for heritage organisations and professionals that are based in the Kingdom of the Netherlands (Netherlands, Aruba, Bonaire and Sint Maarten) and wish to visit a European partner, invite a European partner or set up a cooperation with a European partner.

DutchCulture offers consultations in English or Dutch to organisations and individuals who want to start a European heritage project. We do so by offering information about national and international funding opportunities and connecting projects and organisations to international partners. Please do not hesitate to contact Jacomine Hendrikse, advisor Europe + Heritage, to schedule your consultation.

Pilot programme for the Caribbean part of the Kingdom

As of February 2024, a pilot programme for the Caribbean part of the Kingdom offers an increased travel voucher to applicants based in Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, Saba, Sint Eustatius and Sint Maarten. With a travel voucher of €1.500 instead of €250 for applicants based in the Netherlands, we hope to stimulate cooperation between the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and Europe. The amount of the Travel Grant Scheme remains the same for all applicants based in the Kingdom of the Netherlands and is a maximum of €5.000.

DutchCulture supports heritage cooperation between the Kingdom of the Netherlands and Europe by offering two grant schemes: the Travel Grant Scheme and the Support Grant Scheme.

Cooperation starts with establishing contact and getting to know each other. To facilitate this, DutchCulture has created the Travel Grant Scheme. Under this scheme, vouchers of €250 (for applicants based in the Netherlands) or €1.500 (for applicants based in Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, Sint Eustatius, Sint Maarten or Saba - the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands).

Who can apply?   The scheme is open to heritage professionals from the Kingdom of the Netherlands (including the Caribbean part) who wish to visit a European partner. The scheme is open to heritage organisations or municipal councils established in the Kingdom of the Netherlands (including the Caribbean part) that wish to invite European heritage professionals to visit the Netherlands. The Dutch partner can apply on behalf of the European heritage professional, organisation or municipality. The scheme is open to staff members of heritage departments of Dutch municipalities.   What countries does the Travel Grant Scheme apply to ?     The Travel Grant Scheme applies to all the member states of the European Union, the candidate member states (Albania, Republic of North Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Ukraine, Turkey) and Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

When is the deadline?     Applications must be submitted at least four weeks before departure. There is no deadline: you can apply for vouchers year-round until the budget has been depleted.   For more information in English see   Travel Grant Scheme  (pdf), in Dutch see Reiskostenregeling (pdf).

The goal of the Support Grant Scheme is to promote the establishment of contacts with the European heritage sector and the exchange of knowledge between the Netherlands and the rest of Europe. The Support Grant Scheme offers grants of €5.000 maximum.   Who can apply?   Heritage professionals and heritage organisations that are based in the Kingdom of the Netherlands (including the Caribbean part). Heritage departments of Dutch municipalities who wish to strengthen their European network and/or to improve knowledge exchange in the field of heritage between the Netherlands and the rest of Europe.

We would like to encourage you to travel as sustainably as possible and to consider the impact your means of transport has on the climate.

What countries does the Support Grant Scheme apply to?     The scheme is meant for cooperation with European cities, countries, organisations and individuals on the theme of heritage. ‘Europe’ is understood to mean the member states of the European Union, the candidate member states (Albania, Republic of North Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Ukraine, Turkey) and Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

When is the deadline?     Applications should be submitted at least six weeks before a project is due to start. Applications to the scheme can be submitted year-round until the budget has been depleted.

For more information in English see Support Grant Scheme  (pdf), in Dutch see Ondersteuningsregeling  (pdf).

Applications can be done in Dutch or English.

Application form Travel Grant Scheme (Aanvraagformulier Reiskostenregeling): Europe + Heritage Travel Grant Scheme 2021-2024 .

Application form Support Grant Scheme (Aanvraagformulier Ondersteuningsregeling): Europe + Heritage Support Grant Scheme 2021-2024 .

Other funding opportunities

For more information on funding, see our Mobility Funding Guide (pdf) below or contact us.

European Heritage Label

The European Heritage Label is awarded to European heritage sites that are milestones in the creation of today's Europe. In the Netherlands, four sites hold this label and symbolise European ideals, values, history and integration: Peace Palace, Camp Westerbork, Maastricht Treaty and the Colonies of Benevolence. DutchCulture plays a role in the coordination and communication of the label in the Netherlands. Read more about the European Heritage Label and the nomination procedure in Dutch below.

Projects supported by the Europe + Heritage programme

Projects supported by the Europe + Heritage programme

European Heritage Label (in Dutch)

European Heritage Label (in Dutch)

A New Approach to Cultural Heritage

A New Approach to Cultural Heritage

Government of the Netherlands

Experiences

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Lose yourself in articles about the many wonders of Europe, get inspired by galleries of stunning European sights, learn how to celebrate like the locals and browse through unique events ,  discover exciting routes to embark on during your trip, get to know typical products, and, if you have a flair for cooking, take note of the very best European recipes!

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Looking for an experience?

Featured experiences, cimadolmo white asparagus.

This tender asparagus is a spring delicacy. Highly appreciated for its delicate flavour and its diuretic properties.

The Harvest Festival of Värmlandsnäs

The Harvest Festival takes place on the peninsula of Värmlandsnäs in the middle of Lake Vänern. It’s a weekend that celebrates food and crafts traditions of the Swedish countryside. Welcome to an amazing weekend!

Iconic Landmarks, New Experiences

What’s new at Europe’s most iconic landmarks?

CHECK OUT OUR LATEST GUIDE

Antwerp in focus

Antwerp is home to the best of the European continent. Come for the food, the beauty, the history and the vibrant present.

Wachau Apricot Dumplings

The apricot dumpling, or Marillenknödel, is emblematic for the Wachau region. And it is also a clear illustration of how the Austrian people are open to other cultures. This delicacy combines what is originally a Chinese fruit (the apricot) with a plant from Polynesia (sugar) and an Upper Austrian idea for preparing food (the dumpling). Moreover, the EU certification of controlled origin “Wachauer Marille g.U.” guarantees that these fruits belong to the best of their species.

Soak up Monacoʼs history

Monaco is about sea-views, sunshine, amazing food, and fascinating history

Come for the Nature, Stay for the Culture

Once in Croatia and Slovenia, there are one-of-a-kind museums, vibrant events and incredible festivals to take in too.

Ideas for learning about the past

10 cultural routes of the council of europe.

In 1987, the Council of Europe established the first Cultural Route of the Council of Europe, which is now one of 47 fascinating trails. These carefully constructed sightseeing itineraries encourage travelers to discover the richness and diversity of European heritage through transnational cultural routes. Since the first route was inaugurated over 35 years ago, the “Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe” label has come to represent Europe’s most culturally rich, thoughtfully designed historical routes. Known worldwide, these Routes are a model for intercultural dialogue, local development, and sustainable cultural tourism. We invite you to begin your journey and explore all the cultural routes in Europe! Stefano DOMINIONI Executive Secretary of the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe and Director of the European Institute of Cultural Routes  

Cyprus, an all-natural journey

Hidden gems of nature.

Cultural routes in Romania

Journey through time and tradition…

Flanders: a tale of two cities

A few Flemish cultural gems – by bike.

Ideas for a slow adventure

National parks in finland.

Immerse yourself in breathtaking nature.

Stay in nature in the Netherlands

Sustainable accommodations await you.

Romania, a wonder of nature

Explore the Carpathian garden.

Estonia’s extra season

The floodwaters of Soomaa National Park.

Ideas for city lovers

The carnival of viareggio.

Celebrate Viareggio’s Carnival: vibrant floats, music, & fun!

Belgrade Dance Festival

Belgrade Dance Festival: A mesmerizing showcase of international dance, artistry, and cultural exchange in Serbia’s vibrant capital.

Romanesque route in Portugal

An experience rooted in history!

Cyprus, a Mediterranean jewel

A cultural journey through the island…

Ideas for romantic getaways

A natural view.

Every European country has natural treasures to explore, but where to begin and what to do?

Discover the Thermal Heritage of Europe

The therapeutic use of hot springs has been present in Europe from ancient times to the present day, giving birth to a number of spa towns well-known for the beauty of their buildings, or long tradition of welcoming guests and the healing properties of its springs.

Europe’s Most Romantic Wedding Destinations

A wedding is meant to be unforgettable. That’s why it needs to be in a place that’s equally unforgettable. Europe is one of the world’s most popular places for destination weddings – and for good reason. Whether you like big spectacular weddings or charming quaint ones, there’s the perfect romantic place for you in Europe.

Honeymooning in Europe

When people think of a classically romantic honeymoon, most people think of Paris. And with good reason, Paris, France is the city of love, after all. Beyond Paris though, there are many other options for wonderfully romantic getaway in Europe.

Ideas for foodies

Culture meets taste in greece.

Follow flavor trails across the country!

Responsible discovery: Finland

Explore cultural sights sustainably!

Stories of historic Slovenian towns

Discovering unique treasures and handicrafts.

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Masthof Bookstore and Press

European Heritage Tours

european heritage travel

We invite you to travel with us to where your ancestors lived! Spend two weeks traveling on a tour that is tailored to your roots. Heritage Tours are led by J. Lemar and Lois Ann Mast of Masthof, editors and publishers of the quarterly Mennonite Family History, who have led dozens of previous trips to Europe and Israel.

Click on the tour below to download the complete tour itinerary which describes each day of the tour!

Download: 2022 Heritage Tour

Download: 2024 smucker heritage tour, download: 2024 brubaker heritage tour, download: 2025 hostetler heritage tour.

swiss switzerland alps mennonite tour cow bells

Tour Participant Reviews:

This tour deepened by faith in ways I never anticipated. I have now reconnected with my home church where politics left me feeling distant. What are U.S. politics compared to what our ancestors experienced? I am also finally sharing my learning with Swartz cousins and genealogy friends. And looking forward to returning to Switzerland to visit archives. -Ann, Pa.

Yesterday the current issue of MFH arrived and it made my day!  The articles and photos were excellent. Masthof has been an invaluable ministry in keeping our heritage alive.  It is hard to believe you are still planning and conducting the tours. I can't fathom the significance of the hundreds, if not more, whose lives have been changed by participating in these tours.  -Duane Kauffman, Pa.

Yippeeee..we received our Mast Family Heritage Tour photo journal in the mail! We LOVE it!!  We love the in-depth personalized journaling and the clear photos. What a great addition to the journal the last pages were where each traveler noted some of their “my favorite things” (I would add musical notes here but, alas, my computer does not have emojis!). A huge grateful thanks to Lois and Lemar for two weeks we will never forget! -Love, Andy and Judy Kaufmann, Bryan, Ohio Yesterday our much awaited tour journal of our unforgetable journey to Switzerland arrived. Myron and I thoroughly enjoy studying and treasuring all the memories each page provides. The detailed descriptions of the cities, towns, churches and homes helped me appreciate even more the rich history of this beautiful country. Also a great big thanks to our tour guides Lois and Lemar for the very knowledgeable and detailed information they gave us each day as we visited each location. -Myron (half of 4) and Mary Ann Slabaugh, New Holland, Pa. We received these beautiful tour journals yesterday and I am going over it again and again to relive all the wonderful memories. You did a great job, Lois and Lemar, in printing this wonderful journal and so soon after you arrived home. Loved meeting tour members and have so many wonderful memories.  This trip was worth every dollar we spent. These are memories that will last a lifetime. So very thankful we had some "young whippersnappers" on the trip with their mothers, aunt, etc. I hope you enjoyed it as much as we enjoyed having you.  -Sue  and Sanford Slabaugh, Rockford, Ill. Lois Ann, thank you again for the way you folks planned that very memorable Europe trip!!  And thank you for making the journal! I told my husband that I thank him for letting me take the trip and that it was worth every dollar that I spent for it!! I often look at the pictures and treasure the many memories!! Thanks again. -Mim Achenbach, Mt. Joy, Pa.

swiss chalet cow bells tour switzerland

european heritage travel

Northern Europe and the British Isles

Explore the region's history, culture and natural wonders.

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The Royal Family Is Opening Balmoral Castle to the Public For the First Time in History

Íris Dröfn Guðmundsdóttir (left) and her cousin Anton Ingi Eiríksson release pufflings from the Hamarinn sea cliff on the Icelandic island of Heimaey.

An Icelandic Town Goes All Out to Save Baby Puffins

The author and a friend paddled the 200-year-old Forth and Clyde Canal into the Union Canal. The two canals form a historic, 54-mile route that bisects Scotland.

How Scotland Is Reinventing Its Centuries-Old Canals for Paddlers

european heritage travel

Hoyma Is Bringing Music Home in the Faroe Islands

The Crystal Palace Dinosaurs are the world’s first attempt to model prehistoric animals at full scale.

How a Victorian Dinosaur Park Became a Time Capsule of Early Paleontology

european heritage travel

Get an Eyeful of Iceland in These 15 Photos That Capture Its Natural Beauty

“It could take you a lifetime, or several lifetimes, to learn the history here,” says one member of the abbey staff. Left, the West Towers, completed in 1745.

The Grand History of Westminster Abbey

Svalbard reindeer graze during an early snowfall. If temperatures rise again, food may be trapped under ice during a critical time for packing on winter pounds.

The World’s Smallest Reindeer Get Their Day in the Sun

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What To See During The European Heritage Days 2023

Each September during the European Heritage Days ( Journées du Patrimoine ) visitors and residents alike have the unique opportunity to discover museums, monuments, and private spaces that are otherwise closed to the public. These days provide a fantastic look into some of France’s most spectacular sites. This year, the Journées du Patrimoine are September 16th and 17th. We’re sharing some of our top picks for what to see during the 2023 European Heritage Days in France.

What To See During European Heritage Days 2023

institut de france

The French Ministry of Culture created the Journées du Patrimoine 40 years ago. They take place on the third weekend of September and see approximately 12 million visitors annually. One of the purposes of the Journées du Patrimoine is to highlight the unique stories, histories, and collections of the 17,000 participating sites. These places include embassies, theaters, hospitals, schools, castles, factories and more.

Because of their popularity, the European Heritage Days can involve some time spent queuing in line. Since the pandemic, there has been a shift towards using a reservation system. While not every place has adopted this system yet, more and more places are starting to.

The 2023 European Heritage Days themes are “Living Heritage” and “Sports Heritage.” You can browse an interactive map of participating sites here .

Paris and Île-de-France

national assembly in paris

You’ll find options galore during the Journées du Patrimoine in Paris and the Île de France region. Some perennially popular places to visit include the Elysée Palace , Hôtel Matignon , the French Senate , and the Institut de France . It’s also a wonderful opportunity to explore places like the National Assembly , the greenhouses in the Luxembourg Gardens, and the Oratoire du Louvre.

This is also a fantastic time to visit some of the castles in the Île de France region surrounding Paris. You can visit rooms normally closed to the public at Château de Champs-sur-Marne , the dungeon at the Château de Vincennes , and the family-owned Château de Saint-Jean de Beauregard .

Where to Stay in Paris

chateau voltaire paris

Château Voltaire This 5-star hotel in the 1st arrondissement is a design lover’s dream. The hotel is a tribute to the Parisian art de vivre and a combination of three buildings that date back from the 17th and 18th centuries. The 32 rooms are the epitome of elegance and comfort. Each room contains bespoke headboards, handcrafted details, solid oak wall lights, fringed velvet, and manor-style woodwork. Each element adds to the setting, evoking an almost Gothic, angular and poetic Paris seen through the windows. The breakfast is served at the table to guarantee the freshness of the dishes. Discover a reinterpreted French cuisine at the restaurant. The chef combines local produce with modern culinary skills to create exotic delicacies. Here, the dining experience permeates the art de vivre through even the smallest details. The spa features a sauna as well as a heated pool where guest can relax on a heated day-bed.

chateau de champ de bataille

There are plenty of ways to celebrate the 2023 European Heritage Days in Normandy. Visit La Poterie du Mesnil de Bavent to discover the finials and other ceramic decorations that adorn the villas on the coast. La Poterie du Mesnil de Bavent has been a specialist since 1842. Along with discovering the company’s savoir-faire , you’ll have the opportunity to visit and experience a craftsman village along with a market with both designers and second-hand dealers.

At famed French interior designer Jacques Garcia’s Domaine du Champ de Bataille there will be a special interactive program. Visit the fabulous apartments, tour the exceptionally open Moghol Palace, and visit the French gardens.

In Villedieu-les-Poêles, a town known for its copper production, you can visit the Cornille-Havard bell foundry. This is the foundry that produced the bells for the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris.

  • Loire Valley

chateau de chenonceau

In the Loire Valley, the Château de Chenonceau is offering a special visit for the 2023 European Heritage Days. Meet at the château at 7:00 am for an exclusive visit as the sun comes up and before the castle opens to the public.

At Château de Villandry you can tour the famous French gardens in a horse-drawn carriage. Experience a special guided tour filled with historical anecdotes. Master craftsmen will also be on site to enhance a visit to the château, and visitors will be able to test out some of the various techniques used.

Bordeaux and Southwest France

european heritage days 2022

Unique offerings in Bordeaux include tours of forgotten theaters, an ironmaking workshop and demonstration, and a variety of cultural walks. A not to be missed visit is to the Hôtel de Basquiat, a historic building dating from the 18th century. It was built for Joseph Basquiat de Mugriet, adviser to the parliament of Bordeaux. This exceptional residence was completed in 1781 after three years of construction, supervised by the architect François Lhôte.

In Saint-Émilion, visit the largest monolithic church in Europe. Carved out at the beginning of the 12th century, the monolithic church is underground and only visible thanks to its bell tower that reaches 68 meters high. The building is hidden from the eyes of the visitors behind a gothic portal that only the guide can open. A must-see for the European Heritage Days!

In Sarlat, many places that are normally closed to the public will be open including the Lanterns of the Dead and private mansions. Don’t miss Saturday night’s “Heritage Under the Stars” in Sarlat to discover the city’s alleys illuminated by candles.

Where to Stay in Nice

hotel negresco nice

Hotel Negresco This famous property has overlooked one of the French Riviera’s most beautiful bays for a century. Unique and timeless, it has been classified as a historical monument. Facing the Mediterranean Sea on the famous Promenade des Anglais , the hotel is a few minutes walk from Nice’s historical center. The hotel has attracted a veritable “who’s who” of international clientele, kings of the old and the new world. Many of the world’s rich and famous have signed the guest book: Salvador Dali, Princess Grace of Monaco, the Beatles, Louis Armstrong, and Elton John. Staying at this hotel is stepping into French history and culture. The perfect combination of historic and contemporary is the property’s trademark. Equipped and personalized with exceptional period furniture, each one of the 128 rooms and 26 suites draws its inspiration from the most remarkable French art periods. From Louis XIII style to modern art, five centuries of history are represented. Have breakfast under the cupola imagined by Gustave Eiffel, lunch in the Rotonde restaurant surrounded by white horses, and dinner at the Chantecler, the Michelin star restaurant. In between, why not have a drink at the warm and welcoming bar? In summer, enjoy the private beach just a few steps away from the hotel’s doors.

Provence and the French Riviera

marseille france

The Provence region is filled with activities for the European Heritage Days. In Marseille you can exceptionally visit the Fort d’Entrecasteaux , which has been closed to the public since it was built in 1660.

In Nice, in the spirit of the “Sports Heritage” theme, visitors as young as 4 years old will be able to discover “All by Bike!” There will be an impressive collection of the Nice brand URAGO collector’s edition bicycles, a mandala bike animation that allows participants to create a work of art while pedaling, and a bike mission game that allows participants to learn how to repair a bike as well as learn safety practices.

Lastly, in Aix-en-Provence, take an exceptional guided tour around marble. Visitors will be able to see rare antique marbles, Bibémus marble, Aleppo breach and Tholonet marble.

The possibilities are almost limitless when it comes to celebrating the 2023 European Heritage Days in France. Each region puts its cultural gems front and center so that participants can have a deeper understanding of French heritage and culture. French Side Travel offers a whole host of itineraries focused around history and culture including the Provence and French Riviera Discovery Tour , the Highlights of Normandy by Train , and a Classic Tour of the City of Light .

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Seven new sites receive the european heritage label across europe.

The European Commission awarded the label to the sites for playing a significant role in Europe's history, culture, and the development of the Union.

european heritage travel

More than a decade after the European Heritage Label started in 2011, independent experts from across Europe recommended these sites from a pool of sixteen sites that participating EU countries pre-selected.

The following sites received the European Heritage Label in 2023:

  • Cisterscapes – Cistercian Landscapes Connecting Europe (Austria, Czechia, Germany, Poland, Slovenia)
  • Monastery of San Jerónimo de Yuste , Cuacos de Yuste (Spain)
  • Our Lord in the Attic Museum , Amsterdam (the Netherlands)
  • Royal Theatre Toone , Brussels (Belgium)
  • The Kalevala- Living Epic Heritage (Finland)
  • Romanian Athenaeum , Bucharest (Romania)
  • Sant’Anna di Stazzema , Stazzema (Italy)

The award ceremony for the 2023 European Heritage Label sites takes place on 17 April 2024, in Antwerp, Belgium.

Link to the event page.

Link to the Publications Office of the EU.

About the selection process

To earn this award, sites must meet three fundamental criteria:

  • demonstrating European significance
  • effectively communicating their European historic ties and dimension to their audiences 
  • demonstrating the ability to carry out these activities

Labelled sites are also expected to actively engage in networking activities and collaboration projects  through the actions and campaigns coordinated by the EHL BUREAU, the EHL Network Secretariat co-funded under Creative Europe.

The selection process takes place every other year and is open to all EU countries, provided they have expressed their interest. Based on the recommendations of the European Panel of independent experts, the European Commission awards the European Heritage Label to a maximum of one site per participating country per year. 

Sites that receive the label are subject to periodic monitoring to make sure that they maintain the criteria for which they were selected.

About the European Heritage Label action

The European Heritage Label serves the purpose of enriching people’s understanding and appreciation of the diverse heritage that EU countries share. 

The European Heritage Label has also demonstrated its relevance in fostering intercultural dialogue and nurturing a sense of belonging to the European Union, with a special focus on young individuals. 

This action contributes significantly to bolstering local cultural tourism, sustainable economic benefits, and community building throughout Europe.

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World Wild Schooling

World Wild Schooling

Discover 12 European Cities With a Rich Cultural Heritage

Posted: March 20, 2024 | Last updated: March 20, 2024

<p>For culture vultures from all over the world, there’s nowhere like Europe. The cities here are packed with historic sites, reflecting the continent’s rich and diverse cultural heritage. Whether you’d prefer a seaside spot, an abundance of art galleries, classical music concerts, or ancient relics, here are 12 of Europe’s most culturally rich destinations. </p>

For culture vultures from all over the world, there’s nowhere like Europe. The cities here are packed with historic sites, reflecting the continent’s rich and diverse cultural heritage. Whether you’d prefer a seaside spot, an abundance of art galleries, classical music concerts, or ancient relics, here are 12 of Europe’s most culturally rich destinations. 

<p><a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/athens/">Athens</a> can sadly be bypassed by those flocking to the <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/best-greek-islands-for-beaches/">Greek Islands</a> on vacation, but it doesn’t deserve such a fate. The city was once at the heart of ancient Greek civilization, and many remnants of those days remain. Head to the hilltop Acropolis and its museum first to truly understand why this destination is so important – on a global and historical scale.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read more: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/day-trips-from-athens/">Amazing Day Trips From Athens</a></p>

Athens, Greece

Whether you’re planning a city break or a spot of Greek island hopping, don’t miss the chance to visit Athens . The mighty Acropolis complex dominates the city, reflecting the importance of ancient Greek culture and civilization. You can also see more remnants from those times at the National Archaeological Museum.

Read also: European Cities With Rich Architecture

<p>Rome offers an entire checklist of iconic sights, including the Spanish Steps, the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain and the awe-inspiring Colosseum. Pay Rome a visit, and you can also explore the city’s vibrant foodie and street art scenes and stroll along the banks of the Tiber. Rome is also home to the Vatican City, the international headquarters of the Catholic Church – and technically a separate country.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/must-visit-european-cities/">Must-Visit Cities in Europe</a></p>

Rome, Italy

Rome offers an entire checklist of iconic sights, including the Spanish Steps, the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain and the awe-inspiring Colosseum. Pay Rome a visit, and you can also explore the city’s vibrant foodie and street art scenes and stroll along the banks of the Tiber. Rome is also home to the Vatican City, the international headquarters of the Catholic Church – and technically a separate country.

Read also: Must-Visit Cities in Europe

<p>The symbol of <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/things-to-do-in-paris/">Paris</a>, this tower by the Seine is named for its engineer, Gustave Eiffel. It’s a popular place for marriage proposals, particularly on the top floor. The distinctive wrought-iron tower is also the tallest building in the city and thus offers breathtaking panoramas over the French capital.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/things-to-do-in-paris/">Unmissable Things To Do in Paris</a></p>

Paris, France

From springtime in Paris to a romantic winter break, no one can surely claim to be well-traveled until they’ve spent time in the French capital. Must-sees include the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Louvre art gallery, and the Eiffel Tower, arguably the city’s symbol. Simply strolling the streets, dipping into shops and cafes en route, is also a lovely pastime in the City of Lights.

Read also: Romantic Getaways in Europe

<p>London is home to diverse architectural styles that coexist side by side. From Regency townhouses to brutalist high-rises and contemporary designs, London blends new, old, and everything in-between. Some iconic spots to savor in London include The Gherkin, The Shard, Big Ben, Tower Bridge, the Houses of Parliament, and St Pancras Station. </p><p>The Westminster Abbey, the coronation location of over 40 monarchs since 1066, is a magnificent must-see.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/iconic-places/">Iconic Places Around the World</a></p>

London is another must when it comes to cultural heritage and history. Many of the city’s sights center on the British monarchy, and majestic palaces are everywhere. London also offers glorious parks, Theatreland, unparalleled shopping, the River Thames, and different districts to discover. 

Read also: Cities in Europe for Solo Traveling

<p>The Spanish capital can be overlooked in favor of Barcelona, but the city offers an incredible array of architecture and artistic heritage. Madrid is also characterized by graceful boulevards and stately parks. You can step into military history here, at the city’s Royal Palace and Armory, and don’t miss the Prado Museum’s collection of European art. </p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/european-cities-for-spring/">Top Cities in Europe for Spring</a></p>

Madrid, Spain

The Spanish capital can be overlooked in favor of Barcelona, but the city offers an incredible array of architecture and artistic heritage. Madrid is also characterized by graceful boulevards and stately parks. You can step into military history here, at the city’s Royal Palace and Armory, and don’t miss the Prado Museum’s collection of European art. 

Read also: Top Cities in Europe for Spring

<p>Amsterdam is known for its delightful canals and beautiful and lively streets. Tall historic houses standing beside tulip-lined streets offer an aesthetic paradise. With bikes serving as a preferred mode of transport, Amsterdam is the perfect place for a cycle tour and vlogging. Additionally, Amsterdam is a cultural hotspot with fantastic art museums if you’re looking for artistic inspiration. You can enjoy a Rembrandt masterpiece at the Rijksmuseum, explore Van Gogh’s impressionist paintings in his gallery in the city center or go on a day trip to <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/keukenhof/">Keukenhof</a> in spring.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/keukenhof/">Keukenhof, the Garden of Europe</a></p>

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Characterized by slender, gabled homes lining the many canals, Amsterdam is a cinch to explore by boat, bike, or foot. Many sights hark back to the Golden Age of the 17th century, and the city is also famous for its seedier side. Don’t miss the Rijksmuseum, the Stedelijk, or the Van Gogh Museum for a cultural overdose.

Read also: Hidden Gems in Europe

<p>Yes, the beer is cheap, but there are far more reasons to visit Prague than that. Also known as the City of a Hundred Spires, Prague offers an abundance of ancient architecture. Key sights include the 1402 Charles Bridge over the Vltava River, the baroque buildings of Old Town Square, and the Astronomical Clock, which dates back to medieval days. Though more expensive than it once was, the city remains remarkably affordable compared to other European hotspots.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/european-cities-for-spring/">Excellent Spring Destinations in Europe</a></p>

Prague, Czech Republic

Prague offers an incomparable theater scene, as well as its enchanting medieval center. While you cannot miss sites like Charles Bridge and Old Town Square while visiting the City of a Hundred Spires, there’s Baroque architecture, pretty gardens, and the Vltava River. Mozart once lived here, and classical music concerts are a key feature of city life. 

Read also: Must-Visit Cities in the World

<p>Widely credited as the birthplace of the Renaissance, Florence has many elegant cathedrals, palaces, and museums to see. From the breathtaking Florence Cathedral (Duomo), Palazzo Vecchio, Uffizi Gallery, Strozzi Palace, Ponte Vecchio, and The Brancacci Chapel, Florence is the perfect destination for architectural marvels. </p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/small-towns-in-europe/">Most Charming European Towns</a></p>

Florence, Italy

In the heart of Tuscany, Florence is one of the world’s most artistic cities. People flock here in their millions to see the city’s vast collection of Renaissance art and architecture. The Duomo, the Galleria dell’Accademia, and the Uffizi Gallery are not to be missed. If you can, take a trip into the Tuscan countryside to see another aspect of Italian life.

Read also: Impressive Cities in the World

<p>Tram 28 was initially designed as public transport for locals to travel from central Baixa all the way back in 1914. However, tramlines slowly began to disappear with the construction of the city’s underground metro. Yet, it has become a tourist hotspot as the long lines follow some of the most popular places in the city.</p><ul> <li>Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/spain-and-portugal-itinerary-14-days/">2-Week Itinerary in Spain & Portugal</a></li> </ul>

Lisbon, Portugal

Portugal is often bypassed in favor of neighboring Spain, France, or other cultural hotspots, but it is the second-oldest European capital after Athens. The coastal location is a real plus, making including a beach day on your itinerary easy. Colorful buildings and ceramic tiles are also among the city’s most photogenic features. 

Read also: Most Beautiful Cities in Europe

<p>Green fields stretching for miles make Edinburgh one of the most dazzling places to visit. Whether you venture to the massive rustic Edinburgh Castle, explore the extinct volcano, or even enjoy the expansive view from the highest point of Arthur’s Seat, you’ll have the best time here. With gothic buildings and tons of greenery, it’s one of the top locations for some fresh oxygen.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/european-destinations-for-a-romantic-getaway/">Romantic European Destinations</a></p>

Edinburgh, Scotland

The gorgeous honey-toned architecture of Edinburgh defines the city, from the sweeping New Town Georgian terraces to the soot-blackened streets of the Royal Mile. Keeping watch over it all is Edinburgh Castle, with Arthur’s Seat beyond. Cultural delights and historic monuments are around every corner in the beautiful Scottish capital, including some of the UK’s finest galleries and museums. 

Read also: Underrated Cities in Europe

<p>Vienna is a treasure trove for Art Nouveau, Baroque, and contemporary architecture. If these are your things, you’ll be thrilled by landmarks like Schönbrunn Palace, Belvedere Palace, St. Stephen’s Cathedral, St Rupert, and the Augustinian church, which dates back to the 14th century.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/european-cities-for-solo-travelers/">Best European Destinations for Solo Travel</a></p>

Vienna, Austria

Oh, Vienna, as Midge Ure sang on the Ultravox single of the same name back in 1981. In fact, the Austrian capital has an impressive musical heritage, boasting both Beethoven and Mozart as former residents. The city also offers the MuseumsQuartier district, Schönbrunn Palace, and a magnificent setting by the River Danube. You can also sample a slice of Sachertorte at Café Sacher Wien.

Read also: Top Europe City Breaks

<p>It might be a relative newcomer to the cultural scene, but Bilbao packs a powerful punch when it comes to art and architecture. In addition to visiting sites like the iconic riverside Guggenheim Museum, the Old Town, and the Bilbao Art District, you can also venture beyond the city limits to discover the traditional fishing villages and rolling green hills of the Basque Country.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/fairytale-towns-in-europe/">European Fairytale Towns</a></p>

Bilbao, Spain

It might be a relative newcomer to the cultural scene, but Bilbao packs a powerful punch when it comes to art and architecture. In addition to visiting sites like the iconic riverside Guggenheim Museum, the Old Town, and the Bilbao Art District, you can also venture beyond the city limits to discover the traditional fishing villages and rolling green hills of the Basque Country.

Read also: European Fairytale Towns

<p>This Kefalonia town is a flower-filled Greek delight. It’s enclosed by the azure waters of the Mediterranean on three sides and features a pretty pebble beach. Dipping into the local tavernas for a drink or to enjoy <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/best-traditional-greek-foods-to-try-in-greece/">delicious Greek food</a> is de rigueur, and Venetian-built Assos Castle is also well worth a look. It is also one of the most <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/landmarks-in-greece/">famous landmarks of Greece</a>.</p><p>Read also:</p><ul> <li><a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/best-greek-islands-for-beaches/">Best Greek Islands for Beaches Ranked</a></li> <li><a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/best-time-to-visit-greece-travel-tips-from-a-local/">Best Time to Visit Greece</a></li> <li><a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/day-trips-from-athens/">Best Day Trips from Athens</a></li> </ul>

Stunning Small Towns in Europe to Visit in Your Lifetime

Add these  charming European small towns  to your bucket list.

  • Read more:  Small Towns in Europe

<p>While the Portuguese capital is popular, it doesn’t have visitor numbers as high as European cities like Paris, <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/best-things-to-do-in-rome/">Rome</a>, or <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/barcelona-with-kids/">Barcelona</a>. Head to hilly Lisbon by the sea for pastel-painted buildings, historic structures like majestic São Jorge Castle, and a museum packed with ceramic tiles. You’ll also find beautiful beaches outside the city, making them ideal day trip destinations.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read more: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/things-to-do-in-lisbon/">Best Things To Do in Lisbon</a></p>

Must-Visit European Cities for Your Bucket List

Turn your wanderlust into reality with our list of  must-visit European cities .

  • Read more:  Must-Visit Cities in Europe

<p>Another of Italy’s best-kept secrets is Sirmione. This 13th-century fortress town sits by Lake Garda and is blessed by natural spa waters. It also boasts a magnificent castle, and wandering through the twisting, narrow lanes of the town is a pleasing pastime. </p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/underrated-places-in-the-mediterranean/">Underrated Places in the Mediterranean</a></p>

Hidden European Gems

Explore  off-the-beaten-path gems in Europe  for a truly authentic experience.

  • Read more:  Hidden Gems in Europe

<p>If you’re seeking cheap breaks, Eastern European cities offer some of the best bargains on the planet! Whether Spain, Greece, and Turkey appeal more, or you’d prefer to head to Bulgaria, Serbia, or Romania, here are the top places to expect to pay low prices. </p>

Best Budget-Friendly European Cities

Stretch your travel budget in these  cost-effective European cities .

  • Read more:  Budget-Friendly European Cities

<p>The charms of <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/europe/france/">France</a> are no secret, but you might not know that you can visit the country visa-free as an American. France is home to pristine beaches, freshly baked bread, and several historic buildings that are great for foreigners from abroad. Several vibrant orchards are waiting to be explored in Northern France.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/european-destinations-for-a-romantic-getaway/">Romantic European Destinations</a></p>

European Cities for a Spring Getaway

Make your spring unforgettable with these  European city trips .

  • Read more:  12 Top Cities in Europe for Spring

<p>Colmar in the Alsace region resembles a village pulled from a dreamy fairy tale with its well-preserved medieval architecture, colorful half-timbered houses, wooden floral boxes, and flower-lined canals. This small town full of Alsatian allure is perfect for any history and art lover who would love to look deeper into medieval architecture, museums, and cultural landmarks. While Colmar already has more than enough for tourists to indulge in, do not miss the boat rides in the “Petite Venise” canals.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/must-visit-european-cities/">Must-Visit European Cities</a></p>

Small Towns Across the Globe That Are Straight Out of a Fairy Tale

Step into a world of  beautiful small towns  where cobblestone streets lead to timeless wonders.

  • Read more:  Small Towns Out of a Fairy Tale

<p>Get off the beaten path by taking a trip to the Bay of Kotor in Montenegro. Lovely villages and small towns, seemingly untouched by time, await. The bay by the Adriatic Sea is a UNESCO-listed area and is steeped in maritime heritage.</p><p class="has-text-align-center has-medium-font-size">Read also: <a href="https://worldwildschooling.com/underrated-places-in-the-mediterranean/">Underrated Places in the Mediterranean</a></p>

Unique Places for Your European Bucket List

Make your travel dreams come true with these wonderfully  unique places in Europe .

  • Read more:  Unique Places for Your European Bucket List

Read the original thread on  Discover 12 European Cities With a Rich Cultural Heritage .

This article was produced and syndicated by  World Wild Schooling .

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Historical Homes Category trends in Europe as heritage travel is on the rise

Key Takeaways

  • Cultural tourism is one of the fastest growing segments, accounting for 40% of all tourism worldwide, according to UNESCO.
  • Airbnb launches Historical Homes Category to make it easier to find homes that offer an authentic cultural, historical stay.
  • Yorkshire Dales in the UK, Guadalajara in Spain and Verbania in Italy are three of the trending destinations in Europe for historical homes bookings.

european heritage travel

Airbnb is sharing data that reveals a growing demand for heritage-related travel. In the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy figures shared by Airbnb indicate that bookings for historical homes increased by over 54 percent in 2021 compared to 2019 1 .

To accommodate this growing demand, Airbnb has launched a new Historical Homes category, making it easier for guests to discover almost 20,000 heritage homes in these five countries across Europe – from converted chapels in the UK to centuries-old castles in Germany. To date, the Historical Homes category, offering unique listings of historical significance from the 19th century or earlier, is available in the UK, Germany, France, Italy and Spain with more countries available soon.

As Europe struggles with the cost of living crisis, becoming a Host on Airbnb can help make ends meet. In the UK, for example, typical Host earnings for Hosts listing Historical Homes was almost £10,000 in 2021 compared to just over £6,000 for regular Hosts 2 . This is equivalent to over three months’ additional pay for the median UK household, just by renting an Historic Home on Airbnb.

“The introduction of the Historical Homes Category is a great driver of travel to heritage homes and it’s a powerful way to encourage people to travel to places they wouldn’t normally visit. We’re delighted to collaborate with Airbnb and welcome this growing appreciation for heritage buildings we’re witnessing across the continent.” Alfonso Pallavicini, President of the EHHA

To help owners of historic homes benefit from this growing demand for heritage tourism, Airbnb has launched its Heritage Academy currently available in France , Italy and Spain , giving prospective Hosts a dedicated toolkit and a personal Host ambassador to offer bespoke training and advice on how to become a Historical Homes Host.

“The new Historical Homes Category on Airbnb will not only allow travelers from all over the world to discover the richness of European cultural heritage, it also opens up previously overlooked destinations and helps disperse tourism and its economic benefits in a more equitable way. With the Airbnb Heritage Academy, we aim to provide historic homeowners with everything they might need to thrive as advocates and entrepreneurs of heritage tourism.” Emmanuel Marill, Airbnb Regional Director, EMEA.

From as far North as Dumfries and Galloway in Scotland to the Etruscan coastline of Italy, Hosts of Historical Homes are welcoming guests. Among the top trending destinations for stays in historical homes in 2022 are:

  • Stratford-on-Avon (UK)
  • Verbania (Italy)
  • Guadalajara (Spain)
  • Niederbayern (Germany)
  • Lanzarote (Spain)
  • Dumfries and Galloway (UK)
  • Etruscan Coast (Italy)
  • Fränkisches Seenland (Germany)

And here is a selection of some of the most wish-listed historical homes across Europe:

Stay in a Former Abbey at Loch Ness (Fort Augustus, United Kingdom)

european heritage travel

Villa Front Lake (Blevio, Italy)

european heritage travel

Beautiful 17th Century Farmhouse (Vilanant, Spain)

european heritage travel

Old Village Church (Unterkünfte, Germany)

european heritage travel

 “I have been welcoming travelers to my converted 17th century barn for about fifteen years, and on Airbnb for more than five years. Being a Host on the platform allows me to carry out the necessary maintenance works associated with a heritage home. It has also allowed me to meet so many interesting people, most of whom are just as sentimental as I am about charming old buildings and the preservation of our cultural heritage.” John, Host of a converted barn in Dorset.

About the Airbnb Heritage Academy

Airbnb’s Heritage Academy is currently being offered in France , Spain and Italy . Individuals and organizations residing in these countries can take part in our Host webinars, receive a dedicated host toolkit and be connected with an Airbnb Host Ambassador to receive individual assistance.

About the European Historic Houses Association

European Historic Houses is a non-profit organization representing the owners of private historic buildings, their gardens, and their parks. In consultation with European institutions and based in Brussels, the organization gathers together 27 national associations of private historic houses from European countries and has more than 55,000 historic buildings in its portfolio.

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The Kremlin and Red Square in Moscow, Russia

The Kremlin and Red Square were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1990.

Russian secrets? Here’s the ultimate Moscow itinerary

Tour architectural wonders, discover Soviet history, and savor local flavors in this gold-domed city.

Moscow is a city where the past and the future live side by side. Here you will find everything from medieval fortresses and Soviet monoliths to glass skyscrapers and innovation centers. Moscow’s spirit mirrors its uncontainable size. Muscovites, the city’s approximately 12 million residents, are always on the run, so be prepared to keep pace with their energy. Here’s how to make the most of three days in Moscow .

Day 1: Mosaics and metro stations

9 a.m. Navigate the labyrinth of the Moscow metro , a living, breathing work of art crisscrossing the metropolis. Expect marble arches and pillars, gilded mosaics, and sparkling chandeliers. Each station is unique. Some of the most beautiful stations are Kievskaya and Prospekt Mira (brown line); Mayakovskaya (dark green line); and Ploschad Revolutsii , Arbatskaya and Elektrozavodskaya (dark blue line). Getting lost on the metro is a rite of passage. However, ahead of the 2018 World Cup, most trains introduced route maps and announcements in English to make navigation easier for outsiders.

Three stations take you to Red Square, but Ploschad Revolutsii is ideal. Its platforms have numerous bronze statues of soldiers with their dogs. Locals often stop by to rub the dogs’ noses as they make a wish. ( See pictures of Moscow’s surprisingly elegant subway stations. )

Related: 25 of Russia’s Natural and Cultural Treasures

Kizhi Pogost

9:45 a.m. Head to the iconic Red Square to see the red-bricked towers and the eastern wall of the Moscow Kremlin, Vladimir Lenin’s mausoleum, the State Historical Museum , and the psychedelically colorful domes of the St. Basil’s Cathedral . Queue early outside Lenin’s mausoleum for a spooky date with the man behind the Russian Revolution, who has rested in this tomb, preserved in chemicals, for almost 100 years .

The postcard-perfect St. Basil’s Cathedral was built in the 16th century to commemorate Tsar Ivan the Terrible’s victory over the Khanate of Kazan and the transformation of Moscow into a major center of power. Drop in for a quick visit or keep walking south towards the Moskva River and the Bolshoi Moskvaretskii Bridge for spectacular views of the Kremlin and the Red Square.

a woman in the rain in central Moscow, Russia

Another structure that will catch your eye is the golden-domed Cathedral of Christ the Savior , just southwest of the Kremlin. Unlike St. Basil’s, this Cathedral did not survive the communist persecution of religion. The original was destroyed in 1931 and the area was converted to an open-air swimming pool, the largest in the world. The fall of communism brought with it religious freedom and the Cathedral was rebuilt in the 1990s. If you turn around, you will see one of the “Seven Sisters,” the Stalinist monoliths that command Moscow’s skyline .

11:45 a.m. Head back towards the Red Square for a shopping trip at GUM (pronounced goom ), the largest department store in Russia. Much like Russia, the store has undergone many changes. Built in imperial times as a massive trading center, GUM’s Soviet-era badge of honor was being relatively better stocked than other stores. Today, it’s a glittering mall that houses Hermès and Louis Vuitton. Even if you don’t shop, the long, arched galleries and concave glass roof make it an architectural delight. Next, make your way to the third floor for Stolovaya No. 57 (Canteen No. 57), a Soviet-style restaurant with local dishes and a laid-back vibe. Try the syrniki (roughly translated as cheesecakes), buckwheat with mushroom sauce, or meat cutlets.

2 p.m. The Moscow Kremlin , the seat of the Russian Government, was built in the 15th century and houses cathedrals, museums, and unique objects from imperial Russia. Start with the Armory Chamber , a treasure trove of Fabergé eggs, imperial dresses, and gifts presented to the Tsars. Don’t miss the Diamond Fund inside the Armory where guests can marvel at the crown of Tsarina Catherine the Great.

the inside of Marinsky Theater during a ballet in Moscow, Russia

The Bolshoi Theatre hosts ballet and opera performances, including classics like Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake.

Take a stroll around Cathedral Square to admire the golden domes that mushroom from Orthodox cathedrals. Look out for the 19-foot-high bronze Tsar Bell for great photo ops. The nearby Tsar Cannon is also worth a look. Wrap up in the Kremlin Garden and see if you can spot Cosmos, the lone oak tree that was planted by Yuri Gagarin, the first man in space, two days after his extraordinary flight in April 1961 . ( Trees that traveled to space now live on Earth. Here’s where to find them. )

7 p.m. Finish your day with a ballet or opera performance at Bolshoi Theatre , one of the strongholds of Russian theatrical excellence since the 19th century. If you are lucky, you might be able to catch Tchaikovsky’s masterpiece Swan Lake on the stage where it premiered in 1877. Performances sell out so book in advance, and arrive early to enjoy the neoclassical building. Russians take theater seriously so wear your best outfit.

Day 2: Fine art and food

10 a.m. The extraordinary entrance to Tretyakov Gallery welcomes guests to Moscow’s most definitive collection of fine arts spanning almost a millennium. You can explore 12th-century icons and mosaics or get lost in the brushstrokes of 19th- and 20th-century Russian heavyweights such as Ivan Shishkin and Ilya Repin. The New Tretyakov wing showcases artists from the Soviet period.

1 p.m. Soak up some summer sun in one of Moscow’s most dynamic open spaces: Park Gorky , a hipster paradise that underwent a major makeover from a Soviet relic to the center of cultural life. Grab some food on the go or sit down for a meal at Grill Bar Zharovnya or La Boule . Wander through the open-air sculpture museum, Muzeon , the home of countless statues and symbols from the Soviet times. Muzeon runs next to the Moscow River and offers a great view of the almost 322-foot-high statue of Tsar Peter the Great.

7 p.m. One place you must dine in Moscow is White Rabbit . The restaurant, which has been featured among the top 50 in the world, owes its success to chef Vladimir Mukhin, whose culinary prowess was featured on Netflix’s Chef’s Table . White Rabbit serves Russian food with innovative twists; think sea urchin caviar and beetroot hummus. Quite fittingly, there is also rabbit on the menu. Did we mention the restaurant’s glass dome offers spectacular views of Moscow City?

Day 3: Markets and museums

10 a.m. If the Moscow Kremlin is stately, then the colorful Izmailovo Kremlin cultural center has a bit of a Disneyland feel to it. Built in 2007, Izmailovo is a great place for a stroll before bargain-hunting at Vernisazh , a flea market with stalls selling Cold War memorabilia. You will find stamps, banknotes, pins, propaganda posters, and even steel mugs from Soviet times. Score great deals on matryoshkas , Russian nesting dolls; khokhloma , hand-painted wooden handicrafts; and Baltic amber jewelry. Don’t miss contemporary twists on traditional Russian gifts, such as nesting dolls of modern politicians and music boxes shaped like Orthodox cathedrals. For a market of its popularity, Vernisazh prices are a steal and you can haggle without hesitation. Saturdays and Sundays are the best days to visit.

Russian nesting dolls in Moscow, Russia

Russian nesting dolls make the perfect souvenir, and are sold throughout Moscow, including at the Vernisazh flea market.

1 p.m. By now, you have probably got the sense that there is more to see in Moscow than time to see it. So pick what you crave most. Want more of Orthodox churches? Head to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Novodevichy Convent , which was once used by the women of the Tsar’s family. Still looking for souvenirs and gifts? Make your way to Stari Arbat (Old Arbat), a historical cobblestone street of shops and restaurants. Want to delve deeper into Russian history? Visit the State Historical Museum on the Red Square. A Cold War buff? The Bunker 42 Museum located 18 floors below Taganskaya metro was a strategic command center and an anti-nuclear shelter. A fan of Russian literature? Check out the Gogol House and the Bulgakov Museum . Want another serving of art? Try the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts or the Garage Museum .

8 p.m. End your stay in Moscow with a nice meal. Café Pushkin offers antique interiors, delicious Russian dishes, and five-star service. Even if you don’t eat here, grab a cup of the Pushkin chai, a signature Earl Grey blend with citrusy overtones. For casual fare, go to Varenichnaya (multiple locations), which has an extensive menu of Russian dishes and decor straight out of a Soviet poster. Mari Vanna (multiple locations) is another choice Russian chain.

Moscow is also a great place to try the food from other Soviet states. Head to Khachapuri to try the namesake khachapuri , Georgian stuffed-cheese bread. For authentic Uzbek plov , make a reservation at Uzbekistan . Want to keep enjoying the outdoors? Bar Strelka is a trendy spot with great views, excellent food, and a dance floor to keep the night going .

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15 reasons you must visit Moscow

Home / Russia Travel Experiences / 15 reasons you must visit Moscow

Home to almost over 12 million souls, Moscow is many things to many people, and everyone finds their own reasons to visit Moscow. There is an infinite number of reasons to visit Moscow and its attractions. To make it easier for travellers, we created a list of the crowd’s top fifteen reasons and attractions everyone should visit when in Moscow.

Table of Contents

1. Indulge in countless historical and modern artworks

Whether you are just dipping your toes into the art world or you know everything about arts, Moscow is a must-visit for every self-proclaimed or certified art connoisseur and historian. The city has numerous historical and contemporary museums and art galleries and they are essential in the list when you visit Moscow. Among the plethora of galleries and museums is The State Tretyakov Gallery  holding the world’s foremost collection of Russian fine art. Another is the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts which showcases artworks from the ancient times to this day such as the paintings of Rembrandt, Botticelli, Van Gogh, and Picasso. The Moscow Museum of Modern Art , on the other hand, displays artworks created in the 20th and 21st centuries.

Moscow tours Russia

Moscow is not only home to famous historical paintings, the city also showcases modern, educational, and multimedia arts. The Moscow Planetarium is one of the biggest planetariums in the world. It is an interactive museum that educates everyone with their scientific resources. The openness of Russia to new forms of arts can be seen in the Multimedia Art Museum, Winzavod (Wine Factory), Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Lumiere Brothers Photography Center . These art galleries unite all forms of media, arts, and modern culture.

For the love of art, moreover, they have converted former industrial areas to unique art spaces. ARTPLAY Center of Design and Flacon Design Factory are two of the known art spaces for local organisations and artists to express their creativity, host their own workshops, lectures, design festivals, concerts, performances, and exhibits. 

TIP: Open Museum Day in Moscow offers free day-time admission in most city museums every third Sunday of the month. Forty museums and art galleries are participating including the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics , and State Museum of Ceramics and Kuskovo Estate of the 18th Century.

If you’re craving for more museum adventures, we have created a list of the best museum to visit in Moscow and St. Petersburg.

2. Step onto the mighty Red Square

Walk onto the uneven cobblestones alongside the throngs of bustling citizens and you’ll see centuries of Russian (and world) history reflected in the architecture of Red Square. It is the epicentre of Russia. The country’s major highways and Moscow’s main streets all originate from the Red Square. However, it is not only the heart of Russian streets but is also the heart of Russian history and culture where most of the biggest Russian events and changes unfolded such as high-profile executions and military parades. The city square also served as the main marketplace and site for national public ceremonies and festive processions. Being considered as a sacred place, it is absolutely a must-see when you visit Moscow.

Moscow tour Red Square Russia

Official commemorations and parades today are still mostly held in the square. The surrounding buildings of the Red Square also add great significance to why you should include the beautiful square on your bucket list when you visit Moscow. Some of these famous attractions are iconic:

  • St. Basil’s Cathedral
  • Lenin’s Mausoleum
  • The Kremlin
  • Kazan Cathedral
  • The historical GUM Department Store
  • State Historical Museum
  • The Iberian Gate (also known as the Resurrection Gate and Chapel

3. Visit the Moscow Kremlin

The Kremlin , together with Red Square was recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1990. UNESCO included this architectural ensemble not just because of its outstanding design but also because of its rich historical and political linkage. That is why you should not miss this when you visit Moscow. It is located on Borovitsky Hill just above the Moskva River, on the west side of the magnificent Red Square. It serves as the Russian President’s residence and treasure houses such as the Armory Chamber Museum and the Russian Diamond Fund . Two Royal Cathedrals, the Secret Garden, and Ivan the Great Bell Tower are some of the attractions you can visit inside the Kremlin. Also, along the Kremlin wall is where you can see the gravestones of most Soviet leaders -including Stalin’s.

Moscow tour Russia

TIP: The Kremlin is open every day except on Thursdays and tickets for each establishment inside the Kremlin are sold separately. They also limit the number of daily visitors. May to September of every year is considered as the peak season.

4. Awaken your senses in the Bolshoi theatre

The Bolshoi Ballet Company is one of the most enduring symbols of Russia’s esteemed cultural traditions, and Moscow’s Bolshoi (Big) Theatre is the association’s fittingly elegant headquarters. Moscow’s oldest theatre has been painstakingly restored and renovated in recent years. It is a must-see day or night with their world-famous opera and ballet performances when you visit Moscow. Taking in an evening performance of a classic Russian ballet like Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker is one of the city’s most captivating cultural experiences.

Moscow tour Russia

Aside from the Bolshoi Theatre, there are around 170 theatres in the city; each of which features unique performances. It is the sole reason why Moscow is coined as the “City of Theatres”.  No matter what genre, as long as it is in Moscow it will be surreal.  No wonder the city attracts all theatregoers around the globe. To name a few, here are the must-visit theatres around the city: (1) Maly Theatre which showcases classic traditions of Russian Theatre, (2) Moscow Art Theatre combines classical and modern drama traditions, and (4) Theatre of Nations and (5) Gogol Centre further popularized modern arts such as post-drama and comedy production.

Russian ballet

TIP: Most people have been planning to witness a performance (especially in Bolshoi Theatre) for years. Remember to check and purchase tickets ahead of time before getting excited to watch the spectacular performance. Also, wearing your best evening dress won’t hurt.

5. Enjoy the ambiance of Moscow parks

While Moscow’s attractions are usually known as a mixture of extravagant Tsarist architecture and stern Soviet buildings, much of Moscow is actually surprisingly green and the city’s parks have grown into its pride and joy over the years. Take a break from walking around historical establishments and rest in these well-groomed green areas. These parks provide some of Moscow’s best people-watching spots and offer various activities you can do with your group or with the locals from playing sports and board games on the pavement to simply enjoying the outdoor cafes.

St Petersburg tour Russia

Slow down from the hectic pace of the city life by having a stop-over in the most popular green spaces when you visit Moscow. Gorky Park has its own telegraph and clinic, Park of Arts Museum often hosts music festivals, art fairs and exhibits, and lastly, Sokolniki Park and Izmailovsky Park have bike rentals and small amusement parks that are perfect for family day-outs.

6. Experience the magnificent Moscow Metro

Apart from being an extremely handy way to get around the city,  Moscow’s metro system  is a striking feat of engineering. Opened in 1935, it is one of the largest and oldest underground railway systems in the world. Its grand stations are remarkably beautiful. With their grandiose architecture, intricate mosaics, and dramatic sculptures, it has turned many metro stations into picturesque tourist attractions. There are 12 lines and a total of 200 stations. Elektrozavodskaya, Arbatskaya, Kievskaya, Komsomolskaya, and Mayakovskaya are just a few of the magical stations that seems to be like an underground palace.

Moscow tour Russia

Visit Moscow grand stations during “dead hours” —11 am to 2 pm or after 10 pm in order get the most out of the spectacular metro stations. And for the sake of courtesy and respect, always give your seat to Babushkas or the beautiful Russian grannies on the train. Train tickets can be shared and you can buy them for 1, 2, 20, 40, and 60 trips. Unlimited Metro travel for 1, 3, and 7 full days are also available from 210 to 800 rubles. Alternatively, you can purchase a Troika Card which costs 50 rubles and allows you to travel on all public transportation in Moscow.

7. Be amazed by the beauty & grace of Moscow’s churches

In Moscow, the majority of religion belongs to the Russian Orthodox Church which has 320 of total parishes in Moscow alone. Thus, it is not surprising that Orthodox churches and its unique architecture are one of the must-sees when you visit Moscow. Onion domes had long been known as the classic design of Orthodox churches in Russia. Below, we will mention some of the iconic churches you shouldn’t miss seeing in the city.

Moscow tour Russia

The Cathedral of Vasily the Blessed or St. Basil Cathedral is perhaps the most popular and most unusual church in the country. It is located at the Southern end of the Red Square. Built in 1555, it is originally called the Intercession Cathedral  to commemorate Ivan the Terrible’s victory over the Tatars. The bonfire-flame-shaped-cathedral has nine towers full of colours, shapes, and patterns. It was designed like a maze as a whole while each way leads to nine chapels with creatively decorated interiors. The magnificent cathedral is open every day except for the first Wednesday of every month.

With its golden onion domes, the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour  is the largest cathedral of all Russian Orthodox Church and has the capacity of over a thousand devotees. However, there is another known cathedral with golden domes —the Cathedral of the Assumption. What makes this cathedral different is that its domes are not just gold, but  they  are also light-reflecting sitting inside the Kremlin. Lastly, we would like to feature a church with neo-gothic architecture –the Moscow Immaculate Conception Catholic Cathedral.  It  is the largest Catholic building in the country. To this day, masses and Catholic religious services are still being conducted in different languages in the cathedral.

8. Visit Moscow streets and the monumental architecture

The beautiful architecture of museums and churches, makes each city street a sight to behold. For sure you’ll have a jaw-dropping moment at least once when you visit Moscow. The streets around the Red Square are a good start for you to stroll and have them as background for your OOTD photos. 

Russia tours Moscow

Tverskaya Stree t is known as Moscow’s fashion street and main street. This street is also one of the most expensive streets in the world, basing from the commercial rental fees. Another fashion district, Kuznetsky Most (literally translates to Blacksmith’s bridge)is where popular shops such as “Kuznetsky Most 20” – a famous concept store and “House of Foreign Books” (which is the best foreign-language bookshop) are located. Ulitsa Varvaka claims to be the oldest street and has the most churches in the city; it also shows the more medieval side of Moscow. If you are looking for high-end souvenirs, take a look at the shops on Arbat Street . Just do not forget to negotiate with the vendors and ask for discounts! Also, you get a chance to taste local vodkas as they offer free samples on the street.

9. Enjoy Moscow street food and fine dining restaurants

Moscow can surprise even the most demanding gourmands with the variety of foods , flavours and dining scenes the city has to offer. Russian cuisine is famous for exotic soups and rustic, hearty dishes like pelmeni (meat dumplings), pancakes with different fillings, and last but not the least, caviar. Sweets are also a big thing in the Russian kitchen and they are incomparable with other confectioneries that can be bought outside the country. “RotFront” soya bars , Chak-Chak Sticks and Kozinaki are just a few of the most popular sweet snacks in Moscow.

Russian food

Great food is everywhere, 24 hours a day in the city. Yar , one of the oldest restaurants in Russia has been serving local Russian cuisines for nearly a century now in Moscow. Another restaurant, Praga , which opened 150 years ago is known for its European and Russian dishes in addition to their pastry shop on the ground floor. Cafe Pushkin , a three-storey restaurant is open 24 hours a day. Each floor has its own menu and theme: the Pharmacy, Library, and the Fireplace Room. The Library floor is said to have the best view of the Tverskoy Boulevard during breakfast. However, if you want to time travel, find the secret door of Mari Vanna and experience what it is like to live in a Soviet home 50 years ago. Watch old Soviet channels and look through old bookcases and photos while having traditional Russian stews and pies. And oh, do not forget to book for tables!

Russian Food Guide Moscow Restaurants

But there’s so much more to Moscow’s modern gastronomic landscape. From sophisticated new takes on old-school cooking to cosmopolitan eateries offering refined cuisine from around the world, Moscow is also boasting with street foods. Chebureki or cheburechnaya, as what some cafes call them, are fried triangle-shaped thin dough stuffed with minced meat and spices. On the other hand, Blini is a better option for those who have a sweet tooth. They are crepes that can be filled with, cheese, jam, honey, ham, condensed milk, or red caviar. Today, Blini are famously made and sold in Teremok — a popular fast-food chain. Another fast-food chain has popularised a Russian local snack: Kroshka-Kartoshka . Although the name translates to “tiny potato”, they serve enormous baked potatoes with cheese, pickled mushrooms, butter, and other fillings. And lastly, pirozhki, which means pie seems to be the symbol of Russian street foods. Just look around the streets and try the four local snacks that we’ve mentioned and you’ll realise that every food is stuffed and/or filled with something. Now it is your turn to stuff your belly with Moscow street food!

10. Shop till you drop in Moscow boutiques

Muscovites are mad-shoppers and once you see the brands and collectives in each shopping centre, you might become one of them. From the most glamorous high-end fashion brands, art and design pieces, to antiques and traditional handicrafts, the opportunities for a hardcore spree are endless. Make sure to drop by the two most famous shopping centres, GUM and TSUM when you visit Moscow. They are must-visits even if you are only there to admire (or baulk at) their stupendous swankiness.

Moscow tour

GUM is on the east side of Red Square. It is a former State Department Store. The building’s architecture will instantly give you an extravagant feeling. However, along with its luxurious interior, comes the most luxurious brands and prices. It is open for twelve hours each day from 10 am to 10 pm. On the other hand, TSUM , a six-story historical gothic building is the largest high-end department store in Eastern Europe. There is a luxury supermarket which is open for twenty-four hours on the ground floor.

More affordable options are in the city’s many bustling flea markets, or in beautiful old boutique stores. Tsvetnoy Central Market and Kuznetsky Most 20 are just two of the known markets in the city where both hot and hippy street brands can be found. Local creative contemporary designers and high-end creatives are also housed in both markets.

11. Earn bragging rights with the perfect Instagram snap

Up your Instagram and Facebook feed with these views and different angles of the city. Shamelessly share your food and shoes with the streets and floors you’re walking into with your virtual friends. Or take a snap of the random streets of Moscow depicting their rich cultures. Also, do not forget the big picture! Which literally means photos of the whole city.

Moscow tour

Did you really visit Moscow if you don’t have any photo of the Red Square and Moscow Kremlin? Stand at the centre of Red Square and Kremlin, take the most iconic shot and show the world that you were actually in Moscow. We’ve listed three buildings that have the best top views of the city. The (1) Federation Tower which also has the highest restaurant in Moscow, (2) The Moscow State University has a panoramic view of the city inside The Museum of Geography on its top floor and (3) Cathedral of Christ ’s observation deck have the most breathtaking top views of the city.

The Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Garage Museum of Contemporary Art , GUM, ARTPlay , and Moscow Metro stations are just some of Moscow infrastructures perfect for your channel your inner artsy persona.  While walking around the Moscow CBD, do not forget to look up and take photos of the skyscrapers as far as your eyes and camera can reach. However, if you want to take a break from all the spectacular man-made architecture, take a stroll in Patriarch’s Pond , where you can feel like a real Muscovite and nature-lover.

12. Moscow never sleeps

>Let it be known: Russians love to party! And Moscow is undoubtedly the party capital of Russia. The capital city has an incredible array of nightlife options and a scene for everyone. Whether you’re keen to catch a live Russian rock band or slink into a smoky jazz club, Moscow is there for you. Go clubbing till the break of dawn or just lounge around with a beer and an endless array of fine local vodka. We have listed our top five bars and clubs to help you decide which one to go to. Go ahead and get your body moving along the music while drinking with Muscovites. In that way, you can actually experience Moscow.

european heritage travel

Propaganda , or Probka as what regulars call it, is opened in 1997 and has about the same age as the Moscow club culture. Aside from local drinks and world-class DJs, the club is also boasting with cheap sandwiches and steaks. On Thursdays, they hold dance parties and gay parties on Sundays. Nauka i Iskusstvo (Science and Art) is for you if music is the sole reason for your night out. The club is said to host the best electronic and hip parties. Noor Bar, nonetheless, is known for their classic cocktails which can be best enjoyed on Fridays and Saturdays while listening to their DJ sets. Just make sure to go there early to secure a spot. Another two famous nightclubs are located in Artplay: Pluton and Rodnya . Pluton promotes all kinds of music and art-performances while Rodnya is a rooftop club where you can enjoy dancing while waiting for the sun to rise in Summer.  Squad 3/4  is one of the most bizarre nightclubs in Moscow. It is located at the basement of the former Central Baths building and often hosts bohemian raves.

13. Take a Moscow River Cruise

Cruising along the Moskva River is one of the best ways to see and visit Moscow. Ticket pricing of the cruise depends on the size of the boat; the bigger the boat, the more expensive and smoother its sailing will be. For 800 rubles, you can board the most famous tour boat in Moscow: the yellow Lay’s boat. It plays loud Russian pop music as you sail the river. Bigger boats cost 1,100 to 2,000 rubles per person. These cruises on bigger boats often offer cozy lunch and dinner on top of the cruise itself.

Moscow River Cruise

TIP : There are two main boarding piers: Hotel Ukraine and Park Kultury. If you want to save money, buy your tickets online and make sure to arrive earlier as it is hard to find the pier where your boat is at. However, if you do not mind spending more for tickets, you can purchase from street hawkers. They will personally guide you on where to find your boat and where to get off. Also, make sure to bring extra clothes even in the summer season.

14. White Christmas in Moscow

Visit Moscow and bring all your thick but light-weight clothes and experience Moscow’s white winter. The average weather in December is around -10 to 0 degrees Celsius with an average of 17-30 days of snowfall. Witness snowfall on the Red Square which transforms into a Christmas market and the biggest ice skating rink in December. Celebrate with Muscovites during the Russian Winter Festival and watch live performances, eat street foods, and play games from mid-December to mid-January in Manezh Square.

Moscow winter tour Russia

15. Explore the Medieval towns of Golden Ring

There is always more to see beyond the capital city of a country. And in Russia’s case, outside Moscow is the ancient region called the Golden Ring . The region’s name is derived from the golden onion-shaped domes of the churches around the towns and from the ring-like route in which 1967 art historian and journalist Yuri Bychkov travelled.

Golden Ring tour Russia

The Golden Ring is comprised of eight main cities:

  • Yaroslavl is where the Transfiguration Monastery (now a museum) and Ioann Vasiliyevich — a Soviet-themed hotel and restaurant.
  • Vladimir boasts its Golden Gate and the Cathedral of the Dormition of the Mother of God.
  • Suzdal is a thirty-minute drive from Vladimir, it has five monasteries, thirty churches, and a market square (Torgovaya Ploshchad) where you can local berries and honey.
  • Sergiev Posad is known to be the location of the Trinity Lavra of St Sergius — one of the largest monasteries in the world.
  • Pereselavl-Zalessky is where you can enjoy windsurfing and ride hot air balloons.
  • Rostov Velikiy or Rostov the Great is boasting its colourful churches and unchanged kremlin architecture.
  • Ivanovo is known for its huge textile industry, it is also known as the city of brides since there more women than men in the area.
  • Kostroma is where the town of Bui — a town of cultural heritage, and Trinity-Ipatiev Monastery can be explored.

Visit Moscow and experience and see in the Golden Ring afterwards. We have carefully crafted  tours  for every traveller like you.

Just as a cherry on top, here is an awesome video clip of this magnificent city, Moscow:

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Home » Europe » Moscow

EPIC MOSCOW Itinerary! (2024)

Moscow is the heart of Mother Russia. Just the mention of this city conjures images of colorful bulbous pointed domes, crisp temperatures, and a uniquely original spirit!

Moscow has an incredibly turbulent history, a seemingly resilient culture, and a unique enchantment that pulls countless tourists to the city each year! Although the warmer months make exploring Moscow’s attractions more favorable, there’s just something about a fresh snowfall that only enhances the appearance of the city’s iconic sites!

If you’re a first-time visitor to Moscow, or simply wanting to see as much of the city as possible, this Moscow itinerary will help you do just that!

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Best Time To Visit Moscow

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Here is a quick look at the seasons so you can decide when to visit Moscow!

The summer months (June-August) are a great time to travel to Moscow to take advantage of the enjoyable mild temperatures. This is considered peak travel season. Bear in mind that hotel prices rise along with the temperatures!

when to visit moscow

If you’re planning a trip to Moscow during fall (September-November) try to plan for early fall. This way the temperatures will still be pleasant and winter won’t be threatening.

Russian winters (December-February) are not for the faint of heart as Napoleon learned to his peril. Some days the sun will be out for less than an hour, and snow is guaranteed. Although winters are exceptionally cold, this is when you’ll get a true glimpse of the Moscow experience!

The best time to visit Moscow is during spring  (March-May). The temperatures will begin to creep up and the sun begins to shine for significant portions of the day. Hotel rates will also have yet to skyrocket into peak ranges!

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With a Moscow City Pass , you can experience the best of Moscow at the CHEAPEST prices. Discounts, attractions, tickets, and even public transport are all standards in any good city pass – be sure invest now and save them $$$ when you arrive!

Moscow is a large city with many accommodation options to choose from. Staying in a location that fits with your travel plans will only enhance your Moscow itinerary. Here is a brief introduction to a few great areas of the city we recommend checking out!

The best place to stay in Moscow to be close to all the action is Kitay-Gorod. This charming neighborhood will put you within walking distance to Moscow’s famous Red Square, thus cutting down on travel time. This will allow you to see more of the city in a shorter amount of time!

where to stay in moscow

It’s surrounded by restaurants, cafes, bars, and shops. If you’re a first-time visitor to Moscow, or just planning a quick weekend in Moscow, then this area is perfect for you!

Another great area to consider is the Zamoskvorechye district. This area of the city offers a blend of new and old Moscow. It has an artsy vibe and there are plenty of fun sites you can explore outside of the main touristy areas of Moscow.

Of course, as in all areas of Moscow, it’s close to public transportation that will quickly connect you with the rest of the city and make your Moscow itinerary super accessible!

Best Airbnb in Moscow – Exclusive Apartment in Old Moscow

Exclusive Apartment in Old Moscow

Modern and cozy, this apartment is in the heart of Old Moscow. Bordering the Basmanny and Kitay-Gorod districts, this two-bedroom flat is walking distance to the Kremlin and Red Square. Safe, quiet, and comfortable, this is the best Airbnb in Moscow, no question!

Best Budget Hotel in Moscow – Izmailovo Alfa Hotel

moscow itinerary

The Izmailovo Alfa Hotel is a very highly rated accommodation that provides all the components necessary for a comfortable trip to Moscow. There is an on-site restaurant, bar, fitness center, and an airport shuttle service. The rooms are modern and spacious and are equipped with a TV, heating/air conditioning, minibar, and more!

Best Luxury Hotel in Moscow – Crowne Plaza Moscow World Trade Centre

moscow itinerary

If you’re touring Moscow in luxury, the Crowne Plaza Moscow World Trade Centre is the hotel for you! Elegantly furnished rooms are equipped with a minibar, flat-screen TV,  in-room safes, as well as tea and coffee making facilities! Bathrooms come with bathrobes, slippers, and free toiletries. There is also an onsite restaurant, bar, and fitness center.

Best Hostel in Moscow – Godzillas Hostel

moscow itinerary

Godzillas Hostel is located in the center of Moscow, just a short walk from all the major tourist attractions and the metro station. Guests will enjoy all the usual hostel perks such as self-catering facilities, 24-hour reception, Free Wi-Fi, and security lockers. This is one of the best hostels in Moscow and its wonderful social atmosphere and will make your vacation in Moscow extra special!

Godzillas Hostel is one of our favourites in Moscow but they’re not taking guests right now. We’re not sure if they’re closed for good but we hope they’ll come back soon.

An important aspect of planning any trip is figuring out the transportation situation. You’re probably wondering how you’re going to get to all of your Moscow points of interest right? Luckily, this sprawling city has an excellent network of public transportation that will make traveling a breeze!

The underground metro system is the quickest and most efficient way to travel around Moscow. Most visitors rely exclusively on this super-efficient transportation system, which allows you to get to pretty much anywhere in the city! It’s also a great option if you’re planning a Moscow itinerary during the colder months, as you’ll be sheltered from the snow and freezing temperatures!

moscow itinerary

If you prefer above-ground transportation, buses, trams, and trolleybuses, run throughout the city and provide a rather comfortable alternative to the metro.

Moscow’s metro, buses, trams, and trolleybuses are all accessible with a ‘Troika’ card. This card can be topped up with any sum of money at a metro cash desk. The ticket is simple, convenient, and even refundable upon return to a cashier!

No matter which method you choose, you’ll never find yourself without an easy means of getting from point A to point B!

Red Square | Moscow Kremlin | Lenin’s Mausoleum | St. Basil’s Cathedral  | GUM Department Store

Spend the first day of your itinerary taking your own self guided Moscow walking tour around the historic Red Square! This is Moscow’s compact city center and every stop on this list is within easy walking distance to the next! Get ready to see all of the top Moscow landmarks!

Day 1 / Stop 1 – The Red Square

  • Why it’s awesome: The Red Square is the most recognizable area in Moscow, it has mesmerizing architecture and centuries worth of history attached to its name.
  • Cost: Free to walk around, individual attractions in the square have separate fees. 
  • Food nearby: Check out Bar BQ Cafe for friendly service and good food in a great location! The atmosphere is upbeat and they’re open 24/7!

The Red Square is Moscow’s historic fortress and the center of the Russian government. The origins of the square date back to the late 15th century, when Ivan the Great decided to expand the Kremlin to reflect Moscow’s growing power and prestige!

During the 20th century, the square became famous as the site for demonstrations designed to showcase Soviet strength. Visiting the Red Square today, you’ll find it teeming with tourists, who come to witness its magical architecture up close!

The Red Square

The square is the picture postcard of Russian tourism, so make sure to bring your camera when you visit! No matter the season, or the time of day, it’s delightfully photogenic! 

It’s also home to some of Russia’s most distinguishing and important landmarks, which we’ve made sure to include further down in this itinerary. It’s an important center of Russia’s cultural life and one of the top places to visit in Moscow!

In 1990, UNESCO designated Russia’s Red Square as a World Heritage site. Visiting this historic site is a true bucket-list event and essential addition to your itinerary for Moscow!

Day 1 / Stop 2 – The Moscow Kremlin

  • Why it’s awesome: The Moscow Kremlin complex includes several palaces and cathedrals and is surrounded by the Kremlin wall. It also houses the principal museum of Russia (the Kremlin Armory).
  • Cost: USD $15.00
  • Food nearby: Bosco Cafe is a charming place to grat a casual bite to eat. They have excellent coffee and wonderful views of the Red Square and the Moscow Kremlin!

The iconic Moscow Kremlin , also known as the Kremlin museum complex, sits on Borovitsky Hill, rising above the Moscow River. It is a fortified complex in the center of the city, overlooking several iconic buildings in the Red Square!

It’s the best known of the Russian Kremlins – citadels or fortress’ protecting and dominating a city. During the early decades of the Soviet era, the Kremlin was a private enclave where the state’s governing elite lived and worked.

The Kremlin is outlined by an irregularly shaped triangular wall that encloses an area of 68 acres! The existing walls and towers were built from 1485 to 1495. Inside the Kremlin museum complex, there are five palaces, four cathedrals, and the enclosing Kremlin Wall with Kremlin towers.

The Armoury Chamber is a part of the Grand Kremlin Palace’s complex and is one of the oldest museums of Moscow, established in 1851. It showcases Russian history and displays many cherished relics. Definitely make sure to check out this museum while you’re here!

The Moscow Kremlin

The churches inside the Moscow Kremlin are the Cathedral of the Dormition, Church of the Archangel, Church of the Annunciation, and the bell tower of Ivan Veliki (a church tower).

The five-domed Cathedral of the Dormition is considered the most famous. It was built from 1475–1479 by an Italian architect and has served as a wedding and coronation place for great princes, tsars, and emperors of Russia. Church services are given in the Kremlin’s numerous cathedrals on a regular basis.

The Grand Kremlin Palace was the former Tsar’s Moscow residence and today it serves as the official workplace of the President of the Russian Federation (Vladimir Putin seems to have bagged that title for life) .

Insider Tip: The Kremlin is closed every Thursday! Make sure to plan this stop on your Moscow itinerary for any other day of the week!

Day 1 / Stop 3 – Lenin’s Mausoleum

  • Why it’s awesome: The mausoleum displays the preserved body of Soviet leader Vladimir Lenin .
  • Cost: Free!
  • Food nearby: Khinkal’naya is a charming Georgian restaurant with vaulted ceilings and exposed brick. It’s a popular place with locals and right next to the Red Square!

Lenin’s Mausoleum, also known as Lenin’s Tomb, is the modernist mausoleum for the revolutionary leader Vladimir Lenin. It’s located within the Red Square and serves as the resting place for the Soviet leader! His preserved body has been on public display since shortly after his death in 1924.

It’s located just a few steps away from the Kremlin Wall and is one of the most controversial yet popular Moscow attractions!

Admission is free for everyone, you’ll only need to pay if you need to check a bag. Before visitors are allowed to enter the mausoleum, they have to go through a metal detector first. No metal objects, liquids, or large bags are allowed in the mausoleum!

Lenins Mausoleum

Expect a line to enter the building, and while you’re inside the building, you’ll be constantly moving in line with other visitors. This means you won’t be able to spend as long as you’d like viewing the mausoleum, but you’ll still be able to get a good look. Pictures and filming while inside the building are strictly prohibited, and security guards will stop you if they see you breaking this rule.

The mausoleum is only open on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday – unless it’s a public holiday or a day scheduled for maintenance. The hours it’s open for each day are limited, make sure to check online before you visit to make sure you can fit this into your Moscow itinerary for that day!

Insider Tip: The Lenin’s Museum is there for people to pay their respect; remember to keep silent and move along quickly, it’s not intended for people to congregate around. Also, men are not allowed to wear hats and everyone must take their hands out of their pockets when inside the building.

Day 1 / Stop 4 – St. Basil’s Cathedral

  • Why it’s awesome: A dazzling designed cathedral that showcases Russia’s unique architecture. This cathedral is one of the most recognizable symbols of the country!
  • Cost: USD $8.00
  • Food nearby: Moskovskiy Chaynyy Klub is a cozy cafe serving food items and pipping hot tea; it’s the perfect place to go if you’re visiting Moscow during the winter months!

Located in the Red Square, the ornate 16th-century St. Basil’s Cathedral is probably the building you picture when you think of Moscow’s unique architecture. Its colorful onion-shaped domes tower over the Moscow skyline!

The cathedral was built from 1555-1561 by order of Tsar Ivan the Terrible. It was designed with an iconic onion dome facade and enchanting colors that captivate all who see it. Fun fact: If you’re wondering why Russian churches have onion domes, they are popularly believed to symbolize burning candles!

This iconic cathedral has become a symbol of Russia due to its distinguishing architecture and prominent position inside the Red Square. It’s one of the most beautiful, wonderful, and mesmerizing historical cathedrals in the world!

St. Basils Cathedral

The interior of the church surprises most people when they visit. In contrast to the large exterior, the inside is not so much one large area, but rather a collection of smaller areas, with many corridors and small rooms. There are 9 small chapels and one mausoleum grouped around a central tower.

Visiting the inside is like walking through a maze, there are even small signs all around the cathedral tracing where to walk, and pointing you in the right direction! The walls are meticulously decorated and painted with intricate floral designs and religious themes.

The church rarely holds service and is instead a museum open for the public to visit.

Insider Tip: During the summer months the line to go inside the cathedral can get quite long! Make sure to arrive early or reserve your tickets online to guarantee quick access into the cathedral!

Day 1 / Stop 5 – GUM Department Store

  • Why it’s awesome: This is Russia’s most famous shopping mall! It’s designed with elegant and opulent architecture and provides a real sense of nostalgia!
  • Cost: Free to enter
  • Food nearby: Stolovaya 57 is a cafeteria-style restaurant with a variety of inexpensive Russian cuisine menu items including soups, salads, meat dishes, and desserts. It’s also located inside the GUM department store, making it very easily accessible when you’re shopping!

The enormous GUM Department Store is located within the historic Red Square. It has a whimsical enchantment to it that sets it apart from your typical department store.

A massive domed glass ceiling lines the top of the building and fills the interior with natural sunlight. There are live plants and flowers placed throughout the mall that give the shopping complex a lively and cheerful feel! A playful fountain sits in the center, further adding to the malls inviting a sense of wonder and amusement!

The GUM department store opened on December 2, 1893. Today, it includes local and luxury stores, including Fendi, Louis Vuitton, Prada, and many more! There are numerous cafes, restaurants, and even a movie theater inside!

GUM Department Store

For a special treat, head into Gastronom 1. This 1950s-style shop sells gourmet food items, like wine, freshly-baked pastries, cheese, Russian chocolate, and of course, vodka! Also, be on the lookout for a bicycle pedaling ice cream truck with an employing selling ice cream!

The ambiance is simply amazing, a trip to this idyllic shopping mall is an absolute must on any Moscow itinerary!

Insider Tip: Make sure to carry some small change on you in case you need to use the restroom, you’ll need to pay 50 rubles – or about USD $0.80 to use the bathroom in GUM.

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Novodevichy Convent | Gorky Park | State Tretyakov Gallery | All-Russian Exhibition Center | Bolshoi Theater

On your 2 day itinerary in Moscow, you’ll have a chance to use the city’s excellent public transportation service! You’ll explore a few more of Moscow’s historic highlight as well as some modern attractions. These sites are a little more spread out, but still very easily accessible thanks to the metro!

Day 2 / Stop 1 – Novodevichy Convent

  • Why it’s awesome: The Novodevichy Convent is rich in imperial Russian history and contains some of Russia’s best examples of classical architecture!
  • Cost: USD $5.00
  • Food nearby: Culinary Shop Karavaevs Brothers is a cozy and simple place to have a quick bite, they also have vegetarian options!

The Novodevichy Convent is the best-known and most popular cloister of Moscow. The convent complex is contained within high walls, and there are many attractions this site is known for! 

The six-pillared five-domed Smolensk Cathedral is the main attraction. It was built to resemble the Kremlin’s Assumption Cathedral and its facade boasts beautiful snowy white walls and a pristine golden onion dome as its centerpiece. It’s the oldest structure in the convent, built from 1524 -1525, and is situated in the center of the complex between the two entrance gates.

There are other churches inside the convent as well, all dating back from many centuries past. The convent is filled with an abundance of 16th and 17th-century religious artworks, including numerous large and extravagant frescos!

Novodevichy Convent

Just outside the convent’s grounds lies the Novodevichy Cemetery. Here, you can visit the graves of famous Russians, including esteemed authors, composers, and politicians. Probably the most intriguing gravestone belongs to Russian politician Nikita Khruschev!

The Novodevichy Convent is located near the Moscow River and offers a peaceful retreat from the busy city. In 2004, it was proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The convent remains remarkably well-preserved and is an outstanding example of Moscow Baroque architecture! 

Insider Tip: To enter the cathedrals inside the complex, women are advised to cover their heads and shoulders, while men should wear long pants.

Day 2 / Stop 2 – Gorky Central Park of Culture and Leisure

  • Why it’s awesome: A large amusement area in the heart of the city offering many attractions!
  • Cost: Free! 
  • Food nearby: Check out Mepkato, located inside Gorky Central Park for a casual meal in a cozy setting. There are indoor and outdoor seating options and the restaurant is child-friendly!

Gorky Central Park of Culture and Leisure is a large green space in the heart of Moscow. The park opened in 1928, and it stretches along the scenic embankment of the Moskva River. It covers an area of 300-acres and offers a lovely contrast from the compact city center.

You’ll find all sorts of wonderful attractions, from boat rides to bike rentals to tennis courts and ping-pong tables, and much more! there are an open-air cinema and festive events and concerts scheduled in the summer months.  A wide selection of free fitness classes is also offered on a regular basis, including jogging, roller skating, and dancing!

Although many of the options you’ll find here are more suited for outdoor leisure during the summer, you’ll also a selection of winter attractions, including one of Europe’s largest ice rinks for ice-skating!

Gorky Central Park of Culture and Leisure

If you’re trying to decide what to do in Moscow with kids, the park also offers several venues designed specifically for kids. Check out the year-round Green School which offers hands-on classes in gardening and art! You can also feed the squirrels and birds at the Golitsinsky Ponds!

The park is very well maintained and kept clean and the entrance is free of charge, although most individual attractions cost money. There is also Wi-Fi available throughout the park.

With so many attractions, you could easily spend all day here! If you’re only planning a 2 day itinerary in Moscow, make sure to plan your time accordingly and map out all the areas you want to see beforehand!

Day 2 / Stop 3 – The State Tretyakov Gallery

  • Why it’s awesome: The gallery’s collection consists entirely of Russian art made by Russian artists!
  • Food nearby : Brothers Tretyakovs is located right across the street from the gallery. It’s a wonderfully atmospheric restaurant serving top quality food and drinks!

The State Tretyakov Gallery was founded in 1856 by influential merchant and collector Pavel Tretyakov.  The gallery is a national treasury of Russian fine art and one of the most important museums in Russia!

It houses the world’s best collection of Russian art and contains more than 130, 000 paintings, sculptures, and graphics! These works have been created throughout the centuries by generations of Russia’s most talented artists!

The State Tretyakov Gallery

The exhibits range from mysterious 12th-century images to politically charged canvases. The collection is rich and revealing and offers great insight into the history and attitudes of this long-suffering yet inspired people!

All pictures are also labeled in English. If you plan to take your time and see everything inside the museum it will take a good 3-4 hours, so make sure to plan your Moscow trip itinerary accordingly! This gallery is a must-see stop for art lovers, or anyone wanting to explore the local culture and history of Russia in a creative and insightful manner! 

Insider Tip: When planning your 2 days in Moscow itinerary, keep in mind that most museums in Moscow are closed on Mondays, this includes The State Tretyakov Gallery!

Day 2 / Stop 4 – All-Russian Exhibition Center

  • Why it’s awesome: This large exhibition center showcases the achievements of the Soviet Union in several different spheres. 
  • Food nearby: Varenichnaya No. 1 serves authentic and homestyle Russian cuisine in an intimate and casual setting.

The All-Russian Exhibition Center is a massive park that presents the glory of the Soviet era! It pays homage to the achievements of Soviet Russia with its many different sites found on the property.

The center was officially opened in 1939 to exhibit the achievements of the Soviet Union. It’s a huge complex of buildings and the largest exhibition center in Moscow. There are several exhibition halls dedicated to different achievements and every year there are more than one hundred and fifty specialized exhibitions!

All Russian Exhibition Center

The Peoples Friendship Fountain was constructed in 1954 and is a highlight of the park. The stunning gold fountain features 16 gilded statues of girls, each representing the former Soviet Union republics. 

The Stone Flower Fountain was also built in 1954 and is worth checking out. The centerpiece of this large fountain is a flower carved from stones from the Ural Mountains! Along the side of the fountain are various bronze sculptures.

You will find many people zipping around on rollerblades and bicycles across the large area that the venue covers. It’s also home to amusement rides and carousels, making it the perfect place to stop with kids on your Moscow itinerary! Make sure to wear comfortable shoes and allow a few hours to explore all the areas that interest you!

Day 2 / Stop 5 – Bolshoi Theater

  • Why it’s awesome: The Bolshoi Theater is a historic venue that hosts world-class ballet and opera performances!
  • Cost: Prices vary largely between USD $2.00 –  USD $228.00 based on seat location.
  • Food nearby: Head to the Russian restaurant, Bolshoi for high-quality food and drinks and excellent service!

The Bolshoi Theater is among the oldest and most renowned ballet and opera companies in the world! It also boasts the world’s biggest ballet company, with more than 200 dancers!

The theater has been rebuilt and renovated several times during its long history. In 2011 it finished its most recent renovation after an extensive six-year restoration that started in 2005. The renovation included an improvement in acoustics and the restoration of the original Imperial decor.

The Bolshoi Theater has put on many of the world’s most famous ballet acts! Tchaikovsky’s ballet Swan Lake premiered at the theater in 1877 and other notable performances of the Bolshoi repertoire include Tchaikovsky’s The Sleeping Beauty and The Nutcracker!

Bolshoi Theater

Today, when you visit the theater, you can expect a magical performance from skilled singers, dancers, and musicians with the highest level of technique!

If you don’t have time to see a show, the theater also provides guided tours on select days of the week. Tours are given in both Russian and English and will provide visitors with a more intimate look at the different areas of the theater!

The stage of this iconic Russian theater has seen many outstanding performances. If you’re a fan of the performing arts, the Bolshoi Theater is one of the greatest and oldest ballet and opera companies in the world, making it a must-see attraction on your Moscow itinerary!

moscow itinerary

Godzillas Hostel

Godzillas Hostel is located in the center of Moscow, just a short walk from all the major tourist attractions and the metro station.

  • Towels Included

Cosmonautics Museum | Alexander Garden | Ostankino Tower | Izmaylovo District | Soviet Arcade Museum

Now that we’ve covered what to do in Moscow in 2 days, if you’re able to spend more time in the city you’re going to need more attractions to fill your time. Here are a few more really cool things to do in Moscow we recommend!

Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics

  • Hear the timeline of the ‘space race’ from the Russian perspective
  • This museum is fun for both adults and children!
  • Admission is USD $4.00

The Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics is a museum dedicated to space exploration! The museum explores the history of flight, astronomy, space exploration, space technology, and space in the arts. It houses a large assortment of Soviet and Russian space-related exhibits, and the museum’s collection holds approximately 85,000 different items!

Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics

The museum does an excellent job of telling the full story of the exciting space race between the USSR and the US! It highlights the brightest moments in Russian history and humanity and is very interesting and fun for all ages!

If you’re a fan of space or just curious about gaining insight into Russia’s fascinating history of space exploration, make sure to add this to your 3 day itinerary in Moscow!

The Alexander Garden

  • A tranquil place to relax near the Red Square
  • Green lawns dotted with sculptures and lovely water features
  • The park is open every day and has no entrance fee

The Alexander Garden was one of the first urban public parks in Moscow! The garden premiered in 1821 and was built to celebrate Russia’s victory over Napoleon’s forces in 1812!

The park is beautiful and well maintained with paths to walk on and benches to rest on. The park contains three separate gardens: the upper garden, middle garden, and lower garden.

The Alexander Garden

Located in the upper garden, towards the main entrance to the park is the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier with its eternal flame. This monument was created in 1967 and contains the body of a soldier who fell during the Great Patriotic War!

The park stretches along all the length of the western Kremlin wall for about half a mile. Due to its central location in the city, it’ll be easily accessible when you’re out exploring The Red Square.

It provides a bit of relief from the city’s high-energy city streets. Bring a picnic lunch, go for a walk, or just sit and people watch, this is one of the best Moscow sites to wind-down and relax!

Ostankino Television Tower

  • Television and radio tower in Moscow
  • Currently the tallest free-standing structure in Europe
  • Make sure you bring your passport when you visit, you can’t go up without it!

For spectacular views of the city, make sure to add the Ostankino Television Tower to your itinerary for Moscow! This impressive free-standing structure provides stunning views of the city in every direction. The glass floor at the top also provides great alternative views of the city!

Ostankino Television Tower

It takes just 58 seconds for visitors to reach the Tower’s observation deck by super fast elevator. The tower is open every day for long hours and is a great site in Moscow to check out! There is even a restaurant at the top where you can enjoy rotating views of the city while you dine on traditional Russian cuisine or European cuisine!

The tower is somewhat of an architectural surprise in a city that is not known for skyscrapers! To see the city from a new perspective, make sure to add this stop to your Moscow itinerary!

Izmaylovo District

  • The most popular attractions in this district are the kremlin and the flea market
  • Outside of the city center and easy to reach via metro
  • Most popular during the summer and on weekends

Travel outside the city center and discover a unique area of the city! The Izmaylovo District is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike, and one of the coolest places to see in Moscow! The two main attractions we recommend checking out are the Kremlin and the flea market.

The Izmailovo Kremlin was established as a cultural center and molded after traditional Russian architecture. This colorful complex is home to several single-subject museums, including a Russian folk art museum and a vodka museum!

Izmaylovo District

Next to the Kremlin is the Izmailovo open-air market, which dates back to the 17th century! The market is connected to the Izmailovo Kremlin by a wooden bridge. Pick up all your Russian souvenirs here, including traditional handicrafts, paintings, books, retro toys, and Soviet memorabilia!

You will find many hand-made and hand-painted options available at higher prices, as well as mass-produced souvenir options at lower prices!

Museum of Soviet Arcade Games

  • Closed on Mondays
  • Filled with old arcade games that visitors get to try out!
  • The museum also includes a small cafe and burger shop

For something a little different, check out the Museum of Soviet Arcade Games! The museum features roughly 60 machines from the Soviet era, including video games, pinball machines, and collaborative hockey foosball! The machines inside the museum were produced in the USSR in the mid-1970s.

Museum of Soviet Arcade Games

The best part is, most of the games are still playable! Purchase tickets and try the games out for yourself! The museum also has a neat little screening room that plays old Soviet cartoons and an area with Soviet magazines! This unique attraction is a fun addition to a 3 day itinerary in Moscow, and an attraction that all ages will enjoy! 

Whether you’re spending one day in Moscow, or more, safety is an important thing to keep in mind when traveling to a big city! Overall, Moscow is a very safe place to visit. However, it is always recommended that tourists take certain precautions when traveling to a new destination!

The police in Moscow is extremely effective at making the city a safe place to visit and do their best to patrol all of the top Moscow, Russia tourist attractions. However, tourists can still be a target for pickpockets and scammers.

Moscow has a huge flow of tourists, therefore there is a risk for pickpocketing. Simple precautions will help eliminate your chances of being robbed. Stay vigilant, keep your items close to you at all times, and don’t flash your valuables!

If you’re planning a solo Moscow itinerary, you should have no need to worry, as the city is also considered safe for solo travelers, even women. Stay in the populated areas, try and not travel alone late at night, and never accept rides from strangers or taxis without a meter and correct signage.

The threat of natural disasters in Moscow is low, with the exception of severe winters when the temperature can dip below freezing! Bring a good, warm jacket if you visit in Winter.

However, please note that Russian views on homsexuality are far less accepting than those in Western Europe. Likewise, Non-Caucasian travellers may sadly encounter racism in Russia .

Don’t Forget Your Travel Insurance for Moscow

ALWAYS sort out your backpacker insurance before your trip. There’s plenty to choose from in that department, but a good place to start is Safety Wing .

They offer month-to-month payments, no lock-in contracts, and require absolutely no itineraries: that’s the exact kind of insurance long-term travellers and digital nomads need.

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SafetyWing is cheap, easy, and admin-free: just sign up lickety-split so you can get back to it!

Click the button below to learn more about SafetyWing’s setup or read our insider review for the full tasty scoop.

Now that we’ve covered all the top things to see in Moscow, we thought we’d include some exciting day trips to other areas of the country!

Sergiev Posad (Golden Ring)

Sergiev Posad Golden Ring

On this 7-hour guided tour, you’ll visit several scenic and historic areas of Russia. Start your day with hotel pick-up as you’re transferred by a comfortable car or minivan to Sergiev Posad. Admire the charming Russian countryside on your drive and enjoy a quick stop to visit the Russian village, Rudonezh!

You’ll see the majestic Saint Spring and the Church of Sergiev Radonezh. You’ll also visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius, one of the most famous Orthodox sites in Russia!

Lastly, you’ll swing by the local Matreshka market and enjoy a break in a nice Russian restaurant before returning to Moscow!

Day Trip to Vladimir and Suzdal

Day Trip to Vladimir and Suzdal

On this 13-hour trip, you’ll discover old Russia, with its picturesque landscapes and white-stoned beautiful churches! You’ll visit the main towns of the famous Golden Ring of Russia – the name for several cities and smaller towns north-east of Moscow.

Your first stop will be in the town of Vladimir, the ancient capital of all Russian principalities. The city dates back to the 11th century and is one of the oldest and the most important towns along the Ring! Next, you’ll visit Suzdal, a calm ancient Russian town north of Vladimir with only 13,000 inhabitants!

The old-style architecture and buildings of Suzdal are kept wonderfully intact. If you’re spending three days in Moscow, or more, this is a great option for exploring the charming areas outside the city!

Zvenigorod Day Trip and Russian Countryside

Zvenigorod Day Trip and Russian Countryside

On this 9-hour private tour, you’ll explore the ancient town of Zvenigorod, one of the oldest towns in the Moscow region! As you leave Moscow you’ll enjoy the stunning scenery along the Moscow River, and make a few stops at old churches along the way to Zvenigorod.

Upon arrival, you’ll explore the medieval center, including the 14th-century Savvino-Storozhevsky Monastery. Next, you’ll take a break for lunch (own expense) where you’ll have the chance to try out the Russian cuisine! Next, you’ll visit the Museum of Russian Dessert and sip on tea at a Russian tea ceremony.

The final stop of the day is at the Ershovo Estate, a gorgeous place to walk around and enjoy nature!

Day Trip to St Petersburg by Train visiting Hermitage & Faberge

Day Trip to St Petersburg by Train visiting Hermitage and Faberge

On this full-day tour, you’ll enjoy a a full round trip to St Petersburg where you’ll spend an exciting day exploring another popular Russian city! You’ll be picked up from your hotel in Moscow and be transferred to the train station where you’ll ride the high-speed train ‘Sapsan’ to St Petersburg.

Upon arrival, you’ll start the day by touring the Hermitage Museum and the Winter Palace. Next, you’ll visit the Faberge Museum, where you’ll explore the impressive collection of rare Faberge Eggs! In the afternoon, enjoy a sightseeing boat ride and a traditional 3-course Russian lunch.

If you’re spending 3 days in Moscow, or more, this is an excellent trip to take!

Trip to Kolomna – Authentic Cultural Experience from Moscow

Trip to Kolomna - Authentic Cultural Experience from Moscow

On this 10-hour tour, you’ll escape the city and travel to the historic town of Kolomna! First, you’ll visit the 14th-century Kolomna Kremlin, home to the Assumption Cathedral and an abundance of museums!

Next, enjoy lunch at a local cafe (own expense) before embarking on a tour of the Marshmallow Museum – of course, a marshmallow tasting is provided!  Your final stop is the Museum of Forging Settlements, where displays include armor and accessories for fishing and hunting.

Discover this beautiful Russian fairytale city on a private trip, where all of the planning is taken care of for you!

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Find out what people want to know when planning their Moscow itinerary.

How many days you need in Moscow?

We recommend that you spend at least two or three days in Moscow to take it all in.

What’s the best month to visit Moscow?

The best time to visit Moscow is over the spring, from March to May as temperatures are mild, crowds are thin and prices are reasonable.

What are some unusual things to do in Moscow?

I mean, queuing up to see an almost 100 year old corpse is pretty unsual! Check out Lenin’s Mausoleum if you fancy it!

What are some fun things to do in Moscow?

The Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics is a fun place to explore the famous space race from the perspective of the ‘other side’!

We hope you enjoyed our Moscow itinerary! We’ve made sure to cover all the Moscow must-sees as well as some unique attractions in the city! Our addition of insider tips, favorite food stops, and day trips from Moscow is an added bonus and will guarantee you make the most out of your exciting Russian vacation!

Immerse yourself in the modern and traditional Russian lifestyle! Get lost in museums, witness awe-inspiring architecture, and indulge in Russian cuisine! Spend the day strolling through all of the charming sites of Moscow, admiring the beautiful scenery and discovering the city’s fairytale-like enchantment!

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And for transparency’s sake, please know that some of the links in our content are affiliate links . That means that if you book your accommodation, buy your gear, or sort your insurance through our link, we earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you). That said, we only link to the gear we trust and never recommend services we don’t believe are up to scratch. Again, thank you!

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Alya and Campbell

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Although the state’s European heritage mirrors much of the nation’s, the European Texan immigrant, like Texas itself, represents a uniqueness found only in the Lone Star state.

The arrival of Europeans in the territory now known as Texas marked the beginning of a dramatic transition for Native Americans already inhabiting the region. Spanish conquistadors (a term that literally means “conquerors), the first to arrive in 1519, established a pattern that would ultimately terminate the Native American presence and pave the way for colonization of the pre-Texas region by Europeans. Texas today is a lively amalgam of cultural influences, a diversity well-documented and interpreted with historic artifacts at cultural museums across the state, including San Antonio’s Institute of Texan Cultures. More than twenty cultures, most of them European, are represented here. Events, timelines, and personal stories of immigrants from Germany, France, Eastern Europe, Italy, and Spain, among others, help explain the complexity of cultural aggregation that occurred first in pockets and then statewide across Texas. Although the state’s European heritage mirrors much of the nation’s, the European Texan immigrant, like Texas itself, represents a uniqueness found only in the Lone Star State.

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Strand National Historic District

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Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum

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    World Heritage Journeys, presented by UNESCO, guides you to the most unique and authentic World Heritage travel experiences, recommended by local experts and curated by National Geographic.

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