The parks of Moscow, Russia, are the big green lungs of the city, where you can relax from the eternal hum of roads, work and noisy neighbors. Here is our selection of the best parks for a memorable afternoon.
Gorky Central Park of Culture and Leisure
One of the oldest culture and leisure amusement parks in Russia, Gorky Park was created on the banks of the Moscow River in 1928. It is a perfect place for an active holiday, with lots to do – it even has several shooting ranges. Most notably, the original layout has remained intact to the present day. Gorky Park is always full of people: in the colder months fans of a winter skate queue patiently in order to go on the ice skating rink. In summer many visitors simply have lazy strolls along the alleys of the most famous park in Moscow. Golitsyn Pond is equipped with a boat station, where you can hire a pedalo or catamaran.
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Among the many parks in Moscow, you can find one of the most valuable monuments of Russian culture, the Museum-Reserve Tsaritsyno. This historical and architectural state museum-reserve is located in the southern part of Moscow. It features a palace and a landscaped park with three ponds. Tsaritsyno farm is the largest nature reserve in Moscow. In 1775 Empress Catherine II ordered the construction of this as her suburban residence. However, construction was delayed for many years and had not been completed during her lifetime. Today the complex is the only palace complex in Europe to be built in the Russian Gothic architecture style. Furthermore, stables operate in the park, and you can always ride a horse or a pony. The other side of the main pond is equipped with a slide, horizontal bars, ropes and other exercise equipment.
Vorobyovy Gory can be described as a huge green mass, lying on the bank of the Moscow river. The park can be seen at the exit of the metro station of the same name. Vorobyovy Gory features a high jump platform, which points to its history tied with sports facilities. Near the top of the jump, there is a viewing platform, which is visited by an enormous flow of people with cameras and easels. The panoramic view shows off the wonderful skyline of Moscow, the river, Luzhniki Stadium, Novodevichy Monastery, St Andrew’s Monastery and skyscrapers of the Moscow City complex. If you head towards the building of Moscow State University, in front of it you will spot an alley with the busts of great scientists and a lovely pond. The park also features wonderful slopes and access to the waterfront. Here you can enjoy nature and solitude, paint landscapes or read classical literature.
MSU Botanical Garden Aptekarskiy Ogorod
Aptekarskiy Ogorod is not quite a park but an oasis away from the stone and concrete of the city. At the beginning of 17th century Peter I decided to build a herb garden on this site. With that decree began the stormy history of the garden, which in Soviet times was essentially abandoned. Now it is a small cozy garden, and a lovely place to go during lunch or visit on a romantic date. The park features dozens of attractive, bright colors which cannot be found anywhere else in Moscow, and a beautiful pond dotted with water lilies. There is a shop with rare plants, where you can buy rare seeds of American blueberry or bog oak. During the winter the park hosts festivals of ice sculptures. In spring, exhibitions of orchids are perfect events for admiring their blossoming and a variety of floral crops. In the summer you can simply enjoy teasing fish in the pond, and sitting on a bench admiring the colorful nature.
Izmaylovskiy Park of Culture and Leisure is a combination of nature and grounds for outdoor activities and cultural entertainment. Whenever possible, Muscovites try to get to the park to breathe in the fresh, clean air. Izmaylovsky Park was created in 1931, and since then its green doors have been open to visitors all year round. Spending a day out in the park with the family has became one of the good traditions for residents of Moscow. The park resembles more of a genuine forest, with green trees, rotten stumps covered with moss and lichen overgrown with tall grasses.
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