Lonely Planet Writer

Russia celebrates 55 years since Yuri Gagarin’s first space voyage

Today marks 55 years since Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first human to travel to outer space on 12 April 1961. To commemorate this historic milestone, Russia has declared the year 2016 the ‘year of Yuri Gagarin’.

Russia celebrates 55th anniversary of Gagarin's first space flight.
Russia celebrates 55th anniversary of Gagarin’s first space flight. Image by Dmitry Dzhus / CC BY 2.0

The Roscosmos space agency will organise various events throughout the year, and this spring Russia will launch the first rocket from the new Vostochny Cosmodrome in the Amur region in Russian Far East. Over the last few years, private space companies have been set up in Russia as well. CosmoCourse is one such company, and it has been given permission from Roscosmos to develop a system for sending people to space, which doesn’t have strict requirements for tourists apart from taking a medical exam and a test run in the centrifuge. The company plans to launch its first commercial trip to outer space in 2020, with the price of tickets ranging from US$200,000 to US$250,000. Read more: rbth.com