Must-see attractions in Russia

  • Chak-chak Museum, Kazan, Russia.

    Chak-chak Museum


    Interactive museum dedicated to traditional Tatar food and drink, particularly sweet 'chak-chak', balls of dough that are baked in honey and served on…

  • Faberge egg at the Faberge Museum in Saint Petersburg.

    Fabergé Museum

    St Petersburg

    The magnificently restored Shuvalovsky Palace is home to the world's largest collection of pieces manufactured by the jeweller Peter Carl Fabergé …

  • View of the historical center, city pond with dam, Yekaterinburg-City neighborhood and north-western side of the city from the observation deck on the 52nd floor of the Vysotsky skyscraper at 186 meters above the ground in Yekaterinburg.

    Vysotskiy Viewing Platform


    Take the lift up 52 floors to the viewing platform for one of Russia's best urban panoramas. Children under 15 years must be accompanied by an adult. The…

  • Museum of Fine Arts, Petrozavodsk, Russia.

    Fine Arts Museum

    Northern European Russia

    Besides the permanent exhibitions that feature medieval icons, and folk art such as embroidery, weaving and birch-bark creations, there's a collection of…

  • Goncharov Museum

    Goncharov Museum

    Volga Region

    Writer Ivan Goncharov grew up in this three-storey house, which today is one of Ulyanovsk's most important museums. It tells the story of the house itself…

  • Ploshchad Mira


    Krasnoyarsk's Lenin museum was opened on the occasion of the October Revolution's 70th anniversary in 1987, only to see the entire communist system…

  • Winzavod Center for Contemporary Art

    Meshchansky & Basmanny

    Formerly a wine-bottling factory, this facility was converted into exhibit and studio space for Moscow artists in 2007. The post-industrial complex is now…

  • Regional Studies Museum

    Northern European Russia

    The history section charts the development of the harsh north, from its settlement by dispossessed and exiled peasantry in the 1930s, to the Gulag camps,…

  • Museum of Contemporary Art PERMM

    The Urals

    This museum was opened in 2009 with the aid of gallery dealer Marat Gelman. At that time it was housed in the historic Perm River Station Hall. It moved…

  • Lenin Mosaic


    How about this sparkling, red, 8m-high head shot of Ilyich as a backdrop for your holiday photos? This beauty was unveiled in 1980 to mark the 110th…

  • Soviet Lifestyle Museum


    Kazan's most unusual museum, packed with Soviet knick-knacks, is proof that Russia's socialist epoch fostered a lively contemporary cultural scene –…

  • Trinity Monastery of St Sergius

    Sergiev Posad

    In 1340 St Sergius of Radonezh founded this lavra (senior monastery), which soon became the spiritual centre of Russian Orthodoxy. St Sergius was credited…

  • Kunstkamera

    St Petersburg

    Also known as the Museum of Ethnology and Anthropology, this is the city’s first museum, founded in 1714 by Peter himself. It is famous largely for its…

  • Mikhailovskoe

    Western European Russia

    Russia’s most beloved poet, Alexander Pushkin, lived several years at his family estate, Mikhailovskoe, near the small town of Pushkinskie Gory …

  • Rostov-Veliky Kremlin

    Golden Ring

    Rostov-Veliky’s main attraction is unashamedly photogenic. Though founded in the 12th century, most of the buildings date to the 1670s and 1680s.

  • Alexander Palace

    Around St Petersburg

    The classical Alexander Palace, built by Quarenghi between 1792 and 1796 for the future Alexander I, is surrounded by the charming Alexander Park…

  • Trinity Cathedral in Tyumen, Russia

    Trinity Monastery

    Western Siberia

    Riverside Trinity Monastery is undoubtedly Tyumen’s most appealing architectural complex. Its kremlin-style crenellated outer wall is pierced by a single…

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    Cathedral of the Nativity

    Sakhalin Island

    This extraordinary new addition to Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk's otherwise ho-hum architectural ensemble is a staggeringly impressive golden-domed cathedral, which…

  • Yasnaya Polyana

    Western European Russia

    This late 19th-century estate is where Leo Tolstoy wrote War and Peace and Anna Karenina, as well being the place he was born, lived most of his life and…

  • Goritsky Monastery

    Golden Ring

    This large hilltop monastery 2.5km south of the centre was founded in the 14th century, though the oldest buildings today are the 17th-century gates, gate…

  • Pereslavl Railway Museum

    Golden Ring

    A large collection of old locomotives, coaches, boxcars and other narrow-gauge railroad relics that once ran through this part of Russia (up to the middle…

  • N.K. Rerikh Museum


    This museum is dedicated to the works and life of the painter Nikolai Rerikh (Nicholas Roerick), beloved in these parts because of his life-long passion…

  • Memorial Museum


    The gloomy basement of this former NKVD (proto-KGB) building is now a museum dedicated to the unspeakable horrors that took place here. Look out for the…

  • Deputy’s Palace Museum

    Western Siberia

    Tobolsk's best museum, and indeed one of the best museums in Siberia, occupies a beautiful 18th-century former administration on the southwestern edge of…

  • Arms Museum

    Western European Russia

    Tula has been a weapons manufacturing centre for centuries, a legacy celebrated at this fantastically kitted-out new building that houses an impressive…

  • Zarya Centre for Contemporary Art


    The full renovation and repurposing of a former clothing factory into a giant creative complex containing offices, studios, cafes and work spaces is one…

  • Sami History & Culture Museum

    Kola Peninsula

    This excellent museum delves into the Sami people's troubled history and their way of life, which continues to be threatened. It also celebrates the…

  • Assumption Cathedral

    Golden Ring

    Hearing your footsteps echoing in the gloom as you walk through this empty, unrestored cathedral (built 1744) within Goritsky Monastery makes it almost…

  • Regional Museum


    Housed in a wonderfully dilapidated 1912 merchant’s house with original art nouveau fittings, this fine museum is home to standing stone idols,…

  • Ascension Cathedral

    Western European Russia

    Designed by Konstantin Ton (1794–1881), the genius behind Moscow's Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, the Kremlin Armoury and the Grand Kremlin Palace, this…

  • Geyser Lake


    One of the more unusual sights along the Chusky Trakt is this sublime turquoise blue sulfur lake and geyser. This is no Yellowstone-style geyser erupting…

  • A.V. Anokhin National Museum of Altai


    This well-put-together museum offers a good introduction to Altai culture with a range of ethnographic exhibits, wildlife displays and local art and…

  • Mt Mashuk

    Mineral Water Spas

    There's a fantastic view of Pyatigorsk, and all the way to Mt Elbrus on good weather days, from the 993m summit of Mt Mashuk. You can reach here either by…

  • Novosibirsk State History Museum


    In an elegant mansion, the State History Museum has recently re-opened after renovations and is now by far the best museum in Novosibirsk. The well…

  • University & Siberian Botanical Gardens


    The classically colonnaded main buildings of the university lie in resplendently leafy grounds, giving Tomsk the sobriquet ‘Oxford of Siberia’. Most of…

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