As the largest country in the world by land mass, Russia has no shortage of attractions. Plenty of both natural and historic sites await the adventurous tourist. Though you are likely to enjoy any number of Russia’s attractions, these five top our list.
1. Valley of Geysers
Located in the Kamchatka Peninsula of Russia is the Valley of Geysers, the only geyser field in Eurasia. This collection of geysers also happens to be the second largest concentration of geysers in the world. In the 2.7 square-mile area, 20 large jets and 200 smaller thermal springs blast through the crust of the earth. Discovered in 1941 by a local scientist by the name of Tatyana Ustinova, it has since become a well-known tourist attraction in Kamchatka. The Valley of Geysers was elected as one of the seven wonders of Russia in 2008, making it well worth a visit.
2. State Hermitage Museum
In St. Petersburg, you will find the State Hermitage Museum. It was founded by Catherine the Great in 1764 and has been open to the public since 1852. It is one of the oldest and largest museums in the world. You’ll catch the highlights of over 3 million pieces of art and culture from all over the globe. The collections are spread across six historic buildings including the Winter Palace, once called home by several Russian emperors.
3. The Kremlin in Moscow
No trip to Russia is complete without a stop at the iconic Kremlin. This walled enclosure is home to the nation’s top governmental offices and also houses a number of notable museums and historic cathedrals. The walls and towers themselves are full of history and are a visual marvel. One of the notable museums is The Armory. The space was built to house the treasures of the Tsars and is filled with clothing, jewelry, weapons, armor and many other artifacts.
4. Trans-Siberian Railway
Though technically not a place, the Trans-Siberian Railway should be experienced by all of Russia’s visitors. Construction began in 1891 and was completed in 1916. Today, you can hop on it to travel to the destinations on your itinerary. The train can even accommodate you for overnight travel. There are three classes of sleepers with some featuring private bathrooms and showers. It is the longest railway system in the world. You can ride from Moscow all the way to Vladivostok, near the borders of China and North Korea.
5. St. Basil’s Cathedral
Built in the 1500s, St. Basil’s cathedral has long been one of the top tourist attractions in Russia. The cathedral was built to mark the capture of Kazan from the Mongol forces in 1552 and was named after Basil the Blessed, who was buried at the site at another cathedral that once stood there. It is the distinct architecture that most draws visitors to the attraction. In the 1970s, a wooden spiral staircase was discovered during some restoration work and visitors can now take this route to the central church. Only one service a year is held in the cathedral on the day of intercession in October.
That wraps up our top five picks for Russia’s tourist attractions. Get going and enjoy Russia’s cultural, historical and natural beauty. As a reminder, don’t forget to take care of your travel documentation well ahead of time. You can get your passports and visas processed quickly and professionally with Fast Passports and Visas.