After we left Poland (catch that recap here), we hopped on a plane for Russia. A couple hours later, we touched down in Moscow. We were lucky enough to get in contact with one of the missionaries to Moscow and he was kind enough to act as our tour guide.
We got into Moscow in the late afternoon, so first we headed off to a Georgian restaurant for dinner and it was amazing. It had kind of a Mediterranean flair..super scrumptious!
After dinner, we headed down to Red Square to take in some of the sights by night. Let me just tell you, Red Square is absolutely stunning at night. Everything is all lit up and it looks totally magical. I didn’t have my nice camera with me, so all I got was an iPhone picture.
The next morning, we headed back down to Red Square to take some pictures during the day and go inside Lenin’s tomb. No pictures of that, unfortunately, since they won’t let you take cameras inside. And they’re pretty serious about their security..you can’t even stop when you’re inside the tomb or have your hands inside your pockets. But I do have lots of pictures of the rest of Red Square!
This is the exact center of the city..it’s just outside Red Square.
The famous St. Basil’s..so breathtaking in person.
After we left Red Square, we visited the Kremlin.
Inside were several beautiful churches and other monuments.
This is the Tsar’s cannon that was never fired..it was too big. It weighs 40 tons!
This is the Tsar’s bell..it also was too large and it cracked before it could ever be rung. Clearly the guy had a fixation with overly large things. Compensating for something, Mr. Tsar?
By the time we left the Kremlin, it was about 4:00pm and we had every intention of doing a bit more sightseeing…however the day got cut short because someone (*coughcough, me*) had to go and make a huge dramatic scene. Let me explain.
Moscow is a very big, crowded city and the subway is pretty much the only way to get around. The subways are jam-packed with people and it’s about 100 degrees down there. We had been walking all day long and all I’d had in the way of liquids was about 1/2 a bottle of water. You see where this is going?
When we left the Kremlin and headed to the subway station, I started to feel pretty overcome with tiredness but I figured I was just out of shape and didn’t want to be a whiner. So I pushed on. But by the time we actually got on the subway I was feeling pretty terrible..I was sweating and clammy at the same time and my vision was blurring. I looked over at my sweet, sweet hubby and said , “I think I’m going to pass out.” He looked back at me with what can only be described as pure terror in his eyes and says, “What?! Can’t you wait until we get off the subway?!?!”
Well, unfortunately, it doesn’t work like that and a few seconds later I passed out cold. Like completely unconscious. JP had to carry me off the subway, damsel-in-distress style. Thank God we had the missionary with us..he spoke enough Russian to be able to find help. By some miracle they found a doctor in the subway station. She came and made me drink something and then gave me an injection of something. We have no clue what either of those substances were because she spoke NO English and the missionary couldn’t understand what she was saying. Luckily, I was coherent enough to see her take the syringe and needle out of an unopened package so that was at least a little comforting.
Since then, we’ve been joking that they injected me with some kind of tracking chip and I’m now a spy for the Russian government. Don’t mess with me.
So, sadly, our sightseeing time in Moscow was cut a little short but the next day we got up and took a train to St. Petersburg!
St. Petersburg was a beautiful city..much smaller and less crowded than Moscow. No subway needed, wahoo! It was very easy to navigate the city..we stayed in the Petro Palace hotel which was very close to all the sites we wanted to see.
The Church of the Spilled Blood
The big thing to see in St. Petersburg is the Hermitage and Winter Palace. The place is HUGE. Like, you could easily spend a whole day in there if you’re a big art buff (which I am not..I know shockingly little about it, but it’s fun to pretend).
Talk about extravagance..the place was dripping in gold and crystals. It was like Liberace was their interior decorator. To each his own.
On a whole, St. Petersburg was much more my style. More laid back and it almost felt like Italy (my true European love), especially with the canals and everything. And! It’s where I picked up my adorable little Russian nesting doll that I looove!
Isn’t she a purty lady?? I’ll be back tomorrow with the next stop on our trip, Latvia!