Flight and hotel Moscow
An Introduction to Moscow
Located off Moskva River in western Russia, Moscow is the nation’s cosmopolitan capital. A colourful city, Moscow offers a wonderful mix of history and culture, thanks to its well-preserved iconic sights set in a hip, modern city atmosphere. A weekend in Moscow is fascinating, thanks to the mix of glimpses of its troubled past, charming ambience, and grand architecture.
For memorable city breaks in Moscow, it's best to you book your Moscow flight and hotel in advance, particularly as travellers typically need to arrange a visa to visit Russia. Planning package holidays in Moscow can make the process of heading to the city easier as well as economical.
What to Know Before Visiting Moscow?
Flights to Moscow typically arrive at Sheremetyevo International Airport (MOW), though this huge city is also served by Vnukovo International Airport and Domodedovo International Airport. All these airports are well connected with the Moscow Metro through Aeroexpress. If you're flying from the UK, you can book a direct flight from London or from Manchester to Moscow.
British passport holders need a visa to travel to Moscow. Visit the Russian embassy website to learn more about how to apply, and be sure to do so well in advance — it typically takes at least ten days to process tourist visas after their application, but can take longer in busy periods. The official language in Moscow is Russian, but many locals understand and speak English. Moscow is three hours ahead of the UK, and the local currency is the Russian Ruble.
When Is the Best Time to Visit Moscow?
Weather in Moscow varies significantly depending on the season. July and August are the warmest months in the city, with the average temperature hovering around 18°C to 30°C. Due to the continental climate, the summer's maximum temperatures often feel very hot. The coldest month in the Russian capital is January, when average temperatures remain around -7°C.
If you opt for package holidays in Moscow during April and June, you will likely experience pleasant weather perfect for sightseeing. If you're looking to enjoy a weekend in Moscow during this time, it's a good idea to book in advance to avoid any last minute rush. You can also enjoy some of the city's most exciting events, including Russian Fashion Week (April), Labor Day/Spring Festival (May), Victory Day (May), Usadba Jazz Festival (June), and the Moscow International Film Festival (June), during this period.
What Is There to Do In Moscow?
Moscow is synonymous with great museums, impressive cultural attractions, and lavish shopping, not to mention the eclectic array of music venues, clubs, bars, and restaurants. Be sure to get around by Metro, as the stations, deep underground, are beautifully decorated and the trains come quickly. For luxury shopping and a typical Russian lunch in an architectural landmark, head to GUM, right on the Red Square. And don't miss Novodevichy Convent and Cemetery, a beautiful cloister and UNESCO World Heritage site.
If you are travelling with family, Gorky Park is a must-visit location which offers entertainment for everyone, including outdoor dancing sessions, beach volleyball, ping-pong, rollerblading, yoga and fitness classes, cycling, skateboarding, and boat rentals. The Moscow Hermitage Garden offers outdoor concerts in the summer, while its theatres offer opera and plays all year long. For ballet and other top-notch performances, the Bolshoi Theater is the ideal venue.
What to Visit In Moscow
City breaks in Moscow offer a blend of history and culture. The Red Square is undoubtedly Moscow’s most popular attraction, as it is surrounded by incredible sites like the Kremlin, Lenin’s Mausoleum, and St Basil’s Cathedral. If you are planning to explore the Kremlin's museums, make sure to visit the Armoury Chamber and the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, famous for its collection of masterpieces by the likes of Van Gogh, Gauguin, Monet, and Picasso.
- Lenin’s Mausoleum: This must-see attraction houses the embalmed body of the legendary Russian leader Vladimir Lenin in a glass sarcophagus.
- State Historical Museum: Learn about Russian history via an impressive collection of large coins, 6th century manuscripts, art, and relics of prehistoric tribes.
- Kolomenskoye Museum-Reserve: Get a glimpse of medieval Moscow at this former royal estate.
- Central House of Artists: This exhibition space is home to 60 galleries, and is the site of a number of events and festivals.
- Other popular sites worth visiting are the Ostankino TV Tower, Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, and the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art.
What and Where Should You Eat In Moscow?
Moscow offers an array of international restaurants serving everything from sushi and authentic French cuisine to traditional dishes from Uzbekistan, Georgia, and the other former Soviet republics. Local chain restaurants like Mu-Mu and Grabli serve homey Russian and European cuisine. Tverskaya Street is filled with sophisticated places to eat, drink, and experience the Russian way of life.
Café Pushkin, an iconic restaurant by Andrei Dellos, serves highlights from Russian cuisine in an imperial setting. You can savour delicious Italian food at Casta Diva, an opulent restaurant with fountains, glittering chandeliers, and marble columns. If you are looking to have a meal with a panoramic view, head over to Sky Lounge, located south-west of the city centre.
What to Bring Home From Moscow
Apart from local handicrafts, there is much to shop for during a weekend in Moscow to bring home as a memento of your trip. Dom Knigi, a book store, is the perfect location for purchasing Russian-language souvenirs. Izmailovo Market is where local vendors sell khokhloma art, matryoshka dolls, shot glasses, fur hats, embroidery, and paintings, which all make great souvenirs. Other notable items that are worth buying include valenki (felt boots), tinned caviar, Orthodox icons, palekh (traditional Russian miniature paintings), and balalaika (a Russian stringed musical instrument).