Sunday, June 04, 2006

Russia Rendevous

1st Stop - Moscow!
31 May 2006, flew off to my long awaited destination of the year - Russia. 1st stop of the tour will be Moscow! So glad that we managed to fly off on the last day of the promotional ticket, saved us at least S$800.
Arrived in Moscow early in the morning..So tired, did not sleep well throughout the flight (busy watching the inflight entertainment). Took the airport train to the city for 120 roubles (~S$8) and it took 45 minutes.
Took the famous metro to our hostel. The metro stations are really BEAUTIFUL!! All marbles decoration...
Checked into Godzillas Hostel (great choice of hostel) and went off to sight see! How exciting! Nice weather that day..Just cooling.
1st stop - Tretyakov Gallery. With our student card on hand, half price off the entrance fee! Oh man, how glad I am to have applied for ISIC card!
Saw rainbow across the Moscow River! Amazing view!
Followed the aroma of chocolate to the Moscow Red October Chocolate Factory! Yes, bought some Russian chocolates (but some people find them weird tasting)
Next stop - Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. yes the churches in Russia all have very long and interesting names. You'll find out more later.
2nd day - The famous, well known Kremlin! Could not get into the Armoury Chamber, much to the disappointment of Mei Mei, as all the tickets were purchased by the bloody, money-sucking travel agencies. Did not get to see the coronation eggs.
Anyway went to visit the inside of Kremlin. All the churches! Very beautifully designed and built. All the long, interesting names...
The Annuciation Church
Must stop by the famous shopping center in Moscow - GUM. Nothing much to buy there as the things are really expensive! But the shopping center is really nice. Bridges across the parallel blocks, and statues and fountains within. Well, if only we have such shopping centers in Singapore...
Got a little bored at night (nothing much to see for the day) so we decided to hunt for cinemas but unfortch, since English is a minority, the only English movie on screen is Da Vinci Code which Mei Mei has watched and at a unsuitable timing. So we passed.
On Saturaday, it's Shopping time! The Izmaylovskaya weekend market! It is just a really HUGE flea market or pasar malam as we call it in Singapore. Clothes, sunglasses, jeans, shirts, shoes, you name it you have it here! Really too huge to walk the entire area! But I did not splurge here..On a tight budget..The design of the market is really cool..looks like Disneyland from afar which colourful cute buildings.
Me wearing the sunglasses I bought! Yes, those are bikinis behind me, did it on purpose.
My only spending here was for a pair of sunglasses for 100 roubles (~S$7). This is when a Russian bloke approached me and started chatting me up. OUt of courtesy, I chatted back a while before hurrying off.
Managed to find an American cinema and watched X-Men: The Last Stand for 250 roubles (~S$16) expensive but we had nothing much to do as we waited for our overnight train at midnight to St Petersburg.
Well, the beds weren't really fantastic. Small and slightly cramp, did not really sleep well on the train. For the money paid, it really wasn't fantastic.

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