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There's a large pale-green building with a cupola around the corner from “Biblioteka Imeni Lenina” station, at the corner of Mokhovaya and Vozdvizhenka streets. There's a business-centre called “Mokhovaya”, and a popular cafe (open to the public) called Eat & Talk, with free Wi-Fi.
The current building at No.7 Mokhovaya street was put up in 1901 by the Moscow Mutual Insurance and Income Society. In 1919 the building was nationalised and used by the Praesidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR and the Chairman of the Praesidium. Today it's a Reception building of the State Russian Parliament - the Duma.
The substantial glass doors of the “Mokhovaya” business-centre lead to a cosy cafe called Eat & Talk – a favourite rendezvous of journalism students from the Moscow University faculty around the corner, and with local office workers too. In fact this very audio-guide was planned over several cups of coffee there. It's a laid-back kind of place for informal chats, with an international bistro menu. There's free Wi-Fi and you can plug your laptop into a mains socket too.
Don't be fooled by the name of Mokhovaya, or Moss Street – it was never the boggy marsh it might sound like. In fact it was only christened Moss Street in the C18th. Old Russian houses were made from solid tree-trunks to keep them warm in winter, and to provide the insulation between the trunks people used dried moss (which is “Mokh” in Russian) – it was very efficient. Before Manège Square ever appeared, the open area here was a market selling building materials – timber, tar, and of course moss. Russia's Soviet rulers renamed Moss Street in 1961 – as Karl Marx Street, obviously. But in 1990 the old name was restored once more. Moss Street begins at the Borovitskaya Gate of the Kremlin, and then leads northwards. To the west it branches away into Tverskaya, Bolshaya Nikitskaya and Vozdvizhenka streets.
Researchers suggest that near to where we are standing now, on modern Mokhovaya Street, once stood the headquarters of the once-feared organisation of the Oprichnina – the secret police henchmen of Tsar Ivan the Terrible. Legend says their hideout was a gunshot away from the Kremlin's West walls - putting it about 200-250 metres away, reckoning on a flintlock of that time. This would give a location roughly where the Old University buildings stand now. Before them stood wooden buildings surrounded by a high stone wall and a gate. Elbow-deep white sand filled the courtyard, they said. These buildings were burnt down in the Crimean Tartar attacks on Moscow of 1571. But in 1936, during building work to lay new Metro lines, workers unearthed a courtyard at No.7 Mokhovaya, with a 50-centimeter depth of white sand in it...
Moscow is the capital of the ancient and modern Russian state. It has been playing crucial role for centuries. Here you can face all episodes of rich and gorgeous Russian history.
The city is full of historical buildings, monuments, cathedrals, museums and parks. It started many centuries ago from the Kremlin – medieval city-fortress overlooking the Moskva River. Now it is not only the government seat but open air museum. Behind the tall red brick walls palaces, cathedrals and museums are hidden. You can get there through one of the gates and walk along the streets that saw Ivan the Terrible, Boris Godunov, Peter the Great and all other Romanovs, and the Soviet leaders.
You can visit all the cathedrals on Sobornaya (Cathedral) Square, climb Ivan the Great Bell Tower, take photos of the Tzar Bell and Tzar Cannon, see state regalia, ceremonial vestments and gold and silver relics in the world-known treasury-house – the Armoury Chamber. To say more, the Kremlin and its vicinities are on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
We would like to advise you not to concentrate on the Kremlin only. Now you can get out of the Kremlin through the Spasskiye Gate and find yourself on Red Square – the main square of the country where Victory Day parades take place. In winter there is a skating rink with some kind of souvenir bazar. Red Square is famous for being the part of so called Kitai-Gorod – the second ring of fortified walls. Here you will see the beautiful fairy-tale St. Basil’s Cathedral. It is open for tourists and it’s worth visiting. Other places that pay tourists’ attention are GUM (the main center for shopaholics), Lenin’s Mausoleum, the State History Museum and the small Cathedral of the Kazan Icon of Our Lady. If you go along Nikolskaya Street, you will get to Lubyanka Square with the imposing buildings of former KGB and the biggest in Russia Children's World Department Store.
If you decide to go through the Resurrection Gate you will find yourself on Manezhnaya (Manege) Square at the entrance to the Alexander Garden. It’s a large pedestrian open space and a nice place to walk and relax near the fountains. Underground Trade Centre ”Okhotny Ryad” or “the Hunter’s Row” is a paradise for shopping. You can continue your walk towards Arbat or Tverskaya Street. There are also fine buildings to visit and to take pictures of: The Shilov Art Gallery, hotels “Moskva”, “Nationale”, Pashkov's House, The Former House of the Moscow State Duma etc.
If you decide to turn round Georgy Zhukov’s horse monument you’ll occur on Revolution Square where you can visit the Museum of Patriotic War of 1812. From there it’s very easy to get to Teatralnaya or “Theatre” Square limited by the Metropol Hotel, The Bolshoi and the Maly Theatres. In the center you will find a beautiful fountain by Vitali.
All these sites and even more you will be able to visit and explore with knowledgeable audio excursion with offline map from Your Audio Guide “Attractions around the Kremlin”. You will find Moscow very pleasant for spending holidays.