guest blogger: tamara of american girls in moscow (part II)

Welcome back to the newlywed tour of Moscow, From Russia With Love led by guest blogger Tamara of American Girls in Moscow. Yesterday we visited Gorky Park, and here are today’s destinations:

Second Stop: Sparrow Hills

From here you have a stunning panoramic view of the city in front of you, just across the river. You can make out many of the famous gothic “Seven Sisters” skyscrapers commissioned by Stalin, spires from the Kremlin, and gleaming golden domes from many of the city’s famous churches.

Along the hill there are ski jumps, nature trails, a playground, sports areas, cafes, and paths for biking and rollerblading. Here’s a picture of my girls taken during the first days of spring this year; we had a wonderful time exploring the woods there.

American Girls in Moscow

This spot is definitely the most famous of the “newlywed tour;” everyone has a picture from this rotunda. We stopped there for a picture the day my oldest daughter graduated from kindergarten (it’s a very big deal in Russia); high school seniors take over the spot during the last week of May, too.

American Girls in Moscow

The view behind you (when you’re standing on the rotunda) is equally famous; here is awe-inspiring Moscow State University.

American Girls in Moscow

The campus is particularly breathtaking when illuminated at night; it’s no wonder that part of the annual Victory Day (to celebrate the end of World War II) fireworks are always held here. I took the following picture just before this year’s extravaganza.

American Girls in Moscow

Now we’ll get back into the limo and make our way down the other side of the hill, looping back towards the center along Kutuzovsky Prospect—the main grand avenue leading to the heart of the city. This is the road the President and most bigwigs follow during their daily commutes (often leading to temporary blockades and ghastly traffic jams).

Third Stop: Victory Park

Victory Park, Moscow, Russia

This vast landmark is a memorial to Russia’s defeat of the Nazis in World War II. It was completed in 1995, in time for the 50th anniversary of the end of the war.

The park’s design is formal, with straight alleys dividing the cobble stoned square, grassy slopes and forested area. Main monuments include the 142 meter (466 foot) Nike obelisk and the domed, semi-circular Museum to the Great Patriotic War (what Russians call World War II).

Given how every single family in Russia suffered during the war, losing sons, fathers, grandfathers and uncles, this park is a very important stop for newlyweds. It gives them a chance to honor the relatives who are unable to attend the wedding festivities.

This floral artwork is a good example of Russian landscaping and a very popular spot for photographs. The clock actually works! (MOCKBA is “Moscow” in Russian).


Across from the park, dividing Kutuzovsky Prospect, is the Triumphal Arch that commemorates the Russians’ victory over the French in the War of 1812.

Triumphal Arch, Moscow, Russia

Come back tomorrow to visit our fourth stop, Novodevichy Monastery!

6 Beans of Wisdom to “guest blogger: tamara of american girls in moscow (part II)”
  1. Bleeding Espresso – long time no see I know…. wedding planning has been all time consuming. But summer is here, despite the
    fact that it has not stopped raining in Geneva for 3 weeks 🙁 however this gives me more time to blog.
    What a great idea to have a quest blogger! Please drop me a line with your latest news.

    TAMARA: thanks for this insight into your life in Moscow. I went to visit a good Russian friend (Katya) for the 1st time this year
    (her apartment was in one of the famous SEVEN SISTERS buildings – with a spectacular view! I had such wonderful time that
    I am now planning another trip to St Petersburg. I am also taking Russian language classes and wish I had the capacity
    to learn as quickly as your daughters! Having a positive attitude is half the battle.
    Have you been to the Izmailovo fair? My friend took us there and introduced me to a woman who makes the most beautiful
    hand-painted mat finished little churches & Russian dolls. Definitely worth the trip (and braving the traffic to go there 🙂 )
    Looking forward to reading your future posts.


    Ciao Bella! So nice to see you here…will send a nice long email shortly 🙂

  2. 06.17.2008

    Great photos! Thanks for the virtual tour. It’s always interesting to read about people living abroad.

    Sandier Pastures’s last blog will feel like 1989 again

    I’m a sucker for living abroad tales too Grace; glad you’re enjoying the peek into Moscow!

  3. 06.17.2008

    Great pictures! The passion to travel still burns inside of me, but I have to finish my studies first before I can get up and go! Hahaha.

    BecsLifeOnline’s last blog post..Marriages are made in Heaven… Weddings are from Hell!

    Good idea Bec…hope you get lots of good trips in 🙂

  4. 06.17.2008

    Very beautiful, love the photos and the story/history behind each one!

    Thank you so much for this visit to a place I’ve never learned about! I will enjoy reading the other installments.

    Scarlett & Viaggiatore

    Wanderlust Scarlett’s last blog post..Viaggiatore’s Milestone, and a Farewell to Brothers in Arms

    So glad you’re enjoying the series Scarlett–although I *knew* you would 😉

  5. annie

    Cool pics. It’s great to see other parts of the world that I will probably never visit in person.

    Glad you’re enjoying Annie!

  1. guest blogger: tamara of american girls in moscow (part II)... [Source: Bleeding Espresso] q...
Michelle KaminskyMichelle Kaminsky is an American attorney-turned-freelance writer who lived in her family's ancestral village in Calabria, Italy for 15 years. This blog is now archived. 

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Homemade apple butter
Green beans, potatoes, and pancetta
Glazed Apple Oatmeal Cinnamon Muffins
Pasta with snails alla calabrese
Onion, Oregano, and Thyme Focaccia
Oatmeal Banana Craisin Muffins
Prosciutto wrapped watermelon with bel paese cheese
Fried eggs with red onion and cheese
Calabrian sausage and fava beans
Ricotta Pound Cake