10 unusual places in Moscow even locals don’t know about!

Legion Media
Here are perfect locations to escape crowds and get awesome Instagram shots.

1. Painted trees in parks (Vystavochnaya/Izmaylovskaya metro station)

While walking through some parks of Moscow, for example Izmailovsky park or “Krasnaya Presnya” park, you may see images of fairy-tale characters painted on the trees. In this unusual way, Evgeniya Khlynina, an artist from Moscow, is trying to save tree barks from being damaged by heavy winds or frosts. These paintings aren’t harmful to the trees and also look more interesting than regular whitewashing.

2. Elephant-house in Ostrovtsy

A house that looks like an elephant was designed by Sergey Kozhuro and was initially built as an experiment, but since 2009, is one of the main sights in the Ostrovsky area, located south of Moscow. Despite its uniqueness, the four-story mansion hasn’t found an owner yet. The elephant-house is decorated in an oriental style on the front facade, while the elephant’s trunk and blanket are adorned with Indian ornaments.

3. Cheburashka’s phone box (VDNKh)

There are quite a lot of interesting places in VDNkh (the All-Russian Exhibition Center), which will take you back to the Soviet times. Close to the “Dom Kultury” (House of Culture), which currently houses the Moscow Museum of Animation, for example, you can find Cheburashka’s phone box, one of the most popular cartoon characters of all Soviet children - and their parents! According to the cartoon, the big-eared Cheburashka lived here before he met his friend, Gena the Crocodile.

4. Stalin’s (miniature) skyscrapers (VDNkh)

If you want to check out all the famous seven Stalin Sisters skyscrapers, you don’t need to drive around the whole of Moscow anymore. Small replicas of them have been installed within the VDNkh park. Being just a little taller than an average human, the models let you perfectly observe all tiny details of these legendary buildings. 

5. Tram station ‘Krasnostudenchesky proyezd’ (Timiryazevskaya)

An antique, but still operating, tram station also exists in Moscow. It was initially made out of wood in 1890, but later, architect Evgeniy Shervinsky added some constructions and decorative elements out of cast iron. The tram station was considered abandoned for a long time, but in 2018, it was reconstructed and now it’s operating once again. 

6. House of traveler Fedor Konyukhov ( Paveletskaya)

The house of famous Russian explorer Fedor Konyukhov hides in one of Moscow’s yards. Also in the yard is a small church, that host memorial plaques dedicated to the greatest Russian explorers who died during their expeditions on its walls.

Inside and around Konyukhov’s house, you can find many outlandish things from his expeditions – for example, a “Turgoyak” rowing boat, on which he crossed the Pacific Ocean solo.

7. Installation in Chermyanka park (Otradnoye)

Funny-shaped figures made of wood and willow twigs appeared in the Chermyanka park in 2014. The creator of these unusual objects is Nikolay Polisskiy, the author of more famous installations in land-park ‘Nikola-Lenivets’ in the Kaluga region. This installation doesn’t have any official name, so it’s time to get creative and make one up yourself!

8. Ancient castle (Novokosino/Maryino)

Modern entertainment areas, for both children and adults, in Moscow have become as stylized as ancient castles, back in their heyday. However, it’s more adventurous to visit this real castle on the weekend, especially when city events, fairs and festivals are held. Thanks to colorful decorations, these areas have become popular for taking photos. Now you know where you can take exclusive new shots for your Instagram!

9. ‘Symbol’ art-park (Ploschad Ilyicha)

This brand new park of modern art is a part of the ‘Symbol’ creativity-zone. Here, you can find public artworks by many modern Russian artists. The administration of the park notes that these art-objects were mostly made from materials found on the territory of the ‘Serp I Molot’ (Sickle & Hammer) factory that was situated on the territory previously. 

10. Artist’s village (Sokol)

The Village of Artists is a naturally wooden garden city, where you can escape from the urban bustle. Its history begins in the 1920s from the idea of creating experimental cottage village close to the city-center, where famous artists might live and work. Each house was built with a unique design by a group of Soviet architects and the streets have names of great artists – Isaac Levitan, Vasily Surikov, Mikhail Vrubel, Orest Kiprensky, Ivan Shishkin and others. There’s also a museum which tells about the village’s history, including, for example, how the ‘Maxim Gorkiy’ plane crashed there in 1935!

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