Carol & John Llewellyn
Moscow, June 2001
Moscow June 2001

An exciting place to visit. Probably because they are now willing to have tourists, but in many ways are not quite ready for them. Not being able to read the cyrillic alphabet makes things a challenge! Overall, the city was clean and the people were friendly.

St. Basil's church
The Soviet-era architecture is unmistakably ugly. No photos of it here! But, the Russians have taken good care of their older buildings.

St. Basil's (left) stands at the end of Red Square. On the two long sides of the square are the GUM department store (below, left) and the Kremlin with Lenin's tomb. (below, right)

During the Soviet era, the GUM department store (below, left) was noted for its lack of goods. Today, it features international brands like Reebok and Victoria's Secret.

Lenin's tomb, (below) just outside the walls of the Kremlin and across Red Square from GUM, is only open on specified days. Admission is carefully controlled and no cameras are allowed inside.
Red Square
Inside the Kremlin, the grounds are in excellent condition. There are five churches on the grounds, dating from well before the revolution of 1917. Russia has done a lot to protect historical structures, even those with links to religion, despite the antagonism toward religion during the Soviet Union years.