I think there is no better way to spend your summer mornings in Moscow than walking around and enjoying the sunshine and the many parks it has to offer. The parks were all filled with brightly coloured flowers and loads of people also out to soak up the sunshine.
My first visit to Tsaritsyno Park was with my friend Judith for her birthday!!
Tsaritsyno Park and Estate is located in the South-East of Moscow and I couldn’t believe we were still in the city after we entered the park. It was quiet and peaceful, a quiet haven away from the busy city. While I can’t say much about that neighborhood, the park itself is a real beauty with a rich historic legacy.
We had a stroll through the huge park, all around the lake and then sat down on a lovely grassy spot for the afternoon.
We had packed a picnic and enjoyed the sunny day by having some Russian vodka and blowing bubbles!
On my next visit to the park I actually went and explored the whole estate and walked around the palace buildings. It was late summer by then so I had to make the most of the little bit of sunshine that was left before the long cold Russian winter arrived.
As I entered the park the smell of flowers and the sound of the big water fountains gave it an eerily tranquil feel even though the park was filled with people.
I bought an ice-cream at one of the carts and sat next to the big fountain eating it while watching the people around me.
In 1775, the estate was bought by Empress Catherine the Great, and named Tsaritsyno, which means “Tsarina’s” (Queens). In 1776-85 architect Vasili Bazhenov built a new palace for the Empress here, but in 1786 Catherine ordered it to be partly pulled down.
Until 1797 architect Matvey Kazakov was working on the construction, but the palace remained unfinished. The palace was then left in ruins but restored in 1984 and is now a very popular tourist attraction.
I crossed the bridge and walked through a beautiful archway to enter the palace grounds. On my left was the huge palace and on my right a tiny blue church. The little church was quite plain on the outside but true to Russia it was filled with gold and icons on the inside.
I strolled past the palace and into the forest behind it where I found a number of pavilions, artificial grottos, decorative bridges and even a green house.
My favourite part about the forest was watching and feeding some of the parks many squirrels. I do love watching them although I am a bit scared to actually reach out and touch one, what if it actually bites?