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Moscow Ideas

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Feb 12th, 2013, 07:47 PM
  #1
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Moscow Ideas

Does anyone have any idea what can be done with a long flight stopover in Moscow. Perhaps not enough time to do anything but... the plane lands in Sheremetyevo at 5ish pm on a Saturday night and the next leg leaves at either 10am or 3pm on Sunday. I'm sure the 10am flight would leave us no time to do anything. It's an international flight to the US. As for the 3pm, would it be worthwhile paying for a hotel for the night. Could you see anything worthwhile or is everything closed on a Sunday morning? We've never been to Russia. Just curious if it might be a fun stopover or not worth the trouble.
long2travel is offline  
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Feb 13th, 2013, 10:23 AM
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If it were me, I wouldn't do it for a few reasons. First, you need a visa to leave the airport. It may not be worth the hassle and costs to get one just for a night. Second, the airport is somewhat out of the city and traffic to and from is generally pretty awful. You could get stuck in traffic and miss your flight. Third, hotels in Moscow are generally very expensive, again, it may not be worth the expense.

Also not sure what is worth seeing in such a short amount of time. I guess you could wander into Lenin's Tomb (which takes all of 2 minutes to walk through) and see Red Square, view the outside of the Bolshoi Theater, things like that. However, I don't think seeing those things are worth the hassle of leaving the airport. Of all the reasons listed above, my biggest concern would be getting back to the airport in time to catch my flight. I can't stress enough how bad traffic can be in Moscow.

Moscow is an amazing city - I recommend going there on a trip one day. I would skip it this time around.
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Feb 13th, 2013, 10:26 AM
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Probably true about leaving the airport, but I think the view of St. Basil's and the Kremlin in Red Square is pretty incredible.
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Feb 13th, 2013, 12:03 PM
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No one enters Russia without a visa (unless from the countries that are exempt and the US is not one of them).

Transit visas are valid for 72 hours and are much easier & cheaper to obtain than the usual tourist or business visa. There is a train transfer to the old Belorussky railway station from the airport and you can take the metro to Red Square which is a short distance from there, train leaves every half hour and takes half an hour. If you are considering a taxi, you are returning on a Sunday, which does have traffic but is usually traffic coming into Moscow from the countryside, where people have spent the weekend.

I would do it just to have a glimpse of Red Square from Resurrection Gate, with St Basil's in the distance. It is totally worth the effort of seeing that and having a great meal and staying one night in a hotel IMO.
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Feb 13th, 2013, 03:05 PM
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I would love to get a glimpse of Red Square! Do you get the transit Visa in the airport or before hand?

Not sure yet but there's a chance the layover could switch to being very short, from 5am to 10am Sunday morning. I guess it would be too short a time frame to see anything, even a taxi ride to Red Square.
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Feb 13th, 2013, 03:22 PM
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Beforehand definitely. You cannot get a visa on arrival in Russia. I'm not sure if I gave correct info on the visa fee, it might not be cheaper than a normal single entry tourist visa, however it is easier to obtain as you don't need an invitation. I couldn't see a separate price.

http://www.ruscon.org/visa_dep_eng.html

If the layover is 5am to 10am, I think that is too risky to leave the airport.
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