Russia - Red square and the Kremlin
Wow! What a day. It is now 1am and we are in Moscow.
Our hotel has 5 thousand rooms and is literally a stones throw from the Kremlin! With the UK 3-hours behind we have just called our parents from the very centre of Red Square – cool or what!?
We had left Vologda at around 10 am and with the exception of food and fuel breaks rode non-stop to Moscow. We had arrived in Moscow at around 7pm to catch the tale-end of rush hour. Everybody had advised us not to ride in Moscow and although a little worrying at first, to be honest we had not found it as bad as we’d anticipated. Unsure as to where we were heading we made our way (as you do!) to the Kremlin.
After several wrong turns we found ourselves at the end of a road indicating we could only go left – as we looked across and to our right we noticed some glorious buildings and a large open expanse – bloody hell – we’d just ridden past the Kremlin and onto Red Square by accident!! Two guards rapidly headed over to us shouting things in Russian. We think they weren’t that happy with the fact that we had parked up...well...we were lost so had to stop somewhere ....and it had been a large open empty space! Eerr.... there was a reason for that as we now realised...Opps! Needless to say we swiftly moved on.
However, directly ahead of us we saw the aptly named Hotel Russyia and parking our bikes in front of the main entrance we very quickly attracted an audience. Hot and tired as we were it was easy to make new friends and answer the many questions as to where had we come from, what had we seen, where are we going etc. Some while later we were booked into our hotel at a cost of approximately £40 per night and although a large part of our daily budget, considering its location and the secure parking offered for the bikes, we both agreed the price was justified.
Getting our really dirty bike kit up to our room on the 7th floor was a bit of a marathon but with Red Square so close and an evening walk beckoning we found the much-needed extra reserves of energy needed to ‘’lug’ the bags around.
Walking onto Red Square this evening had been an almost surreal experience. Looking around we saw things that were familiar but things that we had only ever seen on TV in the news and in films....and now, here we were. Red square is massive. We walked past Lenin's tomb – craned our necks up at the wonderful St Basil's towers – stared at the huge walls of the Kremlin – and then rang our parents regardless of the time! Well we just wanted to share this amazing time with the people we love.