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What to Do in Moscow During the Day

ST BASIL’S CATHEDRAL

Perhaps the most striking and instantly recognizable of all of Russia’s monuments, the Cathedral of Intercession of the Virgin on the Moat, or as it is better known, St Basil’s Cathedral, is a true architectural marvel.

Commissioned by Ivan the Terrible to mark the capture of Kazan from Mongol forces, the cathedral has stood at the edge of Moscow’s Red Square since 1561. Urban folklore suggests that Ivan was so pleased with the architects’ work that he arranged for them to be brutally blinded, so that they would never create anything to rival the Cathedral. St. Basil’s has undergone several changes throughout its history, the most famous addition being the brightly painted onion-shaped domes. Visitors can go inside but St. Basil’s is best viewed from outside in Red Square, especially in the evening, when its amazing colors are brightly illuminated against the night sky.

4 Krasnaya Ploshchad