‘Kremlin’ means ‘fortress’ and there has been one on Borvitsky Hill imposing itself over Moscow since the 12th century. As the seat of Russian power, it is steeped in history and shrouded in mystery. All the tsars were crowned here and Napoleon rode through the gates, although he did not stay long! From its portals Ivan the Terrible and Stalin managed their reigns of terror and today the President lives here.
The Kremlin is full of churches since it was not only the seat of political power but also, pre-1917, the seat of religious power. Don’t miss the Assumption Cathedral, the Great Bell Tower, the Tsar Cannon and Tsar Bell. The Armoury contains everything from the Tsarist wardrobes to their imperial silver and Fabergé eggs. The Diamond Fund Exhibiton is a must – how could you miss Catherine the Great’s 190-carat diamond?
You’ll require at least half a day, and possibly longer, as there is so much to see. Informative freelance guides can also be found lurking outside the ticket office. Ticket prices vary depending on the extent of your visit, but expect to pay 300 roubles for the cathedrals and a further 350 roubles for the Armoury and Diamond Fund.