On City Day, more than 880,000 people in Moscow visited the main expositions and took part in various free tours offered by Moscow museums supervised by the Moscow Department of Culture.
The Moscow State Integrated Museum Reserve of Art and Historical Architectural and Natural Landscape, which oversees Kolomenkoye, Lyublino and Izmailovo museum reserves, topped the ranking of the most popular cultural landmarks during this year’s City Day with more than 250,000 visitors.
Other popular destinations on City Day included the Tsaritsyno State Museum Reserve (more than 240,000 visitors), Kuskovo Estate (more than 55,000 visitors), the Museum of Moscow (more than 40,000 visitors) and the Museum of Cosmonautics (more than 16,000 visitors).
“Cultural venues are gaining popularity by the year as more and more people decide to spend their free time visiting museums or exhibitions or taking walking tours. This year, more than 880,000 people visited museums affiliated with the Department of Culture on City Day, almost double compared to last year, when more than 470,000 people attended cultural events,” General Director of the Moscow Agency for Recreation and Tourism (Mosgortur) Vasily Ovchinnikov said.
As many as 80 museums and galleries in Moscow offered free admission between 8 and 9 September to mark Moscow’s 871st anniversary, and in some of them there were expositions dedicated to the city. Visitors were asked to take a free pass at the ticket office in order to enter these museums.
In addition to this, more than 150 free tours were on offer during City Day celebrations on 8 and 9 September. The Moscow Department of Culture and Mosgortur released maps showing routes linking the most interesting exhibitions in Moscow museums. Three walking tours were developed for the occasion: Poets and Writers, Architecture and Sculpture, and An Artist, A Composer and Art Patrons.
City Day celebrations were not limited only to museums, spilling over into the streets. For example, Tverskaya Street offered a stage to a number of performances on Moscow, a steel ball motorcycle show and performances given by acrobats. People were also invited to take part in various workshops.
To get home after City Day celebrations, people could use the metro and the Moscow Central Circle, which worked round-the-clock on 8 September. On this day, there were more than 5.7 million passengers using this form of public transport, up one third compared to an ordinary weekend.
Stations in the city centre and near the main attractions saw the biggest influx of passengers. The most popular stations were Okhotny Ryad, Kitai-Gorod and Ploshchad Revolyutsii with 93,800, 86,700 and 83,900 passengers, respectively.
This year, City Day celebrations took place in almost every Moscow courtyard. Markets were set up as part of the Flower Jam festival, alongside chalets with barbecues plus masses of other food to eat on the go. Youngsters could take part in flower arranging workshops, play hockey-inspired games, shoot with a slingshot, have their faces painted and engage in many other fun activities. A flowerbed competition was open to any amateur gardeners, challenging individual contestants or teams to design a masterpiece under the guidance of professionals.