Today was a free day in which we were able to create our own programs and see the parts of Moscow that fascinated us the most. Some of us visited the old courtyards in Moscow’s Great Possad (Великий Посад or Китай Город). One can reach the famous Kremlin (Кремль) from Great Possad by crossing through the adjacent Red Square (Красная Площадь).
Some students visited Izmailovo Market (Измайлово Рынок), the famous destination in which one can purchase authentic Russian souvenirs. Some of us also visited this location on Saturday. Russian vendors have sold their wares at Izmailovo Market since the seventeenth century, and tourists often visit this locations to score deals on fur hats, hand-painted matrioshka dolls (матрёшки), and even old Soviet posters and military uniforms
Another location visited today was one of the three Pushkin museums in Moscow: the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts. This particular museum features 19th and 20th century art from Europe and the United States. Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, Marc Chagall, and other eminent artists’ works were featured here. French, Greek, Italian, and other countries of origin can be found in this museum.
A final place we saw was the Borodino Battle Museum Panorama, which commemorates the crucial 1812 victory of the Russian army over the Emperor Napoleon’s forces. During the battle, the Russians burned down Moscow and the French were forced to retreat in the midst of a harsh Russian winter. The panorama was painted by Russian battle painter Franz Roubaud in 1912. The panorama is seen inside the museum, which has a cylindrical shape.
We ate our later meals near our dormitory. Most of us ate at the nearby pizzeria, which features succulent desserts and one of America’s favorite foods with a Russian twist in a pleasant atmosphere. One of our students brought a Russian friend so he could practice his English with us. It was quite a nice experience!