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“Want to talk about Russian history? Got a Millennium?” – Anthony Bordain, TV show host: No Reservations.

Russia‘s history is overflowing with revolutions, wars, change, as well as incredible achievements in science, technology, art, sport and literature. And its capital, Moscow, has always been at the forefront of it all.

I was born in Moscow, but my parents moved a lot for work and so, I spent part of my childhood in Kishinev (Chisinau), Moldova, and Odessa, Ukraine. However, I always maintained close ties with Moscow.

My aunt lived on famous Tverskaya Ulitsa (Tverskaya Street), Moscow’s principal street starting at the Kremlin Wall and Red Square and stretching all the way to the outskirts, where it would become the highway to St. Petersburg. Lined with posh hotels, restaurants and homes of the rich, it was the street used by the Russian Tsars and dignitaries on their visits to Moscow. More about Tverskaya here.

In GOLD TRAIN, Jade Snow walks along the “always noisy Tverskaya Street,” until she makes a sudden turn onto a quiet alley, leading to the fateful encounter with a mysterious and handsome stranger which would forever change her life.

Upon arrival, Jade and her Russian journalist friend Svetlana take a tour of Moscow, including the Red Square, complete with Lenin’s Mausoleum (above).

Above: The iconic St. Basil’s Cathedral on Red Square. The most photographed building in the world.

Above: One of the Golden-domed Kremlin cathedrals.

Above: Russian Tsars’ crowns and scepters adorned with priceless furs, rubies, emeralds and sapphires. From the Kremlin’s Armory exhibit.

Above: Alexander Gardens by the Kremlin Wall, named after Russia’s Emperor Alexander.

Above: Spasskaya Tower with its famous clock. Kremlin’s main tower.

Above: New Year’s on Red Square.

Above: British Buckingham Palace Guards marching in the Victory Day Parade, May 9th, Red Square.

Below: For the winter months, part of the Red Square turns into the giant skating rink. Here you can skate to your heart’s desire, while enjoying some of the most dramatic and magnificent views in the world.

Together with Svetlana, Jade also visits Moscow’s pedestrian artists’ district, called Arbat.

It is here, on Arbat, that Jade hears the strange and disturbing predictions of the clairvoyant Gypsy, Rada. These predictions will set the wheels of Gold Train’s fast-paced action into motion.

Above: historic pedestrian street Arbat.

Alone in the unfamiliar country, Jade unwittingly finds herself embroiled in the net of lies, glamour, intrigue and alien ideals. In fact, she becomes so popular that it may be hazardous to her health. And Jade deals with this unwanted and dangerous popularity in the way that is guaranteed to surprise even the most seasoned reader!

Above, the FSB Building (former KGB), the infamous Lubyanka, which plays no small part in the book.

Later, Jade and Alexei take a stroll in the ancient city’s new attraction, the Sculpture Park, where scores of Soviet statues, monuments and plaques, complete with the statue of the KGB’s infamous first boss, Felix Dzerzhinsky, have found their final resting place.

In Gold Train, Jade says: “Moscow was indeed the city of contrasts. Noisy and quiet, in your face and retrospective, old and new – all at the same time.”

More views of Moscow – old and new, noisy and quiet – all at the same time:

Above and below: Modern Moscow.

Below: Beautiful Novodevichy Convent, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Below: Moskva River.

Below: The famous main building of Moscow University.

Below: The Friendship Fountain, The historic All-Russia Exibition Center, formerly VDNKH (USSR).

Famous Bolshoi Theater, which just re-opened after a major renovation.

Bolshoi Ballet.

Dancing in Alexander Gardens

Moscow has so many facets and attractions, that all I can do here is barely scratch the surface. But I hope you enjoyed this post and I hope it will come handy when you decide to visit Moscow. :)

Companion posts:

GOLD TRAIN: Amazing Russian Metro

GOLD TRAIN: the World of Russian Trains and My Childhood Memories

GOLD TRAIN: Meet Jade Snow, heroine of the Accidental Spy Series

GOLD TRAIN: Who is this mysterious Alexei?

Buy GOLD TRAIN (Accidental Spy Russia Adventure) ebook & paperback!

GOLD GT COVER ebook

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More about Books by Lada Ray