ВДНХ + Cosmonaut Exhibition

Cosmonaut Exposition


It was an early September day when I first came across these to sites. Just a day before, I didn't even know they existed, but a local friend, Anya, suggested we meet up there for the day. She told me to look for the statue of a rocket going into the sky and said that is where I'd find her. Not knowing if it would be something difficult to spot, I agreed and hoped out for the best. As it turned out, there wasn't so much difficulty.

Away from the busy center and urban sky scrapers, the Cosmonaut Exhibition stands in a large, open area. Alongside the giant structure imaged above, there are several other features, including head busts of the first man (Yuri Gagarin) and woman (Valentina Tereschkova) in space. Even some of the space shuttles that went into orbit can actually be seen at the base of the statue complex. Plus all of this is above the Cosmonaut Museum, which is regularly open to the public and features a very important time in Soviet History.



Anyway, that informational tangent aside, Anya and I didn't go into the museum that day. Instead we walked past the exhibition to the giant park behind it. Named ВДНХ (also located at the appropriately named ВДНХ metro stop), the park greeted us with a large, granduous columned gateway. Inside, everything was incredibly lively. Small food shops and well maintained gardens lined the walkway as numerous exhibitions were taking place. One in particular involved a large group of people putting together a house mad out of cardboard. It got our attention, so naturally we got involved.


Alongside that, there were tons of monuments and fountains dating back from the Soviet era, each being a tribute to one of the republics. The park continued to stretch back, with more stages for performances and monuments here and there, but eventually they stopped and the parked turned into a forest with pathways and trails. Human construction stopped and nature took over. I later went on to visit the place throughout the year, and whatever the season, there was always something going on. Personally, now, I recommend winter because they open up a large ice skating rink in the center that's open for the public.