Moscow Layover Guide (SVO)
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Tours/To do | Relax/Sleep | Internet/SIM | Transport | Storage | Money
Sheremetyevo Alexander S. Pushkin International Airport (SVO) is one of the 4 major airports serving Moscow, the capital of Russia. The airport is situated in the city of Khimki, Moscow Oblast and it is located 29 km (18 mi) from central Moscow. The airport has had international flights since it opened officially as a civilian airport in 1959. Moscow is the most populous city of Russia, known for its wealth, tourism, history, architecture, UNESCO World Heritage Sites and serves as the cultural, scientific and financial centre.
Can you leave Moscow Airport (SVO) airport during a layover? Do you need a visa?
It's possible to leave Moscow airport during a layover. However, you would need a visa depending on your nationality to pass through immigration and customs control. (more info).
Tours, Things to do, Sightseeing
St. Basil’s Cathedral and Red Square
Probe the glory of the famed St. Basil’s Cathedral in the heart of the city and learn the history of the great Red Square. Your tour begins at the 16th Century St. Basil’s Cathedral with a guide that lectures on the origin of the site and various historical events attached to them. Recorded as one of the oldest church buildings in Russia, the Cathedral was built under the rule of Ivan The Terrible and is shaped in the form of a bonfire flame rising to the sky and remains a symbol of Russian. The building now serves as a Museum Of Religion with a ban on church services. The Red Square is a large stretch of cobblestone square in central Moscow formerly used as parade grounds by the Soviet Union encompassed by the beautiful architectures of the Kremlin, the St. Basil’s Cathedral, the State History Museum and other marvels. The Lobnoye Mesto where several high profile public executions were carried out. » book this tour
The Grand Kremlin Palace
Explore the highly revered presidential palace of Russia. Learn how important the various monuments and landmarks are important to the history of Russia on a private tour of the palace in the city of Moscow. As part of your tour package, a guide takes you through the exquisite halls and towers of The Kremlin which at a time during the 17th – 20th century was residential to the Tsars and the royal family and the famed Ivan The Terrible, all of which’s history and more you’ll learn from your guide as you’re taken through the palace from the Kutafya Tower through to the Palace Of Facets and led to see the never-rung Tsar Bell, the largest in the world and as per the Guinness Book Of Records the largest cannon in the world, Tsar Cannon. » book this tour
Moscow: Metro & The State Tretyakov Art Gallery Tour
Admire the art-adorned famous Moscow Metro Station and explore a vast collection of classical Russian art at the State Tretyakov Art Gallery. The breath-taking marble halls of the Moscow Metro Stations are adorned with beautiful mosaic artworks. Chandeliers and intricate architecture enough to pass for a palace which indeed is known to the locals as the “People’s Palace” when it was opened in 1935. Included in your tour after seeing the beautifully designed Metro Stations is a visit to Tretyakov, one of the largest in the country which houses a vast collection of classical Russian art, sculptures and the famous 15th century icon The Trinity by Andrei Rublev. Founded in 1856 the gallery boasts of a range of 130,000 collections in its exhibit. » book this tour
Things to do / Sightseeing
With a touch of distinct architectural design, the 127-year-old GUM (abbreviation) known as the State Department Store during the Soviet era facing the Red Square, functions now as a shopping mall that houses about 150 shops where you can find any luxury brand, gourmet food just to name a few. It is the largest department store in Russia and with its ornate interior has become a tourist attraction. Fun Fact: It contains a historical luxury soviet era toilet.
Time required: Full Day.
Airport to here: Trip takes 34 minutes to make via taxi and an 1 hour via public transport.
The Moscow Kremlin
The Kremlin which translates “fortress inside a city” is an ancient fortified complex settled in the center of the city. As one of the largest fortresses in Europe, it has a host of five palaces, four cathedrals and 20 towers. The Grand Kremlin Palace, which is within the complex, was residence to the Tsar’s and houses two of the world’s largest monuments, the never shot Tsar Cannon and the never rung Tsar Bell mainly consisting of copper and also gold. The peak of the towers has ruby stars placed on them, believed to possess powerful energy. The Kremlin currently serves as residence to the President of Russia.
Time required: 2 hours minimum, 4 hours maximum to explore.
Airport to here: At least 28 minutes via taxi and an hour by bus.
Central House Of Artists
For most contemporary art lovers, this is one of the most and best places to visit in Moscow. The Central House Of Houses is the largest Russian exhibition complex and features a largely early 20th-century collection of modern Russian art, exquisite Soviet art collection and a sculpture garden with Soviet-era sculptures. CHA hosts 300 annual local and international exhibitions, film festivals and serves as a great spot for socialization for people of all ages.
Time required: Full day.
Airport to here: 40 minutes via taxi and an hour via public transportation.
The UNESCO listed World Heritage Red Square surrounded by exemplary architecture is by far Russia’s most historically significant places to visit. It’s grounds for the colorful famous St. Basil’s Cathedral, the GUM and the brick platform on which executions ordered by Ivan The Terrible were carried out called the Lobnoye Mesto and Lenin’s Mausoleum just to name a few. The body of Soviet Union Dictator, Vladimir Lenin is displayed in a granite tomb at the Red Square, since 1930.
Time required: Full Day.
Airport to here: Trip takes 33 minutes by taxi and an hour by public transport.
The Moscow Metro
The city of Moscow proves to be one of alluring grandeur, architectural design and the extravagant Metro Station proves it quite precisely. Covered with ornate walls and earning the title ‘People’s Palace’, has become a tourist attraction on its own and has 232 stations. It generally has a classical aesthetic beauty for stunning photographic experiences and many of them feature bursts of Soviet leaders. The Sportivnaya station houses The Museum Of The Moscow Metro where a collection of interesting models of trains can be found.
Time required: Full day.
Airport to here: This will depend solely on which of the stations is preferred to visit as there is a several of them.
State Historical Museum
The museum, on the Red Square houses a vast collection of Russian history in antiquity (including the 17-19th century) and holds exhibitions to display them. For a better understanding of Russian history a tour of the Museum is requisite.
Time required: Full day.
Airport to here: 35 minutes via taxi and an hour via public transport.
How about a stroll through a tranquil garden with beautiful views of the city, landscape designs, ornamented colorful flower beds, Russian fairy tale and water figures and a vast variety of artistic monuments from different eras like the Romanov Obelisk.The Alexander Garden along the Kremlin walls was founded in 1821 to celebrate Russia’s victory over Napoleon forces is the city’s first public park and links the Red Square and The Kremlin.
Time required: A couple relaxing hours will do.
Airport to here: 36 minute drive via taxi and an hour via public transport.
A free to visit green space that features a floating bridge with a view of The Kremlin insight, a food court that highlights Russian cuisine and a simulated flight over Moscow created by way of a collection of footages, an interactive theme park ride that tours the city of Moscow. Another alluring space for a great photographic and leisure experience in the city of Moscow.
Time required: You’ll need at least 2-3 hours to explore.
Airport to here: 37 minutes via taxi and an hour via public transport.
Relaxing and Sleeping
Airport Lounges and Relaxing
There are several lounges in each terminal. » view all lounges or buy a lounge pass or membership online
Hotel and Sleeping
There are many options for hotels close to the airport as well as transit hotels in the airport found in the transit areas of Terminal D and E. » view all or book an airport hotel online
Rest Area and Sleeping in Airport
There are no designated rest zones within the airport.
WIFI/Internet and SIM Card
WIFI/Internet: Free WiFi is available at Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport, but you must connect to the Wi-Fi network via call or text.
SIM Card: There are several shops within the airport that sell SIM cards. » buy a global sim card for Moscow, Russia that you can use for other countries as well!
Transportation to/from airport
Taxi: Licensed taxis are readily available outside of the 1st floor of the Arrivals hall.
Train: The Union Pearson Express is an express train that runs between the airport and downtown in just 25 minutes. (more info).
Bus: There are buses that connect the airport with Moscow’s extensive transport network. (more info).
Shuttle: There are hotel and private shuttle services at the airport.
Car rentals: Offices of rental operators are located on the 1st floor of Terminal D » view available cars or rent a car now online
Parking: A safe and secure parking facility is available. You can book your parking slot online.
Luggage Storage & Lockers
24-hour Luggage offices can be found on the landside of every Terminal. » book a luggage storage or locker at Moscow Airport (SVO) online (subject to availability).