Gorky Park, or Gorky Central Park of Culture and Leisure, provides a great day out. In winter, go skating on its frozen pond. In summer, picnic on its grassy lawns. Like Central Park in New York or Hyde Park in London, it is a green haven beloved by city residents. Put aside at least an afternoon to explore the park.
First appearing on the Moskva riverbank in 1928, Gorky Park became a model for the typical USSR theme park. It is also the location featured in crime author Martin Cruz Smith’s Gorky Park and the setting for the subsequent film. In the late 20th century, it became dilapidated and rather undesirable, but has undergone extensive renovations since then. Come here today to admire its successful transformation.
Bring the kids to the fantastic playground for some thrills. A dream world for children, it contains a selection of intriguing objects to play on, including a sunken ship, a moon and a lighthouse, each equipped with activity features, such as climbing pegs, slides and ropes. Try bungee jumping. For something tamer, go boating or horseback riding.
After all the activity, stroll in the park’s traditional gardens. This area was once called Golitsynskiy and Neskuchniy Gardens and has some of the city’s oldest cultivated green spaces. It retains the charm of bygone days with quaint bridges and buildings, including homes designed by renowned Russian architect Mikhail Kazakov. Choose a spot to relax for the afternoon, bring a picnic and stay current with news from back home using the park’s WiFi.
Bask in the sun on Gorky Park’s beach during the summer season or watch a film at the park’s outdoor cinema. In winter, rent skates and glide across the huge ice rink.
Gorky Park is free to enter, but has charges for some of its attractions. It is open every day. To get here, take the metro to Oktybryskaya station.