We’ve now settled in Nizhny Novgorod for a couple days, our first real stop in European Russia. Since entering Russia from Mongolia, we’ve spent 134 hours on the train and crossed 5 time zones to make it to this ancient city, just a few hours east of Moscow.
Nizhny is a beautiful city with a stunning kremlin (a heavily fortified compound, central to many historic Russian cities) overlooking the confluence of the Oka and Volga rivers. The city boasts lots of beautiful architecture, a lively pedestrian zone full of restaurants and bars, and some beautiful old monasteries and churches. The space inside the kremlin is like a city unto itself, filled with city administrative buildings, museums, monuments, and peaceful parks.
Last night we found a great cocktail bar called Franky. The bartenders knew all the intricacies of cranking out beautiful classic cocktails, so we couldn’t help but have a couple perfectly crafted Negronis.
Tomorrow we’ll complete the last short leg of our Trans Siberian journey from Beijing to Moscow. After so much travel and so many short stays (two days here, a night on the train, two days there, one day here, another night on the train), we’ll be very glad to settle into the big city for a few days. We’re determined to do less moving around in the future.
After Moscow, we’ll travel on to St. Petersburg, where we will meet up with my parents for a few days — the first time we’ll see people we know since leaving San Francisco five weeks before! They will have spent the previous week traveling by river from Moscow, which we can’t wait to hear about.