The Moscow Planetarium is an exciting experience for anyone with an interest in science and the stars. It features many exhibits and has separate museums and interactive halls. There you can see physical representations of how light bends, or displays showing Earth’s magnetic field. Their collection of telescopes throughout history is really impressive and well displayed, and there is an entire section devoted to Galileo and his findings. They have a huge collection of meteors, and they even allow you to touch some that are boulder-sized!
There are so many options, and you must purchase separate tickets to various parts of the planetarium. At first glance it can be intimidating to decide what to see. I recommend seeing a “star show” in the Grand Star Hall “Большой Звёздный Зал” (about 400 rubles with your student card.) When you purchase a ticket to this show, it includes the two main areas of the museum “Урании,” with the displays I mentioned, and after the show you are free to wander on the observation deck, the “Астроплощадка.” There you can leisurely relax and see over the top of Moscow, view the 7 sister building nearby, and walk around life-sized sun dials. They even have a small “Stonehenge” which shows how the formation may have been aligned with the movements of cosmic bodies.
The Grand Star Hall is really the main attraction, though they have a 4D theater and a small theater that seems to be geared towards children. The offerings for star shows were really amazing. I saw “Super Volcanoes” which was truly visually amazing. There were also titles like “Black Holes,” “Stars of Love,” “Earth in Motion,” and “Journey through the Stars.” They also offer a Pink Floyd show in English on certain nights. The “Super Volcanoes” showing included a miniature star show, which talked about the night sky of Russia and some of the celestial happenings that were coming this summer. We also learned about the capabilities of the projector, which is a technical wonder.
The planetarium also offers an interactive museum, the “Лунариум,” for another 300 rubles. Some of the regular planetarium features are here, like the static electricity ball, and wind funnels, but you can also go inside the cockpit of a rocket ship. On the main floor there is a souvenir shop with lots of cool activity books and games. There are a few cafes where you can have a sit-down lunch or coffee. It seems to be designed especially for kids, but is still interesting for adults.
It’s possible to see multiple shows, but the ticket I described will keep your scientific mind occupied for hours! It’s a great way to spend the day.
The Moscow Planetarium/Планетарий Москвы
Sadovaya-Kudrinskaya ulitsa, 5, Moscow
Open 10:00-21:00, Closed Tuesdays
Tickets range from 450 rubles-700 rubles
Sarah Parker is a University of Utah student working on an undergraduate in Business Operations with a minor in Russian Language. After The School of Russian and Asian Studies’ Russian as Second Language program in 2014, she will complete her degree and begin work on her career goal of increasing commercial trade between Russia and the Americas. She is seen here being chased by a bear near Pavlovsk.