The military history of Russia starts with the first people to establish settlements, the Rus', who built Kiev, the Mongol invasion, the numerous wars against Turkey, Poland, Sweden, the Seven Years' War, France (especially the Napoleonic Wars), the Crimean War. The 20th century saw two world wars and the Cold War. Since then Russia has always been a strongly developed country of a military power. Whether you are interested in a military history or in a modern military industry you will find numerous inspiring objects here in Russia to visit.
In Moscow we may offer to you the following sights to visit:
The Central Air Force Museum, housed at Monino Airfield, 40 km east of Moscow, Russia, is one of the world's largest aviation museums, and the largest for Russian aircraft. 173 aircraft and 127 aircraft engines are on display, and the museum also features collections of weapons, instruments, uniforms, other Cold War-era US spy equipment, artwork, and other air-related items.
The Kubinka Tank Museum is a museum of armoured fighting vehicles in Kubinka, Moscow region. The museum consists of open and covered exhibition of many famous tanks and armored vehicles throughout the 20th century. Most of its displays in the museum were derived from the research collection of the still-functioning Kubinka armour testing and proofing ground. Most Cold War-era Western tanks were war trophies from Middle East, Africa, Vietnam and Latin America, sent to the armor test facility to test for weaknesses. Due to its secretive history as well as its close relationship with the army, the museum is still staffed entirely by Russian army personnel today.
Central Museum of the Armed Forces - one of the largest military-historical museums in the world. It was founded in December 1919. Over its history the museum has managed to accumulate the most prominent and important military relics of the Soviet period, creating a record of its military past. In total more than seven hundred thousand individual exhibits are now stored at the museum. The most valuable are displayed in the 25 halls of the main building. A special display is dedicated to the Soviet involvement in Afghanistan and recent combat operations in Chechnya.
Several museums are dedicated to exact wars of our history:
Borodino Battle Museum is dedicated to Napoleonic War of 1812. The highlight of the museum exposition is the panorama Borodino painted by an outstanding Russian artist Franz Roubaud. Canvas (115 meters in length and 15 meters in height) depicts the decisive episode of the battle between the Russian and French armies near Borodino village on September 7, 1812. Franz Roubaud presented the high point of the battle when "all the infantry, cavalry and artillery were fighting desperately".
Victory Park and Second World War Museum – Memorial of Victory in Great Patriotic War 1941-1945.
In the center of the museum is the Hall of Glory, a white marble room which features the names of over 11,800 of the recipients of the Hero of the Soviet Union distinction. Below lies the Hall of Remembrance and Sorrow, which honors Soviet people who died in the war. This room is dimly lit and strings of glass beads hang from the ceiling, symbolizing tears shed for the dead.
The museum is set in Victory Park, a 2,424-hectare park on Poklonnaya Hill. The park features a large, paved plaza, fountains, and open space where military vehicles, cannons, and other apparatus from World War II are displayed. Also in the park are the Holocaust Memorial Synagogue, the Church of St. George, the Moscow Memorial Mosque, a triumphal arch, an obelisk, and a number of sculptures.
Museum of Cold War / Cold War Bunker is a once-secret military complex, bunker, and Spare Long-Range Aviation Command Post. It has an area of 7,000 square metres (75,000 sq ft) and is situated at a depth of 65 metres (213 ft) below ground. Up to 3,000 people could live and work there for 90 days without assistance from the outside world, thanks to stores of food and medicine, an air recycling system and diesel generators.
St. Petersburg disposes of less number of military objects. Main of them are:
Monument to the Heroic Defenders of Leningrad is the focal point of Ploschad Pobedy (Victory Square) and is hard to miss on the main road from St. Petersburg's international airport. Inside the monument, in a vast underground memorial hall, there is an exhibition devoted to the Siege. The external wall of the monument is decorated with a freeze of sculptures representing the soldiers, sailors and civilians who did not surrender to the Nazis despite hunger, cold and the dangers of constant enemy bombardment.
The Central Navy Museum tells the fascinating story of the development, growth and achievements of the Russian navy. The pride of the museum has to be the boat of Peter the Great, known as the "Grandfather of the Russian Navy". It was on this very boat that Peter learned to sail as a teenager and acquired his fascination for the sea, sea faring and shipbuilding.
Museum of Artillery, Engineers and Signals is a great place to visit with your kids, who will love the open-air exhibition of artillery and missile launchers in the museum's courtyard. Inside the museum displays a rather old-fashioned collection of military memorabilia, temporary exhibitions, a nice little shop stocked with models of weapons and miniature soldiers and a cafe.