for as big of a city with a rich history extending to the byzantine era, it's an easy city to cover in a few days. i imagine much has been destroyed or changed over the years. so here are the things we did and our opinions on "was it worth our time." as the sights are quickly covered, this is clearly a place to experience the culture.
it's a HUGE, sprawling city so be prepared the walk and metro (tube) it. taxis charge rates based on zone, min 500 roubles.
kremlin - the fortified grounds are far bigger with many more purposes than we thought. well worth the admission ticket. state armory rivaled the tower of london's crown jewels. maybe not as condensed and presented as nice, but as a whole, one of the more striking memories of our sightseeing in europe. check out tsarina natalia's gold/bejeweled bible commissioned as a gift to the church. cameras not allowed :( unfortunately, didn't get to see the diamond fund. separate admission fee AND specific admission times marked when you arrive there.
bolshoi (ballet) - do it and hopefully when you're there, the bolshoi theatre will be done with renovations. we didn't actually see the performance in the historic building :( some say other troupes are better but come on, it's the bolshoi. it's like going to broadway and catching a show. it's moscow/st petersburg tradition (note: stp's troupe is mariinsky, currently on a worldwide tour.) it was jason's first and to his surprise, he likes it...and much more compared to musicals.
river cruise at the radisson - i thought it was lovely on a hot summer day as the breeze kept it light but the sun was a welcomed stranger on my skin. jason also took the cruise on a weekday evening and thought, like rome, the city is prettier at night with the lights framing bridges and buildings.
red square - as an alumni of the university of washington, i was really surprised that moscow's red square is made of grey stone. the red reference was way before the communist period of the 20th century. in russian, "red" and "beautiful" sound similar.
st basil's - we didn't go in...iconic and a marked moment in my life to be able to see it in person.
GUM - same western stores you can find anywhere else but at a huge mark-up. AC is like a puff and considerably neutralized since the glass ceiling creates a greenhouse environment during the summer. i'm sure the natural light is really welcome in the winter.