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Moscow Arthur Lookyanov
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Patriarch releasing two doves

Patriarch releasing two doves

On April 7th, the holiday of Annunciation of the Mother of God, I organized for my Australian clients a special tour to the Grand Kremlin and Faceted palaces on the first half of the day and after this tour we planned to see cathedrals and Armory museum of the Moscow Kremlin. For a while I was waiting for my clients from this special tour, so I decided to hang around the grounds of the Kremlin to take some interesting pictures by my new camera, I had about 1.5 hours for it and actually this time passed very quick - it was really nice warm sunny day, I can say that my clients from Australia were very lucky with weather, they were the first sunny spring days.

Walking around the Cathedrals Square (the main square of Moscow Kremlin) I noted several camera crews and journalists nearby Annunciation Cathedral and had a thought that something important was going on there... After taking some interesting shots within an hour I returned back to the Cathedrals Square to meet my clients from the special tour and I was greatly impressed by amount of people and security surrounding the Cathedral. It was not difficult for me to guess that the Patriarch of Russia is currently providing a morning liturgy there. Of course, I held on to my camera so I would not miss the moment when our Patriarch will came out after finishing the holiday message. The liturgy lasted till noon and by tradition the bell ringers were on the main tower of Ivan The Great announcing to the people that the message is over. I also was greatly impressed again because right before the moment when our Patriarch appeared from the cathedral, the group with my clients came out from the Grand Kremlin Palace and were able to see the ceremony provided by Alexii II outdoors.

I think that to see this ceremony was quite interesting for all tourists and believers who were the square at that moment. According to Russian tradition, His Holiness came out to the porch of the Annunciation Cathedral (private church of our Tsars). Several small girls and boys greeted him by reciting a short rhymes dedicated to this holiday. Then Alexii II sounded greetings to believers and released two white doves to remind people about the good news of the coming freedom given not only to humans but to all creatures. After the outdoor ceremony was finished, Alexii II sat into his limo surrounded by his bodyguards and was escorted by a jeep with security and minivan with a lot of nuns in black robes. I heard from somebody nearby that His Holiness Patriarch went to Cathedral of Christ The Savior to continue to greet people with the holiday, orá I thought at the moment, maybe to have a "holiday dinner"? ...

PS: On this day I learned disappointing news for travel photographers - beginning March 2008, the administration of Moscow Kremlin has forbidden taking pictures on the grounds of the Kremlin with cameras which lenses more than 70 mm without special permission. I had some difficulties on that morning to bring my new camera Nikon D300 with 72 mm lenses. After long discussion with security of Moscow Kremlin they let me to go in with my camera, but I don't think that I will be allowed in the future.. This is a pity, isn't it?

With BEST Regards,
Arthur Lookyanov
My HOT News from Moscow
Last Edited: April 14th, 2008

Photo taken on 2008-04-07 at 12:07:11

Random customer's Responses & Recommendations.
You are welcome to visit web site of Moscow Guide Arthur Lookyanov.
Brandon  Pelsmaeker Brandon Pelsmaeker
From: United States
Date: 2012-06-13 23:08:10

To my Guide Arthur

Throughout the last seven years I have spent a lot of time traveling to different parts of the world, exploring whenever and wherever I can in order to better appreciate the world around us. Several months ago I decided it was time to visit Russia and Moscow was one city that I have wanted to visit since I was in grade school, so the pressure to see and experience the Russian capital was on. After a series of random internet searches I found a guide that had good reviews and so I decided to send an email whereupon several days later Arthur Lookyanov replied with a detailed itinerary of sights to see and a very organized cost sheet that made everything concise and easy to understand. My tour to Moscow began in the early June, 2012 and was the last leg of a mini European tour that included Berlin, St. Petersburg, Chernobyl, Kiev and after a long delay navigating through customs I met Arthur at a Snack Time café area. Right from the start Arthur was on time, waited for my delayed entry and navigated the airport like it was his second home.
Throughout all of my three tours, Arthur was always on time, organized what we saw from beginning to end, allowed enough time to take as many pictures as one wanted with a break for lunch and made adjustments to the itinerary when it rained or crowds got in the way of our tour. When you sign for one of Arthur’s tours, you can rest assured he will not be sitting in his car texting while you navigate the Russian subway system because he will be there with you every step of the way regardless of weather, circumstance or Kremlin security. What is also a real bonus throughout his tours, it that Arthur brings along his very professional camera whereby taking pictures from his perspective therefore you get a second camera snapping shots to further enhance your Moscow experience. His energy to show the beauty of Moscow is immediately apparent because his knowledge about Russian history is overwhelming even for a professional historian and Arthur’s drive to make sure you get the best tour possible is without question what sets him apart from other tour operators. It is without reservation or doubt that when I return to Moscow Arthur Lookyanov will be my personal guide and photographer.

Brandon Pelsmaeker
Riverside, California