Novosibirsk travel guide

Novosibirsk Tourism | Novosibirsk Guide

You're Going to Love Novosibirsk

Siberia's increasingly mobile capital city, Novosibirsk boasts lovely wooden architecture, some exceptional museums and a warm, welcoming atmosphere that makes the desolation of the tundra seem thousands of miles away.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Novosibirsk

1. A Treasure Trove of Museums

Novosibirsk has a wonderful range of museums, from the historical kitsch of the USSR Museum and the Nikolai Rerikh at the State Art Museum, to the fascinating Museum of Archeology and Ethnography, with its mummy exhibits.

2. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

This gorgeous red-brick Byzantine-style cathedral is one of Russia's finest, with its golden cupola and lavish decorations.

3. All Kinds of Cultural Attractions

Pretty much every kind of cultural activity is catered for in Novosibirsk, with its prestigious Philharmonic Orchestra, vast theater staging opera and ballet, and the Trans-Siberian Art Festival every year.

4. Plenty of Family Activities and Attractions

With a well-stocked and massive zoo, swimmable beaches on the shores of the Ob Sea and amusement parks like Funky Town, Novosibirsk will entertain every family member.

5. Make it Part of a Trans-Siberian Adventure

Novosibirsk is a node on the Trans-Siberian Express, which stretches from Moscow to Vladivostok. Why not make it a stop-off on your rail journey of a lifetime?

What to do in Novosibirsk

1. Animal Wonders And A Reputation For Welfare

Novosibirsk Zoo may come as a surprise to some visitors due to its sheer size. In total, this massive animal park has more than 11,000 inhabitants and over 700 species are represented. And they aren't just native Siberian fauna either (although there are a few polar bears and Siberian tigers to get to know). From mandrills and yellow mongooses, to lions and cheetahs, the city zoo is crammed with charismatic critters, and has a reputation for being one of the most responsible zoos in the world, as well.

2. Endless Visual Delights From Russian History

Opened under Soviet rule in 1958, the State Art Museum is a visual delight. Well, from the outside it might seem a little dour, but when you get inside, you'll be in art heaven. The 10,000 paintings and sculptures provide a unique panorama of Russian art, from 16th century Orthodox icons to 19th century realists and modern masters, too. The large collection of dreamy mountain landscapes by Nikolai Rerikh is a highlight, but there's lots for art fans to feast on here.

3. Stunning Sacred Architecture

Although it was built relatively recently during Novosibirsk's late 19th century boom, Alexander Nevsky Cathedral looks and feels much older. Perhaps that's because the builders adopted a stunning Byzantine arrangement, with ornate cupolas that are crowned with golden gilding, and jaw-dropping murals inside the church. Inspiring, majestic, and very much a living religious center, the cathedral is one of the city's focal points, and not to be missed.

4. A Fun-Packed Communist Curio

What with the prosperity of modern Novosibirsk, and the fresh, creative atmosphere of the city, it's sometimes hard to remember that the city spent more than 70 years under Soviet rule. Well, you can refresh your historical memory at the USSR Museum, which presents a fascinating array of communist-era memorabilia. Even better, it's a really hands-on place, where you can try on Soviet costumes (and take some unique photos). Fun, engaging and full of curiosities, it's a quirky historical highlight.

5. Culture And Communist Kitsch At The City's Heart

Modern Novosibirsk grew up around Lenina Square, which functions as the city's civic heart. If you eat out or spend the evening in Novosibirsk, there's almost no way to avoid Lenina - which is a good thing, as it's full of appeal. For one thing, the square is lined with cultural institutions like the Philharmonic Orchestra and State Concert Hall - where shows are cheap and of an astounding quality. But there's also a hulking statue of Lenin (hence the name) - a reminder that locals aren't exactly ashamed of their Soviet heritage. And with restaurants and parks aplenty, the area is a place that always repays time spent there.

1. Animal Wonders And A Reputation For Welfare

Novosibirsk Zoo may come as a surprise to some visitors due to its sheer size. In total, this massive animal park has more than 11,000 inhabitants and over 700 species are represented. And they aren't just native Siberian fauna either (although there are a few polar bears and Siberian tigers to get to know). From mandrills and yellow mongooses, to lions and cheetahs, the city zoo is crammed with charismatic critters, and has a reputation for being one of the most responsible zoos in the world, as well.

2. Endless Visual Delights From Russian History

Opened under Soviet rule in 1958, the State Art Museum is a visual delight. Well, from the outside it might seem a little dour, but when you get inside, you'll be in art heaven. The 10,000 paintings and sculptures provide a unique panorama of Russian art, from 16th century Orthodox icons to 19th century realists and modern masters, too. The large collection of dreamy mountain landscapes by Nikolai Rerikh is a highlight, but there's lots for art fans to feast on here.

3. Stunning Sacred Architecture

Although it was built relatively recently during Novosibirsk's late 19th century boom, Alexander Nevsky Cathedral looks and feels much older. Perhaps that's because the builders adopted a stunning Byzantine arrangement, with ornate cupolas that are crowned with golden gilding, and jaw-dropping murals inside the church. Inspiring, majestic, and very much a living religious center, the cathedral is one of the city's focal points, and not to be missed.

4. A Fun-Packed Communist Curio

What with the prosperity of modern Novosibirsk, and the fresh, creative atmosphere of the city, it's sometimes hard to remember that the city spent more than 70 years under Soviet rule. Well, you can refresh your historical memory at the USSR Museum, which presents a fascinating array of communist-era memorabilia. Even better, it's a really hands-on place, where you can try on Soviet costumes (and take some unique photos). Fun, engaging and full of curiosities, it's a quirky historical highlight.

5. Culture And Communist Kitsch At The City's Heart

Modern Novosibirsk grew up around Lenina Square, which functions as the city's civic heart. If you eat out or spend the evening in Novosibirsk, there's almost no way to avoid Lenina - which is a good thing, as it's full of appeal. For one thing, the square is lined with cultural institutions like the Philharmonic Orchestra and State Concert Hall - where shows are cheap and of an astounding quality. But there's also a hulking statue of Lenin (hence the name) - a reminder that locals aren't exactly ashamed of their Soviet heritage. And with restaurants and parks aplenty, the area is a place that always repays time spent there.

Where to Eat in Novosibirsk

Novosibirsk has one of Russia's finest collections of elite restaurants, with standouts like the Mediterranean restaurant Perchini, the beer hall and dumpling cafe Beerman, and excellent Georgian eatery Tiflis. Prices range from RUB1,000-1,700.

When to visit Novosibirsk

Winters can be pretty bleak in Novosibirsk, so schedule your trip between April and early October for the best sightseeing conditions.

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How to Get to Novosibirsk

Plane

Tolmachevo Airport has plenty of domestic and international connections. Bus 111 runs into the city center and costs RUB35. Expect taxis to charge around RUB500.

Train

Novosibirsk is about 50 hours from Moscow by train and is a stop on the Trans-Siberian Express. Tickets cost around RUB5,000-10,000.

Car

From Tomsk, take the P-255 straight to Novosibirsk or take the P-254 from Omsk; both journeys are about 8 hours.

Airports near Novosibirsk

Airlines serving Novosibirsk

Emirates
Excellent (1,461 reviews)
flydubai
Good (42 reviews)
EL AL
Excellent (185 reviews)
Uzbekistan Airways
Good (11 reviews)
Azerbaijan Airlines
Excellent (3 reviews)
FLYONE
Mediocre (1 reviews)
Pobeda
Good (2 reviews)
S7 Airlines
Okay (3 reviews)
UTair
Poor (1 reviews)
Nordwind Airlines
Poor (1 reviews)
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Where to stay in Novosibirsk

Krasny Prospekt - The most important street in town, Krasny Prospect is home to the Opera and a huge array of stores and restaurants.

Popular Neighborhoods in Novosibirsk

Akademgorodok - Built by the Soviets as an academic city, Akademgorodok has some extraordinary architecture and beautiful tree-lined boulevards. It's a great place to explore.

Oktyabrskiy Rayon - A sprawling neighborhood in the southeast of the city, with a beautiful riverfront and excellent bars like Beerman; it's the ideal place to round of a busy day of activities.

Where to stay in popular areas of Novosibirsk

Most booked hotels in Novosibirsk

River Park Hotel
Excellent (10, Excellent reviews)
$43+
Marins Park Novosibirsk
Good (7.2, Good reviews)
$36+
Elektron Hotel
Poor (0, Poor reviews)
$16+
Avrora Hotel
Poor (0, Poor reviews)
$27+

How to Get Around Novosibirsk

Public Transportation

Novosibirsk has a small Metro system, which serves most central areas and costs RUB35 per ride.

Taxi

If you need a taxi in the city, expect to pay around RUB100 for the meter drop, then about RUB20 per mile.

Car

If you want to visit Tomsk or see the Ob valley, you can rent a car from companies like Eurazcar, Europcar and Hertz for around RUB700 per day.

The Cost of Living in Novosibirsk

Shopping Streets

The most enjoyable place to shop for clothing, crafts and food is indisputably Baraholka (the main market), although for apparel fans, malls like Aura Planeta and Royal Park offer big brands and Russian boutiques.

Groceries and Other

Supermarket options include Zebra and Servis, where you'll pay about RUB65 for 12 eggs.

Cheap meal
$10.21
A pair of jeans
$144.75
Single public transport ticket
$0.58
Cappuccino
$3.36