A Photo Tour To The Soviet Past

Moscow Intourists 7

Thousands of tourists from the West visited Russia in 1960 and all had a camera with them. But only a couple of similar photos can be found on the Internet today.

Leningrad 1

A group of foreign tourists inside the bus at the border between the USSR and Finland.

Leningrad 2

First stop between Vyborg and Leningrad.

Leningrad 3


Leningrad 4

The tourists are going to a hotel.

Leningrad 5

Having a meal at the hotel.

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And now it’s time for an excursion around the city.

Leningrad 7

Communication with Russian citizens.

Leningrad 8

Looking for a gift for local kids.

Leningrad 9

Monument to Ekaterina the Great.

Leningrad 10

A motor-ship ‘Moskvitch’

Leningrad 11

Native citizens of Petersburg recognize the square at once.

Leningrad 12

The same square.

Leningrad 13

Leningrad 14

How do you like the public call box?

Leningrad 15

That was the view enjoyed by tourists who traveled by bus.

Leningrad 16

The places can be recognized only by those who had lived here for a long time.

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Leningrad 18

Remote districts of Leningrad.

Moscow Intourists 1

Tourists of Soviet Moscow were usually taken to see the Kremlin and the State Department Store.However, there were some exceptions to the rule. The pictures below were made by David S. Cook who came to Moscow in 1969 to attend the meeting of the International Electrotechnical Commission.

Moscow Intourists 2

The people had lunch at the restaurant of the hotel ‘Russia’ that doesn’t exist any longer.

Moscow Intourists 3

It is not that easy to take such a photo today.

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It is becoming common to wait on line.

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Parking lot.

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Moscow subway in 1969.

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That is what the Big Theater used to look like.

Petersburg Photos 1

The photos below were taken by a tourist who visited Leningrad in 1963. Next to Oktyabrskaya hotel.

Petersburg Photos 2

On the Nevsky prospect.

Petersburg Photos 3

Flower sellers.

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Petersburg Photos 5

The Kazan Cathedral.

Petersburg Photos 6

The Church of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ before its restoration.

Petersburg Photos 7

Petersburg Photos 8

Saint Isaac’s Cathedral.

Petersburg Photos 9

Symbols of the city.

Petersburg Photos 10

Does the pebble pavement exist today?

Petersburg Photos 11

The blue mosque.

Petersburg Photos 12

New residential area.

Petersburg Photos 13

Registration of marriage at a local Vital Records Office.

Petersburg Photos 14

The big cascade of Peterhof.

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Petersburg Photos 16

People are walking in the park.

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Petersburg Photos 18

A park in Zelenogorsk.

Location:Moscow, Saint-Petersburg

via ccp-photo

29 thoughts on “A Photo Tour To The Soviet Past”

  1. Images are not representative, torn out of context and it’s boring. We saw it several hundreds times before. Put some more, those not from Moscow and Leningrad.

  2. So clean and neat. What would the street vendor be selling from the white trailer.

    Nostalgia…..its great……as long as it stays in the past.

    • The white trailer is selling national drink KVAS, a sort of beer or lemonade made from rye with low alcohol content. Almost in every soviet photoset you can find such a kvas trailer, I guess it was like soviet Coca-Cola. I don’t recall seeing those trailers in St. Petersburg or Moscow couple of years ago, although you can find kvas in every convenience store.

    • I have to admit, from the camera angle it does appear that mermaid man is committing an impure act with whatever beast he is with.
      In Bennington Vermont, there is a statue of old honest Abe Lincoln standing in front of a naked boy child, and a topless woman. The boy is standing and the woman is kneeling before him. I swear, this is true. My wife and I stood there laughing at it for some time. The woman and child, appear to be preparing to “service” old Abe. I wish I could post a picture of it here, lol.

      • I just want too see what the sculpture really is of now. 🙂

        Oh, and BTW, that would be the “Spirit of America” sculpture. Good one… lol


    • It’s “Triton and seamonster” fountain in Petrodvorets. I guess it represents some victory of Russian Empire. http://www.panoramio.com/photo/38449812

  3. Except for the traffic, people and large new buildings a lot of it still looks the same.

    BTW, last time I checked, the pebble street just down the road from the Admiralty still exists – but it can be difficult to travel because of so many cars parked along it!

    Damn, I miss the place!!

  4. > Does the pebble pavement exist today?


    It is the other way around. The roadway is asphalt now, whereas the sidewalk has a tile pavement.

  5. I wonder if the people that are signing their marriage record are still married?It looks like the pictures where taken some time in the mid 60’s~early 70’s.

      • From what i recall… it’s legally not considered an alcoholic beverage but does have a low alcohol content, something like 1% at most? Could be much less.

        What is Kvas exactly, is it brewed from bread or similar to the fermented teas in the U.S. like Kombucha? They’ve recently had problems with their U.S. labeling complying with the law due to it being fermented and the resulting small alcohol content. They pulled it from shelves for awhile while they retooled their brewing process and labeling.

        OK, from what i gather KVASS and “TEA KVASS” are similar types of products, both Russian in origin? I didn’t know that. I do know i find fermented tea unpalatable, yuck.


  6. Just imagine what westerners thought when visiting Soviet Moscow and Leningrad. They were probably taught that it was a dirty hellhole, then they arrive and see this nice clean place full of life and culture…

    • I can’t recall ever getting taught anything about Russia geography wise (except in a government class) in public school. Now when I was in DoD school, no we weren’t taught that it was dirty. It was clean because everyone had a job, whether it was an economically important job, or make work was the question.

    • Not really that may have been the view of some yahoos but not really the general view.I never understand why people always go to the stereotypical propaganda induced view.
      There was propaganda both sides trying to convince you had bad and vile the other was I have seen old Soviet films of propaganda they show Las Vegas and New York and they also showed a rally in Georgia(the American state) by American Communist party members of course this was black and white people together and some KKK guy walked up and shot and killed some people.I dont know what the film says about it because it was in Russian.

    • *ahem* If westerners thought it was a dirty nasty hellhole they would have never gotten on a tour bus and taken a vacation trip there in the first place. Quite the opposite. Think about it…

  7. Great photgraphs E*R is like a LIFE magazine for the internet.I also was curious about what was in the white trailer.Thanks to the people who answered that it was a beverage called KVAS.

  8. Yes.. Very beautiful houses and verry beautful old cars.. I remember the model of the cars from my childhood… russian cars are the mest resistant on the bad roads conditions….

  9. There’s something about photographs from the 1960s and 1970s. Were colours different back then or was it the film photographers used?


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