Terletskiy Park also called Terletskiy Oak Wood is a park around a relict oak wood. It is not well known by Moscow citizens, let alone among the tourist population, and as such, deserves your attention and is worth taking note of. First though, have a look on a short video clip from Terletskiy Park, which should probably come with a spoiler warning for what’s to follow.
The park isn’t close to any Moscow Metro mass transit station and you’ll need a car or bus to get there. This may point to why it’s an unpopular destination. In any case, Terletskiy Park is well worth the time it’ll take you to get there. There are two parking areas: one is just in front the central entrance and a big restaurant called Nightly Patio (Nochnoy Dvorik). Another one is at the southern border of the park. There’s also a bike rental station next to the secondary parking area. Terletskiy Park is pretty big and you may wish to travel through it by bike (as mentioned, the rental station makes this pretty easy).
The park is built around an ensemble of 5 relatively small-sized lakes. (Actually it wasn’t “built” as it is centered among the remains of the old forest, and about 40 years ago it was a part of Izmaylovskiy Park which, on a tangential note, is another great place to spend a day.) On the biggest lake, you may find a boat rental station; it is located near the central park square.
It is said that, a long time ago convicts were transported through the park to the eastern prisons in Vladimir and further afield, to Siberia. Somewhere in the park there was a boundary, as far as which the convict’s families could accompany them, but beyond which, the convict was on their own.
When visiting Terletskiy Park, don’t just stick to the broad walk roads; get into the forest. It is a majestic wood with some trees estimated to be as old as 300 years. Some people call this area a power area. It’s difficult to say for sure, but sitting on a bench among very old oaks certainly makes for an experience that is at once very relaxing and energizing.You may read a book, have lunch or just sit for a while and contemplate your surroundings.
The area is densely populated with animals. It is very difficult not to happen upon hungry ducks waiting for children to feed them (take some bread with you) and funny squirrels jumping all around. Given the number of fishers attracted to the lakes, it seems that there’s a good deal of fish as well. Visitors here are of all ages and all manner of walks of life, from recently born babies to old couples, including a great many teenagers as well. All find something interesting and attractive here.
There’s a broad range of attractions and activities for everyone. Sports (there are several playgrounds for volleyball, football, tennis courts), sandy beach (some even swim), as well as numerous children playgrounds. And I’ve almost forgotten! There’s a horse riding school in the park so anyone can ride a horse or a small pony. There are also carriage tours around the park.
The place is pretty quiet and peaceful (maybe because of a huge police base in the park). Given the vast amount of activities and attractions available, there really is no excuse to miss Terletskiy Park during your time in Moscow.
As a local in this area, I would be very glad to share my experience and give any advice on how best to spend your time in Moscow. Don’t forget that it is pretty simple to miss the most interesting and important things behind the obvious. Keep in touch.