Icebreaker navigating through frozen Moscow

Russian engineers have a long history of building ships capable of reaching frozen lands by sea through any amount of ice, but you do not have to travel far to experience a ride on an icebreaker – in Moscow.

When temperature drop below zero and the notorious Russian winter turns the Russian capital into a wonderland of snow and ice, a brand new river ship, the ‘Ferdinand’, navigates just like his bigger brothers through ice-covered waters as it ploughs its way down the Moscow River.

The managing Director of the icebreaker project, Mikushko Aleksey, promises this to be an amazing ride.

“You can navigate on ice in the middle of the city. No one's done this before and only professional sailors experienced winter scenes from the middle of the river before,” he says.

A special double hull made of extra-resistant steel allows this river cruiser to break through ice.

The icebreaker’s captain, Vladimir Butov, is an experienced sailor, though he says navigating this vessel has its share of challenges.

“The ice season is generally more dangerous. The ship hits ice and it's an obstacle. The ship could drift to the left or to the right. We have to be on alert at all times.”

On a gorgeous winter day, when the sun is shining and the temperature is about – 20 degrees Celsius, the layer of ice on the river is 10 cm thick and all other ships are at their dock, but ‘Ferdinand’ is moving steadily ahead. Inside the ship it's warm and cozy and passengers might enjoy a delicious meal.

The trip takes two hours and lunch or dinner are included.

Organizers hope that this project would attract tourists eager to combine their winter sightseeing with dining.

The first icebreaker in Moscow may very well become one of the most popular attractions during the cold season.