Initially three independent towns until the Königsberg Fortress united them and gave them their first name (Königsberg), the city was eventually renamed to Kaliningrad in 1946. The city’s entire history is reflected in its landscape: Soviet housing coexists with picturesque European neighborhoods, ancient churches with modern buildings, residential suburbs with strikingly beautiful countryside.
It is quite pleasant just to wander around Kaliningrad looking at old German villas, taking pictures, going into cozy cafes, enjoying nature, and admiring the lovely seaside sunsets.
The local climate transitions from moderate maritime to moderate continental. Winter is mild, summer is cool, and the proximity of the capricious Gulf Stream makes the weather change frequently. It is usually rather cloudy here, but that does not affect the flow of tourists. Even if it starts raining (usually a brief occurrence), there are plenty of interesting museums and cafes where you can pass the time while waiting for the rain to stop.
A good place to start exploring the city is Kant Island. Kneiphof (as it is officially called) is a really cozy place with many paths where you can stroll in the shade of the trees. Here you can take in the majestic presence of the gothic Cathedral (Konigsberger Dom), listen to organ music, and visit the grave of Kant, the famous philosopher.
The German villas in Maraunenhof look exactly the same as they did 100 years ago. By the way, many of them have become comfortable mini-hotels, so anybody who wants to can try on the role of a respectable last-century German.
Aeroflot operates six daily direct flights from Moscow to Kaliningrad.