Sokolniki Park

Sokolniki Park, named for the falcon hunt of the Grand Dukes of Muscovy formerly conducted there, is located in the eponymous Sokolniki District of Moscow. Sokolniki Park is not far from the center of the city, near Sokolnicheskaya Gate. The park gained its name from the Sokolnichya Quarter, the 17th-century home of the sovereign's falconers. It was created by Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich, a keen hunter who loved to go falconing in the area.
The park's current layout of clearings and alleys began under Tsar Peter the Great. In 1900 a "labyrinth", or network of alleys, was laid out.
Today Sokolniki is a typical Russian park, with an aging funfair and other amusements for children, and numerous fast food stalls all clustered near the main entrance. In summer the central alleyways are a mass of brightly colored formal flowerbeds, while the depths of the park are a wilderness home to pines and spruces, birches and oaks, limes and maples - all trees native to the Moscow region - as well as a number of non-indigenous trees, such as larches, cedars, walnut, red oaks, etc. The park's wildlife includes hares, squirrels and weasels, as well as 76 types of bird.
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