This place called the Helicopter Landing Place is just within 20 min from the city. There are benches, an open air restaurant, a nice place with a fountain and of course the VIEW! that is so picturesque!
Come over there to spend several hours just enjoying the scenery, the air and feeling freedom from the city noise.
Yes, just imagine!!! Only in 1991 citizens of Samara learnt that in the very heart of the city, in Chapaev Square, on the other side of the building of the Institute of Culture, there is a tiny metal door that leads to the bunker that was built during WW II for Stalin.
It is 37 m deep!!!
(Cf.: Hitler's was 16 m. Churcill had an ascape room just on the second undeground floor.)
There are 192 steps leading downstairs. The bunker is actually a 8-m wide shaft.
Absolutely hermetic up to now, and is suitable for 5 days of self-air supply.
It was built within several months in 1942 -1943, when Samara became the extra capital as many factories, plants, embassies, etc. were moved here and Stalin thought of moving there as well in case Hitler took Moscow. The bunker was built in absolute secret, nobody knew of it except for the builders who were obliged to keep the secret till they die.
Only in 1991 it was announced, and opened for visitors. You wil see several rooms, offices inside, pictires of Karl Marx and Lenin, real old telephone that is still working, only is switched off by the supervisors as some of the tourists being on top of delight called their friends to say hello from the Bunker and later the bunker got bills to pay :-)
Though Stalin never visited this bunker as thanks god there was no need for him to use it, but it does not make it less valuable. Still it is history, a war monument, and an amazing marsterpiece of Soviet architects and engineers.
Normally they have excursions for groups from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., it costs USD 20, and actually you can visit it alone and the guide will show you around if you pay the sum.
Samara has important aerospace industry and also a university for aerospace science.
One room in the university serves as a space museum showing models of Wostok, Sojus and other rockets, Buran, Mir, cosmonaute food etc.
It may be locked, but we asked and then minutes later somebody came and opened the museum.
The university is located on Moskovskoe Chaussee, where tram number 23 crosses. The museum is in the block that is in second line. Nothing from the outside would suggest that there is this museum.
Wander through the streets and alleys of old town Samara (e.g south of the Mc. Donalds restaurant and the blocks around) and look out for old - sometimes decaying - wooden houses.
Pay particularly attention to the mostly beautiful window frames.
There are orthodox churches all over Samara and new ones are being built all the time. This church is located next to the White House and will be completed at the end of the year. It is in front of a war memorial that still exhibits interesting soviet imagery and slogans (if you can read them!).
If you find yourself here, take a good walk around the city. It may not seem impressive compared to other places you have been, but if you stop and look at some of the old wooden houses and buildings in the middle of the city, the old pre-Socialism buildings along the Volga and choose to ignore the obvious state of disrepair, you will see a city that has seen days of greatness and will hopefully again one day soon!