Both Sputnik 1 and Vostok 1 were launched from Baikonur Cosmodrome, located in desert of Kazakhstan. It has since served as a launch pad for generations upon generations of spacecraft, including the International Space Station. Take a tour of Baikonour as it looks today.


The photo above was taken by Bill Ingalls/NASA.

The Cosmonaut Hotel, where some astronauts have been accommodated before and after their flights

(via Alexpgp)

Flight Engineer Karen Nyberg of NASA pauses for a photo while signing a hotel room door at the Cosmonaut Hotel, 2013

(Photo by NASA/Bill Ingalls)

The Soyuz TMA-05M spacecraft is rolled out by train on its way to the launch pad, 2012

(via NASA/Carla Cioffi)

Extreme Danger Zone

(via NASA/Bill Ingals)

An Orthodox Priest blesses members of the media, the crew and the Soyuz rocket, photos from 2012 and 2013

(Photo by NASA/Bill Ingalls 1 – 2 and Carla Cioffi)

The Soyuz TMA-05M launches in 2012

(Photo by NASA/Carla Cioffi)

The Energia Launch Site and its flame bucket

(via alexpgp 1 -2)

The crawlers for Energia and Buran

(via Baikonur and EnglishRussia)

Abandoned facilities, pipes, and launch pads

You can see more abandoned Soviet space facilities here, including a secret laboratory, a military town, and the first flight control center used during Gagarin's mission.

(via Baikonur and drugoi)

The Buran test model OK-M, now restored to its original condition

(via drugoi)

Abandoned military buildings

(via EnglishRussia)

A big sign commemorating space exploration on the Main Street in the city

(via Ken & Nyetta)

The Proton Club at Area 95 at the Baikonur Space Port – it has an auditorium, a kitchen, a hall with pong-pong, and pool tables

(via Alexpgp)

A full-size Soyuz rocket is on display near the main post office

(via Alexpgp)

On the fields of Baikonur

(via Neil Berrett)

There are some interesting things near the street

(via Neil Berrett)

The SS-17 ballistic missile as a monument

(via Baikonur)

"Peace to the World!"

(via alexpgp)

A tower block with a cool space-themed artwork

(via Baikonur)

The former officer's club, now a disco on the main square

(via Baikonur)

The house of Yuri Gagarin

This is the bed where the famous cosmonaut spent his last night before flight.

(via Russia Blog/Photo by Anton Verstakov and Baikonur)

The statue of Gagarin

(via Baikonurfest)

A bronze bust of Felix Dzerzhinsky (known as Bloody Felix or Iron Felix), the founder and first leader of the Soviet Secret Police Cheka in 1917

(via Russia Blog/Photo by Anton Verstakov)

Skateboard park

(via Russia Blog/Photo by Anton Verstakov)

The many former names of Baikonur (Zarya village, Leninski village and Leninsk city – it was renamed to Baikonur only in 1995)

(via Esther Dyson)

Bonus: Parts of the Russian Moon Rocket N1 on a Baikonur playground in 1998

(via Leuband)