Founded in 1960 in the USSR, this former “Military Unit 26266 in Closed Village number One” now opens its doors over a still mysterious and impenetrable world. Cast in the shadow of Star City, which at the time of the Soviet Union was nothing but a nameless and faceless area in the eyes of the world and Russian citizens alike, the Yuri Gagarin Training Centre is now home to training cosmonauts. In 2008, the Roscosmos agency turned it into a civil organization open to the public.
In an exact copy of the first MIR space station, men in spacesuits train to manoeuvre the Soyuz machine, simulate take-off in a centrifuge and learn how to respond to emergencies. Roscosmos has recently launched a new recruitment campaign aimed at any Russian citizen who fulfils the many criteria required to apply for training. Are you tempted? Perhaps not by the official training of six consecutive years, but at least by a visit to this curious space?
La Cité des Étoiles
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