The most famous orthodox monasteries in Russia
Which monasteries to meet in Russia here we show you. Visiting the Cathedrals of Russia and knowing about its history is ideal to marvel at these beautiful places. Taking a tour in monasteries and cathedrals of Russia has never been so easy.
In this article you can find information about several orthodox monasteries of Russia, both known worldwide and small and less known. Without a doubt if you want to travel to Russia, the most important thing you can do here to learn more about Russian traditions and customs is to visit the country’s monasteries, temples and cathedrals. In Russia in every city or town, without exception, there is a church at least, so you can choose what you would like to visit more.
The most important monasteries are not always the most recognized worldwide, a clear example is the Danilov monastery in Moscow, the place of residence of the current Russian Orthodox Patriarch (the Orthodox Pope). If you want to know more about Russian culture and spirit, we recommend visiting the following monasteries and cathedrals that are located in different parts of the country, it will certainly be an unforgettable and memorable experience.
In this list we show you the monasteries, cathedrals and Orthodox churches around Russia.
Moscow Orthodox monasteries and cathedrals
Which monasteries to meet in Russia:
Christ the Redeemer Cathedral
The Cathedral of Christ the Redeemer (or Savior) in Moscow, is the largest and most important cathedral in Russia. It is also considered as the tallest orthodox temple in the world. Your stay in the capital of Russia will not be complete without the visit of this majestic place.
The Novodevichy monastery in Moscow is a place, no doubt, very famous and known. They also call it many times Convent of the Maidens in Moscow. Since 2004 the complex was declared as the Umanity Heritage protected by UNESCO.
Kazan Cathedral in Moscow
The Kazan Cathedral in Moscow is located on Red Square and is presented as one of the most beautiful churches in the center of Moscow. It has a very interesting history and certainly do not forget to visit during your stay in Moscow.
St. Basil’s Cathedral
Known worldwide the Cathedral of San Basilio attracts thousands of tourists every year and not in vain! The Cathedral can already be seen from the entrance to the Red Square and it will really impress the view and colors of the church. A magnificent place!
Cathedral of the Epiphany of Moscow
Cathedral of the Epiphany of Moscow known for the christening of Sergei Pushkin. It is located in one of the oldest areas of Moscow. The cathedral from 1938 to 1991 belonged to the Patriarch of Moscow and was the Cathedral Temple of Russia.
Churches and cathedrals of St. Petersburg
St. Isaac’s Cathedral
All St. Petersburg cathedrals are sincerely precious and well known, and St. Isaac’s Cathedral is no exception. But St. Isaac’s Cathedral is noted among the other churches for having a very special place.
Cathedral of the Spilled Blood
The Spilled Blood Cathedral is a symbol of St. Petersburg and the unique church for its interiors. It is located in the center of the city and cannot be confused with anything else.
The Cathedral of Our Lady of Kazan in St. Petersburg
The symbol of St. Petersburg the majestic cathedral of Kazan is one of the most important cathedrals in the city.
St. Nicholas Cathedral
The cathedral of St. Nicholas (of the sailors) is the first temple dedicated to sailors in Russia. One of the best examples of Baroque from the era of Imperatrix Elisaveta. The cathedral is located in the center of the city in San Nicolas square.
Peter and Paul Cathedral
Majestic Cathedral of Peter and Paul can be found in the fortress that bears the same name. The cathedral for many years keeps the remains of the emperors and the Russian empresses.
Convent Smolny is a magnificent Cathedral and set of buildings made in a barocco style where in the years 1744-1764 it used to be the convent of nuns, under the control of Imperatrix Elisaveta.
As we all know Russia is a multinational country. That means that among the monasteries of Russia we can find not only Orthodox churches, but also mosques and Buddhist temples. In the list that we leave here, you will find several monasteries, temples and churches of different religions that are located around Russia. If you want to travel through Russia and discover every corner, these places will interest you.
The Monastery of the Virgin Jiten in Ostashkov
The Monastery of the Virgin Jiten in Ostashkov is located on the shore of Lake Seliger in the Tver region in the city Ostashkov. You cannot find a more authentic and beautiful place to learn more about Orthodox culture.
The Holy Monastery of the Assumption in Bahchisaray
The Holy Monastery of the Assumption in Bahchisaray is certainly worth seeing in the first place for its unusual location. It is not a religious building that we used to see normally, the monastery was built in the mountains, on the cliffs. For centuries the monastery survived the riots and changes, was abandoned and from the 90s finally began to return to life.
Surb Khach Monastery
The 14th-century Armenian Surb Khach monastery is in Crimea in an area of forests. A perfect place to rest and enjoy peace and quiet.
Znamensky Cathedral in Kursk
The history of Znamensky Cathedral in Kursk takes its beginning in the late 16th century. Despite many complications, the Monastery was inaugurated and still remains the symbol of the city of Kursk.
The Church of the Resurrection of Elijah
The Church of the Resurrection of Elijah is a jewel of the city of Kursk. A large and majestic temple that is definitely worth visiting.
The Ascension Cathedral in Tver
The Ascension Cathedral is located in the center of the city of Tver. The church is located in the place of 2 wooden churches that were burned in the 17th century. Your visit to Tver will not be complete without visiting this church.
Juma-Jami in Eupatoria
The Juma-Jami mosque in Eupatoria is the main mosque in the city and also known as Friday’s mosque. One of the most important mosques in the Crimea.
Inkerman Monastery (cave monastery) is one of the most important attractions of the city of Inkerman. Its history begins in the VIII – IX centuries. Without a doubt, the Monastery has a very fascinating history. If you want to travel through Crimea, do not leave it outside your tourist route.
The Trinity Church in Kyzyl
The Trinity Church in Kyzyl is a small and very welcoming church that is located in the capital of the Tuva Republic. Get to know the real authentic Russia, visiting this beautiful place!
The Vvedensky Temple in Kursk
The Vvedensky Temple in Kursk one more church that we recommend you visit during your trip to Russia.
The Tsechenling Buddhist Temple
The Tsechenlong Buddhist Temple one of the most striking places in Kyzyl. The name of the temple is translated as “the convent of infinite compassion,” which fits perfectly into the Buddhist concept. The temple is quite small and modest, but despite that it is very successful among citizens and visitors of the city.
The Church of Ioanna Predtechi in Kerch
The Church of Ioanna Predtechi is a good example of architecture, executed in the traditions of Byzantium constructions. It is considered as one of the oldest Christian churches not only in the Crimean peninsula, but also in Europe, and its elegant picturesque appearance distinguishes it from the rest of the Orthodox churches.
The Basilica in the Basilica
The Basilica in the Basilica, as a name, sounds a bit confusing. But in reality it is the medieval Temple that is located in the territory of Chersonese, a city founded by ancient Greeks on the southwest coast of the Crimean peninsula.
The Kebir-Jami Mosque
The Kebir-Jami Mosque is the main mosque of the Crimean peninsula. It is located in the capital of Crimea: Simferopol. It is the residence of the mufti and the Spiritual Direction of the Muslims of Crimea.
Laura de la Trinidad and San Sergio in Sergiev Posad
Laura de la Trinidad and San Sergio in Sergiev Posad no doubt well known among all those who are interested in Russian culture and history. Sergiev Posad is the most famous city on the Golden Ring route and every year thousands of tourists will meet her. Visiting this place does not leave you indifferent.
In addition to knowing which monasteries to know in Russia, you should know that Russian culture is closely linked to Orthodox traditions. Although many people today in Russia are considered as agnostics, no doubt most of the ceremonies are still held.
The first and the most important sacrament of initiation to Christianity with the use of holy water. Through baptism the person joins the Orthodox church and becomes the member of the church. The rite of baptism consists either of diving in holy water, once or three times (confession depends), or in showering the water with the pronunciation of the prayers established by the priest.
Russian Orthodox Wedding
Today the bride and groom celebrate their weddings in different ways. But the religious part remains the important part. Although in the 21st century the bridal blessing part is no longer the mandatory part of a marriage, many couples do it more and more often.
The rite consists of two stages: betrothal and the nuptial blessing. The deacon brings the rings on a special tray. The priest approaches the bride and groom with lit wedding candles and delivers them in the hands of the bride and groom. Then, holding a tray with wedding rings in front of the couple, the priest offers the bride and groom to exchange these rings three times. The bride and groom move the rings three times on the tray, and then each one puts their own ring. This gesture shows that the decision to marry is mutual. At this time, the bride and groom give themselves the commitment to be together all their lives.
And the climax of the sacrament of the Orthodox wedding is coming. The priest takes the crown of the groom, and marks the cross to the groom with this crown. Then he gives the groom to kiss her the image of the Savior, which is attached to his crown. After this, the priest puts the crown on the groom’s head.
Then perform the same ritual with the bride. The only difference that his crown adorns the image of the Blessed Virgin. Therefore, the bride kisses her.
The crown is usually not put on the head of the bride for her hairstyle. Therefore, the honor of holding the crown on the head of the bride generally falls to the witness of the wedding.
Then a chalice of wine is brought, on which the priest reads a prayer, overshadows it with a cross sign and gives the bride and groom. The couple alternately (first the groom, then the bride) drink wine three times.
The cup represents a common destiny, with common joys and sorrows of consolations.
When the newlyweds finish drinking wine, the priest joins the husband’s right hand with the wife’s right hand, covers the hands connected to the epitrachelion, and puts his own hand on the epitrachelion and the newlyweds give Around the lectern
At the end of the solemn procession, the priest takes the crowns of the couple and welcomes them with solemn words. After that, the newlyweds go to the royal gates, where the groom kisses the icon of the Savior, and the bride – the image of the Mother of God. According to the old tradition, the newlyweds should also kiss the icons of the saints Cosmas and Damian and the martyrs Guria, Samon and Aviv, considered as marriage patterns.
Orthodox funeral rite
Funerals in almost every religion is the very sad and painful event. But here we would just like to teach and explain about the traditions surrounding this rite.
Orthodox funeral rites are based on three stages:
The extreme unction
The first stage is the preparation of the body to burial. Normally after death in the cathedrals or temples they ask for a special liturgy that lasts 40 days.
Extreme unction is usually done on the third day after death (or any possible day).
The most important thing in this rite that extreme unction does not do for those who have committed suicide, people of other religions (not orthodox) and also for those who have not done the baptism rite.
Funerals begin with the special responsory read by the priest before burial. According to orthodox rules, the coffin can be carried by close relatives and friends of the deceased. If there is a priest at the funeral, he walks in front of the coffin as a spiritual pastor. When the coffin is placed under the earth, all the mourners throw into the grave handful of earth. Burial should not take place on Easter Day and on the Day of the Nativity of Christ. In the Orthodox religion they don’t usually do cremation.
Russian Orthodox Holidays:
By visiting the Cathedrals of Russia, you can also learn about Easter is the most important Orthodox religious holiday. It is usually celebrated in spring in April or May, less often in March. There is no fixed day for its celebration, every year the day changes. Almost all Easter traditions arose in worship. Even the celebration of the popular Easter holidays is related to the rupture after the Great Lent: the time of abstinence, when all the holidays, even the family holidays, were brought to the celebration of Easter. The symbols of Easter are all that expresses the Renewal (Easter currents), the Light (Easter fire), Life (Easter cakes, eggs and rabbits). On Easter, as in the most important Orthodox holiday of the year, they make a solemn divine service with the Liturgy.
The most important and well-known Orthodox Easter symbol is Easter cake and painted crimson eggs, representing the blood of Jesus Christ.
Orthodox Christmas in Russia
Orthodox Christmas in Russia is celebrated on January 7 according to the Julian Calendar. In the Russian Empire and in the Soviet Union until 1929 Christmas was the state holiday and was celebrated according to the Gregorian Calendar, but after the cancellation of the days off during religious holidays by the government, most of the symbols of Christmas (the Christmas tree, gifts) left for the celebration of the New Year (December 31).
The Great Lent is the very important period for each religious person. The Great Lent lasts 40 days during which believers prepare for Easter and rethink their actions in life and repent of their sins. During the Fortieth, believers pray and follow religious rules and eat modestly. You can not eat meat, eggs, sea food. There are days when fish can be used in food.
In 2018, the Great Lent in Russia begins on February 19 and lasts until April 7.
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