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Private-Novodevichy Convent

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Activity Schedule

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  • Duration

    3 HOURS

  • Start time

    • Monday/Wednesday/Thursday/Friday/Saturday/Sunday, Start time: 10:00, Finish time: 13:00

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Be dazzled by the gold and silver onion domes of Novodevichy Convent in Moscow with this fascinating three-hour tour to this historic Unesco World Heritage Site. This visit is a must if you are interested in architecture, history, art or spirituality.

Nestled in picturesque spot on a bend of the River Moscow in southwestern Moscow, this large religious complex was originally founded in 1524 by Grand Prince Vasily III to celebrate the victory over the Lithuanians at the Siege of Smolensk. Such was its breathtaking beauty that it soon became a retreat for the noblest of ladies.

Enter through the decorative red and white baroque transfiguration gate-church and take in the wonderful sights inside. The main and oldest structure within the complex is the imposing six–pillared, five-domed Cathedral of Our Lady of Smolensk. This imposing temple has an astonishingly elaborate interior decorated with numerous frescoes from the 16th century. Of particular note is the octagonal bell tower, a later addition, which is considered by many to be the finest in all of Moscow. For a long time its 72 metres also made it the tallest structure in the city.

The other churches and buildings within the complex are also of great interest. The striking red and white colours of the baroque Muscovite style contrast beautifully with the blue sky and offer a very photogenic scene. The onion-domed Church of Assumption is a prime example as are the Church of St Amvrosiy Mediolanskiy and the Old Refectory.


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