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Island-City Sviyazhsk

Остров-град Свияжск с его древнейшими архитектурными сооружениями является замечательным памятником русской старины в Республике Татарстан.

Island-city Sviyazhsk with its ancient architecture is an outstanding monument of Russian antiquity. It is located three kilometers away fr om the Sviyaga river mouth on Vysokaya Gora (High Mountain) hill, not far from Kazan.

The island's streets still have pre-revolutionary names: Uspenskaya (the main street) crosses the island from northeast to southwest; to the south, in parallel with the main street, lies Troitskaya street, and to the north there is Nikolskaya street. Alexandrovskaya street crosses them in the center of the island.

Many Sviyazhsk architectural structures were created in the during the reign of Ivan The Terrible. The first monastery of the island-city — The Troitse-Sergiev Monastery — consisted of two churches: the Trinity and the Sergiev churches. Now, the Dormition of the Holy Mother of God Monastery stands in its place.

The ensemble of the Dormition of the Holy Mother of God Monastery includes Nikolskaya Church and The Holy Assumption Cathedral. The Holy Assumption Cathedral, founded during the reign of Ivan the Terrible, is a wonderful white-stone building. Unique fresco paintings have been preserved inside the cathedral.

The Sviyazhsk architecture ensemble also includes the church of Saints Konstantin and Elena Equal-to-the-Apostles, as well as the cathedral of the Most Holy Mother of God Joy of All Who Sorrow. The cathedral of the Most Holy Mother of God Joy of All Who Sorrow was built of red brick in the territory of the Patriarchal Stavropegic Monastery of St. John the Baptist in 1898–1906 and designed by the architect F. Malinovsky with the support of the Mother ­Superior of the monastery, Apphia. The large five-domed, four-column, cross-in-square church in the neo-Byzantine style with eclectic elements­ is similar in its architecture to the Kronstadt Cathedral of St. Petersburg.

Moreover, in Sviyazhsk Island-city you can also visit the Sviyazhsk historical museum, Konniy Dvor («Stable yard»), and the Lenivy Torzhok Historic Reconstruction Complex.

At the Konniy Dvor Ethnographic Complex, visitors can ride and feed horses or take a ride in a carriage around Sviyazhsk. There is also a handicraft settlement, wh ere visitors can take part in a souvenir production master class. The complex is also a venue for the Sviyazhsk Maslenitsa (Pancake Week) and Sviyazhsk Ukha (fish soup) festivals. Additionally, every year, the streets fill with knights and their beautiful ladies, who come from all over the country for a medieval tournament.

The island-city can be visited as a part of a boat tour. The easiest way to get here is to take one of the boats that depart from the Kazan river port daily. In 2007, an 8-kilometer-long causeway was built, connecting the island to the mainland, so one can get here by car too.

State Tourism Committee of the Republic of Tatarstan /

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