Top 27 Sights of Sergiev Posad – description and photos

A weekend in Sergiev Posad: architecture, Rublev icons, caves and snowboarding

Sergiev Posad is a city 70 km from Moscow, in the north-east of the Moscow region. It has everything for a short and eventful trip: architectural and historical monuments, excursions to the bell tower and caves, a ski trail and a park with camels.

I regularly go to Sergiev Posad on weekends. I’ll tell you what you must see, where the tastiest dinners are and how to find the best locations for photos.

What to see in Sergiev Posad

Sergiev Posad is part of the Golden Ring of Russia and was created by decree of Catherine the Great in 1782 from the villages and slobodas that surrounded the Trinity Sergius Lavra. It is the largest monastery in Russia, which was founded in the XIV century by St. Sergius of Radonezh, and is now protected by UNESCO. It is best to start from here, and plan your route on the map.

The Trinity Sergius Lavra

Here, Dmitry Donskoy took a blessing from Sergius of Radonezh before the battle of Kulikovo, and Andrei Rublev wrote his “Trinity”. During the Time of Troubles, the walls of the monastery withstood a 16-month siege by the Polish-Lithuanian army. The monastery twice served as a refuge for Peter I. The future emperor hid in the monastery during the Strelets riot and seven years later, escaping from an assassination attempt.

In the architectural ensemble of the Lavra more than fifty buildings: temples, museums, cafes, stores.

It is better to start your self-excursion with the Trinity Cathedral, the oldest building of the lavra. On weekends and on church holidays, long lines line up to see the relics of St. Sergius of Radonezh. There is no need to queue just to come in and see.

The cathedral was built in 1423, for its iconostasis Andrei Rublev wrote the famous icon of the Holy Trinity, which is stored in the Tretyakov Gallery. Its place is taken by the Godunov’s List, ordered by the tsar at the end of the 16th century. Hold your gaze on the iconostasis – the three rows above the royal gates were painted by Rublev and his artel. He also worked on painting the walls of the cathedral, but the frescoes have been lost.

Also, notice the big chandelier with the figures of saints, a panikhonel of the XV century, the work of German craftsmen. How did it get here? It was a war trophy of Ivan the Terrible. The tsar brought it from Poland as a gift to the monastery.

After the modest church of the Holy Trinity, I recommend evaluating the most majestic building of the monastery, the Dormition Cathedral, built in the 16th century.

It is better to see it on a clear day, to appreciate the play of light on the bright frescoes.

When there is a service, in these churches are gathered a lot of people, so I recommend to specify the schedule in advance. But during the service you can listen to the Lavra choir, which gives concerts in Russia and abroad.

One of the most beautiful buildings of Lavra is the Church of St. Sergius with a refectory which was built in the XVII century in the style of Moscow Baroque. I advise to come here for three reasons. First, the gallery offers the best views for photos. Second, to see the details of the facade: colorful paintings on the walls, portals and carved columns.

The third is what’s inside. The temple looks more like a palace, and for good reason: Catherine II had a hand in its decoration a hundred years after its construction. The empress ordered to “decently enliven” the interior of the temple with colors. Atypical seems royally luxurious decor, an abundance of stucco and carved gilt iconostasis.

The church is active, so it’s best to check the schedule beforehand.

The bell tower in Sergiev Posad is one of the highest in Russia (88 meters). The lower floor is a souvenir store, where jewelry and gifts are presented. It is possible to go up to the third tier, which offers a view of the city. The visit takes 40 minutes and you can go up only if accompanied by a guide. The price for a group of up to 8 people is ₽2,000. If you come alone or in pairs, the visit will cost the same ₽2,000. Tickets are best booked on the lavra’s website.

The Lavra has two museums – the Riznitsa and the Church and Archaeological Study.

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The core of the Riznitsa exhibition is gifts to the monastery from kings, princes and other dignitaries. In the treasury of the monastery there are icons, precious covers and vessels, embroidery. The museum is open from 08:00 to 18:00 from Wednesday to Sunday, except for the last Thursday of the month. To arrange a tour, please call +7 (496) 540-53-56. The cost of the ticket is 140 ₽.

The church and archeological cabinet contains 20 thousand exhibits, among which are Old Russian and Byzantine icons and ancient books. For more details, call +7 (496) 541-55-01. The ticket costs 300 ₽.

Walk along the walls, by the water and to the observation deck

In the warm season, you can walk along the fortress walls of the Lavra. They were built during the reign of Ivan the Terrible and preserved the elements of fortification – a moat and two ponds.

The fortress wall has nine towers. Try to find the two with the most interesting names – Beer (in the ancient times there was a beerhall here) and Duck (the head of the tower is crowned with a spire, on which sits an iron duck).

You can take a walk by the water along Skete ponds or feed the ducks at the pier of the river Kopninky. Visit the Pafnutyevsky garden and walk along the picturesque old fence in the Russian baroque style.

For the best pictures go to the viewing platform on the Pancake Hill. The place owes its name to the popular before-the-revolution hotel and restaurant complex “Pancake Yard”.

There is a sculpture “Miracle of Birds”, timed to the 700th anniversary of Sergius of Radonezh. It depicts the saint and doves flying to him. According to legend, during the evening prayer the birds appeared to the Saint, who symbolized his future disciples.

Let me tell you a secret that all frequent visitors to Sergiev Posad know – take with you a cake or a bun. On Krasnogorsk square near the monument to the saint in winter and summer, thousands of birds gather, they are used to being fed by kind tourists.

Matryoshka museum, a merchant’s tea party and a cave monastery

Until the end of 2022 you can visit the exhibition “Russian Matryoshka”. Sergiev Posad is considered the birthplace of the world famous souvenir. The first doll was created in 1890 by the lathe operator Vasily Zvezdochkin from a sketch by the artist Sergey Malyutin, who saw the idea from the Japanese craftsmen.

The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday, except the last Wednesday of the month. Every two hours there is a sanitization, it is better to buy a ticket for the exhibition in advance on the website.

In the museum “Sergievská kukmisterka” you can visit a merchant’s tea party, learn what landrinis are and how to make them. You can book a tour no later than one day in advance, the duration – 55 minutes, the cost of 600 ₽, working hours from 10:00 to 18:00.

Cave lovers will be interested in the Gethsemane Chernigov hermitage . It’s also a monastery that was founded in the XIX century. It was founded on the model of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra. You can walk through the narrow underground corridors and imagine the hermit monks’ way of life only with a tour guide.

Tours are available every day from 10:00am to 4:00pm, and from 11:00am on Sundays, cost ₽ 1000 for groups of up to 10 people. You can take minibus 18, buses 30, 36 and 7 to get here from the center and it won’t take you more than half an hour. You can also take a cab for 10 minutes and 260 ₽.

What to see near Sergiev Posad

A half-hour drive from the city center is the largest waterfall near Moscow – Gremyachy Klyuch . Its height is 20 meters, and the water temperature – 6 ° C does not change all year round. You can get there by cab (850 ₽).

In the memorial and literary museum Muranovo collected personal belongings and manuscripts of F.I. Tyutchev. Tours are held every day except Mondays and the last Friday of the month. You can take a train to Sofrino station from the city and change to the bus №34. The trip will take about an hour. A cab will take you 35 minutes and ₽ 850.

Abramtsevo estate is a landmark place for Russian culture. At the turn of the XIX-XX centuries Repin, Vrubel, Korovin, Levitan and others worked here. Now it is a complex of museums, detailed information about ticket prices can be found on the site. I recommend to visit the Church of the Savior Not Made by hands, built after a sketch by Vasnetsov, and the manor house, in the living room of which Serov painted his “Girl with Peaches”.

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To come to Abramtsevo you can take a minibus № 76 or 55k. The train goes to the station with the same name, the trip takes 16 minutes, you have to walk to the estate for 17 minutes. Cab ride takes half an hour and costs 600 ₽.

You can get acquainted with the life and traditions of nomadic peoples, have lunch in a real yurt in the Kochevnik Ethnopark. From 11:00 to 17:00 there are entertaining, musical and educational programs. You can also ride a camel. Adult ticket costs 500 ₽, children under 5 years old are free, it is better to bring cash.

You can get there by train or by bus №76 and 55 to Khotkovo station, then change to the bus №43. Or you can get there in half an hour and 500 ₽ by cab.

In winter, fans of outdoor activities can go skiing or snowboarding. The ski resort “Loza” is located 16 km from Sergiev Posad. You can get there in 20 minutes by cab (about 400 ₽), and the bus number 36 or minibus number 76 will take a little longer. I advise you to bring cash, the terminals may not work.

Where to eat in Sergiev Posad

The most popular cuisine in the institutions of the city – Russian, which means that the menu will include pancakes, soups and porridge according to a slightly modernized classic recipes.

Inexpensive and quick lunch can be had at the Kelarski Dvorik on the territory of the Lavra. It is a cafe in a historical building of the chambers of Master Yelisey. Here you will be offered pancakes, dumplings, soups, salads. Average bill: 100-500 ₽.

For the atmosphere of Russian antiquity go to the Guest House. The menu includes fish soup from two kinds of fish, duck porridge, porridge with porcini mushrooms. Stroganina deserves special attention. You can order dishes from fresh cheeses from monastery’s farmstead. The place is not very big, so it’s better to reserve the table at least a day in advance. Average bill: in the range of 800-1500 ₽.

Russky Dvorik is a restaurant in a wooden terem with a view of the monastery. Russian cuisine and a wide variety of seafood dishes form the menu. The average bill will be 1200 ₽.

You’ll find a whole cluster of cafes and eateries on Karl Marx Street – several coffee houses, small restaurants with European cuisine, and a brewery and Kraft bar.

When to go to Sergiev Posad

From June to August, the temperature is comfortable up to +25°C, and don’t forget an umbrella, the summers in the Moscow region are rainy. Winters are not frosty, within 10-13 ° C below zero.

Before you travel, I recommend checking with the Orthodox calendar. During Christmas and Easter, as well as the days associated with Sergius of Radonezh – July 18 and October 8, there are many pilgrims in the city.

How to get to Sergiev Posad

In Sergiev Posad there is a railway station, from which trains and electric trains go in the direction of Moscow and Yaroslavl, and a bus station.

They are a 15-minute walk from the center and a five-minute cab ride away. The trip will cost 200 ₽, but this route is almost all buses. The ticket price is ₽40.

Since Moscow is not far, you can go to Sergiev Posad by car. It takes up to two hours to get there by Yaroslavskoye Highway, but on weekends and holidays there is a risk of getting caught in traffic. Another option is to take a cab directly from the city, it will cost from 2,300 ₽.

Where to stay in Sergiev Posad

It is better to choose accommodation within walking distance to the central entrance of the Lavra within the boundaries of Red Army Avenue, Karl Marx Street and Voznesenskaya Street. This is a historical and geographical center, from here you can walk to the attractions and restaurants.

What to bring as a present

From Sergiev Posad traditionally bring icons and other religious items. They are sold directly in the monastery.

Be sure to stop by the Sergiev Kanon shop to buy signature lemonades. They are made of natural ingredients, and you will not find complicated or obscure words on the label.

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Don’t pass by the lollipops – they are a Lenten dessert and contain only natural products. They are sold in three varieties: honey, with dried apricots and with prunes and walnuts.

Tips for tourists

1. Before your trip, check the Orthodox calendar – during the days of church holidays there are a lot of pilgrims in the city.

2. If you come to the church service in the Lavra church, you can listen to the choir. In the Cathedral of the Assumption the morning service usually begins at 08:00 and the evening service at 17:00. The schedule may change, better check the day before.

Attractions of Sergiev Posad for tourists

Sergiev Posad is an ancient city of the XIV century, part of the Golden Ring. The convenient location of just 50 km from Moscow makes it attractive to visit and see the main sights. Sergiev Posad is the spiritual center of Orthodoxy in the country.

Attractions of Sergiev Posad for tourists

What to see in Sergiev Posad in 1 day

Any tourist has something to visit in Sergiev Posad. The city is rich in history, monuments of ancient Russian architecture, unique collections of museums and ancient buildings.

Trinity-St. Sergius Lavra

The main attraction, the largest monastery of the Russian Orthodox Church, the center of Orthodox pilgrimage was founded by Sergius of Radonezh in 1337. On the territory of the monastery since the beginning of the 19th century are located the Moscow Theological Academy, ancient buildings, temples – all historical sites.

Rare copies of old printed and handwritten books are kept in the monastery’s premises. There are more than 50 buildings on the territory of the monastery, including churches and cathedrals. The monastery has been reconstructed and renovated several times. Several roads lead to the monastery. The main ones are the Holy Gate and the Church of St. John the Baptist of the 17th century. The complex is protected by UNESCO. All the main attractions are concentrated on the monastery territory.

It is located in the city center, 127 Red Army Ave. 7.

Monument to Sergius of Radonezh.

At the main gate to the monastery there is a monument to its founder, the spiritual symbol of the faithful. The idea to erect the monument appeared only 600 years after the death of Sergius of Radonezh. Money was collected by the entire world for 8 years. Many artists took part in the competition of sketches. The choice fell on the masters from Belarus. In 2000 the monument was installed and consecrated by Patriarch of All Russia Alexis II.

Address: Krasnogorskaya square.

Near the Lavra and the monument there is the stop “White Pond”, buses 2, 4, 5, 20, 21, 23, 24, 26, 27, 28, 32, 35, 39, 40, 41, 42, 46c, 48, 49, 50, 53, 55, 57, 63, 118, 120. Bus 1, 3, 4, 5, 11, 13, 14, 15, 16, 19, 25, 26k, 32k, 34, 55k, 61, 70, 74, 77, 80, 81, 88, 101, 117.

House of P. A. Florensky

What to see in Sergiev Posad for a tourist? Usually such a question does not arise. After all, in addition to cathedrals and monasteries in the former city of Zagorsk, there are memorable places. Pavel Aleksandrovich Florensky was called “the Russian Leonardo da Vinci”. He wrote poetry, was a distinguished scholar, theologian and clergyman. Florensky made many discoveries in science, mathematics, and other fields.

In 1937 Florensky was sentenced to death. In 1990 a memorial plaque was placed on the house where the scientist lived. The building is protected as a monument of federal importance.

Address: ul. Pionerskaya 19, the stop “Plant № 6”, bus 7, 30, 36, 37, 38. Bus 18, 54.

See other places of interest:

Vyborg

Irkutsk

Crimea

The Source of St. Savva Storozhevsky

From the northern side of the wall of Holy Trinity Lavra springs a spring named after a disciple of Sergius of Radonezh. The monk Savva was noted for his love of God and wisdom. Living in the monastery, he prayed a lot. As a result, a spring appeared. The water started to flow behind the ravine that surrounded the monastery as a natural protection.

Pilgrims come from all over the country to fetch holy water. Nearby there is a wooden chapel and a font with changing rooms. Towels and a shirt are bought at the stall standing nearby. The spring can be visited at any time of the year. On December 16, the day of St. Sava is celebrated.

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You can walk to the spring or take the bus 7, 30, 36, 37, 38, bus 12, 18, 54 to the stop “Karla Marksa”.

The Trinity Cathedral

The main temple of Lavra was built in the 15th century on the place of a former wooden church in honor of its founder, Sergius of Radonezh. The relics of the saint are now kept in the cathedral. The white stone temple was built in the style of early Moscow architecture. Originally the interior walls were decorated with frescoes by Daniil the Black and Andrei Rublev, but they haven’t survived to this day.

Address: Trinity Sergius Lavra.

Assumption Cathedral

The largest cathedral of the monastery was built by order of Ivan the Terrible in 1559. The building of the temple was designed in the image of the building of the same name in the Moscow Kremlin. The construction lasted for 26 years. The tsar died before it was finished. Inside the interior is painted by masters from Yaroslavl with frescoes on biblical themes. The five-tier iconostasis impresses with its grandeur and beauty. From the end of the XVII century to the beginning of the XVII century the cathedral served as the burial vault for Moscow metropolitans.

Address: Trinity Sergius Lavra.

The Church of St. Sergius with the Refectory Chamber

This is one of the most picturesque buildings. The construction of the cathedral began in the 17th century, the architects used the “Naryshkin style” – fashionable at the time. The walls are decorated with fine stone carvings, which makes the building look like a palace.

Address: Trinity Sergius Lavra.

Ecclesiastical and Archaeological Study

The museum of the Moscow Theological Seminary has a collection of icon painting, manuscripts and old printed books, numismatics, paintings. In 1814, the first exhibits of the cabinet appeared – portraits of Elizabeth and Catherine II. Now there are 20 thousand exhibits in the museum.

Address: territory of Lavra.

Exhibition Hall “Bells of Russia

The world’s only museum of operating bells opened in 2015. During the tour you can learn the history of each bell, hear its sound. A full concert with the bells is arranged for guests.

Address: Druzhba Street, 14a, stop “Central Regional Hospital”. Buses 4, 5, 9, 10, 20, 21, 24, 42, 49, 32, 35, 39, 53, 55, 57, 58, 63, 115, 116, 122. Shuttles 3, 4, 5, 14, 15, 16, 80, 101.

Vvedenskaya church and Pyatnitskaya podvorye

These are two of the oldest religious buildings outside the walls of the monastery in the area that used to be called Podol. This is a famous place – the trade route from Moscow to Alexandrovskaya Sloboda ran here. In 1547 boyar Ivan Khabarov built two stone churches instead of the old wooden buildings which became parish churches in the XVIII century and later joined the monastery.

Nowadays the Pyatnitskaya suburb unites the clergy of the monastery and the Theological Academy.

Address: 127 Red Army Ave.

Ilyinskaya Church

The church stands on the shore of Kelar Lake in the old part of the city. The building of red brick is notable for its slender silhouette, whitewashed portals and an elegant tent over the bell tower. Stone church was built in 1773 to replace the burnt wooden church. It was famous for the fact that it was not closed even during the Soviet era.

The walls are painted by skilled craftsmen. There is a library and a Sunday school.

Address: 1/5, Kuzminova street.

Spaso-Vifansky Monastery

On the southern outskirts of the city there is a hermitage, which belongs to the monastery. The main temple is the Transfiguration Cathedral with a unique altar. The upper one is on an artificially created mountain, and the lower one is located in a cave similar to the one in which Lazarus was raised by Jesus Christ.

After the revolution the monastery was closed. A new life began in the late 90s. Now there is a theological seminary and a Sunday school.

Address: ul. Masliev, 25, bus 74 stop, “Ptitsegrad”.

The hermitage of the Holy Spirit Praklita.

Emperor Alexander II, in the middle of the XIX century after the birth of his son, donated the land to the Trinity-Sergius Lavra. Initially there lived only a few cells in the hermitage elders, who used to be in the caves. Later, with the assistance of the merchant Korolev, a church was built and consecrated in the name of the Holy Spirit Paraclete. During Soviet times, the temple’s premises were used for various purposes.

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The revival of the Hermitage began in 1992. Monks live on donations from parishioners, no commercial activities are conducted: not sold candles, icons and books.

Address: Moscow region. village Smena.

From the bus station departs by bus 38 to the village.

Where to go in Sergiev Posad tourist interesting places

Tourists who come to Sergiev Posad, mainly pursue one goal: acquaintance with historical objects, visiting the Lavra. Popular places for recreation are in the city and its suburbs. In winter you can combine an informative tour with a ski trip. In summer, you can see waterfalls and lakes near the city.

Market rows

In the center of the city, in Krasnogorsk square, there is a bright architectural structure. It was built in the early XX century in the Russian style with typical red walls not plastered, bubble columns, turrets, spires and a roof in the form of terem. Krasnogorsk square had been an object of trade since time immemorial, so instead of wooden rows stone rows were built.

Now the building houses the pilgrimage center of the Trinity-Sergius Lavra. There are a lot of stores, cafes and souvenir shops in the malls.

Address: ul. I Udarnoy Armii, 12.

Cafe Landau

The house with an unusual name in honor of the physicist Lev Landau is located on Karl Marx street. Perhaps the nearby technical college for physics and mathematics has contributed to it. The interior is decorated in an appropriate style: portraits of scientists on the walls, different electric devices on the shelves and in a glass cabinet there are test-tubes and flasks. The menu is written on millimeter paper.

The food is the usual Russian cuisine, among the interesting: tiny nanochebureks, ginger tea, hot cider, mulled wine with fruit beer.

Address: 7 Karla Marksa Street.

ParkWood’s

If you do not know where to go to have fun with your child, you can recommend the rope park on the territory of Skit ponds. It is designed for family recreation: an adult trail with 2 routes and one for children. There are pedestrian paths, benches for recreation, children’s playgrounds in the park. All this is surrounded by ancient trees and scatterings of ponds.

Address: 151, Vifanskaya Street. Buses: 30, 36, 37, 7. Minibuses: 15, 16, 18, 25, 34, 4k, 64, 74, 80.

Palace of Culture named after Yuri Gagarin.

The main concert hall of Sergiev Posad is located in a classical style building with columns. In the evening, guests and locals have a place to go. In the hall with a capacity of 900 seats you can watch a play, a musical group performance. There is a square with a fountain in front of it.

Address: 185 Red Army Ave.

Stores of shopping aisles

In Sergiev Posad in the first place buy souvenirs of religious content. They are sold in the church stalls and stores on the territory of Lavra. Here they purchase icons, church utensils, blessed oils and other goods.

What else is Sergiev Posad famous for? It used to be called Zagorsk. The city is considered the birthplace of the matryoshka doll. Local craftsmen learned how to make a toy in the 16th century. Another symbol of Russia – the bear – is embodied in a wooden toy. In the village of Bogorodskoye, near Sergiev Posad, craftsmen have been carving Bogorod toys out of wood for four centuries, among them the famous product: a man and a bear taking turns beating on the anvil.

One of the popular gifts is the Alexandrov shawl, which is also a masterpiece of local applied art. Porcelain from the factory in Verbilki (30 km from the city) is popular.

All gifts, souvenirs can be purchased in the stores of the trading rows on Krasnogorsk square, which is adjacent to the Lavra. These are the places that guests of the city should definitely visit.

Place of the fall of the Tunguska meteorite

Address: 1st Udarnoy Army Street, 12.

Toy Museum

A unique repository of children’s toys from all over the world was originally located in Moscow. It was founded in 1918 by artist N.D. Bartram, the attendance of the collection was second only to the Tretyakov Gallery. In 1931 the museum moved to Sergiev Posad, but its popularity did not become any less. Now the collection of 150,000 items is housed in an old mansion. There is a lot to see here for both adults and children, as the exhibits include toys of different peoples of the world. The museum is situated opposite to Lavra.

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