Top 35 Kazan sights – descriptions and photos

70+ Best Sights of Kazan

It’s not surprising that Kazan has so many cultural monuments. After all, it’s a city with centuries of history: it has stood on the banks of the Volga River for more than a thousand years. It was the fortress of the Volga Bulgaria, the main city of the Kazan Khanate, and today is the capital of Tatarstan.

The most recognizable sights of Kazan are located on the territory of the Kremlin. All tourists first of all come here. You will meet in the city and its surroundings a lot of unusual buildings – for example, the reception hall in the form of a bowl, the circus in the form of a “flying saucer”, the fountain-checkerboard, the Temple of all religions. The latter is like the embodiment of modern Kazan, where different nations, each with its own religion, coexist.

Many families with children come here, because there are plenty of activities for them: a water park, a zoo, a circus and many other attractions. And for couples in love there are many romantic places: beautiful viewing platforms, green parks, embankment with walks along the river.

Kazan sights will appeal to everyone, it is no coincidence that it has the title of the third capital of Russia.

Kazan sights on the map

1. Kul Sharif Mosque

Mode of operation

The main postcard view of the capital of Tatarstan is the Kul Sharif Mosque in Kazan. It holds 1,500 people and another 10,000 will fit in the square in front of it. In the interiors you will see the fanciful ligature, openwork fences, woven carpets, quotes from the Koran written in gold. Anyone can come here, regardless of religion.

2. suyumbike tower

Mode of operation

The falling Suyumbike Tower is one meter higher than the Pisa Tower, and the deviation of its spire from the axis is almost two meters. To prevent it from falling, the building was encircled with an iron belt. And once the tower served as a watchtower, it is one of the oldest structures in Kazan. Its history is full of mysteries, and at the walls of Suyumbike is customary to make wishes.

The Temple of All Religions

Mode of operation

Complex, which unites all religions of the world – that is what the architect had in mind to be this temple. But not in the direct sense, where believers come, but as a symbol. A kind of museum, it has been under construction for more than 20 years. The temple of all religions because of its unusual design and bright ornaments has become one of the most popular places that tourists include in their program.

4. Kazan Family Center

Mode of operation

The Central Registry Office has become one of the main attractions of the city of Kazan because of its unusual shape. “Bowl” – this is how it is customary to call this place. And you can not argue: outside the building is a huge cauldron, in which the food is cooked on fire. You can go up to the observation deck, which offers a great view.

5. Bauman Street

Mode of operation

The main street of the historic part of the city is the pedestrian Bauman Street. It concentrates all the Russian-Tatar flavor that tourists come for. National cuisine, old houses, souvenirs, street musicians, museums – here, almost like in Greece, there is everything.

6. Chak-chak Museum

Mode of operation

Gingerbread House in Kazan speaks for itself: the best treats are made here. And chak-chak is considered traditional in Tatarstan. Try to cook it yourself, and the local masters will share their secrets with you. After that you will taste the dessert together with other guests and then try some strong herbal tea.

7. 1000th Anniversary Park

Mode of operation

In the Eastern Garden you will learn about Tatar culture. The fountain in the form of a cauldron will amaze your imagination. And the best photos are taken among the blossoming apple trees. The 1000-anniversary park with an area of seven soccer fields is a great place for recreation for the whole family.

8. Gorky Park

Mode of operation

Kazan Central Park is well maintained and clean. People come here for a walk, eat ice cream on the bench in summer or drink hot coffee in winter. There’s an ice rink and the largest fountain in town, where kids swim during the day and crowds gather in the evenings to watch the light and music show. Find out what else residents and tourists love about this place.

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9. Kazan circus

Mode of operation

Kazan State Circus has become one of the main attractions of the city thanks to its unusual building. Just imagine: you are walking down the street – and then a huge “flying saucer” appears in front of you! You are not imagining things. This is the shape of the circus, where for many years shows have been held.

10. Aquapark “Riviera”.

Mode of operation

One of the largest water parks not only in Russia, but also in the world. “Riviera” is open all year round. There are both indoor and outdoor pools, which are heated and open even in winter. A huge complex of 50 attractions, whirlpools and SPA-zone. You can come here for two hours, or for the whole day with the whole family.

11. Kazan zoobotanical garden

Mode of operation

In the early 1800s there was just a botanical garden on the basis of the university: different, including exotic, plants were brought here. Then students had the idea of making a zoological garden here. So in 1920 their first pets appeared. Today it is one of the oldest zoos in all of Europe. The beautiful grounds encourage long walks, and the opportunity not only to see, but also to feed the animals makes the place popular with parents with children.

12. Kirlay” amusement park

Mode of operation
Attractions

Thirty rides for adults and children, including “Free Falling” and “Flying Saucer. Athletic fields and stunning views from the Ferris wheel. Kyrlai Park awaits visitors from April to September. Timerhan the raccoon, who predicted the results of the 2018 World Cup, lives here.

Where to walk from one part of the world to another

Two parts of the world – Europe and Asia – meet in the Orenburg region, and it is also a land of sandy steppes, mountain peaks and salty lakes. Here they mine jasper, knit the famous Orenburg shawls and grow sweet watermelons. Yuri Gagarin learned to fly here, Vladimir Vysotsky grew up here, and in one of the villages Viktor Chernomyrdin was born. Here is a detailed guide to rest in the Orenburg region.

What else to see in Kazan

Kazan has many interesting places: parks, monuments, museums, temples, mosques and fountains. According to tourists, the city is firmly in the top five most attractive places in Russia. The beauty of the city with its thousand year history and its national flavor is very appealing to tourists. We tell you where else to go and what to see in Kazan and its surroundings:

  • 13. Annunciation Cathedral
  • 14. Governor’s Palace (residence of the president of the republic)
  • 15. Kazan University
  • 16. Cannon yard
  • 17. Palace of Farmers
  • 18. Puppet theater “Ekiyat
  • 19. Tugan Avylym” complex
  • 20. National Museum of the Republic of Tatarstan
  • 21. Kremlin embankment
  • 22. Hermitage Kazan Center
  • 23. Bell tower of Epiphany Cathedral
  • 24. Peter and Paul Cathedral
  • 25. Millennium Bridge
  • 26. Victory Park
  • 27. Kazan Mother of God Monastery
  • 28. Svyato-Uspensky Zilantov Monastery
  • 29. Musa Jalil Opera and Ballet Theater
  • 30. Museum of Socialist Life
  • 31. Museum of Natural History of Tatarstan
  • 32. Uritsky Park
  • 33. Old Tatar Settlement
  • 34. Al-Marjani Mosque
  • 35. House of Shamil
  • 36. Alexander Passage
  • 37. Ushkova House
  • 38. Tukai Square
  • 39. Museum of military equipment in the open air
  • 40. Canal Bulak
  • 41. A copy of the carriage of Catherine II
  • 42. Monument to the Cat of Kazan
  • 43. Zero meridian of Kazan
  • 44. Equestrian sports complex “Kazan”
  • 45. Oceanarium
  • 46. Blue Lakes
  • 47. Island-town Sviyazhsk
  • 48. Museum-reserve Bulgari
  • 49. Raifa Bogoroditsky Monastery
  • 50. The Ferris wheel “Around the world”.
  • 51. Residence of Kysh Babai and Kar Kyzy
  • 52. Park “Black Lake” 53.
  • 53. Cascade of fountains on the Bulak River
  • 54. Museum of Illusions and the House of the Giant
  • 55. Mausoleum of khans of Kazan
  • 56. Kazan Observatory
  • 57. Arch of lovers
  • 58. The fountain at Lake Nizhny Kaban
  • 59. Mishkin house in Kazan
  • 60. Sculpture “Riddles of Shurale”.
  • 61. Monument to the dragon Zilant
  • 62. Konstantin Vasiliev Museum in Kazan
  • 63. Monument to echpochmak
  • 64. Monument to Vodovoz in Kazan
  • 65. Monument to the first streetcar in Kazan
  • 66. Monument to Moidodyr in Kazan
  • 67. Peterburgskaya Street
  • 68. Monument to soldiers fallen in the capture of Kazan in 1552
  • 69. Museum “Urban Panorama
  • 70. Ak Bars Arena Stadium 71.
  • 71. House Museum of Lenin 72.
  • 72. Lebyazhie Lake
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How to get to the master class on artistic weaving

Alekseevskaya factory weavers create natural fabrics and sew from them clothes in folk style and accessories. All production is made only by hand. There are only three such enterprises left in Russia, and one is just in Tatarstan – in Alekseevskoye. Here they regularly organize excursions to the factory and master classes in artistic weaving for tourists. A hostel is open for accommodation of travelers.

Yoshkar-Ola and Sviyazhsk: how to spend an interesting weekend in the Volga region

Russian Railways’ tourist train “Tales of the Volga Region” will take you to places where independent tourists don’t get to very often. You will enjoy a fascinating journey around Yoshkar-Ola and a walk to the “Russian Atlantis” – Sviyazhsk island. Comfort on the trip is guaranteed, because modern trains, like a hotel on wheels – with air conditioning, outlets and showers.

Where did psaltery and Yoshkin cat come from in Mari El?

Why do people in Mari El love Ostap Bender and how did Yoshkin’s cat appear there? What is the famous merchant town Kozmodemyansk all of Russia, what masterpieces will surprise “Little Tretyakovka on the Volga” and what is the secret of the Mari psaltery? They will tell you about it in the republic, which has become a popular tourist destination today. Take a trip to Mari El’s brand routes and enjoy the unique nature, original culture and hospitality of the Mari people.

How to get there

Kazan Airport is located 26 km from the city. You can get there by Aeroexpress train from the railway station, by shuttle bus no. 197 or by cab. Website of the airport: kazan.aero

Railway station “Kazan-1” in the city center, 10 minutes walk from the Kazan Kremlin. You can get here by buses number 2, 5, 6, 10/10a, 23, 30, 53, 63, 68, 72, 74/74a, 79, 91; by trolleybus number 7; streetcars number 1, 5. Website of the station: zhdkazan.ru.

The bus station “Central” is located on the street Devyataeva, 15, 10 minutes from the city center. From here go buses number 1, 6, 31, 53, 54; trolleybuses number 3, 5. Website of the station: avtovokzal-kzn.ru.

Kazan sights: Top 35

Complete guide to Kazan sights – immerse yourself in the Tatar culture of the third capital with your head.

About ten years ago, Kazan began to be called the third capital of Russia. Interestingly, at the same time, the city registered in Rospatent trademarks “Third capital”, “Third capital of Russia”, “Third city”, “Third city of Russia”, as well as “Russia`s third capital”. And it’s not surprising – every year the city is becoming more and more beautiful and attracts more and more tourists.

We know that Kazan is not limited to the Ancient Kremlin and Kul-Sharif Mosque. That’s why we’ve compiled a guide to the main places for you. In total – 35 sights of the city for all tastes. And if you want to visit Kazan for a long time, but don’t have company, find companions on invme and go on a trip together.

Everything near the Kremlin

Kazan Kremlin.

  • What it is: The city’s sights are not limited to the Kremlin, but you should still start there. It is the heart of the city and the oldest part of Kazan, the official residence of the President of the Republic of Tatarstan, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • What to do: Learn the history of Kazan in the six museums of the Kremlin. Marvel at how old and new, East and West, Islam and Orthodoxy combine in one place.

Kul Sharif Mosque.

  • What it is: The main mosque and a real symbol of the city. It is located on the territory of the Kazan Kremlin. This is a reconstructed mosque of the same name, which was destroyed by the troops of Ivan the Terrible in 1552. It took 10 years to build the new mosque, from 1996 to 2005, its opening was timed to coincide with Kazan’s 1000th anniversary.
  • What to do: Marvel at the incredible beauty of one of the largest mosques in Europe. Visit the Museum of Islamic Culture, which is located in the basement.

Hermitage Kazan Center

  • What is it: This is a museum on the territory of the Kremlin, created with the cooperation of the Hermitage and Tatarstan. Different exhibitions are constantly held here, not only paintings, but also arts and crafts.
  • What to do: Visit the exhibition and listen to a lecture about the history of art while walking around the Kremlin.
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Monument to the dragon Zylant

  • What it is: A monument to the dragon, the symbol of the city that adorns Kazan’s flag and coat of arms. Many urban legends are associated with him. According to one of them, he lived right here on the mountain where Kazan was built.
  • What to do: You can see the symbol of the city a few meters from the Kul-Sharif mosque.

Annunciation Cathedral

  • What is it: This is the oldest cathedral on the territory of the Kazan Kremlin, which repeats the colors of the Kul Sharif Mosque. It was built from 1555 to 1562, making it the oldest surviving historical and architectural monument in the city.
  • What to do: See dozens of icons, relics of saints, ancient handwritten books. Get into the spirit of a true center of Orthodox pilgrimage.

Suyumbike Tower

  • What it is: The so-called “falling” tower is located on the territory of the Kremlin. It is often compared to the leaning tower of Pisa, the main leaning tower in the world.
  • What to do: Get caught up in the legend of the tower’s creation – it is believed that Ivan the Terrible built it for Tsarina Suyumbike, whom he wanted to marry. Suyumbike was so reluctant to marry the tsar that she threw herself off the tower, which caused it to tilt slightly.

Kremlin Embankment

  • What it is: One of the main places for walking and recreation, a landscaped alley with walking paths, lawns and cafes.
  • What to do: In winter to skate, in summer to go down the steps to the water and walk along the embankment with beautiful views of the Kazan Kremlin.

Monument to Musa Dzhalil

  • What it is: A monument to the famous Tatar journalist, poet and war correspondent, Hero of the Soviet Union, whose life turned out tragically: he was executed for participating in an underground organization. Ten years later, the poet Konstantin Simonov succeeded in clearing up the slanderous slanders against Dzhalil and proving the patriotic activities of his group.
  • What to do: Look at the monument while walking near the Kremlin. Pay tribute to the military feat of the fearless poet.

City center, outside the Kremlin

Bauman Street

  • What: The main street of the city, which became pedestrian in 1986. It originates from the Kazan Kremlin and stretches through the entire center of the city.
  • What to do: To see many historical buildings and monuments, to drink coffee in a cafe and buy souvenirs in one of the countless shops.

Monument to the Cat of Kazan

  • What it is: The statue of the fat cat on Bauman Street is dedicated to a fictional cat. Supposedly, he was so good at catching mice that he was noted by Empress Elisabeth herself.
  • What to do: Stroke the cat’s belly and make a wish.

Old Tatar Sloboda

  • What it is: One of the important historical places of Kazan, located near Bauman Street. Mansions and estates of the bourgeoisie and wealthy peasants have been preserved here, and there are many cafes and restaurants.
  • What to do: To understand how Kazan looked like 150 years ago, to plunge into the attributes of Tatar culture. Taste dishes of the national cuisine.

Religions of the world

Al-Marjani Mosque

  • What it is: The historic center of Tatar-Muslim spirituality in Tatarstan. The ancient mosque, which for two centuries was the largest and the main cathedral mosque in Kazan, is located in the Staro-Tatarskaya Sloboda.
  • What to do: See with your own eyes the symbol of the beginning of religious tolerance in Russia.

Temple of all religions

  • What it is: An architectural symbolic symbiosis of different religions and cultures, which, according to the idea of its creator Ildar Khanov, unites all people of the world. No church or ceremonial services are held here.
  • What to do: See a unique place that combines Orthodoxy, Catholicism, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, other religions and even extinct civilizations.

Peter and Paul Cathedral

  • What it is: One of the cathedrals of the Peter the Great era, a prime example of the Russian Baroque style, the cathedral erected in honor of Peter the Great’s visit to Kazan.
  • What to do: See the important shrines and visit the place where Alexander Pushkin, Fyodor Chaliapin, and Alexander Dumas left their memories.
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Epiphany Belfry

  • What it is: Kazan’s tallest bell tower and one of the highest places in the city. Its height is 74 meters. It is also made in the style of Russian baroque.
  • What to do: Look for the tower with your eyes if you suddenly got lost in the city – you can see it from almost anywhere in the central part of the city. Where the bell tower – there is the center, Bauman Street.

Kazan’s original buildings

Palace of Farmers

  • What is it: This monumental building is so called because it is the office of the Ministry of Agriculture and Food. The palace was built in 2008-2010 and is reminiscent of 19th century European palaces.
  • What to do: Take a look at the building, which has drawn a lot of criticism from residents who felt it was too pompous and didn’t fit into the historic center of the city.

Kazan Family Center

  • What it is: The Wedding Palace, a bizarre-looking building with unusual architecture, the top of which is a huge kazan (Turkic cauldron).
  • What to do: On a day free of wedding registrations, go up to the observation deck – when else will you be able to be inside the cauldron?

Ekiyat Theater

  • What it is: The largest and one of the oldest puppet theaters in Russia. The name of the theater was formed from the Tatar word “әkiyat”, which means “fairy tale”.
  • What to do: See one of the 50 fairy tales presented in the repertoire of the theater. Many of them go on for decades. Or just take a stroll through the beautiful park that surrounds the theater.

Alexander Passage.

  • What it is: A late 19th century architectural monument located next to the Puppet Theater. A large, historic building purchased by the merchant Aleksandrov, who later gave it to his sister.
  • What to do: Admire the architecture of the building, which is a mix of Art Nouveau and Baroque.

Ushkova House.

  • What it is: A luxurious mansion of the last century, which before the Revolution belonged to the Ushkov family (trading dynasty). Now the National Library of the Republic of Tatarstan is located there.
  • What to do: See what books are in the national library, as well as listen to a fascinating tour and admire the interiors.

Kazan Parks

Millennium Park

  • What it is: A park created for the 1000th anniversary of Kazan, with the Millennium Alley in the center and an area called “Crossroads” that symbolizes the unification of European and Eastern cultures.
  • What to do: Take a walk, take a break from the long walks to all the other sights.

Victory Memorial Park

  • What it is: A park that is famous for having 1,418 shrubs planted in the 1970s – exactly how many days the Great Patriotic War lasted.
  • What to do: Look at the Eternal Flame, visit the museum of military equipment and look at the tanks, which are on display directly in the open air.

Gorky Park

What it is: One of the largest parks in Kazan, named after Maxim Gorky. He often walked there in his youth. Many residents of the city also call it “Russian Switzerland”.

What to do: Relax in the shade of trees, do sports or have lunch in one of the many outdoor cafes.

Kazan museums

National Museum of the Republic of Tatarstan

  • What it is: The main museum of the entire Republic of Tatarstan and one of the largest museums of the entire Volga region, with a collection of more than 800,000 different exhibits. One of the favorite places of tourists, where one can return more than once, because it is impossible to see all the exhibitions at once.
  • What to do: Learn the most interesting things about the culture, traditions, history and everyday life of Tatarstan.

Natural History Museum of Tatarstan

What it is: The largest natural history museum in the Volga region, which will appeal to all lovers of everything prehistoric: dinosaurs, invertebrates, meteorite samples.

What to do: Get in touch with antiquity, take a tour of astronomy, feed the “prehistoric” fish in the aquarium. A side note for visitors with children – the kids can do a mini excavation.

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Gallery-workshop of Slava Zaitsev

  • What is it: It is a private museum of the young artist Slava Zaitsev, about whom few people know. It presents an exhibition of paintings, many of which are made from improvised materials.
  • What to do: Get in touch with contemporary art and talk to the artist in person. As a bonus, meet the parrot Jacques, who lives in the creative space.

Museum of Socialist Life

  • What it is: A unique museum that takes you back in time to the past century and introduces you to the attributes of the 70s and 80s of the Soviet Union. It is interesting that the director of the museum Rustem Valiakhmetov initially placed all the things in his apartment, starting from the 90s. Only in 2011, the government of the republic gave him a separate room.
  • What to do: For those who are older – to remember the past and look at everyday items they used to use. Younger people – to see how their parents and grandparents lived.

Konstantin Vasiliev Museum

  • What it is: A painting gallery of the Kazan-based artist. The permanent collection consists of 160 of his paintings that he painted during his life, which lasted only 34 years.
  • What to do: Enjoy the art of the talented artist, and listen to one of the lectures held in the museum.

Shamil’s House.

  • What it is: An architectural monument and cultural heritage site of regional significance that combines Art Nouveau and Historicism styles.
  • What to do: Not only admire the building from the outside, but also look inside – it now houses the Literary Museum of Gabdulla Tukay, the Tatar folk poet and publicist.

Waters in and around Kazan

Riviera Water Park

  • What it is: An entertainment complex, which was divided into two parts – indoor and outdoor. You can splash in the water park all year round. In total there are about 50 attractions for all tastes. There is an area for the little ones, bathhouses, cafes and restaurants.
  • What to do: Tickle your nerves on the highest (which is called “Kamikaze”) and longest (which is called “Niagara”) slides.

Millennium Bridge.

  • What is it: not far from the water park there is a bridge over the Kazanka River. This is the highest bridge in Kazan, built for the millennium of the city. Its height above the water is 64 meters.
  • What to do: Admire the bridge from afar, see how the structure is built in the shape of the letter “M”.

Blue Lakes

  • What it is: A natural complex with clear lakes located about 20 km from the city. The lakes under the names Protochnoye, Bolshoye Blue and Maloye Blue were formed due to the springs coming out of the ground. The temperature does not exceed 8 degrees.
  • What to do: You can admire the nature or stay for a couple of days in a health resort nearby. For the most desperate – try scuba diving.

Island-town of Sviyazhsk

  • What it is: A 40-minute drive from Kazan is a picturesque island that attracts tourists with beautiful panoramas, museums and stunning views of the Volga and Sviyaga rivers.
  • What to do: Admire the waters of the mighty rivers, visit numerous monasteries, churches and the equestrian yard.

Lake Kaban

  • What it is: A system of three lakes (Lower Kaban, Middle Kaban, and Upper Kaban) inside the city. On the shore is a large sports complex – the Rowing Center, where rowing competitions were held during the 2013 Universiade.
  • What to do: Take a walk along the promenade, look at the largest light and music fountain on Lake Nizhny Kaban.

And some soccer

Kazan Arena Stadium

  • What it is: The home stadium of FC Rubin, which lasted from 2010 to 2013. Interestingly, not only soccer matches are held here – a few years ago the World Aquatics Championship was held here, for which the stadium had to be temporarily rebuilt.
  • What to do: Soak up the atmosphere of soccer, become a soccer fan for two hours and scream to your heart’s content.

Kazan is an amazing city with an original culture and a long history, many museums, churches and mosques, with beautiful architecture and nature. Use our list of the 35 most interesting places in the city, and the third capital will remain in your memories forever. Go to another amazing city – Sergiev Posad. We wrote about the sights of Sergiev Posad .

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