Novgorod (Russian: Великий Новгород Velikii Novgorod) is one of the oldest cities in Russia. It was first mentioned in the manuscripts as early as 859.
The city of Novgorod The Great (Novgorod Veliky) is located between Moscow (530km) and Saint Petersburg (108 km). Its population is estimated at 230,000 people. Novgorod is inscribed on the World Heritage List.
- See also: Russian Empire
Novgorod was first mentioned in manuscripts as early as 859. Together with Kiev, Novgorod was a very important cultural, social, and economical centre in Rus, and was the capital of one of the first European democracies, the Novgorod Republic, addressed publicly as "Lord Novgorod the Great". This independence came to be resented by the Muscovite autocrats; eventually Ivan the Terrible forced it into submission. It has ever since been a backwater kind of place.
Novgorod Airport is not operational. It was a busy airport during the time of the USSR. The planed replacement Krechevitsy Airport is also not open to civil aircraft.
The Novgorod-Na-Volhove train station is located 1.5km west of the city center, the river, and the Detinets (Kremlin).
Russian Railways operates trains between the Novgorod-Na-Volhove train station and Saint Petersburg's Moskovskiy Vokzal station (3 hours, early morning and late evening, ~400 руб) as well as Moscow's Leningradskii Vokzal station (8 hours, overnight, 800 руб+). The trains to/from Saint Petersburg are all seated and can be uncomfortable, although there is a lot of leg room. The overnight trains to/from Moscow feature soft berths and compartments for an additional charge.
All trains and elektrichkas make a brief stop in Chudovo, where you can get out of the train and use a very unpleasantly dirty bathroom.
Left luggage services are available at the Novgorod-Na-Volhove train station.
The bus station in Novgorod is located across the street from the train station.
Several buses run daily from Saint Petersburg's Main Bus Terminal to Novgorod (several daily, 4 hours, ~200 руб). Buses to Moscow operate only during the summer, but the trip is long and inconvenient. Buses also operate to Tver, Pskov, Riga, and other cities in the Novgorod region.
Novgorod has both bus and trolleybus systems. Running approximately every 5 minutes, buses and trolleybuses will get you to every part of the city. Bus & trolleybus route maps and timetables [dead link] are available online in Russian.
Novgorod is a walking-friendly city, and if you like long walks, everything in the city is within walking distance. The advantage is also that you have a chance to see the beautiful architecture of the city.
Bicycles are a perfect way to get around Novgorod. Bicycle and rollerblade rental are available at the "Shooting Club" on the Main Alley of the Kremlin Park. Phone: +7 921 731 74 32.
Taxis are cheap and plentiful.
Several buildings make up the UNESCO World Heritage site Historic Monuments of Novgorod and Surroundings.
- 1 Kremlin (City Center). Novgorod's Kremlin, or Detinets, is free to visitors and includes many of the main places of interest in the city. Admission is free, and two gates (one from the footbridge on the river; the other by Sofiyskaya Square and the Lenin Statue) are open to pedestrians. A beach along the bank of the river can be accessed from a gate inside the Kremlin wall.
- Aleksandr Nevsky Monument. "Whoever comes to us with a sword, from a sword will perish..."... Prince Aleksandr has been a legendary hero for all Russians. Famous for the "Battle on Ice" against the Livonian knights. Aleksandr was canonized by the Russian Orthodox Church.
- 2 Monument of the Millennium of Russia (In the Kremlin). This iron statue is in the park in the center of the Kremlin. It was created in 1862 and is ringed by an interesting panorama of famous individuals in Russian history up to that time. Russian Tsars and Patriarchs appear on one half of the panorama, and cultural figures on the other half.
- 3 Monument Novgorod Militia 1812 (Памятник Новгородскому ополчению 1812 года).
- Monument to St. Peter and Fevronia.
- 4 Cathedral of the Virgin of the Sign (Znamensky).
- 5 Church of Andrew Stratilat.
- 6 Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin at the Marketplace.
- Church of the Assumption on the Volotovo Field.
- Church of the Intercession.
- Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin.
- Church of the Saint Great Martyr Fedor Stratilat on the Brook.
- 7 The Church of the Transfiguration.
- Church Of Nikolai Bely.
- 8 Church of Peter and Paul (Tserkov' Petra i Pavla).
- 9 Church of St. George at the Marketplace.
- 10 Church of St. Philip the Apostle and St. Nicholas.
- 11 Church of Saints Boris and Gleb.
- Church of Spasa-na-Iliene.
- Church Simeona Bogopriimtsa.
- 12 Church of Theodore Stratilates on the Brook.
- 13 Demetrios Solunskiy Church.
- 14 Holy Spirit Monastery.
- Monastery of The Virgin Nativity.
- 15 Paraskeva Church at the Marketplace.
- 16 The Roman Catholic Church of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul.
- St. Basil's Cathedral.
- 17 St. George Monastery.
- 18 St. Nicholas Cathedral.
- 19 [dead link] Saviour Church on Nereditsa.
- 20 St. Sophia Cathedral (In the Kremlin). 10AM to 4PM daily. This eleventh-century cathedral is the centerpiece of Novgorod's religious buildings. The iconostasis and frescoes inside are especially interesting. On the north-west exterior of the cathedral, see the Magdeburg Doors, a bronze twelfth-century German creation with reliefs of biblical scenes and, allegedly, the doors' sculptors themselves in one of the scenes. 500 руб.
- 21 Yaroslav's Court (Across the river from the Kremlin). Across the footbridge from the Kremlin is the old commercial district, which is marked by a long arcade along the river bank. Within the commercial district are several churches, many of which are in typical Novgorod style: a square base topped by a dome. Some wooden houses in Yaroslav's Court also hold temporary museum exhibitions.
- 22 Zverin Monastery.
- Center of Musical Antiquities.
- Faceted Chamber Museum.
- 23 Fine Arts Museum, 2, Pobedy-Sophiyskaya Square (Across from the Lenin Statue), ☏ . 10AM to 4PM except Monday and the first Thursday of the Month. A collection of Russian art, including Repin and other 19th and 20th Century artists. Entrance 80 руб.
- Kokui Tower Museum.
- Likhudov Building Museum.
- Museum of History and Art.
- Nikolskiy Cathedral Museum.
- Sofiyskaya Zvonnitsa Museum.
- State Art Museum of Novgorod Land.
- Vitoslavitsy Museum of Folk Wooden Architecture (To get there, take bus #7 from the bus stop across the street from Sennaya Square and the tourist information office. The stop for the museum is about 20 minutes from the city center, and one stop after the Yurev Monastery. There is a large wooden hotel/restaurant on the left side of the road at the bus stop, but the entrance to the museum is on the right side of the road. To return to the city, board the #7 bus at the same bus stop where you got off; the bus makes a loop on the one-way road, and thus the same bus will bring you back to the city center.). The museum is in the forest near the shore of Lake Ilmen. It is a collection of rural houses from around Novgorod region that were transported to the area in the 1960s to create this museum. Includes wooden churches, traditional houses, and even a windmill and blacksmith's shop. 110 руб for foreigners, 50 руб for Russians.
- Vorotnaya Bashnya Gostinogo Dvora Museum.
- 1 Novgorod Drama Theater (Новгородский академический театр драмы имени Ф.М. Достоевского), 14 Velikaya st., ☏ , , ✉ email@example.com.
- 2 Novgorod Philharmony (Новгородская Областная Филармония), ☏ , , (booking office), ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org.
- DinoLand Family Entertainment Centre.
- Christmas fortune-telling, Vitoslavlitsy.
- 3 King Festival («Малый», новгородский театр для детей и молодежи), 32А Mira bul., ☏ , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. Mid-April. They sometimes hold performances in English
- International Bell Ringing Festival, Vitoslavlitsy.
- International Music Festival and the International Young Pianists Contest. April-May
- Ivan Kupala Day, Ilmen-lake.
- Summer festival "Sadko" (Садко). You can see real old-Russian folklore. "Sadko" based on Russian medieval epic Bylina. Adventurer, merchant and Musician from Novgorod. Also the main character from a Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov opera.
Souvenirs, particularly wooden handicrafts and birch-bark paintings, can be found at many locations, including the souvenir market on Sennaya Square (to one's right as one faces the Kremlin from Sofiyskaya Square and the Lenin Statue).
- 1 "The central cooking", dining room ("Центральная кулинария", столовая), 2/13 Fedorovskiy Ruchey st., ☏ . 8.00 - 20.00. Dirty cheap place to eat. Self-service
- Cafe Charodeyka, Ul. Volosova 1 (Corner of Sofiyskaya Square across from the Fine Arts Museum), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. A comfortable, trendy cafe with excellent food and coffee, a short walk outside the Kremlin walls. For both salads and main courses, you choose your own ingredients and sauces from a list on the menu. English menu. Has a sidewalk cafe in the summer.
- 2 Derzhavnyy ("Державный", кафе-бар), 5/2 Gazon st. (opposite Kremlin), ☏ , . 12.00 - 23.00. Freaking good food, Russian cuisine. Although prepare to wait as they tend to cook it for quite long. Portions aren't particularly big, so grab few ones. mains 150-400 руб.
- 3 [formerly dead link] Fregat Flagman (Фрегат Флагман) (near the walking bridge over the river), ☏ , , ✉ email@example.com. 12.00 - 23.00 (Mon - Fri); 12.00 - 06.00 (Sat, Sun). This is a real-size ship - restaurant with some great views over the Kremlin and surroundings
- 4 [dead link] Ilmen (Ильмень), 2a Gazon st., ☏ , . 12.00 - 24.00. Some OK food, small portions. They serve quite fast. mains 300 руб.
Honey mead is a local favorite.
- Yaroslav Hostel, Nikolskaja Street #4 (Just east of the river). Check-in: 1PM, check-out: 12PM. Bright colors! Dorm bed: 390-590 руб.
- Hotel Acron, Ul. Predtechenskaya 24 (Next to the Volkhov Hotel but with a separate entrance), ☏ , , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. One of the less expensive decent options in the city center. Single: 1600 руб; Double: 2200 руб.
- 1 Intourist (Гостиница «Интурист»), ☏ . Located in central part of a town (10 mins walk from Kremlin). All rooms are ensuite and have been recently renovated. Breakfast is not included in the price and costs 300 руб pp. There is a restaurant inside hotel. double 1800-2200 руб.
- Sadko Hotel, Ul. Fedorovsky Ruchei (Across the river from the Kremlin, about a 30-40 minute walk from the train station), ☏ , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. Mid-range, clean, renovated 3-star hotel with restaurant. Single: 2000-2100 руб; Double: 2800-3000 руб, including breakfast.
- Volkhov Hotel, Ul. Predtechenskaya 24 (Between the train station and the Kremlin, about a 10-minute walk from each.), ☏ , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 11:00, check-out: 12:00. Mid-range 3-star hotel Single: 2150 руб; Double: 3100 руб, including breakfast.
- Beresta Palace, Ul. Studentechskaya 2 (North of the city center on the east side of the river,), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Novgorod's top class hotel, with the most amenities, a moderate distance from the city center. Singles: US$97; Doubles: US$109.