Petersburg monasteries and convents

The route will guide you through the history of a monkery, monasteries and convents in Saint Petersburg. 

  • temples and cathedrals 2 ,
  • museums 1
11 km, 864 m
Smolny Cathedral

Smolny Cathedral

St. Petersburg, pl. Rastrelli, 1

The Cathedral is the centerpiece of the Smolny convent

The cathedral was built by Rastrelli between 1748 and 1764. The projected bell-tower was to become the tallest building in St. Petersburg and, at the time, all of Russia. Elizabeth's death in 1762 prevented Rastrelli from completing this grand design.

Today, Smolny Cathedral is used primarily as a concert hall and the surrounding convent buildings house various offices and government institutions.

1
Saint Alexander Nevsky Lavra

Saint Alexander Nevsky Lavra

St. Petersburg, Monastyrka river embankment, 1

Founded by Peter the Great in 1710, this orthodox monastery is the most important in St. Petersburg

Alexander Nevsky Laura is an Orthodox monastery at the eastern end of Nevsky Prospekt. It is the first and the largest monastery of the city. The place for the construction of the Alexander Nevsky Monastery was personally chosen by the Emperor Peter I in 1710. It was previously assumed that in this very spot Alexander Nevsky had defeated the Swedes in the Battle of the Neva in 1240. In 1713 the first wooden church of the future monastery - the Annunciation church - was laid upon the project of D.Trezzini. On the territory of the Alexander Nevsky Monastery there are several famous cemeteries where the members of the royal family, government and public figures, representatives of culture and art, are buried.

In 1723 Peter I ordered to move the relics of Prince Alexander Nevsky from Vladimir to the new monastery. They arrived in St. Petersburg in 1724, and a new holiday - the Translation of the relics of Prince Alexander - was added to the calendar of the Russian Church. St. Alexander Nevsky, along with Peter I, is one of the patrons of St. Petersburg.

4 km, 387 m
2
Voskresensky Novodevichy Convent

Voskresensky Novodevichy Convent

St. Petersburg, Moskovsky Prospect, 100/2

Active Ortodox Convent

It is the first Orthodox Convent of the St. Petersburg eparchy of the Russian Orthodox Church. Initially the monastery was located in the area of Smolny Cathedral in the Summer palace of the empress Elizabeth Petrovna. Catherine the Great had established a school for the maidens from noble families there, which was then transformed into Smolny institute. By 1797 some nuns were taken into other convents, and in 1827 Voskresensky Novodevichy Convent was closed. In 1845 the emperor Nikolay I signed the decree about the renewal of the Convent. Later, in the autumn of 1848 the Convent was transferred closer to the Moscow triumphal arch, where it is nowadays. The last time of the abolishment of the Convent in 1937, but since 1995 it became active again, and so up to the present days.

The Novodevichy Convent has recently become a place of worship the well-known Sacred objects from Athos, which were brought to St. Petersburg. On could see the multikilometer lines along Moskovsky Avenue even to Obvodny Canal : people went to venerate the relics of Saint Defenders. From 20 Ocober to 24 October 2011 the Holy Belt of the Virgin was kept in the convent, and in January,2014 the Holy Gifts of Magi were brought to St. Petersburg from  the Monastery of Agios Pavlos. Besides, in the Kazan church the worshippers can always see the "shuitsa" (the left hand) of Saint Iaoann Damaskin.

On the gravestone of one of the graves of the Voskresensky cemetery, located near the Convent (not far from the entrance) there is Jesus Christ's bronze statue. It is a tomb of the spouse of the general Alexey Vershinin - Anna Vershinina. They say, that Vershinina was anxious about her family's destiny, she was afraid that their family grave will be forgotten. And once, Anna heard a voice of Christ in a dream: "Buy a place for your family grave  in advance  and put my bronze image there. Then each passerby will pray near it and will remember you". Since then the worshippers regard the statue as wonder-working.

7 km, 139 m
3