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Novodevichy Convent and Cemetery

Enter the hallowed ground in central Moscow where some of Russia’s most respected thinkers are buried.

A tranquil spot in metropolitan Moscow, the Novodevichy Cemetery is the final resting place of many famous Russians. The attached Novodevichy Convent also attracted many of Russia’s elite. These associations, plus its calm surroundings, make it an important spot to visit in Moscow. Pay your respects at the graves of eminent Russian musicians, writers and thinkers.

Tsar Vasily III founded the convent in 1524. His patronage meant the convent usually hosted women from society’s upper echelons. It has been remodeled since this time, largely because of the half-sister of Peter the Great, Regent Sophia. By a twist of fate, she was incarcerated by her half-sibling in the very same building. The convent is also remembered for surviving Napoleon’s invasion due to the ingenuity of its nuns. Read Tolstoy’s War and Peace to see a mention of the convent as well. The cemetery’s history parallels the convent’s. Many prominent Muscovites have been interred here since its inception.

Upon entering, see the Gate-Church of the Transfiguration. This noble red-and-white edifice is an impressive sight. Inside, view the Cathedral of the Virgin of Smolensk, which was built in a style dubbed the “Moscow Baroque.” Its full domes protrude over the walls surrounding the site.

Inside, view many 16th- and 17th-century religious artworks, including a multi-level iconostasis and lavish frescoes by artist Dmitry Grigorev. Inspect the massive 236-foot (72-meter) belfry to admire its intricate design. In the convent area, see exhibits ranging from religious art to precious stones.

Visit the cemetery to see graves of famous Russians. Esteemed author and playwright Anton Chekhov, dramatist Konstantin Stanislavsky and composer Sergei Prokofiev are buried here. Russian politician Nikita Khruschev’s grave may be the most intriguing. Khruschev was a controversial figure and was buried in the cemetery because he was not allowed burial at the Kremlin Wall. Monochrome decorations around his burial site symbolize his positive and negative traits, providing a thought-provoking experience.

Reach the Novodevichy Convent and Cemetery via the Sportivnaya metro station. Both are convent and cemetery are open daily; however, the convent closes on the last Monday of each month. The cemetery, churches and exhibits have entry fees.


Guide to Exploring Novodevichy Convent


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Kazankvartira24 Studio Apartments
Kazankvartira24 Studio Apartments

Kazankvartira24 Studio Apartments

?????? ??????????? ??? 10, Moscow
     
    0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Khamovniki, this apartment building is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Novodevichy Convent and within 3 miles (5 km) of Moscow Kremlin and Arbat Street. Moscow State University and Kremlin Armoury Museum are also within 3 miles (5 km). Sportivnaya Station is 7 minutes by foot and Frunzenskaya Station is 22 minutes.

    Inndays Sportivnaya £61
    Inndays Sportivnaya

    Inndays Sportivnaya

    Usacheva str. 25, Moscow
       
      3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Khamovniki, this apartment building is 0.3 mi (0.5 km) from Novodevichy Convent and within 3 miles (5 km) of Moscow Kremlin and Arbat Street. Moscow State University and Kremlin Armoury Museum are also within 3 miles (5 km). Sportivnaya Station is 6 minutes by foot and Frunzenskaya Station is 17 minutes.

      Khamovniki Spektr Business Hotel £33
      Khamovniki Spektr Business Hotel

      Khamovniki Spektr Business Hotel

      Ulitsa Usacheva 35 Bldg 1, Moscow
         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Khamovniki, this hotel is 0.3 mi (0.6 km) from Novodevichy Convent and within 3 miles (5 km) of Moscow State University and Arbat Street. Luzhniki Stadium and Gorky Park are also within 2 miles (3 km). Sportivnaya Station is only a 2-minute walk and Frunzenskaya Station is 20 minutes.

        Lux-Apartments Malaya Pirogovskaya 23 £48
        Lux-Apartments Malaya Pirogovskaya 23

        Lux-Apartments Malaya Pirogovskaya 23

        23 Malaya Pirogovskaya Ulitsa, Moscow
           
          3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Khamovniki, this apartment building is 0.3 mi (0.5 km) from Novodevichy Convent and within 3 miles (5 km) of Moscow Kremlin and Arbat Street. Moscow State University and Kremlin Armoury Museum are also within 3 miles (5 km). Sportivnaya Station is 10 minutes by foot and Frunzenskaya Station is 17 minutes.

          Apartment on Malaya Pirogovskaya 21
          Apartment on Malaya Pirogovskaya 21

          Apartment on Malaya Pirogovskaya 21

          Ulitsa Malaya Pirogovskaya 21, Moscow
             
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Khamovniki, this apartment building is 0.4 mi (0.6 km) from Novodevichy Convent and within 3 miles (5 km) of Moscow Kremlin and Arbat Street. Moscow State University and Kremlin Armoury Museum are also within 3 miles (5 km). Sportivnaya Station is 11 minutes by foot and Frunzenskaya Station is 16 minutes.

            Yunost Hotel
            Yunost Hotel

            Yunost Hotel

            Khamovnichesky Val, 34, Moscow, MOW
               
              3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Khamovniki, this hotel is 0.4 mi (0.7 km) from Novodevichy Convent and within 3 miles (5 km) of Moscow Kremlin and Moscow State University. Arbat Street is 2.2 mi (3.5 km) away. Sportivnaya Station is only a 3-minute walk and Frunzenskaya Station is 18 minutes.

              Hotel Olimp
              Hotel Olimp

              Hotel Olimp

              Dovatora str., 13, Khamovniki, Moscow
                 
                2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Khamovniki, this hotel is 0.5 mi (0.7 km) from Novodevichy Convent and within 3 miles (5 km) of Moscow Kremlin and Arbat Street. Moscow State University and Kremlin Armoury Museum are also within 3 miles (5 km). Sportivnaya Station is only a 5-minute walk and Frunzenskaya Station is 15 minutes.

                Blues Hotel £51
                Blues Hotel

                Blues Hotel

                Dovatora Ulitsa 8, Moscow
                   
                  3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Khamovniki, this inn is 0.8 mi (1.3 km) from Luzhniki Stadium, and within 3 mi (5 km) of Arbat Street and Moscow Kremlin. Kremlin Armoury Museum and Bolshoi Theatre are also within 6 mi (10 km). Sportivnaya Station is 6 minutes by foot and Frunzenskaya Station is 14 minutes.