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Nizhny Novgorod Where Religion & Money Mix

2. December 2009 by James 0 Comments

When traveling with your Russian bride, be sure to visit the Nizhny Novgorod region. Known for its large number of churches, the Nizhny Novgorod region is listed as a UNESCO cultural site and has a rich heritage.

Serafimo-Diveevsky Monastery

One of the most sacred places in the world for Orthodox Christians is the Serafimo-Diveevsky Monastery named in honor of St. Seraphim. Every year hundreds of thousands of people make a pilgrimage to the church to pray to St. Seraphim of Sarov, who is buried inside the cathedral, for his intersession to heal their ailments.

St.  Seraphim of Sarov is one of the most respected and honored saints in the Eastern Orthodox Church. Following the fall of the Soviet Union his bones were discovered at a Soviet anti-religious center and were venerated in ceremony as he was re-interned at the cathedral.

A Grand Estate

While visiting the monastery be sure that you and your Russian lady visit another nearby medieval structure.

Located close to the monastery, up a steep and often muddy hill, is an old estate that dates back to the 16th Century. The years have taken a toll on the once proud building but you can still see how grand it was. Not much is known about the mansion, or who owned it, the records were lost.  But Zhanna Potravko is leading a one woman crusade to save the estate and turn it into a destination for tourists. Using her own money, she is slowly restoring the estate to its former glory.

Center of Commerce

Located where the Volga and Oka Rivers meet, the city of Nizhny Novgorod is one of oldest cities in Russia, it is the  capital of the region and it the fourth largest city in Russia.

Because of its location Nizhny Novgorod has served as an economic center for Russia since its founding in the 13th Century.  In 1817 it was the site of the Great Russian Fair attracting millions of people. By the mid 19th Century Nizhny Novgorod has become the economic center of Russia. It was the New York City of Russian Empire.

Famous Russian author Maxim Gorky was born in Nizhny Novgorod in 1868 as Alexei Maximovich Peshkov. His novels became a favorite of the communists and socialists for the realistic description of life for the lower classes in the city.  In fact, Stalin renamed the city Gorky in 1932 to honor him. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Nizhny Novgorod like many other cities, reverted back to its original name. Gorky’s childhood home is now a museum.


21st Century 

Today, Nizhny Novgorod continues the tradition as the capital of commerce. It has one of the top stock markets in all of Russia. The city leads the country in IT and computer based businesses. It is also a leader in engineering industry exporting goods to Ukraine, Belarus, Belgium, France, Switzerland and Kazakhstan.

Nizhny Novgorod has so much culture and history it would be a crime for you and your Russian Bride not to visit.