What to do and see in Veliky Novgorod, Russia: The Best Places and Tips

December 30, 2017 Deane Carmody

Immerse yourself in Russian history with a trip to Veliky Novgorod. The town is best known for its incredible medieval churches and monuments, including the 11th century St. Sophia Cathedral. These are some of the oldest buildings in Russia, set in a small town that's easy to get around. Easily accessible by train, bus or car, it's a popular getaway from St. Petersburg.
Restaurants in Veliky Novgorod

1. Millennium of Russia

Novrogod Kremlin, Veliky Novgorod, Russia +7 905 290-86-86
Excellent
88%
Good
9%
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5 based on 608 reviews

Millennium of Russia

Shaped like a bell and surrounded by 128 bronze figures, this monument to Russia's millennium honors the politicians and other people who most contributed to the development of the country between 862 and 1862.

Reviewed By Rachel F - London, United Kingdom

This sculpture - in the middle of Novgorod kremlin - was made for the millenium and depicts the history of Russia. It's so detailed, you can spend ages looking at it, trying to identify famous figures and events. People featured include Mother Russia on the top, and Peter the Great on the second level. Well worth a look if you're in the area.

2. Novgorod Kremlin (Detinets)

Sofiyskaya Storona, Veliky Novgorod, Russia +7 816 277-36-08
Excellent
83%
Good
14%
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5 based on 1 reviews

Novgorod Kremlin (Detinets)

Reviewed By sasalan999 - Dunfermline, United Kingdom

Novgorod may be of significant historical importance but the Kremlin compares unfavourably to that of Moscow. It is a nice place for a quiet walk through and there is an impressive bell sculpture as a focal point but otherwise there isn't that much to see. You may get the most benefit from a local guide and the Kremlin perimeter wall is still pretty impressive but otherwise you may feel a bit disappointed. Remember to make the most of your visit before crossing the river to see the churches on the other side.

3. St. Sophia Cathedral

Kremlin, 11, Veliky Novgorod 173007, Russia +7 816 277-35-56
Excellent
84%
Good
12%
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5 based on 402 reviews

St. Sophia Cathedral

One of the oldest stone buildings in Russia, this magnificent Cathedral is considered to be the symbol of the city, and was once the hiding place for Novgorod's treasury.

Reviewed By Kerryn72 - Melbourne, Australia

One of my favorite churches that I saw in Russia. It is not tacky and gold like many others. The colour scheme id more muted and there is a good balance of art vs just colour. Was free entry.

4. Granovitaya Palata

Detinets, Veliky Novgorod 173007, Russia +7 816 277-37-38
Excellent
83%
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5 based on 141 reviews

Granovitaya Palata

Also known as the Chamber of Facets, this is the only Gothic style building in the Detinets, once used for court sessions and now housing a museum with arts and crafts and an interesting icon collection.

Reviewed By Oleg Y - Belgrade, Serbia

This Palate we visited while looking the large area, encircled with the red bricks walls of Veliky Novgorod Kremlin ( Detinets). And the building of the Granovitaya Palata itself, was made of the red bricks, resembling at the towers and walls of Kremlin in Moscow.
Otherwise, it is called the Palace of Facets and represents the only gothic styled building in Novgorod. Inside, we found many ancient church affiliations, one gospel giant weighing whole 26 kg.
The support of the vaults and ceilings was made by the series of the massive columns, not so high, but branching in the upper parts in the arches or arched ribs, from there this name of Granovitaya (Grani or ribs). Also, there are many and various premises of the Lord, bowls, pot, mugs, utensils and samples of the ancient, everyday life of Russians. We saw the beautiful paintings, depicting the biblical life, as the Holy Supper and the pictures of many saints. For the visitors, there are the shops to buy some Novgorod souvenirs.
Very nice old building, to spend some time under its vaults before going further in exploration of numerous Novgorodian churches, monasteries, cathedrals and museums.

5. St. George Monastery

Yuryevskoye Hwy., 10, Veliky Novgorod 173007, Russia +7 816 277-30-20
Excellent
74%
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4.5 based on 222 reviews

St. George Monastery

Four blue domes cap the Cathedral of this striking, walled-in Russian monastery dating back to the 12th century.

Reviewed By Holger B - St. Petersburg, Russia

You can combine this monastery with the visit of Vitoslavlitsy park, it is just a 15 minutes walk down the road. Idyllic situated at the embankment of the Ilmen lake. There is a beautiful beach behind the monastery, ideally for a shashlik picnic with superb view on the lake. A quite and peaceful piece of earth.

6. Pedestrian Bridge Across River Volkhov

Sofiyskaya Embankment, Veliky Novgorod, Russia
Excellent
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4.5 based on 155 reviews

Pedestrian Bridge Across River Volkhov

Reviewed By Peter C - Wellington, New Zealand

I visited the Pedestrian Bridge Across River Volkhov with a guide. We walked through the Veliky Novgorod Kremlin grounds and onto the bridge. My guide suggested that the best position to photograph the bridge was from the right bank of the river, she was right. The bridge itself is interesting although not spectacular. However, views up and down the river and its surrounds from the centre of the bridge are beautiful. At the time of my visit there was a horse drawn carriage offering rides and small stalls offering souvenirs. A visit to the bridge and a walk across the Volkhov River is a natural addition to any visit to the Kremlin Grounds, Cathedral of St Sophia, the Millennium Monument, etc. The sandy river banks are used for sunbathing and while I was there, playing beach volleyball on.

7. Yaroslav Courtyard (Dvorishche)

Torgovaya Storona, Veliky Novgorod, Russia +7 911 040-00-04
Excellent
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4.5 based on 168 reviews

Yaroslav Courtyard (Dvorishche)

Various architectural masterpieces are conveniently located all in one place inside this court, which was the economic and political center of Novgorod in ancient times.

Reviewed By Antipich - Israel

This area is just across the river bridge from the Kremlin. It is filled with quit large number of ancient churches hinting the past wealth of the city and the importance of the religion.
The buildings are yet to be fully restored therefore the impression is very authentic.
There are also number of landmarks signifying relation of the city to Hansa merchants union in the middle ages: Hansa area map and commemorative monument.

8. Vitoslavitsy Museum of Folk Wooden Architecture

Yurevskoe shosse, Veliky Novgorod 173007, Russia +7 816 277-81-60
Excellent
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4.5 based on 718 reviews

Vitoslavitsy Museum of Folk Wooden Architecture

Reviewed By nccarraway - Fort Worth, Texas

This was a very interesting place. I was impressed with how well thought-out the peasant's homes were and loved to see the beautiful carvings put on the buildings' exteriors. The homes and churches are wooden and rustic, but do not be deceived into thinking that they are thus simple. they are very well constructed!
However, half of this open air museum is closed as they are working on the buildings. This is pretty disappointing as the large churches were the ones that were most obscured by the construction fencing. Once all is finished, it will be great.
Use the buses number 7 or 7A (Both stop at the train station if you cannot find another stop). The cost each way is 22 Rubles which is less than $0.50! The buses will take you to this museum and also to the excellent monastery that is a 1/4 mile away and a must to visit as well.

9. Center of Musical Antiquities

Ilyina, 9B, Veliky Novgorod 173000, Russia +7 816 263-50-19
Excellent
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5 based on 53 reviews

Center of Musical Antiquities

The center of musical antiquities executes the scientific program for detection and restoration in forms and sounding of ancient music instruments of the 10-15th centuries, evidence of which archaeologists discover in the old part of Veliky Novgorod. The cultural and educational program of the Center includes Exhibitions, tours, consulting, lecture-demonstrations dedicated to the musical culture of ancient Novgorod.

Reviewed By Jan G - Fayetteville, Georgia

A museum that shows the history of Russia thru the ages. Bring comfortable shoes and plan to spend time Reading and observing

10. Novgorod State Integrated Museum Reseve

Kreml Territoriya, 11, Veliky Novgorod 173007, Russia +7 816 277-36-08
Excellent
92%
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5 based on 56 reviews

Novgorod State Integrated Museum Reseve

Reviewed By PhilViking - Chapel Hill, North Carolina

There is plenty to see inside the Kremlin, and much time can be used well in this museum. The materials are well presented, in historic order, with good lighting. Signs are in Russian, so take a friend with you. I enjoyed the early materials including Viking period.

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