Located in the high part of the city, this beautiful 18thcentury church was built to be the private chapel of the Strogonov family. The Strogonov’s were some of the wealthiest merchants in Russia, due to their near monopoly in the salt trade. The family built a number of grand, baroque churches throughout the tsardom for their use. Naturally, as Nizhny Novgorod was the setting for the major merchant trade fair in the country and the heart of Russian business, the Strogonov family built a church there as well. The Synaxis of the Mother of God Church, known more casually as the Strogonov Church, was consecrated in 1719 overlooking the confluence of the Volga and Oka rivers. It was lucky enough to escape the soviet wrecking ball and is still a functioning church, open to visitors to this day. As with all functioning Orthodox churches, women are expected to come in with their legs and heads covered. I would recommend wearing a knee length skirt or jeans and bringing a scarf to cover your head. Also out of respect for Orthodox churches, no pictures of the inside were taken, though I will try to describe it’s beauty:
The interior of the Strogonov Church is just as breath-taking as the outside. The floor is a beautiful tiled pattern that perfectly accents the white walls. Decorating these walls are numerous icons, surrounded by ornate golden frames. The partition that separates the narthex from the main part of the church is made of multiple marbles accented with gold leaf and icons. Inside, the ornate iconostasis towers up to the vaulted ceilings, drawing the eye up to the mural of Christ inside the main dome. A iron spiral staircase leads to a balcony overlooking the room, and gliding along the upper walls is an inscription in gold. All available space within the lower wall is covered with golden-framed icons. With free admission, this stop is a must for any lover of Russian art and architecture.