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St. Basil's Cathedral

Moscow's most recognizable staple with candy-like cupolas

Saint Basil's Cathedral_Храм Василия Блаженного (2).jpg

Okhotny Ryad


10:00 — 18:00


150 — 700

Only a few people know the real name of Moscow's most iconic sight, which is the Cathedral of the Intercession of the Most Holy Theotokos on the Moat. It was built in 1555–1561 when Ivan the Terrible decided to erect a one-of-a-kind temple to commemorate the defeat that his army dealt to the Khanate of Kazan on the Day of the Intercession of the Most Holy Theotokos. The creation of the architectural gem is ascribed to maverick masters Barma and Postnik.

The cathedral features a unique ensemble, with a single foundation giving rise to nine separate temples. The central one is crowned with a large tent-like spire and surrounded by eight auxiliary ones arranged in a cross-like fashion. Later, the Intercession Cathedral was extended to include two lower churches in honor of St. Basil and St. John of Moscow.

The Intercession Cathedral is richly decorated with wall paintings and is home to a vast collection of old Russian iconography alongside masterpieces of church applied arts. Today, it is an active Orthodox temple, a museum, and one of Red Square's major landmarks, besides being an internationally recognized tourist symbol of Moscow and Russia, in general.

The services at St. Basil's Cathedral are held on Sundays and the day after Easter, starting at 10 a.m. That said, to enter the building, you have to pay a fee since it is part of the State Historical Museum complex. The cathedral offers guided tours, various events, and workshops enshrining important days and church festivities. On Sundays, the tours are free (excluding the entrance fee).

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