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Moscow

Moscow is the capital of Russia and a city rich with history, art, architecture and culture. This unique capital includes the Kremlin - the former residence of the Russian czars and architectural ensemble of unique beauty which took shape between the 15th and 20th centuries. The cathedral square, which is located at the centre of the Kremlin along with the 15th century Assumption Cathedral, is a must see attraction that will leave visitors better informed of Russian history.

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Sergiev Posad (Zagorsk)

This is the most popular Golden Ring city. Sergius of Radonezh, a monk who was destined to become one of the most honored Russian saints, founded the small settlement of Sergiev Posad and a monastery that later became the centre of Russian Orthodoxy 6 centuries ago. The ensemble of St. Sergius Monastery (Lavra) was created by the best architects of XV-XIX centuries. It includes more than 50 various buildings.

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Pereslavl Zalessky

The city was founded in the 12th century in a charming area amidst cornfields and untouched forests. The entire area is sprinkled with well-preserved churches and monasteries. Visitors to the town can see ancient Russian architectural monuments of the Danilov, Fedorovsky and Goritsky Convents. In the 1690s, Peter the Great decided to build the first Russian military flotilla on a local lake – Plescheevo. From the Kremlin’s bell tower visitors can enjoy marvelous view of the lake.

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Rostov

Once known as Rostov the Great, it is the oldest town in the North-East of Russia. The town was mentioned in chronicles as far back as 862. Rostov is famous for its splendid architectural design, numerous churches, and civil structures. Rostov itself has rather peculiar layout. I the historical centre of the city built in the 16th century, stands the Dormition Cathedral whose bells play one of the most enchanting chimes in Russia.

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Yaroslavl

This town lying on the bank of the Volga River is one of the largest towns in central Russia. It was founded in 1010 and named after Prince Yaroslavl the Wise of Kiev. Its layout and architecture are among the best examples of early Russian urban planning and development. Yaroslavl suffered many years of troubles, but it preserved its look – beautiful complexes of churches and monasteries, noble mentions and parks. The city has a rich collection of icons and decorative folk art.

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Kostroma

Kostroma is believed to have been founded by Prince Yuri Dolgoruky somewhere between 1152 and 1157. Kostroma lies on both banks of the Volga River. The main part of the city, constructed in the early 18th century, has a classic Russian layout. The town contains numerous architectural monuments from the late 18th-19th centuries. The name of the town is closely connected with the Romanov dynasty and there is a museum dedicated to the Romanovs inside the Ipatiev Monastery.

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Ivanovo

This was a village in the 17th century, and at the same time it was known as an industrial centre specializing on linen manufacturing. It was granted the status of town and given the name of Ivanovo-Voznesensk in 1871. Today Ivanovo is a modern city and a textile centre. Not far from Ivanovo Palekh village is located – before the revolution of 1917 this was the major icon-painting centre of the country. Today Palekh is mainly famous for manufacturing papier-mâché painted lacquer boxes, which are excellent examples of Russian craftwork and popular souvenirs.

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Suzdal

This small town is 100 years older than Moscow. It was founded in 1010. Over a hundred examples of Russian architecture attract half a million visitors each year to this remarkable medieval town. Time seems to have stopped in Suzdal: the entire village is a perfection of spatial harmony. Disposed in a picturesque and uniform manner throughout the town’s territory, the architectural monuments form an ensemble of rare beauty.

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Vladimir

The town of Vladimir stands on the banks of Klyazma River. In 1108, Prince Vladimir Monomakh founded the town on the high river bank. Eight centuries ago, Vladimir was the most powerful town of ancient Rus. In 1557, the capital of Vladimir-Suzdal Principality was moved to Vladimir, where the sacred icon of the Virgin, which was once been brought from Constantinople, was located. Ancient monuments dating back to the 12th century can still be seen in Vladimir and its suburbs.