Alexander Nevsky Monastery (Lavra)

Opening hours of the Saint Alexander Nevsky Monastery.

Entrance on the territory of the Monastery: from 05.08 till 23.00.
Entrance to the Trinity Cathedral: 06.00 till 20.00.
Entrance to the Tikhvin Cemetery: 09.30 till 20.30.Entrance to the Saint Lazare Cemetery: 09.30 till 17.30. closed on thursdays.
Adress: 191167, Russia, St. Petersburg, Nevsky prospekt, 179/2.


Historical note on the Alexander Nevsky Monastery:

The Saint Aleksandar Nevsky Monastery o Saint Alexander Nevsky Lavra is one of the most important in Russia and a symbol of Orthodox spirituality. It is located in the eastern part of St. Petersburg at the spot at which Prince Alexander Yaroslavich in 1240 won a historic victory against the Swedes on the Neva (leading to him being renamed Nevsky (Neva)).

The monastery was built by Tsar Peter the Great in 1710 and was dedicated to Prince Alexander who was canonised in the fourteenth century and since then has been the patron of the city. In 1724, Czar Peter ordered that the saint’s remains be transferred to the monastery on the same day that he signed a treaty that sealed another Russian victory over Sweden, thus entering the ranks of the great warriors who had made their Russian motherland so great. In 1797 the monastery was given the title f Lavra by Tsar Paul I which in the Orthodox world is reserved for only the most important places of worship.

The monastery complex consists of 11 churches and four cemeteries and is surrounded by walls and moats. Past the main entrance, along both sides of the boulevard are the Saint Lazare and Tikhvin cemeteries, where there the graves of many people who contributed to the prestige of the city are located, including the great architects Quarenghi and Rossi, the scientist Lomonosov and the likes of Stravinsky, Tchaikovsky and Dostoevsky. The area of the monastery which is separated from the area of the cemetery by a moat is imbued with a particular monastic spirituality. It has vast green area consisting of orchards, gardens and trees that give a sense of peace. Among the churches it is worth remembering the Church of the Annunciation of Mary, the Trinity Cathedral in its neoclassical style and the Church of St. Theodosius.

Overall there are also the monastic cells, the building of the Seminary and the residence of the Metropolit, who still resides there today. One peculiarity is the presence of a communist field in front of the Cathedral where heroes of the revolution and World War II are buried - a legacy of the atheism of the Soviet state.


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