Kizhi Museum is the unique museum of peasant culture and wooden architecture of the Russian North
The Kizhi Museum is one of the first and largest open air museums in Russia. It is located on Kizhi Island in Onega Lake, 68 km from Petrozavodsk (the capital of Karelia) and 425 km from Saint Petersburg. The unique collection of ancient wooden architecture monuments and natural sites is available for visitors in the carefully preserved landscapes of the late XIX century on the archipelago of picturesque islands in Onega Lake. The basis of the museum's collection is the world famous architectural ensemble of the Kizhi Pogost inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1990 together with the Moscow Kremlin and the Historical Center of Saint Petersburg. The heart of the architectural ensemble is the multi-domed Church of the Transfiguration, a universally recognized masterpiece of Russian wooden architecture.
They have painstakingly reconstructed the economic way of life and the cultural world of the Russian North peasants of the late XIX c. on the island. Churches, chapels, houses, and mills are integral with historic landscapes filled with live pictures of the past. Men are ploughing the land, harvesting and building boats, ringing the bells and telling ancient national epic tales. Women are beading and sewing, making tissue and lace, breaking and pulling the flax, singing traditional songs and dancing to melodies of days of yore.
During the tour around Kizhi Island you will see the unique multi-domed churches and their icon decoration, visit a house of a Zaonezhie farmer, listen to bell ringing at the Archangel Michael Chapel and see the Church of the Lazarus Resurrection, the oldest church in Russia, which was revered as an Orthodox shrine.
After the tour you can take a walk around the island by horse carriage, by boat or by bicycle, try your hand in ancient crafts, look behind the curtain of the restoration, participate in a party of traditional Zaonezhie village youth, and listen to northern songs.
In summer one can get to Kizhi Island by cruise ships from Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Nizhny Novgorod, Samara and Perm as well as by hydrofoils from Petrozavodsk. In winter one can get to Kizhi Island by hovercrafts, snowmobiles, buses, dog sleds and helicopters from Petrozavodsk.
Coming to Kizhi means getting out of everyday routine and coming back to the time fairy-tales originate from.
- Wheelchair access
- Free parking