Kilometrage: Veliky Novgorod – Valday (142km), Valday – Iversky Monastery (13km).
Veliky Novgorod is one of the most ancient cities in Russia, the large medieval center of trade and craft, the cradle of Russian democracy, the museum-city that serves as a bridge between two times, where you can feel the atmosphere of the native Russian land. It is here where the first Russian books were written and the first birchbark manuscripts were found, and they became a sensation in archeology.
The historical center of the city – the Novgorod Kremlin – is the most ancient fortification ever built in Rus’. At the heart of the Kremlin lies the first Russian stone cathedral – the St. Sophia’s Cathedral, as well as the unique collection of Russian icon paintings, frescoes of 11th-17th centuries, and the colossal monument to the Millennium of Russia, which depicts the most important events in the history of Russian state. 70 unique landmarks of 11th - 19th centuries are included in the UNESCO World Heritage list.
During the trip, you will drive by the Kresttsy Town, famous for its linen lace called “Embroidery of Kresttsy”. The business can be found at Kresttsy Town, 6 Novokholoskaya st.
Valday – a wonderful land of rivers, lakes and forests. Its bells have been the most prominent landmark of the town ever since the ancient times. For many centuries, they served as a clock for the citizens, telling them the time for communal prayer, labor or rest, grief or happiness. Valday Bell Museum houses the biggest exposition of bells and hand bells from all over the world. Many recreation facilities are located on the territory of “Valdaisky” national nature park, which has 70 lakes, 20 rivers, rare specimens of flora and fauna, and around 500 landmarks of archeology, history and architecture.
Iversky Monastery, founded by Patriarch Nikon in 1653, attracts the pilgrims from all over the world even to this day. An important relic is kept here – the wondrous icon Iberian Mother of God. A visit to the monastery will not only let you become acquainted with the unique historical center of Russian culture, but also feel the life-creating power of Orthodoxy.