The itinerary for the second day of exploring Nizhniy Novgorod by foot. If you have missed the first day, you can find it here
Today’s starting point is the Nizhny Novgorod Kremlin. Interesting fact: Aside from the Moscow Kremlin, Russia boasts of 22 other Kremlins. The first mention of the word “Kremlin” dates back as far as 1317, when some manuscripts featured the word "Kremnik in them." Some say “Kremlin” originated from the the Greek word 'kremnos' which means a high mountain above a shore; others say it originated from the word 'kremnik', which means a fortress inside a town. The jury is still out on that! The other 22 Russian cities, where you can visit a Kremlin include: Astrakhan, Kazan, Kostroma, Nizhny Novgorod, Rostov, Smolensk, Uglich, Vladimir, and Yaroslavl. Founded in 1221, the Nizhny Novgorod Kremlin has never been seized! Recognised as one of the most fortified constructions of its time, from an architectural standpoint, this Kremlin has no analogues in the world.
The Nizhny Novgorod Kremlin is made up of several buildings. One of them - the Arsenal - is now home to the National Centre for Contemporary Art, which was moved there in 2013. Now, in addition to its permanent exhibition, various lectures and festivals are often held there.
The gates of the Dmitriev Kremlin tower, will lead you to Nizhny Novgorod’s main square, named after the famous heroes of the 17th century, Minin and Pozharsky. On each side of the square you will find many signature historical buildings, including the Medical Academy, the Palace of Labor, the Pedagogical University. Many of these buildings are over 100 years old.
Bolshaya Pokrovskaya is one of the oldest streets in Nizhny Novgorod. The buildings on this street were carefully preserved to display the atmosphere of old Russian aristocratic living. Here, among the unusual monuments like the postman or the slick dresser, one can stumbleupon real architectural treasures. There are also plenty of cafes to have lunch and refuel to continue exploring the city. A noteworthy building, in terms of architecture, is the e State Bank, which a mix between a medieval castle and an ancient Russian house, called ‘terem’. A little further you can see the majestic building of the M. Gorky State Drama Theater - one of the oldest Russian theaters that is believed to be founded in the late 18th century.
From Bolshaya Pokrovskaya Ulitsa, turn back to the Kremlin and walk along the Kremlin wall to the Verkhne-Volzhskaya embankment. Here you’ll see the famous Chkalovskaya staircase, named after the legendary Soviet pilot, who made the first non-stop flight from the USSR to the USA via the North Pole. Walk down the stairs and you’ll run into a boat placed onto a granite pedestal. The ‘Hero’ is a small sea vessel, with a truly heroic history - it took part in various battles for almost 100 years.
This luxurious palace on the Verkhne-Volzhskaya embankment used to be the home of a rich merchant, whose name was Rukavishnikov. Now, his mansion is open to visitors as the Nizhny Novgorod State Historical and Architectural Museum.
At the end of the Verkhne-Volzhskaya embankment you’ll see your final destination - the Nizhny Novgorod cable car. It is completely unique - first of all, it is the longest public cable car line in Europe. Secondly, it is the only one in the world to have such a long unsupported flight over water - over 800 meters. Moreover, it’s the highest one – the elevation drops from 95 to 57 meters. Finally, it’s the only one in the world to connect two cities - Nizhny Novgorod and Bor. Take a ride to get a bird’s eye view of everything you’ve seen in the last two days one more time!