10 things you didn’t know about Nizhniy Novgorod


It’s the only Russian city whose founder, Yuri Vsevolodovich, was officially canonized a saint.


The origin of the deer on the city arms is a source of many historical disputes, we suspect that this is probably because no deer has ever inhabited local woods.


It was the first Russian and first modern European city to equip itself with a sewage system. It was also the first Russian city to disinfect its water by chlorination in 1918, after a major outbreak of typhoid fever.


It was the first Russian city to launch a tram in 1896.


Due to the military objects that were built here in Soviet times, it was a closed city until 1991. This meant that Gorky (Soviet name of Nizhny Novgorod) was closed to all foreigners.


Its ‘Moskovskaya’ metro station is the widest in Russia.


It has the longest staircase in Russia – Chkalov’s staircase, with 560 steps.


Its Art Museum exhibits one of the largest paintings in the world – Makovsky’s ‘Appeal of Kozma Minin’, which is 6×7 meters.


One of its Orthodox temples – Alexander Nevsky Cathedral at the confluence of the Volga and the Oka – was built on a raft to avoid annual flooding.


Another Orthodox church is located in a railway car, making it the most famous church car in Russia.

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