Do you want to visit Kostroma but you don’t know where to start? Read on to find out The top things to do in Kostroma!

Kostroma is a city on the Golden Ring of Russia. It is the hometown of the Snow Maiden and the cradle of the Romanov dynasty. The old churches, wooden streets, and rows of stores are well preserved. Today’s inhabitants have also built new dwellings to resemble the old merchants’ homes.

The prices of sweet bread sold in the confectionery stores in the city center are even exact in kopecks (for example, 15 rubles and 35 kopecks). The surrounding kiosks, on the other hand, are built from cans. In the city, the symbols of different historical periods are intertwined.

In a nutshell: You absolutely need to visit this wonderful city because it’s truly unique and beautiful! So What should you see first? Here is a list of the best things to do in Kostroma, enjoy 🙂


Ipatievsky Monastery


Ipatievsky Monastery is one of the main attractions of Kostroma city. The monastery was built at the beginning of the 14th century, and it was here in 1613 that the 16-year-old Mikhail Romanov ascended the throne and became the first tsar of a dynasty that lasted three centuries.

During the Soviet period, the church property was confiscated. In 1958 the monastery was handed over to the Kostroma City Museum of Nature, and in the early 2000s the Russian Orthodox Church acquired ownership of the monastery.

To visit the monastery, you need to cross the bridge over the Kostroma River. In December, the ice is still very transparent and the gray circles of melting snow are still visible. But from the bridge, you can already see dots of various colors.

They are the winter fishing enthusiasts scattered on the ice. The monastery is surrounded by private territory, where there is a 17th-century church and a cemetery with burials of ninth-grade civil officials. In addition, pre-revolutionary crosses have been preserved here in damaged burial mounds.

In the area of the monastery also stands the Trinity Cathedral and the Museum of Historical Church Buildings, which houses various rare icons.

Inside the monastery, the building of the Romanov Boyar House stands. The building has a huge porch and colorless paintings on the walls. The interior contains various objects of life and books from the Tsarist era. In addition, there are several ceramic stoves from the 18th century.

Three Russian presidents have visited the building. One of them, Dmitry Medvedev, came to the monastery on his eighth day in office. The messages of each president are stored in green velvet books inside the glass windows.

Museum of Wooden Architecture

Within the Kostroma Folklore Complex, there is a collection of various log buildings, churches, and small production buildings brought from the Kostroma region. If you are interested, you can go inside some of the log buildings, sit at a table used by the farmer, and play with a fork or rock a cradle.

There are also about 30 cats, all of which have their own little houses. There is also an exhibition of fairy tale figurines for children. At the souvenir kiosk, a variety of wooden toys are sold.

In the open space adjacent to the bridge past the Kostroma River towers a red brick house museum. Many of the exhibits in the museum are made of wood or from other readily available materials. Here, you can try a size 50 sandal made of pine towers. Or you can sit on a woven chair with antlers and admire the wooden reindeer. Or, go hug the giant Lord of the Stump. Truly a must-see sight in Kostroma!

Meat Pie Shops

There are little pie stores on the small shopping streets of Kostroma and usually, they are a super class eatery. Here, you can see aging hippies, typical Russian housewives, and high school students in felt hats. Of course, you can also meet beautiful and classy girls in high heels and expensive purses.

But the most important thing to consider is obviously what you’re going to eat: The only food here is, take a wild guess?! Yep, meat pies! Usually, each diner buys several patties at once. The price is very convenient too, only 38 rubles (less than 0.5 euros!).

Check out the Art shelves shops

These small stores have a unique way of doing business. Anyone who wants to sell their goods can rent one or several shelves from the owner. Prices start at 120 rubles per week.

Thus, you can find an unpredictable variety of goods here: from embroidered icons to ice skaters to vintage vinyl records. The list goes on and on. With this subcontracting method, you can sell literally anything that is legally allowed. Except, of course, for food. They are also called “Art Polka”, as Polka means “Shelf” in Russian.


If you’d like to visit Russia when this pandemic is over, you should check the travel visa requirements first. Visa Express offers a Russian visa service, they also can provide a Russian invitation letter for your visa application.

Covid-19 Information to travel to Russia (August 2021): https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/covid-4/coronavirus-russia The situation at the moment doesn’t look good but if you are fully vaccinated you might be able to travel to Russia and visit Kostroma. If not, we need to be patient for when all this nightmare will be finally over or at least, to get vaccinated as soon as we can.

Stay safe!


Images courtesy:

Further reading for One day trips:

Are you ready? Or you have already visited the city or are planning to visit and need some more info? Leave a comment with your experience!

Leave a Comment