Located along Russia’s famous Volga River, the city of Kostroma is the capital city of Kostroma Oblast. Founded in 1152, Kostroma was granted township status in 1719, but suffered a devastating fire nearly sixty years later.
While some pre-18th century structures survived intact, the city was reportedly rebuilt according to the design and wishes of Russia’s Empress Catherine.
Today, the city is an important tourist destination and is considered one of the stops along Russia’s so-called “Golden Ring.”
Your River Cruise Ship Docks…
River cruise ships calling on Kostroma tie up along the Volga, not far from the historic city center.
When in Kostroma…
Some great ways to enjoy yourself in this fascinating Russian city:
- Walk. Like many other river cruise ports of call, a stroll around the city streets is not only convenient but practical, and can be an excellent way to fully enjoy your time here. Some of the best discoveries are those that are found entirely by accident.
- Saint Hypatia Monastery. Dating back to 1330, this enormous monastery actually houses three equally important sights: the Museum of Wooden Architecture, the 1552-built Borgoroditsky Cathedral, and the Spaso-Preobrazhenskaya Church, constructed entirely without nails. Admission can be had to all three for a single price, approximately 50 Russian Rubles.
- Susaninskaya Ploshchad. In a story that only history could produce, Susaninskaya Ploshchad is a town square named after one Ivan Susanin, whose claim to fame involved luring invading Polish forces into a swamp, where they all ultimately perished. The square is an attractive place and contains numerous buildings that are worth exploring. No word yet, though, on whether the swamp is open to tourists.
River Cruisers Should Know!
- The currency of Russia is the Russian Ruble (RR).
- Citizens of the United States and Canada, as well as other countries, are required to have a tourist visa in order to enter Russia. Travelers to Russia must have their passports on them at all times.
- The area outside Kostroma is quite industrial and likely not of interest. River cruisers should concentrate their exploration on the historic city center.
- Crime in Kostroma is usually limited to the normal pickpocketing that tends to occur around busy railway stations. To be safe, exercise the same amount of caution you would in any unfamiliar major city.
- While it’s not necessary to know if you stick with your river cruise tour group, knowledge of even basic Russian can really help you out in a pinch. While many people in Russia do speak English, its use is not nearly as widespread as in other European countries.