The Kazan cathedral is named after the supposedly miraculous Kazan icon (icon of our Lady of Kazan). It is the main cathedral of St.-Petersburg, one of the largest cathedrals of Russia and one of the most magnificent temples of St.-Petersburg; the project was designed by a talented russian architect Andrey Voronikhin, a former serf.
The cathedral is mainly known for its grand colonnade which embraces a pleasant square with a fountain and two statues, one of them of the great Russian military leader Mikhail Kutuzov. The remains of Kutuzov, who became famous for his victory over Napoleon, are buried in the cathedral. The design of the temple was influenced by St.-Peter’s Cathedral in Rome, but in the same time the difference is conspicuous: the Kazan cathedral does not dominate over the square, on the contrary, it produces the impression of being extremely light-weighted, on the verge of being airy.
In 1932 the museum of the history of religion (with a characteristic name: “religion and atheism”) was opened in the cathedral. In 1999 the cathedral regained its former status. We recommend to visit the cathedral on Sunday morning while the service takes place in order to enjoy the famous choir. We would like to remind you that everybody in a Russian orthodox church has to stand during the service (there are no pews) and women have to cover their heads with a shawl or a headscarf.