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St. Basil's Cathedral
Vacation Travel Guide

St. Basil\'s Cathedral featuring heritage architecture

Think of Russia and you probably picture this iconic building, whose onion-shaped domes overlook the Moscow skyline.

St. Basil’s Cathedral has become an emblem of Russia due to its distinctive architecture and prominent position on the famous Red Square. Discover hidden surprises inside its walls. Take pictures of the famous exterior and then explore the maze-like interior, which is comprised of multiple chapels.

Learn the real name of this 16th-century church: the Cathedral of the Intercession of the Virgin by the Moat. It was so named to celebrate a win over Tatar troops, on the day of the Feast of the Intercession, by Ivan the Terrible and his men. The colloquial name comes from Basil, a holy fool who was laid to rest in the cathedral.

Spend a few minutes appreciating the dazzling design of the cathedral. The most recognizable features are its domes. Known as “onion domes” due to their special shape, they come in a range of different colors and designs with three-dimensional effects. See red and white stripes, green and yellow swirls and a tall golden dome at the top. The dizzying height of its tented roof also catches the eye.

Before you enter, be prepared for the interior to feel a lot smaller than the grand scale of the cathedral’s façade due to its unusual layout. Each of the domes represents a chapel within. Explore the chapels and other religious areas in the building. Look specifically for the St. Basil Chapel and note how it is richly decorated to match the saint’s importance.

Wander along the gallery. The labyrinthine passages here are beautifully decorated and will lead you to your chapel of choice. Climb up the old wooden stairs. These were only unearthed in the 1970s and now lead to the central part of the cathedral. Here you will find a huge iconostasis.

Note that St. Basil’s Cathedral functions mainly as a museum. There is only one service here, held annually on the Day of the Intercession. Take the subway to Ploshchad Revolyutsii to visit the cathedral. The site has an entry fee and is closed on Tuesdays.

Top things to do in St. Basil's Cathedral

Top Hotels Close to St. Basil's Cathedral

Marriott Moscow Grand Hotel
Marriott Moscow Grand Hotel
5 out of 5
26/1, Tverskaya Street, Moscow
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is CA $71 per night from May 16 to May 16
Located in Tverskoy, this luxury hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Tchaikovsky Concert Hall, Bolshoi Theatre, and Moscow Kremlin. Red Square and St. Basil's Cathedral ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (981 reviews)
"Great service, сlean Room, nice breakfast as usual!!!"

Reviewed on Feb. 16, 2021

Marriott Moscow Grand Hotel
Hotel National, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Moscow
Hotel National, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Moscow
5 out of 5
15/1 Mokhovaya Street, bld. 1, Moscow
The price is CA $195 per night from Jun 6 to Jun 6
Located in Moscow City Centre, this luxury hotel is within a 15-minute walk of State Historical Museum, Lenin's Mausoleum, and Bolshoi Theatre. Red Square and ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (712 reviews)
"Furniture, interior"

Reviewed on Apr. 30, 2021

Hotel National, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Moscow
Hotel Savoy Moscow
Hotel Savoy Moscow
5 out of 5
3/6, bld.1, Rozhdestvenka Street, Moscow
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is CA $146 per night from May 16 to May 16
Located in Moscow City Centre, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of TsUM — Central Universal Department Store and Bolshoi Theatre. Moscow Kremlin ...
4.6/5Wonderful! (899 reviews)
"All the staff is nice , great location"

Reviewed on Apr. 12, 2021

Hotel Savoy Moscow
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Top St. Basil's Cathedral Flight + Hotel Deals

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Best Lodging Options Near St. Basil's Cathedral

Marriott Moscow Grand Hotel
Marriott Moscow Grand Hotel
5 out of 5
26/1, Tverskaya Street, Moscow
The price is CA $71 per night from May 16 to May 16
Marriott Moscow Grand Hotel
Hotel National, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Moscow
Hotel National, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Moscow
5 out of 5
15/1 Mokhovaya Street, bld. 1, Moscow
The price is CA $195 per night from Jun 6 to Jun 6
Hotel National, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Moscow
Hotel Savoy Moscow
Hotel Savoy Moscow
5 out of 5
3/6, bld.1, Rozhdestvenka Street, Moscow
The price is CA $146 per night from May 16 to May 16
Hotel Savoy Moscow
Courtyard by Marriott Moscow City Center
Courtyard by Marriott Moscow City Center
4 out of 5
Voznesenskiy Pereulok 7, Moscow
The price is CA $59 per night from May 21 to May 21
Courtyard by Marriott Moscow City Center
The St. Regis Moscow Nikolskaya
The St. Regis Moscow Nikolskaya
5 out of 5
12, Nikolskaya Str., Moscow
The price is CA $528 per night from May 29 to May 29
The St. Regis Moscow Nikolskaya
Pentahotel Moscow, Arbat
Pentahotel Moscow, Arbat
4 out of 5
Ulitsa Novy Arbat, 15, Moscow, Moscow
The price is CA $63 per night from Jun 5 to Jun 5
Pentahotel Moscow, Arbat
Four Seasons Hotel Moscow
Four Seasons Hotel Moscow
5 out of 5
2 Okhotny Ryad Street, Moscow
The price is CA $721 per night from May 29 to May 29
Four Seasons Hotel Moscow
Hotel Baltschug Kempinski Moscow
Hotel Baltschug Kempinski Moscow
5 out of 5
Ul. Balchug 1, Moscow
The price is CA $195 per night from May 29 to May 29
Hotel Baltschug Kempinski Moscow
Marriott Moscow Royal Aurora Hotel
Marriott Moscow Royal Aurora Hotel
5 out of 5
11 Petrovka Street, Moscow
The price is CA $171 per night from May 15 to May 15
Marriott Moscow Royal Aurora Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.