Kostroma is as old as Moscow, founded in 1152 by Yuri Dolgoruki. Located on the left bank of the Volga River, it abounds in magnificent monuments of old architecture. Its picturesque suburbs have long been a source of inspiration for many Russian artists.
The walls of the Ipatyevsky Monastery, founded in the late 13th and early 14th century to protect the approaches to the city, are silent witnesses of the heroic struggle waged by the people of Kostroma against the foreign invaders at the beginning of the 17th century. It was here that 16-year-old Michael Romanov got the news that he had been elected Tsar of Russia. This monastery guarded the western approaches to the town. The first stone buildings appeared in its grounds only in the second half of the 16th century. The frescoes of the Trinity Cathedral are considered to be the peak of artistic achievement of a group of 18 artists who had also decorated the churches in Moscow, Suzdal, Pereyaslavl-Zalessky and Yaroslavl. The monastery complex is now part of the Kostroma Museum of History and Ancient Monument.
Since 1958, a unique open-air museum has been laid out on the territory along the monastery walls. Wooden churches, old peasant houses, barns and windmills have been brought here from different villages of Kostroma Region.
Another treasure of Kostroma is the Church of the Resurrection-on-the-Debre built in the 17th century with the donations of the merchant Kirill Isakov. The church catches the eye with its amazingly festive appearance. Its red-brick walls are decorated with white-stone inserts and green glazed tiles on the domes. Frescoes of the 17th century decorate the walls and the vaulted ceiling. The exquisitely carved iconostasis of the 17th century in the Three Saints Chapel is a real gem of Kostroma. The combination of the old architectural monuments and cozy provincial neo-classicism, the blend of the regular layout and the wooden houses with lacy carvings on the facades, creates the unique, unforgettable image of Kostroma.