The churchyard of Kizhi, the world`s famous museum of wooden architecture, is on a small island in the north of Onega Lake. You can reach it only by a ship from the city of Petrozavodsk, which is 68 kilometers from Kizhi.
Totally, there are over a thousand and five hundred islands on Onega Lake, and the Karelian chose one of them for their pagan rites (kizhat – «public merrymaking»). After the spread of the Christianity Karelian carpenters built wood churches using no nails there in the 18th century. In 1945, after a culture reserve was created on Kizhi, there were gathered a lot of wood structures, churches, houses, and mills from different regions of Russia. So, now you can get to know northern wood architecture there.
The primary monument of universal importance is rightly considered the 22-domed Church of Transfiguration of Our Savior built in 1714. There remained the four-tier iconostasis including 102 icons of 17-18 centuries painted by northern icon-painters. Nearby, in 1764 there was built the 9-domed steepled Church of Intercession of Our Lady, and in 1874 a bell tower was added to the architectural ensemble. Later, it was fenced by single log wall.
Several dozens of meters to the south there is another important monument – the Church of the Raising of Lazarus built in the 14th century. This most ancient monument of Russian reli-gious wood architecture was brought to Kizhi from a monastery near Murom. Nearby, in the south of the island, you can see some more buildings: residential dwellings of past centuries, a windmill and the Chapel of the Archangel Michael (18 century).
In the north of the island you can visit the exposition villages of Vasilyevo and Yamka, as well as country houses of the northern Pudozh region.