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Unlike the other Kremlins of Russia, Rostov Kremlin has never been a ducal or tsar’s residence. It was built as the residence of bishop. For that time it was very ambitiously, but bishop Iona was the closest associate of Patriarch Nikon who had a great influence at the court of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich.

Since 12 century Rostov was one of the important centers of Vladimir principality. The court of metropolitan was also there. But the heyday of the city fell on the period of 1650-1690, when Iona Sysoyevich was the metropolitan of Rostov and Yaroslavl. It was in his time that the magnificent ensemble of the Rostov Kremlin appeared.

The Rostov Kremlin consists of three parts. The Pontifical Court is in the center of the Rostov Kremlin. All the main buildings and churches are concentrated there: the Tsar’s and Metropolitan’s Chambers, the Church of Ascension, the Church of John the Evangelist, the Church of Savior on the Seni, and the Church of Odigitria. To the south from the Pontifical Court, on the side of Lake Nero, is the Metropolitan’s Garden, and to the north from it is the Sobornaya (Cathedral) Square. On the square is the Assumption cathedral, which was built a hundred years before the Rostov Kremlin. 

The walls and towers of the Kremlin served rather a decorative than a defensive purpose, as they had no loopholes as well as some other necessary fortifications of each fortress.

At the Rostov Kremlin you may visit several exhibitions and expositions. After a tour of the Kremlin walls and churches, you should go on an excursion to the Samuel’s Quarters and the adjoining White Chamber. You should also visit an exhibition in the Church of Odigitria.

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The northern gate on the side of Assumption Cathedral and the Gateway Church of Resurrection (1670) 
The Rostov Kremlin as viewed from Lake Nero
The Church of John the Evangelist (1683) was a domestic church of the Tsar`s Chambers at the Rostov Kremlin 
The fresco iconostasis of the Church of John the Evangelist made by Yaroslavl painters in 1683
The Church of Resurrection (1670) over the Holy Gateway
The Rostov Kremlin is surrounded by very strong walls erected in the 60th of the 17th century
Bishop mansion (Samuel building) in the Rostov Kremlin
A view on the northern gateway and the Gateway Church of Resurrection at the Rostov Kremlin
The Church of Odigitria (1693) at the Rostov Kremlin
The exposition «Gold and Azure are Shining» in the Church of Odigitria at the Rostov Kremlin
Domes gate Church of the Resurrection of Christ in the Rostov Kremlin
Holy Image of the Saviour Not Made by Hands Church later called Savior Church on the Seni is included in the Metropolitan`s Chambers
The fresco iconostasis of the Church of Resurrection at the Rostov Kremlin
The frescoes in the galleries of the fortified walls before the entry to the Church of Resurrection at the Rostov Kremlin
A descent from the Kremlin wall between the Metropolitan`s Chambers and the Tsar`s Chambers
The Museum of Church Antiquities in the White Chamber of Samuel`s Building
An exposition of the Museum of Church Antiquities in the White Chamber of Samuel`s Building at the Rostov Kremlin
The museum «Ancient Russian Art» in the rooms of Samuel`s Building
The exposition «The most ancient period in the history of Rostov land» in the Red Chamber of the Rostov Kremlin
Long timbers used in construction of ancient trading ships