The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

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Saint Petersburg, Russia

The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood Saint Petersburg Reviews

vances vances
477 reviews
A bloody confess? Jun 28, 2016
Church of Our Savior on Spilled Blood is a striking landmark, featuring a boisterous collection of onion domes with a rich history to boot. Raised on the spot where Czar Alexander II was assassinated in 1881 - within the cathedral is a small wooden shelter above the precise location. His undoing was a testament to the need for thinking through your good intentions. Alexander had actually freed Russia’s peasant twenty years earlier. Unfortunately, he also instructed them to purchase the land they lived on, somewhat difficult when you had earned no wages throughout your lifetime of indentured servitude. The end result was poverty and suffering, culminating in multiple assassination attempts until one succeeded.

I fear this site is a palace of indignity. Commemorating an assassination is not a good start, and once the ornate tribute was raised (1883 through 1907), along came the Bolshevik Revolution. Soon afterward atheism became state policy and this splendid church was converted into a potato shed. Even more repulsive, streets around the church were renamed after Alexander’s assassins!

Good fortune eventually swung in the church’s direction and after thirty years of restoration work it was reopened to the public in 1997. I had learned Orthodox Christian churches usually feature a stellar iconostasis within, but this would be my very first sample – and the one here was based on marble (all the others I glimpsed seemed to be mostly wooden). Several light years beyond ornate, I was awestruck. Add to this the masses of intricate, glittering artwork adorning everything within. The artistry appeared to be paintings at first glance, but everything was mosaic: that medium being more resistance than paint to the torments of St. Petersburg climate.

Inside was darn near as compelling as the marvel on the other side of the walls. A continual feast for the eyes, a ‘must see’ item for your itinerary. Views of the grand exterior are free, of course, but there is only a charge of 250 rubles to treat yourself to the splendid interior.
Church on Spilled Blood, St. Peter…
The incredible Church on Spilled B…
Even the gate is ornate!
Precise spot where Tsar Alexander …
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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Zagnut66 says:
There were several political assassinations by anarchists at the time, including William McKinley in the U.S.
Posted on: Nov 12, 2016
monkeymia79 says:
Such a beautiful church, so grand.

The mosaics are very beautiful.
Posted on: Nov 10, 2016
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christl3 christl3
171 reviews
Beautiful Inside and Out! Aug 30, 2015
This church is one of the main reasons i wanted to visit Saint Petersburg. I always thought it looked so colourful.

The church has a very interesting story. It was built on the site that tsar Alexander III was wounded in an assassination attempt and later died. He was going along the canal in his carriage and a anti-royal family anarchist threw a bomb under his carriage. He was unhurt. When he got out to confront the man, another bomb was thrown at him and he was severely wounded.

The church was funded by private donors (the different areas these donors were from in Russia are represented in the tiles on the exterior of the church) and the state.

The church is also spectacular from the interior. It is decorated elaborately with colourful, intricate mosaics. The entrance fee is approximately 300 rubles. It is definitely worth going into to revel in its splendour.
Still glorious despite the rain
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brettjayhawk brettjay…
26 reviews
Ode to the Onion Domes Jun 15, 2011
As you hang a right off the Nevsky Prospect you head down Griboedov Canal and at the end your eyes fall upon the Church of the Savior on Blood. This Church was built where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated and was dedicated in his memory. The beauty isn't only on the outside when looking up at the magnificent onions domes but on the inside as well. The interior of the onion domes have mosaics of Jesus. On the inside there are many other mosaics including the one that is in the center of the church. The mosaics on the walls are the different saints and biblical scenes.

There are many stands that you can buy souvenirs at right next to the church. The second day I walked by there was a heavy police force surrounding the church and wouldn't let tourists get close. I wish I would have been able to understand why it was closed to the public.
Me in front of The Church of the S…
2 / 2 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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stevemco stevemco
33 reviews
The Church on Spilled Blood Oct 31, 2009
This is exactly what one would expect a Russian church should look like. It is an absolute must see.
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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afchic1111 afchic11…
2 reviews
Nov 02, 2007
Truly amazing! A must-see! Filled with mosaics floor to ceiling.
View from the main street. Locate…
Where Alexander II was killed insi…
Even the ceilings are mosaics!
Another mosaic!
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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srpiatek srpiatek
30 reviews
May 29, 2006
Seeing and visiting the Church of Spilled Blood on the outside of the church was great. The tour guide had given us the entire history of how the church got its name and the battles that had taken place there. But For anyone to go in, It cost an 'arm and a leg', expensive. Whatever the conversion was from Russian currency to american currency, it was pricey. It is a great place to go and check out and the pictures turn out great, but if you want to see the inside just make sure you REALLY want to go in! Hopefully it will be worth the money. I didn't go inside.
The church from a distance
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travelman727 says:
Shannon, thanks for the review... and the heads up :-D
Posted on: Mar 15, 2008

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