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At the beginning of the century Samara had a huge number of churches, cathedrals and monasteries, as Samara has always been one of the biggest religious centers. Since 1851 Samara became the main town of the Samara Eparchy.

Nikolayevskiy convent and Iverskiy nunnery were erected in the 19th century in Samara. There are 700 tombs and graves of rich and famous people of Samara buried in the nunnery's cemetery. Both monasteries were destroyed during the Civil War 1918 - 1924. The cathedral housing 3 thousand people was built between 1866 and 1894 on the Cathedral Square and was destroyed in 1935. Russian emperor Alexander the II took part in the building of the cathedral when he visited Samara in 1869. Now both convents are under reconstruction.

Apart from Orthodox Christian churches Samara has also a number of religious establishments belonging to other confessions. Catholic Polish temple was built in 1906 and now is the building of the museum of regional studies. German Lutheran church that was built during 1865 - 1875 is now a working one. The diversity of religious establishments no doubt results from rich ethnical composition of the Samara region.

Samara theatres

Samara has 4 theatres. There are the Drama Theatre on Chapayev square (Chapayev was a famous officer of the "Red" army during the Civil War), the Opera and Ballet House, the Theatre of Young Spectators and the Puppet Theatre.

Samara Drama Theatre

The project of the Drama Theatre was ordered in 1886 to Moscow architect M. Chichagov, who supported Russian architectural style. As one may notice the building is characterized by features belonging to two different styles. The plan and the front of the theatre are symmetric. That is the sign of classicism. On the other hand, the details of the building characterize Moscow medieval architecture style. This building is made of red bricks and adorned with white details, which produces an unforgettable impression. There is an auditorium for 1123 people here. The rebuilding of the theatre was accomplished in 1965. The theatrical atmosphere is emphasized by the 2-storeyed wooden house with 2 turrets constructed by the architect Shcherbychev. The Theatre is famous for its classical repertoire.

Samara Philharmonic Society

The Samara Philharmonic Society is reputed not only for its splendid building, but for its diverse repertoire as well. It was there that for the fist time in the world there was rendition of the famous Seventh (Leningrad) Symphony by Dmitry Shostakovich who was living in Kuibyshev (Samara) in evacuation.

Modern Samara: Visitors outlook

Samara is a modern Russian city with all advantages of a regional centre providing almost no problems with employment and disadvantages of a province easily seen after several days spent in the city.

Any traveler happened to visit Russian regional towns including Samara is commonly shocked by the road condition. The vast majority of motorways, street roads, avenues are terribly worn-down, which makes driving an amusement ride. In the centre of the city they are much better, but suburbs will certainly take you down to the reality.

The most popular kind of transport is a tram. A short trip through the streets can replace a traditional bus excursion and is definitely much cheaper (9 rubles per ticket). Luckily many tram tracks go apart from main roads allowing their passengers avoid traffic jams inevitable due to narrow streets. Local citizens prefer domestic cars, frequently old and having nothing in common with Euro2 standard, so the smell of exhaust gas will follow you on the road.

Another problem is clouds of dust swirling behind cars passing by. This phenomenon is common in summer after two or three sunny days. Watching dust in the air reminds of the steppe lying around Samara with its feather grass and wide spread of country.


However, tourists usually come to Samara to see its cultural and historical centre and the Volga, the biggest river in Europe. The Volga is absolutely admirable sandy beaches, gulls and the hardly seen opposite bank produce indelible impression and let you think you are at the seaside. Only the sound of breaking waves is lacking. The bank of the Volga is a small piece of heaven, no wonder the cost of apartments here equals that of Moscow.


Not far from the river there is a famous Zhigulevsky brewery and here you can taste fresh beer, which is actually found tasty by both men and women. An interesting fact is that Iverskiy nunnery is located next to the brewery a funny coincidence.

Beer is an exceptionally popular drink in Samara people drink it in the afternoon, evening, at night and even early morning, no walk is possible without having a bottle of beer. Numerous summer cafés are always ready to serve a tourist for a moderate sum of money.


In the 1990s chocolate factory Rossiya in Samara, which was established in the 1970s, received a new chance to become a competitive participant of the Russian chocolate market due to its cooperation with Nestle. Now its one of the best places to work in the city, though many people living close to the factory often complain about a chocolate smell spreading around.


The further you are from the city centre, the more chances you have to meet a traditionally aggressive person. If you are a punk, hippie or simply like wearing long hair (concerning men) - nobody cares until you decide to leave the cultural centre. Men from the suburbs cant stand these types of style, and if they are drunk they may be really dangerous. But on the whole they are hearty, polite and jolly people.

Tags: Samara Samara Region    



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