Spilled Blood Church

TOUR SPILLED BLOOD CHURCH WITH US: St. Petersburg Sightseeing Tour visiting 3 cathedrals for cruise passengers, St. Petersburg Sightseeing Tour visiting 3 cathedrals for independent travelers

Spilled Blood Church (Resurrection church) is one of St Petersburg's most romantic sites. Although its history suggests it is far from romantic. It was built on the site of Czar Alexander's II assassination in 1881 when a terrorist threw a bomb at the Czar's carriage. His son Alexander III built a memorial church on this spot. The pseudo-Russian style was chosen intentionally. The church would stand out from the rest of European architecture of St. Petersburg and remind all of the assassination and Russia's grief. It took over 20 years to construct it, though it never became a public church. Services were only held for the royal family when paying tribute to the Martyred Czar.

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General public admission was only allowed after Bolshevik Revolution and not for long. It was closed alongside with many other churches in the course of the Communism's atheism campaign.

World War II and Leningrad Siege lead to heavy damage to the Church. Its precious mosaics were crushed by explosions, artillery shelling, low winter temperatures, dust, and humidity. After a long 30 years restoration they were finally  revealed from behind the scaffoldings. Since 1994 Spilled Blood Church has been a state museum acquainting visitors with the story of Alexander's II assassination and, of course, demonstrating the unparalleled beauty of Russian mosaic work.

Open: Summer (1st May - 15th, September) - Cathedral 10:00am - 7:00pm (ticket office closes at 6:00pm). Night excursions - 6:15-10:00pm. Rest of the year - Cathedral 11:00am - 7:00pm (ticket office closes at 6:00pm).

Closed: Wednesdays.

Tourists' remarks

 " ... My jaw dropped. Really. The interior is magnificent. Almost everything is mosaic: icons, pictures, walls, columns and arches, ceilings, floors, even the cupola. Stonework is composed of rich and many-hued marble, jasper, rhodonite and porphyry. The church is light and airy, the people quiet and subdued. The structure is a romantic impression of late eighteenth-century Russian church architecture, the exterior at least. The brick walls are busy, ornamented with carved marble arches, short columns, an elaborate cornice of brick and marble, mosaic representations of saints and a great variety of images. Cupolas are roofed with blue, lime, yellow, and white tiles. Most of the domes are gold-plated, one is covered with spiky cubes, and the topmost appears as a multi-colored turban. Some call the structure garish, a sort of Russian Neuschwanstein. Others love it. I love it, inside and out. Neuschwanstein, too ..."

" ... On my third visit to Russia, in 2001, the restoration of Church of the Spilled Blood was completed and I was finally able to go inside! It was mouth-dropping!!! Anyone who has visited many European Cathedrals is familiar with the awe they inspire. But this was way beyond that, even. Perhaps it was the effect of the mosaic work. After the initial reaction, I started looking closely and realized that there is not ONE cm in that entire church that is not covered with mosaic!! Not ONE! And it was not just the technical marvel of the work, the mosaics were magnificent works of art! No one should even think of going to St. P'burg without a long visit to the Spilled Blood ..."

" ... The Church of Our Saviour on Blood is a delightful Russian-style church. It looks both cute and awesome from its photos, with gold and blue-gold domes that look like Hershey Kisses. The interior of the church features extensive unpolished mosaics, which therefore reflect sunlight ..."

" ... For over 30 years, the Cathedral of Crist-On-The-Blood, built on the spot where Alexander II was assassinated, has been under repair. Now, for the first time in my life, I can see it without scaffolds. And those are its crosses that glow above the buildings on the Palace Embankment. And I was visiting St. Petersburg very frequently since I was 15 ..."

" ... The elaborate edifice is particularly interesting because it's the only work of truly Russian architecture in this city of European palaces ..."

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