Kostroma has a very convenient location at the confluence of the Volga and Kostroma Rivers. That’s why it has three major parts. The largest part lies at the left banks of the Volga and Kostroma Rivers. Two other parts lay on the right banks of the Volga and Kostroma Rivers.
There are two huge modern automobile bridges across the Volga and Kostroma and the railway bridge across the Volga which connect the three parts of the city.
The Volga is rather wide at Kostroma being a part of the Gor’kovsky reservoir.
It's mostly due to the slowly flowing waters of the magnificent Volga, which divides the town into almost equal parts, right and left bank Kostroma,
The location of the town on the hilly banks of the Volga were used as an artistic asset by the architects in their efforts to create a highly recognizable image of the city.
You can watch my high resolution photo of Kostroma on the Google Earth according to the following coordinates 57° 45' 48.22" N 40° 55' 40.26" E or on my Google Earth Panoramio Bridge over the Volga
and according to the following coordinates 57° 45' 50.36" N 40° 55' 40.33" E or on my Google Earth Panoramio Volga River
and according to the following coordinates 57° 46' 38.68" N 40° 53' 45.47" E or on my Google Earth Panoramio Kostroma River.
In 1773 Kostroma was devastated by a great fire. Afterwards the city was rebuilt with streets radiating from a single focal point near the river. They say that Empress Ekaterina II dropped her fan on the city map, and told the architects to follow her design.
In the history of small town planning in old Russia it was rather unique. As it became the starting point in the overall plan of the town's development designed and approved in the end of the XVIII century. The streets of the town were to stretch from the focal point - the square - like rays.
In fact, the town began its really new life. The streets in the new Kostroma, stretching from the square were given the names of Empress Ekaterina II — Ekaterininskaya street, and her son, the would-be Emperor Pavel, and also Ekaterina's grandchildren Alexander, Konstantin, Maria and Elena. Now the streets have other names…
The origin of the town's name is not very clear. I like the story which connects the town's name to an old heathen dancing ritual in which a huge straw doll, which was said to impersonate the awakening of forces of nature in the spring, was used in a ceremony of sacrifice.
The straw doll which in fact was called "kostroma" played the role of symbolic sacrifice to the heathen Sun deity Yarila. The doll would be either set on fire or drowned in the river.
There is also a wonderful modern song “Kostroma” by “the Kupala” folk ensemble which you can hear while watching my 8 min 04 sec HD Video Kostroma Around by car out of my Youtube channel.
Kostroma is a wonderful historic city in central Russia not far from Moscow. It is a part of the Golden ring of the Russian historic towns. It was the third largest city in Russia after Moscow and Yaroslavl in the XVII century.
Today Kostroma is among a few cities in Russia which has retained the layout and architectural ensemble formed in its central part during the XVIII - early XIX centuries.
One of the best preserved examples of the XVIIIth century town planning, Kostroma retains some elegant structures in a "provincial neoclassical" style. These include a governor's palace, a fire tower, a rotunda on the Volga embankment, and an arcaded central market with a merchant church in the center.
You can watch my 6 min 13 sec HD Video Kostroma part 1 out of my Youtube channel with the song by Ljube-Kostroma.
Favorite thing: The Kostroma river joins the Volga river near the center of town. Many visitors come by Volga cruise. Talk a walk along the banks or take a seat and relax.