The Pyatnitskaya Tower was erected in 1640.
One of the most powerful towers was called after the neighboring Pyatnitsky Monastery. It was constructed to replace the tower blown during the siege of the Monastery (1608 - 1610). The Tower has 6 tiers. Originally it was crowned with a tent-type roof and a watch tower. The Tower is massive, austere and impregnable.
You may watch my high resolution photo of the Pyatnitskaya Tower on the Google Earth according to the following coordinates 56º 18' 36.69" N 38º 8' 1.81" Eor on my Google Earth Panoramio Pyatnitskaya Tower .
The Red Tower was built in 17th century and reconstructed in 1856.
To stress the significance of the Krasnaya Tower constructed over the main gate it was faced with white stone. The Tower was considerably reconstructed in the 19th century and subsequently lost its defensive character. A figured portal and superstructure were added.
You may watch my high resolution photo of the Krasnaya Tower on the Google Earth according to the following coordinates 56º 18' 36.42" N 38º 7' 59.45" E or on my Google Earth Panoramio Krasnaya Tower .
The Duck Tower was built in 17th century.
In the north-eastern corner of the Monastery there was a granary yard which gave the name to the corner Granary Tower. Later it was called the Duck Tower. The Tower is crowned with a high red and white open-work structure consisting of four originally decorated tiers. The Tower combines power and impregnability with gala decorativeness. The proper correlation of the bottom and top fine proportions and light silhouette make the Tower an outstanding monument of the 17th century architecture.
The Tower is crowned with a small drum with a stone duck on a high steeple. According to the legend Peter I liked to shoot at ducks at the White Pond.
You may watch my high resolution photo of the Duck Tower on the Google Earth according to the following coordinates 56º 18' 45.35" N 38º 7' 53.46" Eor on my Google Earth Panoramio Duck Tower .
The Belfry of the monastery dates back to 1770 and with a hight of 88 meters it is one of the highest belfries in Russia. Untill 1917 it had a total of 42 bells and the largest of them had about 65 tons.
As a tourist you cannot enter this impressive building,but maybe you are lucky and might hear the chimes playing a nice melody.
The Assumption Cathedral is the church that is visited by pilgrims and tourists alike and unfortunately you are not allowed to flash there. All of the columns and walls are decorated with beautiful and ornate paintings and frescos and the giant iconostasis is also worth to take a closer look at.
Due to the construction of that cathedral it is unfortunately totally impossible to take good photos of the total iconostasis, even with an extreme wide-angle-lens.
This is Krasnaya Tower (=the red tower), the first gate that you will have to walk through to in order to enter the monastery of Sergiyev Posad. The gate has wonderful decorations and paintings and gives you a first impression of what to expect inside.
The entrance to the monastery is free of charge, only when you intend to take photos, you have to pay 150 Rubles but this amount includes also a CD with some chours-music, that was a really nice surprise for me.
This is the 2nd gate that you have to walk through in order to enter the monastery of Sergiyev Posad. There are some interesting paintings in the arches of this gate and it was interesting to learn, that above the gate there is a church as well: it is The Church of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist, dating back to the year 1699. (see it in my 2nd photo)
Tourists have to enter the church of St. Sergius through the refectorium and they will see there one of the most beautiful churches of the monastery. This church is also more a museum that a church, so you are able to take photos without disturbing any pilgrims and even flash photography was no problem there. All of the walls and also the ceiling are decorated in the most beautiful way, take a look at my extra photos as well !
The refectorium is always the diningroom for the monks, who would normally all eat at the same time, so you can imagine how many monks this monastery had at its best times. For quite a long time this hall used to be the largest hall in Russia with a total of 510 m². Nowadays it is used as the entrancehall of the church of St. Sergius, that you can enter only through the refectorium as a tourist.
The refectorium is really one of the most beautiful parts of this monastery.
The Holy Trinity Cathedral as you see it today dates back to the year 1423, but there was a much older, wooden church at this place before that. For people who are not very familiar with the russian-orthodox church it is really not easy to understand that various churches are built next to each other.
Unfortunately the Trinity Cathedral is very dark inside and so I was not able to take any good photos, although the works of art and the iconostasis would really be worth it. I took some pics anyway, you can see them in my 3rd-5th photo.
There is a giant, high fortification-wall around all of the monastery of Sergiyev Posad. The expression "Posad" means OUTside of the Kremlin-walls, so this monastery was obviously never protected by the medieval Kremlin-walls of this town and had therefore to construct an extra-strong wall for themselves.
Sergiyev Posad is a very popular day-excursion from Moscow for tourists and locals likewise and a lot of restaurations were going on still in summer 2009.
The refectorium is quite a large building, 85 meters long and it dates back to the year 1692 and was built for Peter I. It looks interesting already from outside with a facade that gives you the illusion of seeing a 3dimensional pattern, but in fact it is totally flat.
The interior of the Refectory is even more impressive and for a long time its main hall used to be the largest hall in Russia with a total of 510 m².
There are wonderful paintings and decoration inside that building, see some of them in my extra photos !
The St. Sergius Statue commemorates the patron of the Trinity Monastery of St Sergius Lavra.
St. Sergius was born at the beginning of the 14th century in Radonezh, which is a nearby town.
In the middle of the 14th century he founded the monastery at a time when the whole area was still very deserted.
The St. Sergius Statue stands outside of the monastery, just a little north of the main entrance.
The history of the Church of the Presentation in the Temple as well as the adjacent Pyatnitskaya Church date back to the middle of the 16th century.
Both stone churches have a golden dome and just underwent massive renovations.
The Church of the Presentation in the Temple and the Pyatnitskaya Church are located in the small park to the south of the monastery.
The single domed Church of the Holy Spirit (Dukhovskaya tserkov) was built on a site of an earlier wooden church. Its construction was carried out by craftsmen from Pskov in 1476 and 1477.
The church has an open belfry, which was even used as a watch tower in the early 17th century. Together with the Trinity Cathedral, the Church of the Holy Spirit forms an ensemble.
The Church of the Holy Spirit can be found in the southern half of the Trinity Monastery of St Sergius Lavra, just next to the Trinity Cathedral.