St. Basils Cathedral

#45 - Moscow, Russia
Visited Here?
Do You Dream?
It's not so terrible after all.
The cathedral is actually quite beautiful and a symbol of Moscow in general. Located in the Red Square, it features nine onion shaped domes that are so representative of the 16th century Russian style. It was primarily built by 'Ivan the Terrible' to celebrate the military success against the Tartar Mongols in 1552. The origin of its name derives from the 'holy food' Basil, who was very popular then and also Ivan the Terrible. We're just glad he didn't name it after himself.
Slide 1
Onion Dome Fantasy
#1 St. Basils Cathedral Photo - Will Crowthers
Slide 2
St Basils from Top to Bottom
#2 St. Basils Cathedral Photo - Will Crowthers
Slide 3
St Basils to Kremlin to Red Square an...
#3 St. Basils Cathedral Photo - Will Crowthers
Slide 4
The Cupcake Palace - St Basil's Cathe...
#4 St. Basils Cathedral Photo - Will Crowthers
Slide 5
Christmas Time at St. Basils Cathedral
#5 St. Basils Cathedral Photo - Zhao Naidoo
Plan a Visit

Brad & Will's Quick Thoughts

St. Basil's Cathedral and The Red Square sit at the heart of Moscow along the Moscow River. St Basil's is along the South East border of Red Square and has been the icon of Moscow and Russia for over 400 years! It is amazing how many people recognize this landmark with its colorful onion domes and unique spires reaching to the sky.

St. Basil's and Red Square are listed as an AbsoluteVisit for their grandeur, uniqueness and historical value. Like so many other icons around the world, it is special when you first see with your own eyes something you have seen hundreds, if not thousands, of times in a photograph. Red Square has a unifying feeling as you'll see many locals and tourists alike while being surrounded by an immense amount of history.

St. Basil's Cathedral itself is amazing to look at and its architecture will continue to enchant you even while you stand in front of it. Also, the interior is unique as each onion dome means an interior room that extends the full-height of each tower and dome.

Red Square is a huge city square lined by The Kremlin wall, The Russian Museum, GUM (a long high-end shopping building) and St. Basil's. Red Square is the home to many events and festivals that brings locals and tourists together.

When you visit this AbsoluteVisit, stand in the middle of Red Square and slowly turn yourself 360 degrees and soak in the immense history and culture that surrounds you - what a feeling!


Quick Facts & History

  • St. Basils Cathedral actually has a much longer name, 'Cathedral of the Intercession of the Virgin by the Moat', but achieved its much shorter nickname after the holy fool Basil the Blessed.
  • There are actually nine chapels within St. Basils Cathedral, each one with its own unique onion dome.
  • There is an eight-point star on top of St. Basils Cathedral meant to symbolize the Christian Church, acting as a guiding light, showing the way to Jerusalem. The star is also meant to represent the Virgin Mary.
  • Legend has it that after St. Basils Cathedral was complete, Ivan the Terrible blinded the architect so that he could never build anything better than the cathedral.

Where is St. Basils Cathedral?


Photos from St. Basils Cathedral

Submit a new Photo


Submit a new Photo
See Full Size
Onion Dome Fantasy
Ranked #1 by Will Crowthers
St Basils from Top to Bottom
Ranked #2 by Will Crowthers
St Basils to Kremlin to Red Squar...
Ranked #3 by Will Crowthers
The Cupcake Palace - St Basil's C...
Ranked #4 by Will Crowthers
Christmas Time at St. Basils Cath...
Ranked #5 by Zhao Naidoo

Top Blog Posts

Submit a new Blog Post

Places That Are Nearby

St. Basils Cathedral
Fjords of Norway
Moscow Kremlin
Hermitage Museum

Videos of St. Basils Cathedral

Sorry, we're in the process of selecting our favorite videos for St. Basils Cathedral. Check back soon!
# 1

Onion Dome Fantasy

# 2

St Basils from Top to Bottom

# 3

St Basils to Kremlin to Red Square and Beyond

# 4

The Cupcake Palace - St Basil's Cathedral

# 5

Christmas Time at St. Basils Cathedral


Best time to visit St. Basils Cathedral

Submit Your Opinion
We need your help!

Do you know when the best time is to visit St. Basils Cathedral?

Help others visit St. Basils Cathedral at the best time!
Submit Your Opinion

Average Temperature

Average Precipitation

Friends who have Visited

Sign up for My AbsoluteVisit to see which of your friends have Visited...


Friends who Dream of visiting

Sign up for My AbsoluteVisit to see which of your friends Dream of visiting...

Connect with AV
The Top 100 Places in the World
1 Great Wall of China
2 Pyramids of Egypt
3 Machu Picchu
4 Serengeti Migration
5 Galapagos Islands
6 Grand Canyon
7 Angkor Temples
8 Antarctica Cruise
9 Taj Mahal
10 Iguazu Falls
11 Amazon Rain Forest
12 Great Barrier Reef
13 Bora Bora
14 Victoria Falls
15 Bagan
16 Petra
17 Potala Palace
18 Karnak
19 Mt Everest
20 Cappadocia
21 St Peters Basilica
22 Fjords of Norway
23 Jerusalem Old City
24 Burj Khalifa
25 Borobudur
26 Forbidden City
27 Kashmir Valley
28 Li River Cruise
29 Ladakh
30 Alhambra
31 Louvre Museum
32 Perito Moreno Glac.
33 Banaue Terraces
34 Colosseum of Rome
35 Easter Island
36 Venice Canals/Alleys
37 Kathmandu Valley
38 Wat Phra Kaew
39 Yellowstone NP
40 Pompeii
41 Rio Panoramic View
42 Palace of Versailles
43 Dubrovnik
44 Golden Temple
45 St. Basils Cathedral
46 Vatican Museum
47 Florence Cityscape
48 Acropolis
49 Amalfi Coast Drive
50 Kremlin
51 Hong Kong View
52 TerraCotta Warriors
53 Mezquita Cordoba
54 Chichen Itza
55 Damascus Old City
56 Shwedagon Stupa
57 Sahara Desert
58 Mont St Michel
59 St. Marks Square
60 Egyptian Museum
61 Hagia Sophia
62 Angel Falls
63 Delphi
64 Teotihuacan
65 Baalbek
66 Banff NP
67 Santorini
68 Matterhorn
69 New York Skyline
70 Neuschwanstein
71 Chartres Cathedral
72 British Museum
73 Prague Old Town
74 Burj al Arab
75 Yangtze River Cruise
76 Yosemite NP
77 Hermitage Museum
78 Torres del Paine
79 Chambord Chateau
80 Lijiang
81 Portofino
82 Great Ocean Road
83 Tongariro Alpine
84 Las Vegas Strip
85 Tikal
86 Topkapi Palace
87 Sydney Opera House
88 Eiffel Tower
89 Luxor Temple
90 Kerala Backwaters
91 Golden Gate Bridge
92 Cinque Terre
93 Metropolitan Mus
94 Uffizi Gallery
95 Ayers Rock
96 Cliffs of Moher
97 Pacific Coast Hwy
98 Shanghai Skyline
99 Glacier Bay NP
100 Wulingyuan
Cappadocia  Cappadocia, Turkey
Top 100 by Name Top 100 on a Map
Top 100 by Country Top 100 by Continent