Valdaisky Iversky Svyatoozersky Bogoroditsky Monastery is situated in Novgorod region, district of Valdai, 10 km away from Valdai.
Valdai is located in the North-West of the Russian Federation, in Novgorod region, just in the middle of the road between Moscow and Saint Petersburg (M10).
You can arrive in Valdai by train or by bus (see the timetables below), then by taxi or ship “Zarya-211” to the Monastery.
If you go by car, get onto the motorway Moscow – St. Petersburg (M10).
Way from Moscow: on the way to Valdai but not entering it turn right (the road sign “To Borovitschi”). Having driven 2 km along the road, turn left (the road sign “To Iversky Monastery”).
Way from St. Petersburg: drive past Valdai, turn left (the road sign “To Borovitschi”). Having driven 2 km along the road, turn left (the road sign “To Iversky Monastery”).
Valdai history is mostly connected with Iversky Monastery which was built on one of the numerous islands located on Lake Valdai. The chain of islands, on one of which the Iversky Monastery is located, divides the lake into 2 stretches. To the south-east there is the first one, under the name of Valdaisky Plyos (10 x 3 km), and Dolgoborodsky (6.5 x 2.7 km). Both of the stretches have the area of about 20 square kilometers. Lake Valdai is the fourth big lake in Novgorod region, but it is the deepest lake – about 92 metres deep in some parts of it.
The lake’s shores with pure sand hills at many places run down to the water. Due to a plenty of springs the water in the lake is pure and clean. Lake Valdai has always been rich in fish. More than 45 kinds of fish can be found, for example, pikes, zanders, carps, perches, and others. One can also catch crayfishes there. If you are lucky, you can watch beavers and otters at some places of the lake. Tourists enjoy watching wild ducks and gulls that are not afraid of people at all.
Islands of Lake Valdai
Ryabinovy Island is the biggest in the lake. It was named after mountain ash trees which are numerous here. Long ago some Finno-Ugric tribes worshipped mountain ash, it was their cult tree. This island is a popular place where you can get some rest: walk along the path “Ryabinushka” (1.5 km), swim in the lake, get tanned, go fishing, pick berries and mushrooms.
Muravyiny Island — is the second island in size. It has its own inner lake (Glukhoye Lake) which is connected with Lake Valdai. The temperature of water in this small lake is usually some degrees higher than in Lake Valdai. Muravyiny Island is also called Dark as there is a legend according to which this island was inhabited by magicians.
Selvitsky Island is connected with Ryabinovy one. On it there is Iversky Monastery which was founded by Patriarch Nikon in the 17th century. Nikon saw the island, characterized it as “not big, but splendid” and took a resolution to build here a monastery.