Suzdal is a unique town. One of the most beautiful Old Russian towns, it is the only town-museum in Russia: there are more than 300 monuments on its terrirory becoming national heritage not only of Russia but of the world culture as well. Suzdal as a touristic center is not only included in the Golden Ring of Russia, but also its white stone monuments are included in the list of UNESCO.
The first record of Suzdal is dated 1024. At the beginning of XI Suzdal and its environs were a part of Kievan Russia.
Later it becomes a patrimony of the prince Vladimir Monomakh who concentrated on consolidation of the town. Gradually it became a capital town of Rostov-Suzdal principality.
As for many medieval towns, the beginning of Suzdal was Kremlin built on the protected place on board of the river Kamenka. Near Kremlin a town trading quarter was organized. If to trust the chronicle, the initial planning of the town is conserved up till now.
Other prince who made a major contribution in the history of Suzdal was Yury Dolgoruky (1125-1157). During his reign many churches appeared and Suzdal became the center of religious life of Russia. The Suzdal principality became vaster and its political significance grew.
Suzdal became a capital that time when Moscow was just being born. In 1157 the son of Yury Dolgoruky Andrey Bogolubsky moved the capital to Vladimir and the principality was named Vladimir-Suzdal. Located on the rich soil, Suzdal had been the trading center even after Mongol invasion.
After political importance weakening Suzdal was developped principally as a religious center and many of construction projects were realized by Vasiliy III and Ivan the Terrible in the 16th century. In 17 and 18 centuries rich merchants constructed 30 splendid churches which adorn the town even now. Thus Suzdal has unbelievable quantity of churches: 53 churches on its territory of 15 km2 and for 10 000 people.
Of course Suzdal was being robbed and destroyed by fire from time to time but nevertheless it conserved its unique appereance of the ancient Russian town. Also the fact that in Suzdal was not constructed the railway and it hasn’t become an industrial city favoured conservation of its historical view.
Nowadays Suzdal is a district center of Vladimir region. This is a pitoresque touristic center, infinetly attractive for travelers and tourists.
Some useful tips
It’s quite easy to find a place to stay in Suzdal: there are so many Russian style guest houses with restaurants and wonderful views.
Sorry but there is some difficulties with internet (this town is not for working but for relaxing) though in the guest houses you can ask for wifi.
The restaurants offer principally delicious Russian food.
Wooden Architecture museum is really worth to visit. You will see ancient wooden buildings brought here from different Russian villages.