Suzdal’s Museum of Wooden Architecture and Peasant Life is an open air museum dedicated to showing how Russian peasants lived in centuries past. Just a short walk across the Kamenka River from Suzdal’s Kremlin, the museum consists of about 20 wooden buildings from the 18th and 19th centuries, including log houses, windmills, churches and a barn. Set up like a small village, the museum sits on the site of St. Dmitry’s Monastery, one of the oldest in Suzdal. Visitors can go inside three houses, as well as the 18th century Transfiguration Church, notable for its dome covered with silvery aspen shakes.
The museum is also home to a variety of cultural activities, including weaving demonstrations, pottery making and folk singing. Museum staff wear traditional costumes and English speaking guides can explain how the various buildings were used and provide insight as to how Russian peasants lived.
Suzdal can be visited as a long day trip from Moscow or as part of a multi-day Golden Ring tour. To get there on your own, take a train from Moscow’s Kurskaya train station to Vladimir, from where you can catch a bus to Suzdal. The bus terminal in Vladimir is adjacent to the train station and buses to Suzdal leave every 30 minutes.