Nevyansk, Russia

Nevyansk is a city in the Sverdlovsk region, the historical capital of the Demidovs. One of the main Ural attractions is located here — the inclined Nevyanskaya Tower, and in the vicinity you can find Old Believer villages, beautiful Ural nature and many more interesting things.

Nevyansk (formerly the village of Nevyansky Zavod) stands on the Neiva River on the road from Yekaterinburg to Nizhny Tagil. The city is located on a plain, the proximity of the Ural Mountains is only reminded of the hills looming on the horizon — an array of Cheerful Mountains to the west of the Tagil highway.

Iron ore reserves in the Neiva basin have been known since the middle of the 17th century. Even then, the first handicraft factories appeared in the Urals, but serious production began only in 1699, when Peter I issued a decree on the construction of a state-owned ironworks in the future Nevyansk. In 1701, the factory started working and almost immediately, in 1702, it was transferred to private hands — Tula gunsmith Nikita Demidov. Over the next 30 years, factories grew like mushrooms in this area, and the Demidovs made the Urals their patrimony, establishing mutually beneficial relations with the state. Ural industrialists were allowed a lot — to shelter runaway peasants, give religious freedom to Old Believers, mistreat workers and even mint counterfeit coins: all this in exchange for loyalty to the tsar and efficient production, and private factories worked at that time much better than state-owned ones. By the 19th century, "wild capitalism" gradually entered a civilized channel, and the legacy of the progressive Demidovs, industrialists and patrons, you will see in Nizhny Tagil, where the center of the Demidov "patrimony" moved by the end of the XVIII century. Nevyansk is a monument to the era of the formation of the Ural industry, and there is only one attraction here, but what a sight! A huge and very beautiful tower, built as a sign of the power of the Demidovs at a time when all the stone buildings in the Urals (and beyond the Urals) could be counted on the fingers. In addition, Nevyansk is the center of the Ural Old Believers with its own icon painting school and a couple of interesting temples in the vicinity.

The Demidovs left Nevyansk in 1769, selling the factory to Savva Yakovlev. For a while everything went on as before, the metal flowed like a river, but by the middle of the XIX century, ore reserves were depleted, the surrounding forests were cut down, and production began to decline. The blast furnaces were finally extinguished shortly before the revolution. By that time, the plant had completely turned into a mechanical one and began to assemble metal products. In Soviet times, shells were mainly made here, later the plant tried to produce peaceful products, but now it ekes out a miserable existence, which is easy to see from the abundance of ruins on its territory.

Nevyansk itself said goodbye to the capital's role even with the Demidovs' departure and has not been anything special since then. There are a lot of historical, but completely neglected buildings in the city, and if it were not for the Demidov Tower here, it would hardly stand out against the background of Reza, Kushva and a dozen other old Ural "single-industry towns", interesting for their texture, and not for individual monuments. Everything went to that: the tower, which stood on the closed factory territory, would have been destroyed if local historians had not stood up for it. The tourist potential of the tower was realized only in the 2000s, when it was restored and opened to the public, and Nevyansk itself began to be promoted as a center of Ural tourism. Now it is for Yekaterinburg something like Sergiev Posad for Moscow - a city where it is convenient to go for one day, and where souvenir shops, pottery and other attributes of mass tourism began to grow around a single attraction. Tourism has improved the city: roads have been patched up, sidewalks have been made, although the reconstruction of the historical environment has safely stopped a couple of hundred meters from the tower — the area where tourists visit. Shabby, crumbling houses and somehow restored temples do not paint the city at all. If you came here without a car, limit yourself to visiting the main attraction, and go further to Tagil, which is much more lively and, if I may say so, more saturated. With a car, it is worth taking time to the surroundings: the open countryside around Nevyansk is very beautiful, and the legacy of the Old Believers is of independent interest.



Around the tower

1 Nevyanskaya (inclined) tower.  10:00 – 17:30 except Mon. Excursion: 400 rubles/person. The most surreal construction of Nevyansk and the entire Urals appeared in the 1720s, which coincided with the transfer of factories from Nikita Demidov to his son Akinfiy and the peak of Demidov's power. The history of the building is poorly known. It is only clear that the Demidovs wanted to build something in their residence that had not yet been in Russia, and the craftsmen (most likely local) coped with the task set for them. The building is unusual in that it combines the plasticity of Russian fortress towers with the elongated shape of the Italian campanile, and the slope makes the tower look completely unlike anything else. There are various rumors about the slope: they say, for example, that counterfeit coins were minted in the basements, and by the arrival of the auditors, the basements, on the orders of Akinfiy Demidov, were flooded along with the workers who were there, and since then the tower has tilted. There are other stories (they will tell you in the tower), but the most plausible version is that the tower began to tilt during construction due to subsidence of the foundation, and the craftsmen put the upper tiers so as to compensate for the slope, so now the Nevyanskaya tower is inclined, but not falling.
You can get to the tower only with an excursion lasting a good hour and a half. The guides will dump a lot of unnecessary information on you, although they will show you something interesting, including a cast-iron frame, beams made of cast iron and iron (the first "composite" material in Russia; plastic iron strengthens brittle cast iron in it), invented 20 years before Benjamin Franklin, a lightning rod, a hearing room where you can, standing in different corners, talking, and wonderful English-made tower chimes. In the warmer months, they are also allowed to go to the observation deck and survey the surroundings, appreciating the abandonment of the plant and the beauty of the Ural nature. Some details can also be seen from the outside — for example, cast—iron "plaques" on the walls mark the frame supporting the tower - although it is better to spare no money and go inside. Excursions take place according to an unclear schedule, but quite often and have no restrictions on the number of participants. Nevyansk can be crowded on weekends, so it's better to go to the tower in the evening or come to the opening.

2 Spaso-Preobrazhensky Cathedral. The cathedral, located next to the tower, was built in the classical style in 1824-30. During the Soviet years, it was located on the territory of the plant and was rebuilt as a workshop, restored in the early 2000s. It doesn't look too original from the outside, but at least it's authentic, but inside there's a new look. The iconostases made of faience look especially modern, although this technical solution itself is very unusual.

3 Monument to Peter I and Nikita Demidov. A sign of mass tourism is the monument erected in 2003, on which Peter is familiar (and invitingly) he looks into the distance, but Demidov seems to have been copied from the sculpture "A cobblestone is a tool of the proletariat." From the monument it is convenient to explore the territory of the plant, where there are outright ruins and rather funny buildings of the Soviet era.

4 Square with monuments, Revolution Square. In the square in front of the cathedral there are monuments for every taste: from ordinary military ones to, suddenly, anchors in honor of the 300th anniversary of the Russian fleet (the authors considered that the fleet would not have arisen without Nevyansk metal), however, the most concise and, at the same time, the most original monument is dedicated to the "goat", i.e. frozen in the blast furnace, cast iron left over after the pre-revolutionary strike of the Nevyansk workers. Along the square there are a couple of unusually tall and rather pretty apartment buildings built after the war in the Stalinist style.

5 Observation deck at the weather station, between Engels and Lasalle streets (behind the dam). The view point closest to the tower is on the hill on the other side of the pond. There is no official observation deck here, and the weather station is hard to guess, but the view of the city is good. From the monument to Peter and Demidov, follow the dam and continue up in any available way.


Around the city

6 Trinity Church, Krylova str., 20. In the "stump" building with a hastily attached dome, it is difficult to see the "Royal" Church, which is exactly what it was called before the revolution, since in 1853 the temple was built according to the capital (albeit standard) project, "lowered" from above for the Old Believer regions, where just at that time, residents massively (under pressure from the authorities) converted to the same faith. Initially, the temple was five-domed, the project is attributed as much to the architect Ton, but it is difficult to understand this now.
7 Ascension Church and Nevyansky necropolis, Koskovich St. (across the pond, in the cemetery). A small wooden church of the second half of the XIX century would not be of great interest if it were not located in the old Nevyansk cemetery, where there are many burials of the century before last. There is also a small Old Believer Holy Cross Chapel (1815).
8 The building of the women's gymnasium, Karl Marx St., 6. There is not much Art Nouveau in the Urals, and this is just it, and at a fairly high level — without abundant decorations, but with very interesting plastics. Pay attention to the complex shape of the facade and rounded windows.

There are several dozen historical stone buildings in Nevyansk (list). It is best to go in search of them from the Trinity Church (visit, for example, the monuments of brick Art Nouveau — old schools located at 47 Kirova Street and 52 Malysheva Street), although wooden houses are the most interesting here. They do not have the status of cultural heritage and are not always historical, but they preserve and enhance the local traditions of wooden carving. Carved platbands and cornices are a common thing in the Urals, but in Nevyansk and the surrounding area there is a transition from quantity to quality: there are so many carvings on some houses that they look fabulous. The apotheosis of artisanal carving is the house in Kunar, and for those who are too lazy to go there, there is his "younger brother" in Nevyansk, the house of Afanasy Abramov (54 Commune Street). There are many pretty (albeit newly made) wooden houses standing around the pond: you will surely find them walking around the city in search of viewpoints.

The buildings of the XIX century, of which there are also many in the city, are dominated by classicism, which takes the roughest form in Nevyansk: chopped two-storey mansions without a single decorative element can easily be mistaken for minimalistic buildings of the post-war period. A pleasant exception to this series will be the mansion of merchant Dozhdev (Sovetskaya str. 16), but the college building (Lunacharsky str., 26) is classicism with the prefix "neo": an infrequent monument of pre—war Soviet architecture in a small town (1938).

Mount Lebyazhka. If you are not satisfied with the view from the weather station, go along Shevchenko Street (exit to the Right) and turn left onto Lasalle or Koskovich streets. Here is the highest point of the city, from which it is completely visible, along with the cement plant located to the west and the Ural Ridge on the horizon.


What to do

1 Nevyansky Museum , Demidov Square (in the power plant building next to the Nevyanskaya Tower). ☎ +7 (34356) 4-45-09. 9:00 – 19:00 except Mon. 100 rubles, exhibition hall: 50 rubles. The museum acts as an annex to the Nevyanskaya Tower and is primarily engaged in organizing excursions: friendly employees will give a lot of advice, if necessary, arrange a walk around the city or introduce you to local crafts (blacksmithing, clay modeling, making felt boots). The exposure itself against this background is unlikely to attract your attention, unless it's raining outside and you need to kill some time. In the main building, the same thing is shown as in any other Ural museum of local lore — minerals, portraits of the Demidovs, the Nevyansk icon, and in the exhibition hall located on Revolution Square (square with monuments) — everything in general. The museum building is more interesting: this is a former factory power plant from 1915, which looks no less surreal than the inclined tower: Demidov would not be ashamed of the bright red building in the Moorish style.
2 House of the Nevyanskaya Icon , Krasnoarmeyskaya St., 2. ☎ +7 (34356) 2-40-05. The local, Nevyansk icon is known far beyond the city and is rooted in Old Believer traditions that combined a strict canon with bright, expressive faces. The historical Nevyansk icon has gone to museums and private collections, so there is almost no one left in the city: for a good collection you need to go to the thematic museum in Yekaterinburg, and for the Nevyansk icon in its natural temple environment — to the neighboring village of Byngi. The house of the Nevyansk Icon is an icon painting workshop where you can view and, if desired, purchase modern icons painted in the Nevyansk tradition.
3 DK Mashinostroiteley , Malysheva str., 1. An ordinary district house of culture, there are concerts by visiting artists and local collectives. It was built in 1960 according to an atypical design.

Fans of outdoor activities and those who just want to see the Urals as mountains should head to the vicinity of Verkhny Tagil and Kirovgrad, where Mount Yezhovaya is located — a good view point and a ski resort.


How to get here

It is most convenient to stop in Nevyansk on the way from Yekaterinburg to Nizhny Tagil, or just take a day trip from Yekaterinburg.

By train
From Yekaterinburg, trains run to Nizhny Tagil every 1-2 hours. To go to Nevyansk by train for as long as 2 hours, it is more convenient to use express trains running 4 times a day ("Swallow"), which reach the city in 1 hour 15 minutes. In the direction of Tagil, the options are the same: the train goes for an hour, the express for half an hour. A few long-distance trains also stop in Nevyansk, including a daily train north towards Serov and the Ob region.

1 Railway station, 8 Popova str. (in the western part of the city, 2.5 km from the center). ☎ +7 (34356) 2-30-40 (on duty), +7 (34356) 2-14-46 (ticket office). The building was built in 1994 with a claim to originality, but is rather shabby both outside and inside. You need to go to the center along Krasnoarmeyskaya Street, without turning anywhere. Any suburban buses/minibuses departing from the bus station will also suit you: all of them follow Krasnoarmeyskaya Street or Karl Marx Street parallel to it, stopping 5 minutes walk from Nevyanskaya Tower (stops "Fire station", "Deli"). No. 107 walks more often than others (10-15 min interval).

By bus
Buses from the northern bus station of Yekaterinburg on average every hour, 1.5 hours on the way. Some of these buses are direct, the rest are passing to Nizhny Tagil, however, keep in mind that the vast majority of Tagil buses do not stop in Nevyansk, so you should not get on the first one you come across. Buses run from Nevyansk to Tagil with an interval of 1-2 hours, an hour on the way.

A minibus to Verkhny-Neuvinsky (No. 109) runs every half hour, a minibus to Kirovgrad (No. 122) — every 1-1.5 hours. Everything else is a nearby and uninteresting suburb. There is no public transport on the road to Dir.

2  Bus station (in the building of the railway station). ☎ +7 (902) 871-71-87. 6:00 – 20:00. It serves only flights to Yekaterinburg and Nizhny Tagil, all local buses are in the hands of private carriers. Schedule.

By car
Nevyansk is located on the P352 highway, 92 km from Yekaterinburg and 54 km from Nizhny Tagil. This is an unusual four-lane road running through forests and cutting through rocks. Its most beautiful section is located just in front of Nevyansk (from Yekaterinburg).

There is a local road to the east (80 km).


Local transport

There are not many attractions in Nevyansk, and they are located very close to each other. There is no public transport, only suburban. Minibuses have three-digit numbers and depart either from the railway station or from the Yuzhny department store (23 Lenin Street). Inside the city, you will only need minibus No. 107, which runs quite often and connects the station with the center.



A sluggish trade in souvenirs and local goods (gingerbread, jam) takes place near the Nevyanskaya Tower, the modern Nevyanskaya icon is sold in the already mentioned museum. Another popular Nevyansk souvenir is Tavolozhskaya ceramics, for which it is better to go to Tavolgi itself. You can also buy unexpected things like felt boots in Nevyansk (there is a special store for this on Lenin Street).

1  The market, Malysheva str., 10. An indoor market, mainly food. There are several regular grocery supermarkets around it, open until late at night.
2 Monetka supermarket, 60 Karl Marx Street (on the way to the train station). 8:00 – 23:00.



1  Cafe "Simba" , Lenin Street, 30. 9:00 – 22:00. Hot: 100-150 rubles. A children's cafe with a simple interior and simple food resembling either a dining room or Tagil fast food: pizza is filled with a huge amount of mayonnaise and ketchup, and other Italian dishes (pasta, lasagna) do not stay away from these delights of local cooking, so stick to the classics — soup, dumplings, cutlets. A good selection of desserts, no alcohol. The food is prepared quickly, the turnover of visitors is large: This is not a place where you can sit and pass the time for a long time.
2 Cafes "Ural dumplings" (at the entrance to the city from Yekaterinburg), Dzerzhinsky St., 6 (at the entrance to the city from the south). 9:00 – 22:00. An ordinary roadside eatery: a simple assortment, but the dumplings seem to be decent.
3  Cafe "Old tavern" , Trade Unions street 15. 9:00 – 18:00. Lunch: about 150 rubles. The cafe specializes in dinners and banquets. It is not entirely clear whether it is possible to eat here at another time.
4 Slavyanochka Cookery, Lenin Street, 26-28. 9:00 – 19:00. Delicious pies of local production.
5  Dining room, Matveeva str., 20. Mon–Fri 9:00 – 19:00. An ordinary dining room with a distribution.
6 Cafes at the Stary Sobol Hotel, 23 Dzerzhinsky Street. Around the clock. From the outside, it looks more like a roadside eatery, and the contingent is appropriate: in the evenings, local boys come together, turning on loud music in their cars, and in the morning the same guys come to the cafe for cigarettes. However, there is brewed coffee, and the food is not limited to what you will see on the distribution: read the menu and order according to it. Some kind of food happens in the cafe really around the clock.

Average cost
7 Cafe "Akinfiy" , Lenin str., 5a (2nd floor). 11:00 – 22:00. Hot: 200-300 rubles. Akinfiy Demidov, looking menacingly from the wall, can no longer, as of old, set up the quality of service with an iron hand and ensure the availability of all the dishes listed on the menu. If you are lucky, and they will still be there, you will be offered ordinary European cuisine, pizza, sushi - in general, everything that is usually prepared in the Russian province. Conflicting reviews.
8 Cafe "Demidov" , Lenin St., 23a. 11:00 – 24:00. The choice is more modest than that of Akinfiya, but all the dishes are available. A nice interior with an abundance of cast iron and, of course, portraits of the Demidovs. Good reviews.
9  Slavyanskoe Cafe, 37a Uritskogo str. 11:00 – 22:00; Fri and Sat: until 24:00. Hot: about 200 rubles. A simple cafe with Russian cuisine; there is a separate tea room where you can sit with dessert and coffee. Good reviews.
10 Clever Coffee, 15a Lenin Street. 9:00 – 22:00. A modern coffee shop with cocktails and original coffee. There is no food.



Nevyansk is not the most promising place to stay overnight, and there is not much to do here in the evenings, unless you walk around the pond, looking at the Tower. For lovers of evening entertainment, it is better to stay in Yekaterinburg or Nizhny Tagil. There are several modern, Internet—bookable hotels at the ski resort in the vicinity of Kirovgrad - this is a good option if you are by car. There should also be a guest house in Tavolgi (either Upper or Lower), where those who came for Tavolozhskaya ceramics are settled.

1 Stary Sobol Hotel, 23 Dzerzhinsky Street (entrance to the city from Yekaterinburg). ☎ +7 (34356) 2-43-20, +7 (34356) 2-43-42. Single room: 1500 rubles. A small hotel, on the sign of which it is honestly written "Category: Without stars", although the service is quite three—star - shampoo, slippers, electric kettle, Wi-Fi in the rooms, and hot tap water flows regularly, which does not always happen in the Urals. Simple, but cozy and cute. Some guests report that they were settled closer to the center on the street of Trade Unions, 21. From the hotel itself to the Nevyanskaya tower is 2 km, and the area is not conducive to walking.
2  Uraltransgaz LLC Medical Facility Hotel, Kosmonavtov str., 64. ☎ +7 (34356) 2-18-82.


Geographical position

The city of Nevyansk is located on the eastern slope of the Middle Urals, on the Neiva River, which forms the Nevyansk Pond within the city limits, extending south and east outside the city. Nevyansk is located 74 km by road, 99 km by rail north of Yekaterinburg and 76 km by road and 50 km by rail south of Nizhny Tagil. Lake Tavatui is located 40 km south of Nevyansk.



Nevyansk was founded by decree of Peter I in 1701 in connection with the construction of an iron-smelting and iron-smelting plant.

The first smelting was carried out on December 15, 1701, and this date is considered to be the birthday of Nevyansk. On March 4, 1702, by the decree of Emperor Peter I, the State Plant was transferred into its own ownership to the breeder Nikita Demidovich Antufiev (Demidov), the founder of the Demidov dynasty. In 1745, the property of Akinfiy Nikitich was divided into three parts between the sons of Procopius, Gregory and Nikita. The Nevyansk part went to Prokopy Akinfievich Demidov.

In 1768, the Nevyansk plant was bought by Savva Yakovlev (Sobakin).

In 1878, traffic was opened on the Ural Gornozavodskaya railway.

In June 1918, an anti-Bolshevik uprising took place in Nevyansk.

On September 26, 1960, Nevyansk received the status of a city of regional subordination.

On February 1, 1963, the Council of Working People's Deputies of the city of Nevyansk was transferred to the subordination of the Sverdlovsk Regional Council of Working People's Deputies.

The modern city line was established on March 3, 2006.


The city's attractions

Leaning tower of Nevyansk
Built in 1732. This is the most famous architectural structure in the entire Urals. The tower is the main symbol of the city of Nevyansk. Historical and cultural monument of federal significance.

Temples of Nevyansk
Transfiguration Cathedral
"Transfiguration Cathedral" - an Orthodox church in Nevyansk, the city cathedral of the Nizhniy Tagil diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church. It is located in the main city square (Revolution Square). After the revolution, in 1932, by decision of the authorities, the temple was closed, and the building was transferred to the Nevyansk Mechanical Plant. The building was returned to the Russian Orthodox Church after restoration on December 8, 2003.

Ascension Church
"Church of the Ascension" ("Church of the Ascension of the Lord") - a small cemetery church of the XIX century. Located at st. Koskovich, 81.

Nevyansk State Historical and Architectural Museum (Museum of History of the Nevyansk Territory) (Revolution Square, 2);
Museum "House of the Nevyansk Icon" with an icon-painting workshop.
The House of the Nevyansk Icon Museum was opened in November 2003 at the icon-painting workshop of the Revival of the Nevyansk Icon and Folk Art Crafts Foundation. The exposition of the museum is located on the squares of a small room in the historical center of the city, on Revolution Square, not far from the Nevyansk leaning tower. The icon-painting workshop is also located here. After the completion of the reconstruction of the house of the merchant AP Dozhdov, the museum will exhibit its collection within its walls.

The collection of the museum is based on icons donated to the Foundation by a private collector A. A. Koshelevsky. The museum exposition presents ancient icons by masters of the 17th-19th centuries and modern icon painters working in the tradition of the Nevyansk school.

There is a similar, fairly well-known private museum with the same name in Yekaterinburg.

Monuments of Nevyansk
Monument to Peter I and Nikita Demidov;
Memorial in honor of those killed for the Soviet Motherland;
Memorial to those who fell in the Civil War and the Great Patriotic War.