Constructed between 1904 and 1905 and designed by Russian architect Andrey Zhekov, the Ascension Cathedral was created entirely from wood and is said to have been built without the use of a single metal nail. Most impressively, it survived the huge 1911 earthquake that decimated the city, as well as decades of Soviet religious intolerance, miraculously intact. Thank the Lord for that, as its beautiful colours, lavish decoration and perfect proportions mean it forms a glorious, jewel-like centre piece to the western area of Panfilov Park. Within it is classic Russian Orthodox, with ornate and heavily-gilded icons, beautiful frescoes and flickering candles placed devoutly by flocks of headscarved babushkas. You may even encounter a bearded priest conducting a service or even a choir singing hymns – wonderfully atmospheric.
- Panfilov Park,