The State Memorial and Natural Preserve "Museum-estate of Leo Tolstoy "Yasnaya Polyana"
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«Happiness is being with nature…»

«Happiness is being with Nature, seeing Nature and discoursing with her». These words belong to Leo Tolstoy, who as perhaps no one else was able to see, to perceive, and to keenly feel the deepest and the finest, and the subtlest moods and movements of the surrounding nature. People might say, «It’s no wonder, since he lived at Yasnaya Polyana», but most of them wouldn’t know that the Yasnaya Polyana estate harbours a great many secrets of its own.

We offer you a unique opportunity to get acquainted with the Yasnaya Polyana you have never known before – even if you have come here more than once. – And then it will tell you a fascinating story about a Leo Tolstoy whom you are not accustomed to seeing, and about the life of his family, and it will reveal quite unexpected facets of his personality and his genius.

happiness3 When you come to visit our museum, usually you take a guided tour and then walk around the central part of the estate. Have you ever thought that it is only a tiny bit of the enormous world of the country estate in which the Tolstoy family really lived? You haven’t yet walked to the Voronka River through the Zakaz, following the old “bathing road”; and have not reached the Podkapustnik where, on its very edge, the Tolstoy estate offers you one of its most beautiful vistas… The paths of Yasnaya will lead you through the forests Tolstoy knew from his childhood; but the real surprise will be the forests and woods he himself created. Just imagine - forests cover most of the area of the Yasnaya Polyana estate and most of those stately oak and fir woods, and light birch groves appeared here through the efforts of Leo Tolstoy and his wife Sophia. It may well be that walking by some of those woods and admiring their beauty you thought: the nature is so lovely here! – but did not think that it is man-made to a large extent; and that for Tolstoy, it was more than a home where he lived and found his inspiration, but an entire world which was, in may ways, a creation of his genius as much as his literary masterpieces were.

You can immerse yourselves into this world through:

happiness6Various walksaround the estate guided by the Curator of our Memorial Forests; there is not a single path at Yasnaya she wouldn’t know, and she has a great many interesting stories to tell. A captivating story, a forest road running into the distance, the river twisting among grasses, flowering glades and meadows, and the sounds and odours of nature – these are worth coming here for from the noisy cities.


  • Working at the estate that we offer to those who are willing to try their hand at tending our forests and orchards, in addition to walking around the estate. The work can be different, depending on the season and the weather.

If the walk is long, we could also make up a picnic.

  • Besides, you could drop in to our Folk Arts and Crafts Department. Our craftsmen will tell you about local crafts and show the exhibition of the items they make, and also offer you workshops of traditional crafts. You will have a chance to make a traditional “twisted doll,” or to paint on a ceramic plate or toy, or to create a flower composition. And each of these original souvenirs, which you will take home, will be your own little part of Yasnaya Polyana, as they are made of local clay and of grasses and flowers growing at the Tolstoy estate.

The duration of the program and its contents can vary, depending on your interests and time available. We’ll also provide meals, transport if necessary, and accommodation at the Yasnaya Polyana hotel if you want to stay here overnight.

Contact the coordinator of the program:

Yana Bogoslavskaya

International Relations Office

Tel..: +7 48751 76 0 73,

E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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