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The citadel of Rostov seen from Lake Nero.
Coat of arms

Rostov (Russian: Росто́в; Old Norse: Rostofa) is one of the oldest towns in Russia. It was first mentioned in the year 862 as an already important town. By the 13th century Rostov became the capital of an important area.

Now it is an important tourist centre of the so-called Golden Ring. It is located on the shores of Lake Nero in Yaroslavl Oblast. About 35,300 people lived there in 2002.

While the official name of the town is Rostov, it is better known to Russians as Rostov Veliky, i.e. Rostov the Great. This name is used to distinguish it from Rostov on Don, which is now a much larger city. Rostov Yaroslavsky is the official name of its railway station (due to its position in Yaroslavl Oblast), but not of the town itself.