The town of Tikhvin (founded 1560) is known for the Assumption Monastery, one of the biggest in Russia, and the icon of Our Lady of Tikhvin, which is housed in it. It is also the birthplace of the composer Rimsky-Korsakov.

The first settlement on the site of the future town dates back to 1383, the year of miraculous occurrence of the icon of Our Lady and building of the wooden Assumption Church on the scene of it (was replaced in 1515 by the stone church of the same name).

In 1558, aiming to convert Tikhvin into an important strong point in the Ladoga region, the tsar Ivan the Terrible ordered to enlarge the monastery and build massive defensive walls around it, which gave start to rapid developing of the town.