Belarus is situated in the central part of Eastern Europe, in the western part of the East European Plain. Bordered on the north-west of Lithuania, in the north - with Latvia to the north-east and east - Russia, in the south - with Ukraine in the west - with Poland (total length of about 2,969 km of borders). Landlocked country has.
Belarus is situated in the central part of Eastern Europe, in the western part of the East European Plain. Bordered on the north-west of Lithuania, in the north - with Latvia to the north-east and east - Russia, in the south - with Ukraine in the west - with Poland (total length of about 2,969 km of borders). Landlocked country has.
The total area of Belarus - 207.6 thousand. Sq. km. The capital of Minsk.
The territory of Belarus began to settle in the Middle Paleolithic man (100-35 thousand. Years ago) and in the Mesolithic (9-6 millennium BC) was already populated entirely. In VI-VIII centuries. n. e. these lands came the Slavic tribes, and in the next century, the territory of modern Belarus was part of the Lithuania, Poland, the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union. And while the Belarusian culture, though which incorporates a variety of features of the neighboring nations, fully retained its identity. It is not surprising that this ancient land is literally full of monuments of history and culture of many peoples and different eras. A special attraction of this land gives its unique nature - the massive amounts of relict forests, unique wildlife and literally teeming with life marshy areas of Polesie.
The modern capital of Belarus, Minsk originated over 900 years ago on a natural island at the confluence of Svislochi and Nemiga. The first mention about the city belongs to the year 1067. Since the beginning of the XII century the city as the center of an independent principality of Polotsk, is becoming more political and strategic role, and occupies a prominent place in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. During its long history, the city many times destroyed and burned to the ground, but each time it rose from the ruins. Almost all the buildings in Minsk were destroyed by retreating Nazis and restored only after the end of World War II. Therefore, the few historical monuments of the capital, which have been preserved and have been restored in the first place is the upper town, the Trinity and Rakovskoe suburbs, causing interest among the honored guests of Minsk.
The main historical attractions of the capital are the Trinity Suburb - extensively restored area of ancient architecture, the upper town, citadel, Jesuit College (XVIII century) and the Church of Mary Magdalene (1847) on Freedom Square, Kalvariyskoye church (Holy Cross, 1839-1841 year) And eponymous cemetery with Brama (1830) and the chapel (1855), the memorial church of Alexander Nevsky in the Military Cemetery (built in 1896-98 years. dedicated to the Russian victory in the Russian-Turkish war of 1877-1878.), Church of the Holy Trinity (Trinity Zolotogorsky church of St. Roch, 1861-1864.) with an ancient icon of the Mother of Jesus and the miraculous statue of St. Roch, better known as the "Red Church" Neo-Romanesque church of Saints Simon and Helena (1908-1910.) at the Independence Square, the Cathedral Cathedral of the Holy Spirit (formerly the church and Monastery of Bernardine, 1642-1732 year) with the miraculous icon of the Mother of God, St. Joseph's Church and Bernardine Monastery (1652), nearby Shopping malls (1810-1817 year), the medieval symbol of Minsk - city Hall (XVI-XIX centuries, rebuilt in the beginning of XXI century), in the Music House Masons lane (XVIII century), St. Peter and Paul church (Catherine, 1613), Minsk yeshiva (1888, now a restaurant "Rakowski Brewery"), a complex of manor Loshitsa (XIX century) and Pischalovsky castle (1825).
In the Soviet period and after the war, the capital of Belarus gained many new monuments. Among the new attractions of the city decided to attribute the main street - Avenue Skoriny Akademgorodok (1936), Boulevard Tolbukhina a mass grave and buried 10,000 partisans and civilians, Government House (1930-1934.), Residence of the President (former building of the Central Committee of the PBC , 1939-1947 year), Victory Monument (1954) and The Eternal Flame (1961), The memorial complex "The Pit" - a place of mass execution of Jews, the House of Officers (1934-1939.), home-style Stalinist high-rise buildings in the Railway area (1946-1952 year) Vesnyanskuyu (XX century) and the Church of the Intercession (1993-2004.), the church of "All the Afflicted" (1993-1997 year), the Church "Perishing" (1996-1999.) , memorial church who died during the Afghan War (1993-1997 year) in the "Island of Tears", the church of St. George (the end of the XX century) and a monument to victims of the Holocaust on the territory of the destroyed Jewish cemetery.
Minsk - recognized cultural center of the country, so it is not surprising that here you can find many museums, among which the most interesting literary museum Kupala in the same park, the Belarusian National History and Culture Museum, Belarusian State Art Museum with a superb collection of paintings XVII-XX centuries, tragic Museum of the Great Patriotic War, the Museum of Ancient Art, the Museum of folk Architecture and Life Museum, samovars and household items of the XIX century, and unusual stones Uruchcha Museum, on the site of an ancient pagan temple.
By the number of parks and green boulevards Minsk always was one of the leading cities of the former USSR. The most picturesque green areas include the Central Children's Gorky Park (formerly the Governor's garden, 1805) with an extensive area attractions, Yanka Kupala Park (1962), Park of Culture and Rest Cheluskintsev (1932), Victory Park (1945) with Komsomol lake in the heart of Central square (formerly the Alexander Garden, 1872) and the Central Botanical Garden (1932), an area of about 93 hectares.
Around Minsk also many interesting places - Lake Naroch (area 79.6 sq. Km - the largest reservoir of the country), the ethnographic complex "Dudutki" (40 km from Minsk), ski resort "Logoysk" (30 km north of the capital), the famous sports complex "Raubichi", the remains of fortifications and the building of spiritual school (1767) in Slutsk, Church of the Holy Trinity (XVIII century) in Benicia, church of the Intercession (1867-1871 year) and teachers' seminary (1762) in Maladzechna, church of St. John the Baptist (1742) in Vishnevtse, wooden church of Constantine and Helen (1866) in Volozhin, church of the Transfiguration (1793) in Rakov, homestead Bogdashevskih (XIX century) in Vyazyn dating back as many as 1,590 a year in the village church, the archaeological site of ancient settlement "Gashtoldova mountain "and the Church of St. Anne (XV-XVIII centuries). near Dzerzhinsk, church of the Annunciation (1794) in Lyady, Jesuit Church (1620) in Zamosc, Church of St. Stanislaus (1754) in Myadel, Museum of Folk architecture and Rural Life in the open sky Strochitsy, wooden church (1798) in check, church (XVIII century) in Shemetava, Dominican monastery with the church (all XVII) in the dumplings, "Hill of Glory" in honor of the heroism of Soviet soldiers in the 21-kilometer highway Minsk - Moscow, an ancient settlement (XI-XIII centuries). Logoysk relic Nalibokskaya forest, reserve "Blue Lake" and the Berezina Biosphere Reserve. But the main points of attraction for tourists in the Minsk region are the ancient Zaslauye and Shults and tragic Katyn memorial.
Zaslauye, lying 27 km north-west of the capital, founded in the late tenth century Kievan Prince Vladimir Svyatoslavich. Currently, the site stretches Zaslaul State Historical and Cultural Reserve, widely known for its historical monuments far outside Belarus. Here you can see well-preserved castle fortifications XVI-XVII centuries, dilapidated castle gate, Transfiguration Church (XVI-XVII centuries.), Church of Our Lady (1774), the ethnographic complex "Mlyn", remnants of fortifications during World War II, musical Instrument Museum and the Museum of folk crafts.
Located 120 km south-west of Minsk, Shults is one of the oldest cities in the country. It was first mentioned in the chronicles of the XIII century, but the prosperity of the town falls on the middle of the XVI century, when it became the residence of the prince Shults Radzivills. During the XVI-XVII centuries, the city rapidly rebuilt with the latest fortification art and architecture, and Radziwill castle becomes a powerful fortification, surrounded by a system of ditches, ramparts and waterworks. Here we construct the first printing press in Belarus, which is printed the first Bible in the Belarusian language, opens several monasteries and churches, and even lodged a small private army. Now this small regional center is a colorful mix of medieval architecture, simple wooden houses and gray samples socialist urban development.
Outstanding architectural monument is Nesvizhsky palace and castle complex (XVI-XVIII centuries.), Built by the Italian architect Giovanni Bernardoni with the clear intention to outshine the royal palaces of the era. Surrounded by a vast system of reservoirs and ramparts, the castle was virtually impregnable, and has long been a role model in the construction of such facilities. In the second half of the XIX century around the picturesque buildings of the central building, barracks and outbuildings forming a central architectural group was divided extensive park with a total area of over 200 hectares, is still widely known for its elaborately selected floristic complexes.
In addition to the castle complex, noteworthy Benedictine monastery and church (1590-1596 year), Town Hall (XVI century - one of the oldest in the country) and the nearby shopping arcade, a magnificent Parish Church (Church of the Jesuits, 1584-1593 year - The first Jesuit church of the Rzeczpospolita), Castle Tower (XVI century), Slutsky gate (Brama Slutskaya, XVI-XVIII centuries). "House on the market" (1721) and Alba park (XVI century), in the southern part of the city, on the territory of which were located not have survived the summer residence built Radziwill.
The monumental complex "Xatyn" - a sacred place for every Belarusian. Nazis burned this small village along with all its inhabitants (149 people, Vol. H. 75 children) March 22, 1943 Now the site of the village stretches extensive (an area of about 50 hectares) memorial centered around the sculpture "Unconquered Man", which depicts the sole survivor hatyntsa Jozef Kaminski. There is also a symbolic "Cemetery Villages", created in memory of the 185 other Belarusian villages destroyed by the invaders, symbolizing another 433 destroyed villages "Tree of Life", "alarm Khatyn" memorial "Smoke Katyn", as well as terrible in its content "wall of Memory "- a list of the Nazi concentration camps in Belarus and their victims, with a memorial plaque and the Eternal Flame.
Mogilev - one of the oldest and most distinctive cities of Belarus. Although since IX century there already exist large human settlements, the official history of the city begins in 1267, when on a hill Tomb, at the confluence of the Dnieper and Dubrovenka begins construction of wooden fortifications. By the middle of the XVII century Mogilev takes a powerful system of fortifications with 12 towers surrounding the city in three zones with a total length of more than 7 km. Dates from the same period and the transformation of the city into a major handicraft and industrial center and transportation hub with a river port. Numerous wars that have swept through the territory of Belarus, repeatedly destroyed the city itself, but the fortress stood, and its few buildings that have survived to the present day, are the main monuments of the old Mogilev.
Noteworthy Anufrievskaya (1798) and Boris and Gleb (1869) Church, Bishop George Palace Konisskogo (1762-1785 year) And the gate (Gate, 1853), a former town council (XIX century), Cathedral of Minsk-Mogilev archdiocese - Church of St. Stanislaus (1738-1752 year), Holy Cross Church (XVII century), Trekhsvyatsky Cathedral (1909-1911.), part of Cathedral Square memorial arch (1780, he Iosifsky Cathedral, a replica of the Viennese Cathedral of St. Catherine, blown up by the Bolsheviks in 1938), the complex of St. Nicholas Monastery (1669-1672 year), the ruins of the church Farnham Casimir (1604), Regional Theatre (1886-1888.), colorful building of the Land-rural Bank (1903 1914.), The tomb Senozhatskih (1904), House of Soviets (1937-1939.), many private houses built XVIII-XIX centuries all over the city, the famous market and Bykhovsky Saltanovskaya chapel on the site of the Russian-French battles of 1812 (12 km south of Mogilev).
Bobruisk - one of the oldest cities in Belarus. The first mention of the city at the confluence of the Berezina and Bobruyka refers to 1387 By the beginning of the XVI century the city has already had a powerful fortification system and was considered one of the major centers of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. In 1793 Bobruisk is a part of the Russian Empire and became a major supplier of timber, which is reflected in its coat of arms. And in 1810 began construction of a new fortress, in 2 years become famous for their courage of defenders during the War of 1812. With the onset of the XX century Bobruisk fortress begins to play a prominent role in the revolutionary movement in Russia, and in the years of the Great Patriotic War, the old fortress once again gets in the way of invaders.
Today is the regional center of Bobruisk, Mogilev region, famous for its abundance of historical sites, cultural monuments, as well as a popular resort mud-bath.
The main attractions of the city include Bobruisk fortress (1807-1836 year) And the ruins of its many forts between road and rail bridges across the Berezina, "Opperman tower" and barracks, numerous buildings of historic buildings - White Church (1807-1826 year), Nicholas church (XIX century), Jesuit church (XVIII century, is now a guardhouse), more than three dozen mansions of XVIII-XIX centuries, the Catholic church of Saints Peter and Paul, St. George and St. Nicholas Church (XIX century).
Legendary Brest, whose name is associated so many events in the history of both Belarus and Russia, it is unlikely that any other city can compare with him in this indicator lies in the western part of the country, between the Western Bug and Mukhavets. The first mention of birch bark, as it was then called the settlement Dregovichy occurs in the "Tale of Bygone Years" 1019 In the XI century, it is a major commercial and transportation center, the largest settlement Beresteyskaya land and a large fortress (first wooden stronghold built here in the XII century ). From the XIV century Brest part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and is widely known as a major commercial and administrative center, the first Belarusian cities received government (1390 g). By XVI century Brest turns into one of the largest cities in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, built here the first printing press in the country and printed "Brest bible", opened monasteries and fraternal school even has its own mint and customs. However, during the bloody wars of the XVII century the town was almost completely destroyed by launching its revival in the second half of the XVIII century. In 1795 Brest-Litovsk, along with other western Belarusian lands were part of the Russian Empire and after the War of 1812 is transferred to the 2 km to the east, and in its place begins construction of a powerful system of fortifications, inaugurated April 26, 1842 The modern city brought glory defenders of the Brest fortress. Located at the confluence of the Bug and Mukhavets, Brest Fortress in 1941 has lost all of its strategic importance, but its tiny garrison under the supervision of M. Gavrilov, I. Zubacheva and EM Fomin delayed the German advance on how months, revealing example of courage and heroism of ordinary soldiers of different nations of the USSR. The fortress was practically destroyed and is now transformed into a grand memorial to its defenders. In 1965, the Brest Fortress was awarded the title "Hero-Fortress" with the Order of Lenin and medal "Gold Star".
To the west of the fortress lies partially destroyed St. Nicholas Church, the oldest in the city. Once being part of a large monastery, she also suffered from shelling during the siege of the fortress. Other attractions of the city - a massive Cathedral of St. Nicholas (1856-1879 year), Railway Station (1886), Nicholas Brethren Church (1904-1906.), The Cathedral of St Simon (1865-1868 year), Holy Cross Church (1856 ), church of the Resurrection (1995-1998 year), as well as beautiful city museums - Archaeological Museum (built over the ruins of artisan quarter of the XIII century and has excellent historical exhibition), Museum "Berestie" (ancient site, XI-XIII centuries). city Museum (opened in 1928) and the memorial complex Brest Fortress (1971).
Around Brest also many interesting places - Memorial and Museum mark Tadeusz Kosciuszko and the ruins of the magnificent castle of Count Puslovsky (1838) in Kossovo, wooden church of St. George (1790) in Alba, a Franciscan monastery (XVIII century), Collegium Jesuit monastery (1631-1635 year) and Charles church Baromiusha (1770-1782 year) in Pinsk, Trinity Church (1583 - one of the oldest monuments of Belarusian stone architecture) in Chernavchitsah unique "White Tower" (White Tower, 1271-1288 year) in Kamenetz, a wooden church of St. George (1724) in David-Township, Assumption Church (1740-1746 year) in Stolovichi, wooden church Paraskeva (1884) in the care, dating back to the year 1472 as many as Trinity Church in Iškaldź, St. Basil's Cathedral (1924 -1931 years.) Baranovichi, Alexander Nevsky Cathedral (1857-1880 year) and the church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (XX century) in Pruzany, Trinity Church (1733 g) in Volchin, castle ruins and the church in the High, a post office (XIX) in Nehachevo, palace ruins Sapieha (XVIII century) and several churches in Ruzhany, the house-museum of Alexander Suvorov (XVIII century) and the wooden church of St. Nicholas (1750 -1841 years.) in Kobrin, as well as many other historic Places.
Grodno city lies 280 km north-west of Minsk. The first mention of it is found in chronicles (1128 g), and in the beginning of the XII century it is the center of an independent principality and a major trading city on the western borders of Russia. In the middle of the XIII century Grodno is a member of the Lithuanian Principality, then some time again listed as a part of the Galicia-Volyn, and at the beginning of the XIV century is part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. By the XV century Grodno became the largest shopping center in the country, starting from the XVI century, there is a residence of Lithuanian princes, and then Polish kings. Intensively constructed many buildings and structures, focusing on retail space and Grodno stronghold that stretches from the confluence of the river Neman in Gorodnichanka.
To the present day, in spite of the many wars that have swept through the territory of the land, Grodno came as the most picturesque city in Belarus. Stunning Catholic and Orthodox churches, monasteries and museums form the shape of the old part of the city, attracting many travelers. The program of this goal must include Old (XII-XIX cc.) And New (1751) locks, August palace (1773-1778 year), The ruins of the Upper (XIV-XV centuries.) And Lower (XII century) churches mentioned in chronicles, the Boris and Gleb (Kalozha, XII cent) church - the second oldest in Belarus, the Church of Nativity and bazilianok Monastery, Church of the Holy Cross of finding Bernardine (1595-1618 year), catholic church of St. Francis Xavier (1678 ) with grave Tyzenhauz, the Franciscan Church (1635), brigitsky church and residential buildings (1634-1642 year), Apothecary Building (1709), Stanislaviv manor (1760-1780 year), literally full of buildings of the XVIII century the area "Gorodnitsa "house of vice-governor Maksimovic (XIX century), fire tower (XIX century), Marfinskaya chapel (1848), St. Basil Cathedral (1904-1905), kirche (XX century, now here is the department of Local History Museum) and synagogue (XIX century).
Also in Grodno can visit many museums - Historical and Archaeological Museum, the history of religion in the newly renovated palace of the XVIII century, the Museum or the Museum of Grodno Maxim Bogdanovich, walk down the Soviet - favorite place of citizens with a variety of shops and cafes to relax in a large green park the southern end of the Soviet or visit Grodno zoo.
In the village of Mir Korelichsky Grodno region of Belarus is a masterpiece of architecture - the Mir Castle. This unique monument included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site, was built and rebuilt over the centuries (from the XV to XVII centuries). Belarusian magnates Ilyinichs. The castle is a square in plan structure with projecting towers at the corners of the powerful height of about 25 m. Fifth, West Tower, is a portal, and once had a drawbridge over a moat. The thickness of the walls reached 3 meters at a height of about 13 m, and the well-thought-out system of two rows of loopholes provided a circular firing (later, during the construction of the palace, many loopholes replaced arched windows). Extensive dungeons of the castle form a complex and extensive system of support facilities that surpass the ground part of the building several times. In this case, the castle is built from a simple red brick, decorated with whitewashed inserts, openings and ornamental bands, which gives it an unusually colorful look. At the end of the XIX century the castle was laid out around a beautiful park with a pond, and in 1904 the park was built in the temple-tomb. Also here you can see the church of St. Nicholas (1594-1604 year) And Trinity Church (XVI century).
In addition, in the Grodno region has many other interesting buildings, which include the oldest fortified church in Belarus - St. Michael's Church (XV-XVI centuries). Synkovichi, Boris and Gleb Church (1519) and the catholic church (1712-1723 year) In Navagrudak, Malomozheykovskaya church (1516-1871 year) in Murovanka, Holy Cross church (1523) in Bystrica, wooden Nicholas church (1532) in Yuratishki, Peter and Paul Church (1674 year) in Rozhanka, the Franciscan Church (1618 g) in Golshany , Peter and Paul Church (1600 g) in Ivie, house-fortress (1613) in Gaytyunishkah, church of Our Lady (1615) and the church of the Assumption (1741) in Berestovitsa complex Uniate church (1747) in Borun, a wooden church (1773) in the warp, Kozmodemyansk church (1785-1787 year) in Astravets Palace Khrentovich (1770-1776 year) and Demetrius Church (1770-1776 year) in ShhORSA, the house-museum of Bagration and the church of St. Wenceslas (1846-48 year) Vawkavysk, Church of St. Theresa (1826-1829.) in Shchuchyn, a large number of historic buildings XVII-XIX centuries in Slonim, the palace complex (XVIII century) and the church of the Assumption of the Virgin (1624-1882 year) in Dyatlovo, homestead Oginski (1802-1822 year) in Zalesye, castle ruins Olgerda (XIV century) in Krevo castle complex (XVII-XIX cc.) in Lyubcha, as well as dozens of other no less interesting objects.
Vitebsk, located 277 km north of Minsk, is one of the oldest cities in Belarus - the first mention of it found in the annals of 974 major industrial and commercial center of the country, it has always attracted the artists and craftsmen, earning him yet and the glory of one of the most bohemian cities in Belarus. Vitebsk once boasted more than 30 churches and a thriving cultural life. Scorina, Simeon of Polotsk, Colossus, Shevchenko, Kandinsky, Malevich, Chagall and many others - all of them lived or worked in the city. Currently, there are interesting Church of the Annunciation (1120-1130 year - The only monument of Byzantine architecture in the Balkans Eastern Europe), Romer (1775), Protection or Kazan Church (1760), St. Basil's Cathedral (1760) , church of the Assumption (1858), Mitrofanovskaya church (1847), Church of St. Barbara (1884-1885.), the Governor's Palace (XVIII century) and numerous samples of urban development of the XVIII century, Jesuit College (XVIII century), a monument to the heroes of World war of 1812 (opened in 1912) and a small park around it, as well as newer buildings - Millennium Square, Monument to Soviet soldiers who liberated the city in 1944, Afanasyevskaya church (1989), St. George's Church (1997), cross honor of the 1000th anniversary of the diocese of Vitebsk (1992) and the wooden church of Alexander Nevsky (1992-1998).
Also noteworthy City Art Museum with an exhibition of European art of XVIII-XX centuries, the monument and the Chagall Museum (the artist was born in Vitebsk) and a complex of museum-estate Zdravnevo in which he lived and worked great Russian painter Ilya Repin (15 km from Vitebsk).
The city of Polotsk, which lies 260 km north of Minsk, is a quiet patriarchal town with beautiful promenades and rich history. First mentioned in the "Tale of Bygone Years" (862 g) as a major already at that time a military facility. In the X-XII centuries. the city was the capital of the Principality of Polotsk, and its fortifications erected at the turn of the X-XI centuries on a hill high above the confluence of the rivers canvases in the Dvina River, considered one of the strongest in Eastern Europe. In the middle of the XVI century Polotsk was taken by Russian troops, and fortress built almost entirely destroyed during the storm. But in the years 1563-1579 are building new fortifications, which in the XVII century, rebuilt again, assuming the character of a powerful fortress. After the first partition of Poland (1772) the city was divided into two parts Dvina - Poland's western and eastern ceded to the Russian Empire. Was drawn up the development plan, and to the XIX century the city was considered one of the most beautiful towns in Belarus.
Cathedral of St Sophia (1044-1066 year, Rebuilt in the XVIII century) - the main attraction of Polotsk. Originally built to order Useslaw Sorcerer as a replica of the Cathedral of St Sophia in Kiev, it is considered the oldest building in Belarus. Damaged by fire in the XV century, it was turned into a military headquarters and fully restored only in the XVII century as a Catholic church in the Baroque style. The museum inside the church shows the model of the original appearance of the cathedral, at the base of the building is also possible to distinguish some of the surviving elements of XI century. Also interesting are the ruins of the Monastery of Sts (XII century), "Borisov stone" (XII in, as the locals call giant boulders carved with inscriptions, many scientists consider them to be the prototypes of guiding stones of Russian epics), Saviour Euphrosyne monastery (XII-XV centuries., the oldest surviving monasteries of the country) with the Holy Cross Cathedral (1893-1897 year) and Transfiguration church (XII century), the house of Peter I (1692), Jesuit College (1750), Monastery of the Epiphany (1761- 1779), the House of Simeon of Polotsk (XVII century), the Lutheran Church (XIX century), as well as monuments and Euphrosyne Francis Scorina. Deserves a visit Regional Historical Museum, which is located on a street lined with charming old wooden houses.
Not far from the Polotsk is one of the oldest cities in Belarus - Braslaw (the first mention of the city are found in the annals of 1065 g). There are such wonderful historical monuments such as the Castle Hill (IX century fort), a Neo-Romanesque church of the city (1824), Church of the Transfiguration (1897) and a set of houses built in the late XIX - early XX centuries. But the main point of attraction in the area - the famous Braslavsky lakes (Boginskoie, Vaja, Voiso, hair, Drivyaty, Zolva, Ilmenok, Nedrovo, Potseh, Snudy, Strusto and others). This is a complex of rivers and lakes, forming a single water system, with its rich fish fauna and forests around.
Gomel - one of the largest cities in Belarus, a major transport hub and the second most populous city and the industrial potential of the country. First mentioned in chronicles in 1142 as a possession of the Chernigov prince, Gomel lies on the south-east of the country, near the border with Russia and Ukraine, in the heart of the Belarusian Polesie. Since the beginning of the XIV century Gomel part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, in 1569 became part of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, and in 1772 is included in the Russian Empire. At the end of the XVIII century Gomel granted Russian commander PA Rumyantsev Transdanubia for services to the fatherland, and since then extensively rebuilt, acquiring its modern form.
The main attractions are the Gomel Palace and Park Ensemble with the Palace of Rumyantsev-Paskevich (1785-1793 year.), Peter and Paul Cathedral (1809-1824 year), The tomb Paskevich (1870-1889 year), Wooden Elias Church (XVIII century) hunting lodge Rumyantseva (XIX century, now a museum), beautiful Central Park (XVIII-XIX centuries). swan pond, man-made caves and winter garden, as well as the Regional Museum.
Moderately continental, quite soft and moist. The average January temperature ranges from +4 to -4 C in the south-west and south, and to -4-8 C in the north-east. In winter, frequent thaws. The average summer temperature ranges from 17 C in the north (July), to + 18-19 C in the south. Precipitation ranges from 500 mm in the southern regions, up to 700 mm per year in the central areas, and up to 800 - in the north-west. In general, rainfall is distributed throughout the year are fairly evenly, but in the autumn and winter they usually receive the maximum amount. The snow cover is quite small, but in the forest areas of snow falls to 1-1.2 m.
Far from Moscow at 1:00 (GMT +2). On the last Sunday in March to Saturday before last Sunday in October, clocks are moved forward 1 hour.
State languages - Belarusian and Russian.
Belarusian ruble (BYR or Br). In circulation are banknotes in denominations of 10, 20, 50, 100, 500, 1,000, 5,000, 10,000, 20,000, 50,000 and 100,000 rubles. Throughout the course of United States dollars, euros and Russian rubles.
For the citizens of Russia and most CIS countries visa-free entry at the border is sufficient to produce a regular passport.
Citizens of other countries require a visa for entry, which is issued in the embassies of the Republic of Belarus in the country of residence.
Milk and dairy products are generally pasteurized and safe to consume. Meat, poultry and fish is generally considered safe, but still recommended to consume only after pre-heat treatment, preferably hot. Vegetables should be thoroughly washed and pre-processed, and fruit peeled. Use special caution should be taken to such a popular Belarusian table mushrooms.
About 25% of the country is in a contaminated area, so some foods, especially dairy products, mushrooms and wild berries should be avoided. With respect to acts of suspicious products simple rule - that they buy or consume themselves locals, the same certainly harmless and for the tourist.
Traditions and customs of Belarus have much in common with those of its neighboring Slavic. Belarusians (Belarussians) refer to the average European type ET race, their ancestors were East Slavic tribes Dregovichy, Krivichi Radimichi partly drevlyans northerners and Volynyane. The ancestors of Belarusians have embraced a variety of features of the ancient people of this region - Letto-Lithuanian tribes Yatvingians, as well as some features of the Polish, Lithuanian, Ukrainian, Russian and Jewish culture, while retaining, in spite of numerous devastating wars, not just rolled across the land, its main national features. Belarusian ethnicity itself is heterogeneous and includes several sub-ethnic groups - live in Polesie "Polishchuk" in or near Pinsk marshes - "Pinchuks", along the upper reaches of the Dnieper can observe verhnepridneprovsky anthropological type, and in the south Ukrainian noticeable impact. Even in English, there are two dialects - southwest and northeast. Also lived here, and home to many members of the Jewish, Tatar, Ukrainian, Polish, Russian and other cultures, each of which has full freedom of expression.
A country's culture is perhaps the most well-preserved of Eastern Slavs set of ancient pagan customs and traditions. Even despite centuries of domination of Christianity, both Orthodox and Catholic, Belarus preserved remnants of many ancient rituals, starting with Carnival and Kupala "Gromnitsy" and "Calling of Spring" (fracture of the year from winter to summer), "Magpies" and "grandparents "," carol "and" Dazhynki "(end of the harvest festival)," talaq "and" Syabryna "(custom community mutual aid), and ending with a variety of ceremonies connected with the wedding, the birth or death. As neighbors, there were many rituals related to agriculture, with the logging and bath, and all nature was worshiped as a living creature. All these rites have been integrated with the later Christian rites, forming a unique and colorful culture of Belarus. Extremely rich and varied songs and oral folklore.
The main local society has always been a family, usually small. Man occupied and still occupies an important place here - this "But father," for children and "dyadzka" for the younger members of the family, the main breadwinner and protector of the home. The woman - the mistress and equitable hostess household chores, mother and homemakers. This two-piece part of the family and reflected in everyday life - wooden and metal household items considered "masculine", woven and braided - "female". And always and everywhere preference for objects made of natural materials. Traditional clothes, shoes, musical instruments and even the type of dwellings close to the samples of other Slavic cultures, but the Belarusian style seen throughout, and confuse the local clothing and jewelry, for example, samples of Ukrainian or Lithuanian dress impossible - so are original local craftsmen.
Quiet and majestic nature of the country and left a mark on the face of the people. Belarusians for the most part very friendly and good-natured, a centuries-old communal spirit has left an imprint on the nature of the relationship between people. There is rarely seen in public noisy scenes, high mutual assistance between people and dominated by respect for elders and to the other party. Even in business etiquette includes the tradition of trust - are rarely give light weight on the market, scrupulously observe the agreement carefully and cherish the reputation (and not only in the business). Many things, not only the community, decided at the council, even the holidays more often carried out either with the whole family, or all of the village.
In business circles widespread Russian, English and German. In everyday life, the Belarusian language is commonly used, which again introduced as a state in 1990, however, Russian is also widely distributed, leading to the formation of a kind of international slang known as "trasyanka." At any point you can hear the beginning of the conversation in Belarusian, and continued - in Russian, or vice versa. As used Cyrillic writing basics, but is sometimes used and the Latin alphabet. Some Belarusian place names pronunciation locals sometimes sound rather unusual, for example, Hrodna (Grodno), Mahileu (Mogilev), Vitsebsk (Vitebsk), and so on, so when communicating such things should be kept in mind.
Official holidays and weekends:
January 1 - New Year.
January 7 - Orthodox Christmas.
March 8 - International Women's Day.
March 15 - Constitution Day.
March-May - Easter.
May 1 - Labor Day.
May 9 - Victory Day.
May 14 - Radunitsa.
July 3 - Independence Day.
November 2 - Catholic Memorial Day (Remembrance Day ancestors) "Dzyady."
November 7 - Anniversary of the October Revolution.
December 25 - Christmas Day.
Traditional cuisine Belarus
Contrary to popular belief, that, say, the Belarusian cuisine - it's just potatoes and vegetables, local cuisine is one of the most diverse traditions in the continent. Here merged Slavic, Baltic and Jewish and partly German culinary traditions, and in the time of socialism in the Belarusian land came formulation of all the peoples of the USSR. In this traditional folk cuisine of the eastern regions (Vitebsk and Mogilev) is still significantly different from the western areas of the kitchen (Grodno, etc..) Or Polesie. The main difference between the Belarusian dishes from other Slavic traditions lies in the processing of foods, often themselves quite simple. Typically, products are subjected to a rather complicated and time consuming processing, often different types of processing (roasting, boiling, stewing, and others.) Alternated and combined with each other. A characteristic feature of the Belarusian cuisine can also be considered a strong product from flash during the long cooking or longing, which gives many dishes form a thick porridge.
The most frequently used kitchen Belarus various flours, including but crops, oat, buckwheat or peas, are often mixed together. Thus the dough is normally kneaded without yeast (although recently it predominate methods yeast), and added thereto various ingredients. Traditional dishes are thin pancakes "Perepech", "pancake" or "pancakes" of flour and potatoes, meat pies "Dzyady" specific Belarusian pancakes from several types of flour, pea pancakes, dumplings with various fillings, unique dumpling "daw" of kneading the dough directly into the various ingredients (cheese, beef, vegetable soup, etc.. etc..) "Solodukha" (a kind of dish repeatedly heated and cooled sponge), as well as all kinds of flour basis for complex dishes.
Vegetable most typical potatoes, peas and other legumes, cabbage, carrots, as well as all kinds of mushrooms, the latter are only stewed, boiled or make of them mushroom powder. Vegetable dishes here in abundance, and many of them, despite quite a Slavic foundation, so original, that is absolutely not similar to any other dish. Noteworthy soup "Jour" (meatless, milk or meat) on the basis of oatmeal broth, gives the dish a resemblance to jelly, cold soup "hladnik" or "friedge" famous potato "knacker", "zrazy", "kartoflyanki", "potato dumplings "(" kapytki ")" komoviki "" wizards "" tushanka "and" tsybriki ". Traditional local dishes also include bulbyanaya scrambled, "gulbishnik" (baked with a variety of ingredients mashed potatoes), "Botvinnik" soup "cabbage", "watering" (a thin soup of cereals and vegetables), eggs stuffed with mushrooms, "Morkva" (carrot soup), "gryzhanka" (rutabaga soup), "garbuzok" (pumpkin soup), cabbage soup with mushrooms and buckwheat, carrot or potato pancakes, and even fried radish with honey.
Prior to the beginning of the XX century Belarusian meat was a little table, it is mainly used in the various festive dishes, as well as cooked salted and preserved. But these days there is prepared a variety of dishes of pork, bacon, lamb, beef and poultry, especially geese and chicken, as well as all kinds of offal ("vantrobki"). Noteworthy are the excellent home-made sausages, black pudding (blood boar preference) and "vyandlina" (slightly smoked ham or pork loin), sausage meat, bacon and porridge "yuts" or "stravnik" famous "pyachisto" of large pieces of meat, baked, fried or stewed with vegetables and fruits, salted and smoked pork meat and fat (separate dishes), stewed with vegetables and spices meat "bigos", "tushanka" (stew), "vantrobyanka" (a dish of offal) "smazhenoe "(baked for a long time with lots of fat poultry or game)," machanka "(roasted meat together with bones and sausage meat sauce)," prizhanna "- a peculiar assortment of all kinds of meat products (often served in a special way, which is called "Vereshchaka"), "Drach" and "daw" with meat, all kinds of thick borscht, soups with flour products or simply grilled meat in a deep frying pan. Often, instead of fat used for frying bacon, sour cream, ghee or vegetable oil, and always add the onion and herbs.
An extensive network of river and lake country supplies to the local table a huge amount of fish and crayfish. Local fish dishes are very simple, basically it's just boiled, fried or baked fish, all kinds of soup ("soup"), minced fish, going to many baked goods, but in some parts of dried fish or incorporated into complex dishes.
A characteristic feature of the Belarusian cuisine, distinguishes it from the related Slavic, is the almost complete absence of dairy foods on the table. But this does not mean that there is no use of milk - just milk components have never served in the pure form, but are used as integral components of more complex dishes. All kinds of dairy ingredients - yogurt, cottage cheese, whey, butter, cheese and sour cream are used as binding "Zabelok", "close" and "volog" (additives) to many dishes, from milk and whey are doing all kinds of soups with noodles and vegetables, and various cereals and desserts. Stands apart "mokanka" - quite separate dish of cottage cheese, sour cream, milk and buttermilk used as starter or as a sauce for pancakes.
There is also some sweets. Role desserts operate normally drink in the first place kvass, including fruit, as well as "Solodukha" (malt dough), Kulaga (a kind of jelly from the berries, flour, sugar and honey), baked apples, and fresh fruits and berries . Special attention is given "Forefathers Eve" - a large round cake filled with apple jam, raisins and dates.
Of soft drinks are the most popular ancient local drinks such as kvass of all kinds, including birch ("berka") and maple ("klyanovik") juice, as well as all kinds of jelly, coffee and tea (including herbal). In large quantities, manufactured and local alcoholic beverages, mainly - vodka. Its quality in most cases the average, but the best varieties of local spirits are exported to many countries around the world. In most stores, you can find a wide range of imported alcoholic beverages.
Political system Belarus
Belarus gained independence July 27, 1990 g, when the Supreme Soviet of the BSSR adopted the Declaration of State Sovereignty of the August 25, 1991 adopted a declaration of full national independence. At the moment it is a unitary republic with a presidential form of government. Belarus - a member of the UN and the Commonwealth of Independent States. In 1996 an agreement was signed for the establishment of the Community of Belarus and Russia, and on April 2, 1997 - Treaty on the Union of Belarus and Russia. The official Russian documents established the term "Belarus" in the Belarusian language - "Belarus".
Country's total population of about 10.3 million. Persons. The ethnic composition is quite homogeneous - more than 81% of the population are Belarusians, Russian - up to 11%, Poles - 4%, Ukrainians - 2.5%, Jews - to 1.1% and so on. Moreover, the country is home to around 20 thousand. Lithuanians, Latvians and other nations. Up to 70% of the population lives in cities.
Import and export of Belarusian rubles officially allowed in the amount of not more than 500 basic units (1 base amount is equal to approximately $ 11.8), and is carried out without the mandatory declaration in writing. Export of foreign currency is allowed in the range of $ 3000 (without declaration) or $ 10,000 (with a mandatory written declaration). In excess of this amount in foreign currency may be exported only if the declaration of the import of this amount, or requiring the permission of an authorized bank. Import and export of non-cash means of payment is made freely and without limits on the amount.
Duty-free import may be up to 1 liter of alcohol (18 years or older); up to 1 liter of beer; up to 200 cigarettes or 200 grams. tobacco or tobacco products (18 years or older); 5 items of jewelry; up to 3 items of clothing made of leather or fur; 1 copy of the watches; up to 4 tires based on one person. In case of import of goods more, they are subject to customs duties and taxes at the rate of 60% of the customs value, but not less than 4 euro per 1 kg or 20 euros for 1 liter in the case of the importation of alcoholic beverages. When crossing the border is filled customs declaration, which should be documented prior to departure.
Importation of military weapons and ammunition, military equipment and ammunition, narcotics and psychotropic substances, potent, radioactive, explosive, poisonous, toxic substances, plants and animals, as well as radio-electronic means (except mobile phones) is only possible with permission from the respective authorities of the Republic of Belarus.
Import and export of precious metals RB and jewelry in excess of normal requirements, permitted only by special permission of the Central Bank of the Republic of Belarus. Import commemorative coins of precious and non-precious metals can be, without limitation, made of precious metals - only by special permission.
Some difficulties may arise from the import and export of CD, DVD, audio and video tapes. By law, tourists are required to provide such goods for inspection to identify the content that threaten the national security of Belarus. Recently, however, the customs almost do not pay attention to the audio and video products for all types of media.
Medical aid Belarus
Level of local hospitals is low enough, the country still has a certain lack of proper medical equipment and staff. Service even in the capital's hospitals do not always correspond to the European standards, although quite quickly and quite modern, clearly worse than in Russia. First aid is free, form of payment further treatment will depend on the presence or absence of insurance. Very widely used methods of traditional medicine.
Medical insurance is recommended for all foreign citizens visiting the Republic of Belarus. Recommended immunization against hepatitis A and B, diphtheria, tetanus, polio and typhoid, although the natural foci of these diseases in the country do not meet. In forest areas in the spring and summer should take increased precautions against ticks and mosquitoes. Also frequent stomach disorders.
Working hours Belarus
Banks are open Monday to Friday from 9.00-9.30 to 17.00-17.30.
Most of the shops in the country to work with 9.00-10.00 20.00-21.00 hours, supermarkets usually open a little longer - up to 22.00-23.00. Distributed small shops and stalls, working around the clock.
Potable water Belarus
Despite the fact that tap water is chlorinated, all water should be treated as potentially unsuitable for consumption. All water used for drinking or ice making should be pre-boiled.
Mains voltage is 220 V, 50 Hz. In most institutions outlet round, bi-pin, but in some new buildings meet three-pin plugs are the European model.
Tips are on average 10% of the total bill. In some hotels in Minsk and other major cities to the bill added up to 5-15% of the price of the service, while a tip is usually made in the bill separately. If this is not done, it is recommended to give some money without permission directly into the hands of the waiting staff. The doormen and porters usually expect a tip of $ 1-2, waiters - 5-10% of the total bill. In the taxi amount simply rounded up, but to simplify the calculations, it is recommended to negotiate the fare.
In terms of clothing are no strict rules - Belarusians happy to wear as a normal everyday clothing style European and national outfits. In business etiquette adopted European-style suits. Business visit must be agreed and confirmed immediately prior to the meeting. Working day in the majority of institutions continues from 09.00 to 18.00.