Minsk is the capital of Belarus and the largest city in the country. During the time of its eventful history, Minsk, which is even older than Moscow, was completely burned down 18 times, and yet reborn again and again. It has a very interesting history and even more interesting present. Here are the reasons, why you should visit Minsk.
Interesting fact: it is not thoroughly established, but most likely the name of the city came from the Mena River, which was a tributary of the Ptich River.
In this article, we will tell you: where to go and what to see in Minsk, what sights and attractions, parks and interesting places to visit.
Minsk Old Town
(Photo from neoqi.com)
First of all, you should visit the heart of Minsk – the Old Town, walk along its streets, drink coffee in authentic restaurants of the Upper Town. There is also the country’s main orthodox cathedral and the City Hall on the Liberty Square. In summer, many live music concerts like “Evenings at the Town Hall” are held here. There are many bars, clubs, cafes and restaurants in the Upper Town to visit at night. Here, you can find entertainment for every taste.
(Photo from myland.by)
Most of the valuable architectural sights of Minsk are located in the Trinity Suburb. Now, it is a part of the old town complex, and is in a state of gradual restoration. Tourists can visit Minsk museums, exhibitions and various small restaurants with open terraces on the banks of Svisloch river. It is also a good place to buy some original souvenirs.
(Photo from world-tourism.com)
Perhaps, the most famous landmark in Minsk, and at the same time the largest information and cultural center of Belarus, is the National Library. Its dimensions are impressive. The diameter at the bottom is 180 meters, weight is 115 thousand tons. There are two dozen reading rooms in it, where up to two thousand readers can fit at the same time. The archives of the National Library store over 8 million books. Outwardly, the library resembles a kind of glass diamond, which is also a huge advertising screen. In the library, you can climb to the observation deck, which is open in any weather, drink coffee in a cafe and watch the city through panoramic windows from a height. Visit Minsk at least to see it.
Interesting fact: Minsk celebrates its city day on the second Saturday of September.
Travelers who can not live without nature and flowers will be delighted with Minsk Botanical Garden, which in the third largest botanical garden in the world after the ones in London and Madrid (total area – 96 hectares). There are nine alleys in it, each of which is planted with various trees. In addition, there are regular carnivals of roses, as well as holidays in honor of rhododendrons and peonies flowering. In total, 11 281 species of unique plants are listed in the Minsk Botanical Garden. You should definitely visit such a tourist attraction, especially in summer!
Fountains of Minsk
Minsk is also interesting for its fountains. The city has more than a hundred of them. The oldest one was built in 1873. It still works and is called “Boy with a Swan”. You can view the fountain in the Alexander Park, in the heart of the city.
Interesting fact: England is often called the Foggy Albion, but not everyone knows that there are more foggy days in Minsk than in London (on average 67 days per year against 45 in London), thereby attracting fans of a mysterious, noir atmosphere.
Among the sights of Minsk, the Victory monument stands out in its size rising to the sky at 36 meters height, and the diameter of the star at the top is 6 by 6 meters. You can see it on the Independence Avenue, in the center of Minsk. Here is also the eternal fire that burns in any weather, and on holidays there is a guard of honor near it.
On the Independence Square, next to the Government House, there is the Peter and Paul Cathedral, also called the Red Church, the main Catholic cathedral of Belarus.
Independence square with the Red Church on the left (Photo from photocentra.ru)
Romantics can enjoy the other side of the city. They can visit Minsk natural sights. For example, the park named after Yanka Kupala, where the sculptural group “Wreath” is located, which will not leave anyone indifferent. Also worth visiting is the famous Loshitsa park, in the depths of which there are ancient apple orchards and the Prushinsky manor. Also here you can find the remains of a mill, where once a young lady hanged herself because of unhappy love.
Interesting fact: in the center of the capital is the only prison in Europe, the Pischalovsky Castle, where a practice of shooting criminals is still applied. People also call the prison Volodarka.
Lovers of science are strongly encouraged to visit the M. Tank University. It houses the famous Foucault pendulum, only about 20 pieces of which can be found in the world.
Below, you can look at the map where the sights of Minsk mentioned above are located: