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Travel To: Belarus

World  (tags: Belarus, journey, photographs, world )

- 1817 days ago -
Belarus is a landlocked nation with a rich and complicated history dating back hundreds of years. Its location put it in the middle of many wars, including the Napoleonic War and both world wars. Its neighbors are Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania-->

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Kit B (276)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 6:31 am
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Belarus is a landlocked nation with a rich and complicated history dating back hundreds of years. Its location put it in the middle of many wars, including the Napoleonic War and both world wars. Its neighbors are Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania and Latvia. It was a republic of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (U.S.S.R); it became independent in 1991, but maintains close ties to Russia. Its president rules with authoritarian control.

5 Facts You Might Not Know

1 Belarus is a land of castles and fortifications. Its turbulent history of locals fighting off invaders and its own diverse cultural groups waging battles against each other left behind intriguing castles across its landscape, some from as early as the Middle Ages. Key sites are the Nesvizh Castle, built in the 13th century and greatly modified in 16th century; the Krevo Castle ruins, from the 14th century; and Mir Castle, dating back to the 16th century.

2 It has historic cathedrals and churches from both Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic traditions. Noteworthy are St. Sophia's Cathedral in Polotsk and the Monastery of Zhirovitchy in Minsk. Minority faiths are Jewish, Muslim and Protestant.

3 It is home to the zoobr, also called the wisent. Related to the buffalo, it was nearly extinct but the surviving animals were bred and the species rescued. Many live at the wildlife refuge at Belavezhskaya Pushcha National Park.

4 One of its most famous native sons was painter Marc Chagall, who was born in 1887 in Vitebsk. The early modernist artist escaped the Holocaust and fled to the U.S. His surrealistic works are celebrated at the Marc Chagall Museum in Vitebsk.

5 It was attacked by the Nazis and has many World War II memorials. At Brest Fortress, soldiers furiously fought off the Germans. The soldiers did not surrender, but were eventually overpowered. Belarus today honors those who defended the fortress against the Nazis for so long before being killed or captured.

Ten fun facts about Belarus

Fact 1 Belarus has around 31 banks; the government owns 30 banks and only one is privately owned.

Fact 2: The official currency is called Belarusian Ruble.

Fact 3: Belarus gain independence from the Soviet Union in 1990.

Fact 4: Belarus shares borders with Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania and Latvia.

Fact 5: The name Belarus means "White Russia".

Fact 6: 80% of the population is made of native Belarusians, the rest is composed of minorities; mainly Russian.

Fact 7: Belarus is a presidential system; it has a president and a national assembly.

Fact 8: The official spoken language is Belarusian and Russian.

Fact 9: The capital of Belarus is Minsk which is also the biggest city in the country.

Fact 10: Agriculture and manufacturing are the largest industries in Belarus.

Traditional Foods of Belarus:

Among the popular Belarus cuisine dishes are draniki (potato pancakes that can be stuffed with caviar, mushrooms, carrot, etc), borsch (hot beetroot soup), and kholodnik (cold beetroot soup) the latter being normally served with potato puree. Apart from draniki, babka is also popular with different fillings

Machanka is a soup that is cooked from multiple ingredients different types of meat, vegetables, flour and water. Cutlets in Belarusian cuisine can be made of meat, fish, mushrooms and there are several kinds of these, too. A lot of dishes are made of meet because in the old times there was plenty of game in the Belarusian forests.

The traditional Belarusian non-alcohol drinks are kvass and fruit kissel. The alcoholic ones are medovukha, khrenovukha and samogon that are equal to vodka and normally substitute it in the modern Belarusian province.


Frans Badenhorst (582)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 6:50 am
thanks Kit, it looks fabulous........

Pat B (356)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 7:46 am
My goodness...I was out and about, and I almost missed the trip.!! Beautiful country, and I'd love to walk around, and explore the castles and cathedrals. Glad to read that the zoobr has been rescued too. Thanks, Kit for letting us explore another country. Happy 4th everyone, have fun, and stay safe.!! ;-)

Elizabeth Fuller (134)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 9:15 am
Ummm grandmother used to make that soup for my grandpa who was Russian...sooo good ! :) Thanks for the post and the trip down memory lane Kit :)

Ben O (150)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 9:36 am
And, here comes the party pooper!
-Belarus: The Last European Dictatorship...

JL A (281)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 10:28 am
This does explain why there were not the same level of reports of unrest and conflict during the USSR or after independence compared to other Soviet satellite nations. Thanks Kit.

. (0)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 11:03 am

Sheryl G (360)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 2:18 pm
Can't say I really knew that much about this Country. Thanks for the quick tour.

Mike M (40)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 3:12 pm
It would be neat to visit and see the old architecture and monument but I got to bring my own food

Past Member (0)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 5:27 pm

Past Member (0)
Wednesday July 3, 2013, 8:22 pm
Thanks Kit 4 yet another lovely tour---this time to Belarus!

Wolfgang W (235)
Thursday July 4, 2013, 2:22 am
Thanks for this report. Belarus suffered most and still does from the nuclear blast of Cernobyl 1986 in neigbouring Ukraine.

Lindsay K (6)
Thursday July 4, 2013, 9:50 am
Thanks for posting - looks like a great place to visit
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