Museum of the Great Patriotic War
Housed in a building that is garish, the greatest museum of Minsk houses an excellent display detailing Belarus’ suffering and heroism. With explanations throughout, artillery and also a range of real tanks, planes and atmospheric dioramas in WWII, it’s among the few attractions of those capital.
Vul Kastrychnitskaya known by its name, ulitsa Oktyabrskaya — has recently blossomed into the unofficial arts district of Minsk. Street artists have spraypainted murals that were brilliant to the giant facades of the flat blocks, warehouses and warehouses of this street, most of which now house event spaces, museums and hipster cafes. President Lukashenko has allowed ingenious expression to flourish that it generally free of street art and not disperse to other regions of the funding, that remain sanitised.
The district occupies a spirit and is just one of the few places where you’ll hear locals speaking referring to politics. Food truck civilization has taken root here and drinking over the street on any particular day is de rigueur.
The main city’s key thoroughfare contrasts with its absolute size. Formerly pr Francyska Skaryny, it runs out what traveling writer Colin Thubron dubbed the’ferro concrete tundra’ of outside Minsk into the current (read: Soviet) citycentre, terminating only north east of this railway station in the rustic and expansive pl Nezalezhnastsi. The route could be the world’s greatest embodiment of the post-WWII Stalinist Kingdom style, marked by expansive squares, utopian parks along with palatial architectural gems like the Central postoffice .
Museum of Folk Architecture & Rural Lifestyle
A couple dozen hardwood houses, a school, a church and a classic windmill have been transplanted to this folk museum in Azyartso. While perhaps not as developed since the similarly themed Dudutki memorial nearby, this is just a more authentic experience and a requirement for 19th-century rural-architecture buffs.
Belarusian State Art Museum
This fantastic memorial in another of Minsk’s iconic buildings (built in 1939) comprises authoritative functions Soviet social realists and Russian masters, for example Valentin Volkov’s social realist Minsk on July 3, 1944 (1944–5), constituting the Red Army’s coming in the ruined city. Several functions Chagall’s educator, by Yudel Pen, are all here, including his own 1914 portrait of Chagall, and Chagall displays rotate throughout here.
Ў Gallery of Contemporary Art
As it moved to vul Kastrychnitskaya in 2018 this gallery and cultural centre heralded a shift. It’s named after a letter unique to the Belarusian language called’u nieskladovaye’, a symbol of sorts of their Belarusian national identity. This really is one of those rare places where you will notice some Belarusian. It arouses the very best neighborhood visual and multimedia artists to two cavernous exhibition spaces that are Post Industrial
In the heart of the Old Town only off principal vul Lenina is magical pl Svabody, lorded over by the snowy medieval Ratusha (town hall). Off the northern edge of the square is the baroque, twin-towered Orthodox Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, assembled in 1642. It was part of a Polish Bernardine convent, together with the Bernardine Church next door, which now houses archives.
Zaslavsky Jewish Monument
This sight hidden off amid trees away vul Melnikayte at a gully that is sunken, commemorates the savage murder of 5000 Jews out of Minsk . It’s composed of sculptures of men, women and children lining up to be shot, 1 person even carrying their violin.
National Library of Belarus
To get a taste of post-Soviet Belarus, head north of the centre a bit of Lukashenko-approved hubris, into the new library. You’ll want your passport to enter the main building, which is in the shape of a giant rhombicuboctahedron (look it up!) .
Former Residence of Lee Harvey Oswald
Only to the west bank, across the bridge Across the Svislach River, is the House of Lee Harvey Oswald. US president John F Kennedy’s assassin dwelt here for a couple of years. The construction has now evolved since Oswald’s time, but his flat is thought to be at the far left (northwest) side of their building on the next floor.
He arrived in January 1960 in Minsk afterwards leaving the US Marines and defecting to the USSR. Once herehe truly went native: he changed his name, married a Minsk woman, had a young child — and got work at a radio factory.
This addition to Minsk’s totalitarian architecture is the new presidential palace in all but name of the country. Architecturally uninspiring, the glass-fronted eye-sore is a sign of Alexander Lukashenko’s permanence in politics and has hundreds of chambers spread over 50,000 sq yards.
Independence Sq, formerly pl Lenina, is dominated by the 1930s constructivist Belarusian Government Building (supporting the legendary Lenin statue). Even the red brick Catholic Church of SS Simon & Elena, built in 1910, is well worth popping up for a peek at its exceptional, wave-like, arched ceiling. Its gabled Bell-tower and attractive detailing are similar to many brick churches in the Teutonic north west of Poland. Underneath the square lies Stolitsa Shopping Centre.
National History Museum
Two newly museums in just one single here. The top floors are occupied by the history museum proper with exhibits including a replica of their printing media used by hero Francyska Skaryny plus some rooms on Soviet lifestyle, of significance. Down stairs, the environment and character museum will soon be of interest to children having its assortment of creatures. There’s also a large space for art exhibits that are temporary.
Trinity Hill is a diversion on a bend of the river just a little north of the center of Minsk’s prewar buildings. It’s some cafes, shops and restaurants, and also a walking bridge leads over to the Island of Courage & Sorrow, an evocative Afghan war tradition called locally as the Island of Tears.
Church of St Aleksander Nevsky
This red-brick church shut by the Bolsheviks, reopened by the Nazis, closed by the Soviets, was built in 1898 it’s open once more. It’s stated that during WWII, a bomb dropped through the roof and landed plum before the altar, but failed to detonate.
SS Peter & Paul Church
Off the vul Lenina overpass may be the beautifully restored 17thcentury SS Peter & Paul Church. The oldest church of the city, it looted by Cossacks, was built in 1612 and restored from 1871. Its interior is well worth a look, although now it is awkwardly dwarfed by the morose concrete structures surrounding it.
Church of SS Simon & Elena
Even the Catholic Church of Elena & SS Simon , built in 1910, is worth looking up for a glimpse in its exceptional, wave like, arched ceiling. Its rugged, gabled Bell-tower and detailing are reminiscent of many brick churches at Poland’s Teutonic north.
Minsk’s ratusha has been rebuilt at the location where it was originally constructed in the 1800s now lords it over pl Svabody, its pointed steeple beckoning visitors into the Upper City. It’s closed to the general public.
Cathedral of the Holy Spirit
Off the border of pl Svabody could be your baroque Orthodox Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, integrated 1642. It was part of a Bernardine convent, together side the Bernardine Church nearby, which now houses archives.
Certainly one of the collectivist masterpieces of Minsk, Minsk’s market should not be missed by market fans. It’s really a colourful smorgasbord of seasonal (also unseasonal) vegetables and fruits, breads and all types of meat.
Island of Courage & Sorrow
Sitting on a small island connected to the Old Town with way of a walking bridge, sailors know as the Isle of Tears that this Afghan war memorial that was evocative. Integrated the shape of a tiny church together with four entrances, the monument is surrounded by towering gaunt statues of their sorrowful wives and mothers of all Belarusian soldiers that perished in the war between the Soviet Union and Afghanistan (1979–8 9 ).
Bust of Felix Dzerzhinsky
Between pr Nezalezhnastsi along with vul Karla Marksa can be a long narrow park having a bust of Felix Dzerzhinsky, the founder of the KGB’s predecessor (the Cheka) and also a native of Belarus.
- 1 Museum of the Great Patriotic War
- 2 Vul Kastrychnitskaya
- 3 Pr Nezalezhnastsi
- 4 Museum of Folk Architecture & Rural Lifestyle
- 5 Belarusian State Art Museum
- 6 Ў Gallery of Contemporary Art
- 7 Pl Svabody
- 8 Zaslavsky Jewish Monument
- 9 National Library of Belarus
- 10 Former Residence of Lee Harvey Oswald
- 11 Independence Palace
- 12 Pl Nezalezhnastsi
- 13 National History Museum
- 14 Trinity Hill
- 15 Church of St Aleksander Nevsky
- 16 SS Peter & Paul Church
- 17 Church of SS Simon & Elena
- 18 Ratusha
- 19 Cathedral of the Holy Spirit
- 20 Kamaroŭski Rynak
- 21 Island of Courage & Sorrow
- 22 Bust of Felix Dzerzhinsky