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Photo - Brest

The population: 347.5 thousand. Status: Regional center The year of foundation: 1019 Brest region, Brest district

Location - Brest

Brest - administrative center of Brest region, Brest district, and one of the largest and most beautiful cities in the Republic of Belarus. The city is located in 348 km from Minsk, in the south-west of Belarus on the river Mukhavets at its flows into the Western Bug. Today Brest is a major transport node of Belarus, as well as an important transit point on the border with Poland. Brest is a car and railway entry point «Brest-Terespol», and close to the town entry point «Kozlovichi». The international road transport corridor E30(Cork - Berlin - Warsaw - Brest - Minsk - Moscow - Chelyabinsk - Omsk) crosses Brest.

Visa-free entry for visiting the visa-free territory «Brest - Grodno». Brest and districts of the visa-free territory «Brest - Grodno» were among the first where foreign tourists got with visa-free regime thanks to its rich history and cultural heritage. Today citizens of 73 countries can come to the Republic of Belarus with tourist purposes without a visa for a period of up to 15 days to visit the visa-free territory «Brest - Grodno», which includes Brest city, Brest district, Zhabinka, Kamenets, Pruzhansky districts of Brest region. The list of points for visa-free entry, as well as the necessary documents are listed here.

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History of the development - Brest

Brest - an ancient city with a thousand years history. There are only two cities in Belarus older than Brest - Polotsk and Turov. Berestse, the first name of Brest, was firstly mentioned in the «Primary Chronicle» in 1019 as a rather large fortified settlement. The city developed as a trade and craft center with a fortress. Berestse was the reason of military confrontation. For several centuries the city was a part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, then was under control of Volyn princes, then Polish, it was conquered by the Tatars and suffered from attacks of the Crusaders. In XIII-XIV centuries stone castle tower was built for protection against enemies. In 1390, the city received a Magdeburg Law, it was the second city after Vilnia, which got this right for self-government.

XV-XVII centuries were rich period in the history of Brest. During this period the first Belarusian printing house was founded by Nicholas Radziwill Chorny Black and published a unique Brest Bible. The first school theater was opened at the territory of Belarus. However, the most important events of this period was the signing of Union of Brest in 1596, which united the Catholic and the Orthodox Church on the territory of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth.

In 1795 in the result of the third partition of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth Berestse became a part of the Russian Empire and was named Brest-Litovsk. The construction of Brest-Litovsk fortress began after the end of Napoleon's war. Construction was carried out on the site of the ancient settlementk, which was completely destroyed in the result.

During the World War I Brest-Litovsk was ruined. On March 3, 1918 the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk was signed at the territory of the fortress, lands were owned by Germany. But in January 1919 Brest became a Polish city, in 1923 was renamed to Brest-on-the Bug, and only in 1939 the city became a part of the USSR.

The period of World War II was the most tragic in the history of Brest. On June 22, 1941 German army attacked Brest and Brest fortres. It was the begining of Great patriotic war. Its defenders protected it till July 1941. More than three years Brest was under occupation, during which more than 40 thousand of people were killed. Brest was liberated by the forces of the 1st Belorussian Front on July 28, 1944.
Today Brest is a modern European city with a rich history.

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Tourism potential - Brest

Brest - incredibly attractive place for tourists with special atmosphere of cozy streets combined with grandiose monuments of architecture and history. All over the world Brest is famous for memorial complex «Brest fortress» - a monument to the courage and fortitude of soldiers during World war II. It's located in the western part of the city, on the border with Poland, it impresses guests, and the soldier inscriptions on its walls has become legendary. It is a must see place.

It's a great pleasure to go to numerous museums of Brest with unique exhibitions. To learn the early history of Brest you can at Berestse Archaeological Museum. Museum «Saved artistic value» is popular in Brest, here you can see works of art and antiques, saved by customs at attempts to smuggle them abroad. People who don't like museum rooms with exhibits will be surprised by quite a unique outdoor exposition of Museum of railway equipment. Locomotives, vans and cars of different periods of the history are not only exhibits here, many of them are still working, shooting in films and are available for internal inspection and photos.
Brestis rich with fine Catholic and Orthodox churches, which attract not only its architecture, but also a curious history.

Brest historic districts are absolutelly beautiful, they have one-two-story residential and office buildings of late XIX - early XX century and pedestrian Sovetskaya street with its legeng - lamplighter. Every evening he lights the old kerosene lamps. Lots of people gather to see this ritual. There is a belief that the lamplighter brings good luck if you touch the buttons of his uniform.

Cultural life of the city is rich and varied. Many international festivals are held here, among them International Theater Festival «Belaya Vezha», International festival of classical music «January music nights», International Motofestival «Brest Bike Festival International», International festival of children's and youth creativity «Children of the world» and others.
Many parks and recreation areas, cozy cafes and restaurants, art space and other interesting locations for tourists are opend in Brest, there are plenty of sporting activities.
Ancient town is incredibly beautiful and varied with silent witnesses of the past and the rhythm of a modern European city. Brest was announced cultural capital of CIS.

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Location map - Brest

GPS Google: 52.1002120′ N, 23.6798076′ E