When planning a trip to one of the most beautiful and interesting cities of Belarus, decide in advance what sights you would like to see in Vitebsk. An experienced guide will offer you unique excursion routes and provide a lot of opportunities for a fascinating pastime. Or you can work out your own cultural program and see what you can see in Vitebsk. We will tell you about the sights that allow you to experience the atmosphere of this wonderful city.
Even a short trip to these places will be a bright and unforgettable experience if you take the right attitude to the organization of your leisure time. Tourists planning excursions to Vitebsk include the following attractions:
Even a sophisticated tourist will enjoy visiting the International Art Festival called “Slavic Bazaar in Vitebsk”, which is held every year in July. As part of the event, you’ll have the opportunity to see a concert on the stage of the Summer Amphitheater or enjoy a spectacular circus show at the city’s Palace of Sports. If you don’t know where to go in Vitebsk in the middle of summer, check out “Slavonic Bazar.
Official site: https://fest-sbv.by/
When listing the most striking sights of Vitebsk, it is necessary to mention its Town Hall. This building was erected in the 16th century as a sign that the city was given the right to self-government. Since then, it has been repeatedly rebuilt and restored. Today the town hall is at the top of the list of attractions and is a hallmark of the city. Tourists may also be interested in the local history museum, which is located nearby.
Official site: http://ratusha-vit.by/
Travelers interested in what to see in Vitebsk can be advised to visit the Holy Dormition Cathedral. It is an amazingly beautiful temple, stretched on the bank of the Western Dvina River. It is considered one of the most interesting monuments of architecture of Vilna baroque and belongs to the XVIII century. During Soviet times, the cathedral was destroyed, but then it was restored.
Official site: https://vitprav.by/
Suvorova Street is another historical landmark that visitors to Vitebsk leave rave reviews about. It was built in the 18th and 19th centuries and has hardly changed since then. Here you are sure to feel the atmosphere of the old city.
The street began to form in the 15th century, and for almost four hundred years was called Uzgorskaya. Then it was renamed Officerskaya, and finally, was named after Suvorov. The street has that name today, although during the Soviet Union, for several years it was Volodarskaya. Here, the past intricately intertwines with the present, and every tourist will be able to feel its breath.
When describing the most interesting places in Vitebsk, it’s impossible to leave out Victory Square, which is one of the largest in Europe. In its central part there is a memorial dedicated to Soviet soldiers-liberators, where the eternal flame burns. Also on the square you can see a monumental monument “Three bayonets” dedicated to all those who died during the Great Patriotic War. And next to it there is an alley with military equipment, planes and helicopters.
If you have a trip to Vitebsk ahead of you, don’t miss the opportunity to take a look at the Church of the Resurrection. It is located on the Market Square and is one of the most beautiful orthodox temples of the city. Resurrection Church was built in the 16th century from wood. Then a stone temple was built in its place and after the revolution it was destroyed by the Bolsheviks. The modern church was built according to its model, so the architectural style of the building can be attributed to the XVIII century.
Many sights in Vitebsk suffered from the October Revolution. This applies to the Church of the Annunciation, which was blown up by the Soviet authorities and existed as ruins for several years. It was restored at the end of the XX century, and a new church is now located there. But at its foot the remains of ancient masonry (unplastered bricks) can still be seen. According to experts, these stones are about 8 - 10 centuries old. And you can touch them with your hand!
The majestic and grandiose Catholic church of St. Barbara strikes by its austere beauty, which can be appreciated even by photo. The church has architectural elements of Neo-Gothic and Neo-Romanesque architecture, which makes it a unique work of art. The church was built in the 18th century next to the Catholic cemetery and was located outside the city boundaries. But due to the large influx of parishioners, in the XIX century it was decided to rebuild and expand. The temple survived the revolution and World War II, which seriously damaged it. But at the end of the last century it was restored, and today guides, listing the best sights of Vitebsk, necessarily mention it.
Official site: http://svbarbara.by
Fans of culture and art will appreciate the Yakub Kolas Theatre, which was opened in 1926, and has not changed much so far. The first performance staged there was I. Ben’s In the Old Days. The theater is still open today - if you are a fan of Melpomene, be sure to buy a ticket for a performance.
Official website: http://kolastheatre.by/ru
Speaking about what to visit in Vitebsk to get the most out of your stay in this city, it is also worth mentioning the Lyalka Puppet Theater. It was founded in 1985 and its stage still puts on wonderful performances for audiences of all ages. The theater is located on a hill with a beautiful view of the river in the heart of the city.
This is a small building located on Pokrovskaya Street, where the famous artist spent his young years. Once there, you can learn how the master’s family lived and visit an exhibition of his works. Many guides in Vitebsk organize trips to Chagall’s house-museum. And if you come here on your own, book a tour - otherwise familiarization with the attraction will be incomplete.
Official website: http://chagal-vitebsk.
This museum should be mentioned when listing the most original sights of Vitebsk. It is considered to be one of the “highlights” of the city. The first streetcar in Belarus appeared in Vitebsk. And it happened at the end of the XIX century. You can learn about how the first streetcars were built, how they worked after the revolution and during the Second World War, and how they develop and function today, by visiting the museum.
Official site: http://www.vttu.by/
Continuing the review of the best museums of the city, it is necessary to dwell on the Art Museum. It was founded in 1992 as one of the departments of the local history museum (located near the Town Hall). There are paintings of many Russian and Belarusian artists, sculptures and other art objects, there are regularly held various exhibitions and interesting expositions.
For tourists interested in what to visit in Vitebsk, we can also recommend the museum-estate of Ilya Repin. It was opened in 1988 on the territory where the artist once lived. The museum complex includes the main manor house, the manager’s house with an exhibition hall, a cellar and a garden. Inside the buildings you can see the furniture of the XIX century, household items that were used by the artist’s family, and his paintings. And in the garden still grows plants planted by the hand of Repin.
A true work of architectural art, the Governor’s Palace traces its history back to the 18th century. This elegant building, consisting of two buildings, was built for the noblemen of Kudinovichi, but then acquired the status of the governor’s residence. If you are primarily interested in the historical sights of Vitebsk, pay attention to it. These walls have seen many representatives of the nobility (according to rumors, even Napoleon Bonaparte came here).
We have already told you about the main sights, so you know what to see in Vitebsk in 1 day. But, if the time in the city is not limited, the tour program can be expanded. Professional guides usually give tourists recommendations for the following places:
This is a small round tower, erected in 1984 at the site of excavations of the Upper and Lower Castles of Prince Olgerd. It exactly replicates the Duhovka round tower, built here by order of the ruler and directly related to the Duhovka church. The modern tower consists of five tiers: at the very top there is an observation deck, and below it is a museum.
Official website: http://www.gck.by
When listing the main attractions of Vitebsk, the botanical garden should also be mentioned. It was founded in the XVIII century, so it is a cultural and historical value. It is a picturesque park located on the right bank of the Vitsba. Here you can see plants from Belarus and other countries of the world.
Official site: http://lions-guides.
Walking around the city, be sure to look at the Pushkin Bridge over the Vitsba River. It was built in 1961 and stretches for 28 meters. Lovers and newlyweds often walk across it… as well as tourists who choose hotels in Vitebsk on Pushkin and Tolstoy streets, which this bridge connects. It is beautiful, picturesque, and it offers a stunning view.
Continuing the story of what to see in Vitebsk, it’s worth mentioning Frunze Park. It used to be called the Bishop’s Park, but after the revolution it was renamed. The Frunze Park is famous for its beauty. The Vitsba river runs through its territory, and in the very center is the concert hall “Vitebsk”.
Many historians mention this picturesque river when listing sights of Belarus. But it has a special significance for the residents of Vitebsk. Once upon a time, Varangians and Greeks sailed on the river, and later, pearls were mined here. The Western Dvina is one of the most beautiful rivers in the country, which length reaches 1 000 km. While vacationing in Vitebsk, visit at least once on its banks - you will get a lot of vivid emotions and unforgettable impressions.
This is the end of the description of the sights of Vitebsk. We are sure that from the variety of options, offered above, you can choose the ones that will suit your taste. See also Sights of Grodno and be inspired by your future journey around Belarus.