• Bolgar Historical and Architectural Museum-Reserve

    Location: Spassky district, Bolgar

    The Bolgar reserve is situated to the south of the town. Nowadays this place is not only a most important tourist centre and a constant object of interest for scholars, historians, archaeologists, orientalists, art historians and so on but also a place of pilgrimage for Muslims seeking to complete a small "hadj" to holy places. Over the centuries the architectural monuments which have come down to us have stirred the imagination of many people. Peter the Great who was here in 1722 issued an edict for the protection of this territory. Catherine the Second while visiting these places in 1767 responded in the following words: "…whatever has remained here was built of very good stone, the Tatars show great honour to their place and travel to these ruins to pray to God". But a certain persecutor, Archbishop Luka of Kazan under the late Empress Elizaveta, grew envious and destroyed a great deal and out of his built a church and cellars and used it for a monastery. Although there is an edict of Peter the Great to do no harm and not to destroy this ancient place.

    The Bolgar architectural-archaeological complex covers 380 hectares. It consists of the Bolgar settlement (the 10th-15th centuries) – a cultural layer of the centre of Volga Bolgaria – the town of Bolgar, the economic, political and cultural centre of Volga Bolgaria. And also the Bolgar ulus (nomad camp of settlement) of the Golden Horde within the bounds of the fortifications in the form of a rampart and moat 5.63 km long, which surrounded its territory from south, west and east from the 13th to the beginning of the 14th centuries.

    There remnants of monumental stone and brick structures of the second half of the 13th to 14th centuries – The Northern and Eastern Mausoleums, the Chyornaya (Black) Chamber, the Malyi (Small) Minaret, the Khan’s Burial Vault – have been preserved on the territory of the settlement. As well as stone and brick ruins of buildings of public and religious significance like the Cathedral Mosque, the Red, White and Greek Chambers, The Khan’s Bathhouse and mausoleums. They have survived from the once populous town of Bolgar in the period of its prosperity in the second half of the 13th and first half of the 14th centuries.

    At the present time more than 100 remnants of ancient buildings have been identified. The ancient part of the town from Bolgar times in the north-eastern part of the monument dating back to the 10th and 11th centuries has been discovered, the growth of the territory of the settlement has been traced and dwelling, artisan and also architectural and defensive buildings have been studied. This is a Muslim holy place, a place of pilgrimage as well as a place for tourist excursions and a place for holding international events (the 1100 anniversary of the adoption of Islam by Volga Bulgaria, and the Ist and IInd World Congresses of Tatars, etc).

    For more infomation visit https://vbolgar.ru/?lang=en



  • Anan'ino burial ground

    Location: Elabuzhsky district, near to the Anan'ino village

    The site is situated on the river Toima. This world famous archaeological monument of the first millennium BC had given its name to an entire Iron Age culture. The burial ground was discovered by the famous archaeological scholar from Moscow University Professor K.I. Nevostruev with the active assistance of I.V.Shishkin (the father of the artist I.I.Shishkin). Academician Yuryi Gotet believed that in the first millennium BC a major trade centre existed here, the final point of one of the northern branches of the Great Silk Road. From here furs from the north travelled south – to Central Asia and Persia, east – to China and India, and west – to Byzantium, the Arab Caliphates and further on to Europe. On the right bank of the Kama in the area of Elabuga was the centre of tribes of the Anan’ino culture going back to the early Iron Age. These tribes covered a huge territory from Sura to Vetluga in the west to the upper reaches of the Kama and Belaya in the east.

    During that period there was a growth in population, the appearance of dwellings above ground, large settlements along rivers and arise in the cultural level. The Anan’ino people engaged in slash and burn agriculture, fishing and bee keeping and their articles of bronze, iron and also ceramics were notable for their high quality, evidence of the beginnings of applied art. The religious beliefs of the tribes were expressed in the cult of the sun and water and worship of various animals. The clan and tribal society began to disintegrate as military tribal and clan leaders emerged and there were wars of various kinds in which some of the prisoners were enslaved.

    The Anan’ino tribes maintained close links with their neighbours, the inhabitants of the Urals, the Upper Volga and with the Scythians. During excavations of the burial grounds and settlements articles made by Greeks and Egyptians have been found as well as those of Central Asian and Iranian origin.



  • Annunciation (Blagoveshchenskyi) cathedral

    Location: Kazan, Sheynkman Str.

    The cathedral is a unique 16th century monument, the most ancient of the Orthodox cathedrals in the central Volga region. Pskov master builders under the direction of the famous Postnik Yakovlev built it in 1556. Originally it was made entirely of stone with 6 columns, 5 cupolas and 5 apses, and with two chapels on either side or a porch running between them which curved round the central cube of the cathedral. This, the main Christian place of worship in Kazan, had additions made to it right up to the middle of the 19th century. The architecture of the cathedral displays traditions from different schools and different periods. From its initial form the central body of the cathedral with the one middle drum has survived to this day as have three apses, the foundations of the two stone side-chapels, traces of the interior fresco and a number of decorative elements. An addition to the number of unique items worth seeing at the cathedral is a stone with an inscription in Arabic of an epigraphic nature, which was discovered in the ancient wall masonry under a layer of plaster in the course of restoration work. The builders used it as a door crosspiece.




  • Apanaev (Masjid) mosque

    Location: Kazan, Kayum Nasyri Str. 29

    It is one of the earliest stone Muslim buildings, which have been preserved in Kazan. The mosque was constructed from 1768 to 1769. The baroque style is reflected in decorative motives of varying origin – Tatar, Russian and west European. Mosque was built during the first third of the 19th century already bear the imprint of classicism – this is a characteristic type of mosque with the minaret on the roof. The two-storey building included service and household premises (a stockroom, library, and woodshed, etc.), and warehousing for merchants. On the first floor might be classrooms for the madrasah or mekteb (elementary school) of the parish.



  • Balynguz cemetery

    Location: Alekseevsky district

    This cemetery is of the 13th-16th centuries. Dozens of gravestones were known were as early as the 18th century (some of them are now in museums). Traces have survived of white stone foundations of burial vaults. According to legend and historical research, it is known that at this site burials of important people took place not only during the period of the Golden Horde but also during the Kazan Khanate. A small Tatar village was established as early as the 17th century beyond the Toretskyi ravine to protect the graves and mausoleums, which were considered holy.



  • Bilyar ancient settlement (Bilyarskoe gorodishche)

    Location: Alekseevsky district, Bilyar

    The cultural layer of a major medieval city, the capital of Volga Bulgaria from 10th century to 1236. It was a centre of economic, political and cultural life known by the name of Bilyr, Bulyar and in the Russian chronicles Velikyi Gorod (the Great City). This is a whole complex of archaeological monuments, which includes, apart from the fortified parts, extensive non-fortified suburbs, town necropolis-cemeteries and estates beyond the town. All this complex, the area of which amounts to almost 800 hectares, occupies a large roughly right-angled square, surrounded by concentrically arranged earth ramparts and ditches – the remains of defensive fortifications. The latter divide the territory into two parts – the inner and outer city. Two lines of ramparts and ditches 5 km in length surrounded the inner city with an inhabited area on 116 hectares. The outer city, with an inhabited area of 374 hectares, by three lines of fortification more than 10 km long, the overall area of the ancient settlement together with fortifications amounts to about 700 hectares. It has been archeologically established that as early as the 10th-11th centuries the town occupied an impressively large area and from the very beginning had the division into two parts. The city perished in the autumn of 1236 as a result of the Mongol conquest. It never recovered after that.

    A number of monuments of Bulgar monumental architecture have been discovered in the central part of the inner city. The most important are the remnants of the cathedral mosque consisting of two parts: wooden and white stone with a large separately standing minaret (as early as the 18th century researchers had noted the remains of the walls, the pillar-minaret and the portals). The overall area of the prayer halls of the mosque amounted to about 2500 m². Among the remains of other structures of particular note are the brick building with central (under-floor) heating in the close vicinity of the mosque, and the brick caravanserai and baths.

    In the middle of 17th century the fortifications of the Bilyar Gorodishche were included in the system of defensive lives of the Zakam’e line and an encampment of musketeers (strel’tsy) was established here under the name of Bilyarsk suburb, which later grew into the village of Bilyarsk.

    The archaeological monuments of Bilyarsk:

    • Bilyar trading quarter (posad) (10th-13th centuries)
    • Bilyar burial grounds (10th-13th centuries)
    • Bilyar mosque complex (10th-12th centuries) is one of the biggest buildings of medieval Eastern Europe known today – the area of its interior was no less than 2000 m². Preserved to the level of foundations.
    • Bilyar feudal lord’s house (10th-13th centuries) preserves to the level of the foundations and the foundations of the walls. It was equipped with an extensive system of underground heating. The earliest brick dwelling to have been discovered in the central part of Eastern Europe.
    • Bilyar "caravanserai" (10th-13th centuries) remains of the walls and foundations of the brick building, which had under-floor heating and of the courtyard paved in brick.
    • Bilyar "bathhouse" (11th-13th centuries)
    • Bilyar well (12th-13th centuries) is one of the 12 wells in the ancient settlement has been studied. The depth is 7.6 m it was restored and subjected to conservation measures in the 19th century.



  • Bilyar State historical-archaeological museum and nature reserve

    Location: Alekseevsky district, Bilyar

    The complex covers an area of 3,840 hectares including an original set of surviving natural features. They characterise the natural conditions of the wooded steppe area of eastern Europe from an historical point of view. A concentrated array of various archaeological monuments from almost all epochs, from the Bronze Age to the late medieval period, remains of felled tree barriers of the Russian State in the 17th century. Historical and cultural monuments linked to the names of the Academicians Butlerov and Arbuzov and others. In 1992 a museum reserve was set up with the aim to preserve the complex.



  • Bol'she-Tarkhanskyi complex

    Location: Tetyushsky district

    The complex consists of the Bol’she-Tarkhanskyi settlement is the biggest and best fortified settlement of the Imen’kovo culture so far known. The Bol’shie Tarchany graves of the 8th-9th centuries located partly in the village and on the right bank of the Tarkhanka river. Both graveyards (more than 400 burials have been discovered) were lest by the early Bulgars. On the northeast outskirts of the village is an ancient cemetery "Tashbilge" (Stone sign) where you can see a Bulgar gravestone of 1314 with an engraved calligraphic inscription executed in cufic handwriting and crowned by a lancet arch.



  • Bolgar State Reserve of History and Architecture

    Location: Spassky district, Bolgary, Nazarova Str. 67

    Established in 1969 with the aim to preserve historical and cultural monuments of Middle Volga and Kama peoples, the reserve comprises monuments of the largest cities in Volga-Kama Bolgari, Bolgar and Suvar. As a subdivision, the reserve incorporates the Spassk-Kuibyshev City Museum of History.
    Museum stock of over 80,000 items being mostly the items of archaeological excavations.

    Internet: https://vbolgar.ru/?lang=en


  • Boratynskyi Museum

    Location: Kazan, Korolenko St., 26, and Gorky Str. 25/28

    The museum is an affiliate of the Tatarstan National Museum of the Republic of Tatarstan.
    Established as a community school museum in 1977. Since 1983 it was incorporated into the Republican National Museum as a affiliate. In 1991, the exhibition "Family Album Pages" was opened in the reconstructed wing of the Boratynskys' estate on Gorky Street. The exhibition is based on the genuine items of that time. There is also a small collection of the Boratynskyi's memorabilia exposed at the museum.

    Internet: http://boratynskiy.tatmuseum.ru/   
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1762666090673852/ 



  • Cathedral of the Epiphany (Bogoyavlenskyi sobor)

    Location: Kazan, Bauman Str. 78 (see the map below

    The church was built from 1731 to 1776 with funds donated by a well-known Kazan factory owner I.A.Mikhlyaev and the merchant S.A.Chernov and is a typical monument of Kazan architecture from the first half of the 18th century in the baroque style. The bell tower, which replaced an earlier structure at the turn of the present century, was designed by architect M.Mikhailov. This impressive tall tower of 74 m is made of red brick and has the stamp of pseudo-Russian style, what you can notice by patterned surface. The cathedral is one of the most memorable and eye-catching buildings in the old part or the city.


    Cathedral of the Epiphany (Bogoyavlenskyi sobor), Tatarstan, Russia, tourism, travel, cities, districts, sightseeing, tourist, visitor, tourist attractions, places to visit, monuments, local culture, cultural tourism, local tourism
    Photo: Sergei i Masha Popovy, www.sobory.ru

    Cathedral of the Epiphany (Bogoyavlenskyi sobor), Tatarstan, Russia, tourism, travel, cities, districts, sightseeing, tourist, visitor, tourist attractions, places to visit, monuments, local culture, cultural tourism, local tourismPhoto: Sergei i Masha Popovy, www.sobory.ru

    Cathedral of the Epiphany (Bogoyavlenskyi sobor), Tatarstan, Russia, tourism, travel, cities, districts, sightseeing, tourist, visitor, tourist attractions, places to visit, monuments, local culture, cultural tourism, local tourism Photo:Sergei i Masha Popovy, www.sobory.ru

    Cathedral of the Epiphany (Bogoyavlenskyi sobor), Tatarstan, Russia, tourism, travel, cities, districts, sightseeing, tourist, visitor, tourist attractions, places to visit, monuments, local culture, cultural tourism, local tourism Photo:Vasiliy Shelyomin, www.sobory.ru

    Cathedral of the Epiphany (Bogoyavlenskyi sobor), Tatarstan, Russia, tourism, travel, cities, districts, sightseeing, tourist, visitor, tourist attractions, places to visit, monuments, local culture, cultural tourism, local tourism Photo:Mikhail Sukhanov, www.sobory.ru


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  • Chak-chak museum

    Location: Kazan, Ulitsa Parizhskoy Kommuny,18


    The Chak-Chak Museum is all about the wonder of Tatar cuisine - Chak-chak. Here you may learn not only making this delicacy but also meet other Tatar traditional dishes with a cup of aromatic tea from a hot samovar.

    It is advised to make an appointment in advance, in order to avoid ocasional overcrowding.


    internet: https://chak-chak.museum 

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/muzeino/ 

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/chakchakmuseum/ 



  • Chally ancient settlement (Challinskoe gorodishche)

    Location: Naberezhnye Chelny, Tukaevsky district

    The settlement is located on the river Kama near to the Orlovka village. During excavations here metal ploughshares of Bulgar make have been found revealing the early development here of metallurgy and ploughing in agriculture.

    This settlement is dated by archaeologists to the time of the Golden Horde (13th-14th centuries). But it is entirely possible that Bulgars lived here in an earlier period considering that on the river Ik, where it is joined by the river Menzelya, there were Bulgar fortifications where they halted the first invasion of Russia by Mongols in 1223.

    It is known that in the Golden Horde period on the territories occupied by the Tatar Mongols agriculture ceased. It is difficult to suppose that in fleeing from the enraged hordes the Bulgars could have taken their metal agricultural implements from their earlier places of habitation to new ones unknown to them. It therefore seems more likely that the Chally settlement arose when the Great Bulgar state was an independent state, what was before 1236-1237. The settlement was destroyed by the armies of one of the last of the descendants of Genghis Khan – Tokhtamysh and his conqueror Tamerlan, which passed through here in 1395, or else by the Kazan Khans, who seized this part of the Kama short after them (in the first half of the 15th century.



  • Christian cemetery with chapel

    Location: Alekseevsky district, the Butlerovka village

    This area is about 10 hectares. The chapel has been preserved here together with the burial vault of the famous scholar A.M.Butlerov. There are other archaeological monuments from various epochs – ancient village settlements, burial mounds, graveyards, and also the natural landscape of meadows, the forest tract along the river Malyi Cheremshan and its tributaries. Among the monuments if the Bol’she-Tiganskyi graveyard reliably known to have been left by the ancient Hungarian tribes which lid a nomadic existence between the 7th-9th centuries in the Volga and Belaya rivers within the boundaries of the legendary Great Hungary.



  • Church of Holy Kirill Belozerskyi, Alexandr Nevskyi and Mefodyi Patarskyi

    Location: Vysokogorsky district

    It is the great two-tire church with delicately worked cross on the top has survived and inside there are fragments of the beautiful frescoes which once covered its wall.



  • Elabuga historical-architectural and art museum-reserve

    Location: Elabuga

    The museum-reserve was created in 1990 to preserve monuments of material and spiritual culture. The area is about 491.5 hectares. Within its territory at the present time are 226 monuments of history, architecture and town planning which are under state protection, and in total there are up to 700 buildings and installations in the town and elements of them which are of architectural or other value.

    For more information visit http://www.elabuga.com/



  • Elabuga settlement (Gorodishche)

    Location: Elabuga

    The Chertovo ancient settlement is a memorable place near Elabuga. It is situated on a high promontory on the right bank of the Kama. The settlement represents the remains of a fortified settlement of one of the tribes, which lived here during the second half of the first millennium. In the eastern area (400 m²) of the site are the remains of a fortress-mosque of the Volga Bulgars (10th century) with round towers at the corners. One tower has survived. This castle had typical architecture style of Volga-Bulgaria. The only surviving stone tower from the Bulgar town besides archaeological importance has also become a symbol of Elabuga.

    The settlement was originally a clan fortification defended only by earthen ramparts. In the 9th-10th centuries on the area which they defined a wooden citadel with four towers was built – a development typical for a class society. Around it was concentrated the majority of the villages.



  • Gorkinskoe I ancient settlement

    Location: Alekseevsky district, at the Gorka village

    It is an area with adjacent monuments covering 42 hectares.



  • Gorkinskoe II ancient settlement (Balynguz)

    Location: Alekseevsky district, at the Gorka village

    This site remains of an uncompleted town of the 1330s-1340s with an area of about 400 hectares together with adjacent monuments on the Bal’gaguz hill (mausoleum). In area this is the second largest ancient settlement of Tatarstan and the Middle Volga region after Bilyar.



  • History of Tatarstan

    The first settlements in the territory of the Republic of Tatarstan date back to Palaeolithic period (about 100,000 years ago). The first state - the Volga-Kama Bulgaria - was set up at the end of the 9th - beginning of the 10th centuries which was the first feudal state in the north-eastern Europe. In 922 Islam was accepted as a state religion. The Bulgar mosques and medrasah (Muslim clerical schools) spread knowledge and culture in the neighbouring regions. In the 13th century, the territory of the Volga-Kama Bulgaria was annexed to the Empire of Genghis-Khan and then became a part of powerful Zolotaya Orda (Golden Horde) State. The collapse of the Golden Horde in the thirties-forties of the 14th century resulted in formation of a number of new states including the Kazan Khanate (1445). Kazan became the capital of the newly formed state. The Kazan Khanate ceased its existence in October, 1552, after two-month siege when troops of Ivan IV (the Terrible), numbering 150,000 people, conquered Kazan.

    A path-breaking step on the way to restoration of statehood of the Tatar people was the declaration of the Tatar Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic in 1920. The end of this century brought new opportunities for development of statehood of Tatarstan. On August, 30, 1990, the Supreme Soviet of Tatarstan announced the Declaration of State Sovereignty of the republic, later supported by 61% of referendum participants held in March, 1992.