Fam trip to the Ural region

Greatly impressed by the level of the capital infrastructure, quality of services in restaurants and hotels and of course cordiality of the locals.
Yekaterinburg was founded as a fortified ironworks in 1723. The city was named after St. Catherine of Alexandria (the patron saint of mining) as well as Empress Catherine I.

In the 19th century it was the only “mining town” in Russia. Metal produced at Yekaterinburg plants was used in construction of the most famous architectural structures and buildings around the world. The heritage of the 20t century was over 100 unique constructivist monuments and status of the country’s industrial heart.

Today with its 1,5 million residents, Yekaterinburg is the largest city on the borderline between two parts of the world – Europe and Asia. It is a modern city of industry, business , science and commerce successfully hosting diplomatic, sports and cultural events of national global importance.

The easy reachable distance from Moscow attracts here a lot of visitors on business and sightseeing. Flight is 2,5 hrs in duration from Moscow. You are arriving at airport “Koltsovo” that was considered to be the best harbor in Russia in 2016. The famous Transsiberian crosses the city and adds many tourists in the city by rail.

The acquaintance with the city starts with visiting the Historic Square that is located on spot where the first metal producing plants were located. Here luckily the monument of the hydrotechnic art is being kept till nowadays - it is a dam (or plotinka) of the City Pond. Rhodonite monument is displayed here as a “Stone of Love” – a symbol of Yekaterinburg. Pink rhodonite lump appeared here in the 60s of the 20th century just after its reconstruction. This mineral is mined in Russia in the Urals near Yekaterinburg. Pink color, for which citizens and rhodonite called " stone of love" , it gives the manganese. The monument was chosen by couples and honeymooners of the city especially since it is set in a beautiful location - at the beginning of the dam, where the water is discharged in the historic square.

No one is left indifferent after visiting Yekaterinburg’s Church on the Blood that is built on the spot where the last Tsar and his family was executed, on the spot of the Ipatiev House. We had also an opportunity to visit a unique Orthodox complex "Ganina Yama» as well, the monastery that now stands on the site where the bodies of the last Russian Tsar Nicholas II and his family were dumped into a mine shaft after they were murdered by the Bolsheviks in 1918.

One of the tour highlights is the excursion in the eastern part of the city that continues westward running along the great Siberian (Moscow) road to the obelisk "The border between Europe and Asia", established on the border of two continents. Here you can make a ritual of crossing the border, stand with one foot in Europe, and the other in Asia.

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The city is rich in museums of minerals and stones. Visited just a couple of them and felt the real enchantment of subsoil treasures.

Had a chance to take part in walking tour (partially) - the Red Line of Yeakterinburg. It is a walking route around the historical centre of the city, marked by the red stripe on the ground along the pavements and pedestrian paths. The length of the ring-route is 6 km which takes you about 3 hours. Within this time you will see 35 sites which are signed on the line with white figures. The Red Line is an absolutely voluntary project invented by the citizens in 2011. The idea belongs to the local bloggers , historians and guides. It is a great idea – if it were summer I would be happy to cover on foot the whole routing!

Surely worth seeing a private museum complex of the Ural Mining and Metallurgical Company that is considered to be the biggest one in the museum world of military , auto technic and history. At present the complex comprises two exhibition centers and an open-air exposition area. The collection is rich in 5700 exhibits – more than 250 Soviet and foreign autos, motorbikes and bicycles and 400 samples of military equipment. It was so informative to learn more of the unique engineering achievements!

My kindest advise is not to miss a chance to visit this great city one day – the fourth largest one in Russia after Moscow, St. Petersburg and Novosibirsk! As for me I am going there someday in summer to enjoy the weather and see the city from a different perspective.

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