Cultural life in Minsk for expats while learning Russian
You can see the entire Minsk for two days. However, it’s not a good idea to chase places on the first day of your stay here. It is better to wander around the city, and you can do it even without a map because Minsk is a monument itself. So, you can walk on a regular basis opening up new interesting corners.
You can take a tour of Minsk by a double-decker bus Minsk City Tour. Its route passes along the most popular historical sites of the capital and takes approximately 2 hours. There is an audio guide in 7 languages: Belarusian, Russian, English, German, French, Spanish, and Italian. And for children, there is a special channel with songs from the cartoons.
However, the best way to get acquainted with a new city is a walking tour. One of the main sights is Independence Avenue. Pay attention to the architectural ensemble of the 1950s: the building in the Stalin’s Empire style with balustrades, flower gardens. On the avenue, there are the largest squares in Minsk.
Along Independence Avenue, there are:
Palace of the Republic
National Academic Theatre
The National Academy of Sciences
In the historic center of Minsk, you will see the majestic temples and historical monuments. Troitsky Suburb deserves special attention. Here, you can see the building of the XIX century and take a stroll along the ancient paved streets.
From the old Upper Town near the Troitsky Suburb, the second largest Avenue of Minsk takes its way – Winners Avenue.
Having looked at the main attractions, you can make notes for yourself and come back for a closer acquaintance with your favorite places later.
Parks in Minsk
At the weekend, you can go to one of the many parks of Minsk.
Central Gorky Park
It is located along the waterfront of the river Svisloch. In the warm season, there are amusement rides including the Ferris wheel that offers a panoramic view of the city.
It’s a cozy park near the railway station.
Alexander Public Garden
One of the most romantic places in the city. There is the oldest fountain in Minsk here established in 1874.
Central Botanical Garden of the National Academy of Sciences
One of Europe's largest by area (about 100 hectares in the city) and the collection of plants – more than 10,000 plants from around the world.
Here, you can see the natural reserve Bird Island, admire the illuminated fountains, walk along the shore. Leisure activities include a ride on the bike path, on a boat or catamaran.
It’s one of the most beautiful corners of Minsk where you can stroll through ancient walkways and visit the museum.
Theatres and Museums
Visit Belarusian State Philharmonic. The schedule of all parties and concerts can be found at www.philharmonic.by. Tickets are available at the Belarusian State Philharmonic, as a rule, at any time. You can easily buy a ticket for a seven-hour concert in 15 minutes before it starts. The things are different with the Bolshoi Theater of Opera and Ballet. It is very difficult, almost impossible, to buy tickets for a couple of days before the staging. It is a little easier to get tickets for the opera. If you know a little bit Russian (or Belarusian) you can visit any national play in the theater.
Most large museums are located in the city center and are within walking distance for tourists: The National Art Museum of Belarus, Museums of the History of Minsk and History of Belarusian Cinema, and others.
During warmer months, one of the very popular tours in Minsk and near it is a suburban tourism. Not far from the Belarusian capital, there are several entertaining sports complexes (Logoisk, Staiki or Silichi), as well as the Belarusian Museum of Architecture and Life Strochitsy, well-known to the whole country, and the Museum of folk crafts and technologies Dudutki.
Some Belarusian travel agencies arrange special sightseeing tours to Strochitsy and Dudutki with a full program including the foreign language-speaking guide.