Belarus is a country and former Soviet Bloc Republic in Eastern Europe. It is entirely landlocked, and surrounded by Russia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Ukraine. The climate is more moderate than other areas of Eastern Europe. Winters are cold but not too harsh, and summers are quite pleasant. More than 1.9 million of the country’s 9.5 million population live in the capital city of Minsk. Get a car for hire in Belarus so that you can explore Minsk at your leisure. A vehicle might also come in handy for visits to other destinations such as Brest, Mir, and Navahrudak.
Minsk is the capital of Belarus and a great place to visit if you want to see grandiose Soviet architecture. Get a car for rent in Belarus and head for Victory Square and Independence Avenue. You must also explore the Troitsky suburb, National Library of Belarus, and the many museums and churches. There are 18 museums in the city, but do not miss the Belarusian State Museum of the Great Patriotic War. There are 12 theatres worth visiting, but the best of the lot are the Bolshoi Ballet Theatre and the Theatre of Dolls. The Dynamo Stadium and Ice Palace might be worth a look-see if you are a sports fan.
The border town of Brest is about four hours from Minsk, close to where the borders of Belarus, Poland, and Ukraine come together. In fact, Brest is closer to Warsaw than it is to Minsk, but that is another story. For now, the main aim is a day trip to explore the famed 19th century Brest Hero-Fortress. It occupies a huge area of several miles, with a massive citadel in the center, and artificial islands linked to it by bridgeheads. It became famous mostly due to the resistance put up here during WW II by the Soviet Army against the invading Nazis.
The 16th century Gothic style Mir Castle is a UNESCO listed world heritage site, and one of the most popular tourist attractions in Belarus today. You can visit the castle on a day trip from Minsk, since Mir is on the way to Brest. But that makes it a rather hurried stop where you drive in on the M1 Motorway, snap a few pictures, and continue on to Brest. If you want to stay nearby and explore the rest of the Grodno region at your leisure, the best place to stay is Navahrudak. Other attractions near the castle include the Mir town square, Trinity Church, and the Church of St. Nicholas.
A four-hour drive to Brest with a stop along the way at Mir Castle is but one of the choices you have for day trips from Minsk. Book your car rental in Belarus right now and plan for visits to Bobruisk, Lida, and the UNESCO listed Belovezhskaya Pushcha forest on the border near Brest.
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