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Badanov Alex & NadjaRUSSIA. Travel across the MARI EL

Hi! We are Aleksandr and Nadezhda. We live in Mari El. It is a small territory in the central part of Russia. Our republic has a unique nature. It is rich in forests, rivers and lakes. And also our people are very hospitable. We are fond of trips across Mari El. Welcome to our place and enjoy our wonderful nature.
You can contact us: tel. +79177153581, Email badanov@list.ru


The Republic of Mari El is situated at the Eastern part of European plain in the middle flow of the Russian river Volga.
The greatest part of Mari Republic is on the left bank of Volga where there are hills with ravines and valleys.
This territory is called Vyatka ridge. This area has a picturesque landscape and is known as”Mari Switzerland”.
To the West there is the Mari lowland. It is very vast. Most of the republic is the taiga forest. On the territory of Mari El numerous rivers, springs, lakes are situated.


The Republic of Mari El has a rich history. A great number of archaeological relics can tell us about it. They refer to Paleolithic and Neolithic periods.
From ancient times the Mari people are famous for their woodcarving, weaving and embroidery. They make furniture, jewelry and other things using different ornaments. It may be geometric shapes, animals or plants. Folk Instruments: tumyr (drum), shuvyr (bagpipe), gusli (harp), shushpyk (whistle), kovyzh (violin). There are not many monuments of architecture because of wooden buildings.


The capital of Mari El is Joshkar-Ola. It was founded in 1584. Joshkar-Ola is situated the bank of the river Small Kokshaga. (the left inflow of the river Volga)
 Before 1919 it was called Tsarevokokshaisk, then Krasnokokshaisk.
The word "Joshkar-Ola” means the red city. In 1990 Joshkar-Ola considered to be one of the historical places of Russia.


The main sights of  Joshkar-Ola

The Mari Tsar-pushka (gun) is on Nogotkov’s square. It is there since 2007. It weighs about 12 tons. The gun’s barrel is made of steel. The wheels are cast.

The museum of history was opened in 1996. There are  about 17 thousand exhibits. Of great value are the collections of ethnography, decorative art, archaeological and heraldry, art works, documentary photographs. The visitors can see the trader’s shop, the room of philistines. This museum shows the cosy atmosphere of old houses with their samovars, old clocks, hand-made carpets and ficuses.

The national art gallery is the greatest exhibition area of the city. It was opened in 2007. It was visited by 60 thousand of people. Permanent exhibition from the Museum of Fine Arts presents the best examples of national painting, drawing and sculpture. On the facade of the gallery housed a huge clock chimes with moving figures. Every hour we can see the donkey carrying the icon.

The Republican Museum of Fine Arts is formed and developed on the following key areas: self Mari fine art and decorative arts (in this unique collection); Russian painting and sculpture in part - mostly the end of 19-20 centuries.

The Tsarevokokshaisk Kremlin was reconstructed and opened in 2009 on the site of an ancient fortress Tsarevokokshaisk. For centuries the territory of the Kremlin was the center of administrative, commercial and social life of Tsarevokokshaisk, and now, at the beginning of the XXI century, regaining the status of the historical city center. In the center of the complex is set a monument to the king of Fyodor Ivanovich, under his decree in 1584 the city Tsarevokokshaisk was founded.

The National Museum is named after Evseev. It is the oldest museum in the Republic of Mari El. Founded on March 4, 1920. The Museum is named after the prominent local historian and scholar of Mari people Evseev. In the halls and funds of the National Museum are located more than 200 thousand of exhibits. Among them we can find clothing, ritual objects and ornaments not only Mari but also Russian, Tatar, Chuvash, Udmurt, Mordvinians. The fund of the National Museum includes a collection of porcelain and earthenware, interior of  XVIII-XIX centuries. Archaeological fund contains more than 90, 000 items that reflect the ancient history of the Volga region of Mari. Ethnographic collection contains unique household items.           

The monument of Ivan Kirlya was installed in Yoshkar-Ola on the square in front of the train station. The bronze sculpture "Ivan Kirlya" depicts a talented Mari Soviet actor and poet. The plot of the monument was taken from the first sound Soviet film "Road to Life”, where he played a person named Mustafa.

The Hammer and builder monument in Yoshkar-Ola is devoted  to people who are engaged in beautification of the city, region, republic and even country. Weight of the hammer is more than 2. 5 tons and the size is about 4 m.

Monument to Obolensky-Nogotkov, the first governor of the city Tsarevokokshaisk (the ancient name of the capital of Mari El) established in the center of Yoshkar-Ola in front of Government House on the square, which is named the same name of the founder of the Mari capital. This is one of the main attractions of Yoshkar-Ola and the historic character of the city. Prince is known for involving the suppression of the uprising in the Volga region, the so-called Third Cheremis war.

The monument to Leonid,  the Bishop of Mari . Bishop Leonid was shot in 1938. The monument was erected in 2007 on the square named after I.A.Obolensky.

The sculpture « The tree of Life» is installed in the Park named after the     XXX  anniversary of the Komsomol. Three bronze musicians  height of more than 3 meters are playing  Mari national instruments. Sculpture meets national color of the republic, and reflects the musicality of the Mari people. The boy, a man and an old man - three heroes and three musical instruments - harp, drum and pipe in hand. In the middle there is a  tree as a symbol of life and continuity of generations. The sculpture combines all - historic, epic and cultural epic Mari people.

Monument of Patriarch Alexy II. It is located on the bank of the Little Kokshaga.

Russian Academic Drama Theatre named after George Konstantinov was founded in 1919. Time of working as the head director G.V. Konstantinov was the whole epoch in the life of the theater (1964-1994). The activities of this person occupy a central place in the history of the theater. In 1993, the theater, headed by Konstantinov was the initiator of the International Association of Russian Theatres (March), with headquarters in Yoshkar-Ola, and its president became People's Artist of USSR M. Solomin. September 30, 1994 the theater was named after George Viktorovich Konstantinov.

Cathedral of the Resurrection was built in 1759. The cathedral was closed in 1928, was used as a cinema. It was renovated and returned to the believers in 1944.. In 1961 it once again closed and demolished. To date, the cathedral rebuilt and March 27, 2010 was consecrated archbishop of Yoshkar-Ola and Mari Republic.

Church of the Holy Trinity is the oldest stone church in Yoshkar-Ola. The church was built in 1736 and was the first stone buildings of the city. The church closed in 1932, in 1939 the bell tower and the upper tier of the temple is broken. In the 1930's on the ground floor of the temple located shop. During the Great Patriotic War, there were tested party armor plates. In 1995-2008 the building was  restored for a new project.

Church of Our Lady of Tikhvin built in 1774 as a church to the cemetery. the Clergy and nobles of the city were burial at the church. In 1926 it was decided to ban funeral at the cemetery and the closing of the church. In 1927, the graves were razed to the ground. In place of the cemetery is located AAFC recreation behalf of the XXX Anniversary of the Komsomol. In the early 90-ies of XX century, the church was reconstructed, and there are services.

Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary was built at the initiative of President of the Republic of Mari El, L.I. Markelov in 2006. The church is located on the territory of the House of Government of the Republic of Mari El.

Voznesensky temple
was built in 1756 at the expense of the merchant Ivan Andreevich Pchelin The church was originally trehprestolnoy. The upper floor of a building located in the main temple altar in honor of the Ascension and a chapel in the name of Our Lady of Kazan, in the lower church acted after the Exaltation of the Cross with chapels of St Basil the Great, Gregory the Theologian and John Chrysostom, and St. Gury and Varsonofi Kazan Wonderworkers, who were abolished before the revolution. At present church has the status of a cathedral. In 2009 the restoration of the demolished during the Great Patriotic War, the bell tower of the church  was started .

Mari Gulag Museum is open  on May 9, 2011 at the entrance to the Tsarevokokshaisk Kremlin. Near memorial to the victims of the Gulag in a mass grave who died during the repression of the inhabitants of Mari El is located.
gulag mari-el

The Republic of Mari El

Mironosizkaya hermitage (17 century). The appearance of the monastery belongs to the middle of XVII century and is associated with the phenomenon of wonderworking image of the Blessed Virgin Mary with the holy myrrh wives. Mironositskaya temple - a bright monument of Russian architecture, builded in the tradition of the XVII century. He is a two-storey building. In the top part of the cold main church of Sts. myrrh, and the chapel of Sts. John Forerunner, and the bottom - warm church in honor of Holy Face of Jesus Christ and the chapel of Sts. Archangel Michael. At the end of XX century revival Mironositskaya desert as nunnery. Near monastyrm is holy Mironositskaya source.

Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin. On a hill village Semenovka golden-domed crown adorns the temple in the name of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It was built in 1818 at the expense of the parishioners. In his architectural forms of the church as it synthesizes the traditional Russian and classical techniques. In Soviet times, the church remained active. Divine service it stopped only for 4 years (1940-1944).

Lake Sea eye (Miracle of Russia) is distinguished a unique form, like a volcanic crater destroyed the outer wall. It is a relatively young karst collapse occurred in a high bench to 90 m in height. Color of the water in the lake amazing - emerald green. When you look with Sharinskaya mountains down the valley, that catches the eye a bright contrast between the color of water in the sea eye and other nearby reservoirs, where water is the usual color. The unusual color of the water attached to green, fragile, do not touch seaweeds.

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