The epic journey around Belarus that the VETLIVA team made is coming to its logical conclusion. Our circle is about to close, and we will be at the starting point. For those who missed everything, recall our route for the last time:
- the first day passed in Chechersk and Mogilev,
- the second day we devoted Vitebsk and its environs,
- the third day passed under snowfall in Polotsk,
- on the fourth day we taxied to Braslav Lakes and Naroch,
- we met on the fifth day in Grodno, Mir, Nesvizh and Brest,
- on the sixth day, we were lucky to visit the Brest Fortress and the homeland of Tadeusz Kosciuszko.
An epic journey should have an epic ending, and we promise it to you. Go!
Seventh day: Mazyr → Rechitsa → Gomel
Mazyr: homeland of mead, walrus and a castle
Mazyr Brewery was founded in 1885. It’s one of the oldest in Belarus.
The brewery is a real attraction of Mazyr. Incidentally, it is known not for beer, but for traditional Belarusian drinks: kvass, sbiten and mead. By the way, we went after them.
An interesting fact from VETLIVA: now you can try traditional Belarusian drinks and dishes that only riches saw on their tables in the old days! And VETLIVA has a chic gastrotour in Belarus for gourmets.
The entourage of a local company store takes us straight to the times of the USSR. Holding out the cherished bill to the saleswoman, we acquired sbiten and mead. It’s only a pity that we will only be able to take the sample in the evening, because we are driving again soon!
By the way, you can play a trick on the woman behind the counter and ask her: “why the factory is still called Mazyrbeer if the foamy drink has not been produced here for more than thirty years?”. Surely, she will answer you with a joke in response. And Mazyr begin for you here.
The next attraction of Mozyr, with which we happened to meet, was the settlement on the Castle Hill. In 1155, Mazyr was presented by Yuri Dolgoruky to Prince Svyatoslav. Besides the castle, there was simply nothing else in the city at that time. Now on Mount Kommunarov (that's what it is called) there is only a recreated version of the sights of Mazyr. We didn’t go to the castle, but we admired the old houses on the way to it.
It was time to continue our journey around Belarus. Gomel had just over 50 km to go, but on the way we had to see another interesting place.
Sights of Rechitsa: passing by the city of oil industry workers
Surely you know that oil fields were discovered near Rechitsa at one time. Perhaps, oil rigs cannot be called a tourist attraction in the literal sense of the word. However, their unusual silhouettes interestingly dilute the plain landscapes floating outside the window while traveling to the Republic of Belarus.
We counted about 30 towers while driving. And this is clearly not the limit, because Rechitsa is considered to be an oil Klondike of the blue-eyed. By the way, at the beginning of 00’s prices here were even higher than in the capital!
Traveling around Gomel: getting to know the pearl of architecture
At the entrance to Gomel, we first contacted the local guys and asked them where to start exploring the city. The answer was unequivocal: "The park". There we are!
Local “White House”: the main building of the Rumyantsev-Paskevich Palace.
The main and unconditional dominant of the Rumyantsev-Paskevich ensemble is the palace. Among the attractions of Gomel, it occupies a special place: within its walls meetings of high-ranking officials of the state take place.
Advice from VETLIVA: if you are planning to travel around the cities of Belarus on your own, as we are sure to use our guide. It gives valuable advice on how to spend a day or two in Gomel and where to stay. In a word, it closes all the tourist gestalt in one fell swoop.
The length of the Sozh embankment is about 800 m.
The ensemble actually consists of a whole complex of various buildings and locations:
- a hunting lodge (although Count Rumyantsev was not an avid hunter, he was even completely indifferent to this entertainment);
- swan pond;
- a chapel-tomb, similar to a miniature tower;
- a beautiful embankment, which has become even more beautiful after reconstruction;
- park with exotic trees.
We wanted to have dinner after the walk. Two of the most suitable places for this were just nearby: a youth bar “Kvartirnik” and a restaurant with European cuisine “Provence”, located directly above it, on the mountain. Restoring strength, we went on.
Spring is the perfect time to get to know the park. Everything around was blossoming and smelling: compared to the beginning of our trip to Belarus, when we managed to get into a snowstorm, it was already almost summer-warm.
Next in line we have another iconic place in Gomel. Now this place is called the observation tower, and once it was part of the sugar factory, which was located on the territory of the palace and park ensemble. The prospect of climbing up and meeting the sunset seems incredibly tempting, but the dream is breaking into the barrier of reality: the tower is open until 19.00 (7 p.m.), and it gets dark much later.
After wandering around the park, we went to the main exit. It goes to Lenin Square, and there is also something to see here. There was no separate building for theatrical productions in Gomel for a long time, and now, in the middle of the 20th century, it finally appeared.
A visit to the performance of the Gomel Drama Theater can be the perfect end to an eventful day. It was time for us to uncover the mead bought in Mazyr, so we say goodbye. Thanks to all those who spent this week with us!
And for data fans — briefly about the trip in numbers:
- Total distance: 3300 km,
- Fuel consumption: 180 liters of diesel,
- Days in transit: 7,
- Average prices for lodging per night: from 40 to 60 BYN (from $20 to $30),
- Average check for lunch: 4–7 BYN ($2–3,5).