Belarusian province or going home. Part 1: Slutsk
I've just come back to my place in Minsk, but I hope you don't mind returning to my native town and starting our trip around Belarus from there :)
is 100 km far from the capital of Belarus – Minsk and it takes a bit more than one hour to get there by car (actually, it depends on driver’s skills, but usually it’s like this:). I used to be driven by my brother, but should I wish to see my parents I can call to a private company and book a place anytime: there are minibuses available every 30 minutes (or not really available at weekends because of too many of those who wish).
Anyway, a warm welcome to Slutsk!
This is an ancient town, which was mentioned for the first time in chronicle in 1116, but all that can remember you about it is the stone in the historical part of Slutsk, where a castle was standing many many years ago.
And now there is the house of culture here, which is a very functional place for all types of events:) so as there are no clubs or theatres in the town. When I say we have no theaters or clubs I mean special buildings, since we have amateur performances and we also have discos (even in the park in summer).
On the other side of the street Our White House is situated :) This is Building of Executive Committee. And the adjacent square is popular among teenagers in summer evenings. They try their roller skates here or just sitting at the benches or...whatever.
This is indeed the center of the town. You can also see some monuments nearby. One of them is to Lenin, another is to soldiers and the most interesting was raised in 2000 to saint Safiya Slutskaya the last princess of Slutsk, who did a lot for Orthodox Church at the times of church union with Rome.
There is a little chapel (Chapel of Saint Varvara) a bit further.
In the past
Slutsk was a princedom, it had a printing-house and a manufactory producing famous belts with silk and gold, so called Slutsk Belts. The element of gentry’s dress was very popular in ХVІІІ – XIX cent. At first its pattern looked like an eastern, but later belarusian weavers added national motives like common local flowers to it.
We have just souvenir belts even without any original example in the local museum. The local museum, by the way, also is of a historical and cultural value. It was a house of noble descent in XIX cent.
Though the town was destroyed during wars we still have some sights. Sviata-Mihailauski Cathedral is an architectural monument of XVIII cent. and a place of intercourse with God for pious people.
There is also a bright Roman-Catholic church in the town.
Gymnasium №1 is notable since it is the oldest school in Belarus, founded in XVII cent. And now it is one of the best among 13 schools in the town.
A sad place is the memorial in honour of soviet soldiers, partisans and inhabitants killed during World War II , where 14 000 people are buried in common graves.
Apart from looking for sights one can go to the cinema or to the gallery or...to the library or park...
We also have some cafes and restaurants, but a provincial town doesn’t offer a wide range of culinary and entertainment delights, to suit your every taste and whim. That’s why not many young people want to live here, considering the town too boring.