Discover Kazan, a Volga paradise and historical treasure trove. Founded in the early 15th century, Kazan was an important part of the Tatar Khanate until it fell into Russian hands. To this day, the city preserves its Tatar Islamic identity in architecture, language, and culture. Tour Kazan to learn firsthand about Russia's second religion, Islam, and immerse yourself in a magnificent example of Volga diversity!
In the city center stands the massive Kazan Kremlin complex. Once a Tatar fortress, the Kremlin underwent reconstruction in the 16th and 17th centuries, and now represents a fusion of Tatar and Imperial Russian architectural styles. Inside the complex, admire gleaming parapets and gorgeous, long paths that lead you to one of the largest mosques in Russia – the Qolsharif. Even from far away, its soaring, light blue minarets catch the eye, and up close, the view only seems better! Take a tour of the mosque, which introduces travelers to Tatar Islamic culture. Afterward, walk past Suyumbike Tower, a center of local folklore, on your way to the nearby State Museum. Here, learn about Tatar history and culture and discover fascinating displays dating back centuries. To finish off your tour of the Kremlin, be sure to enjoy the breathtaking view of Kazan that opens up over the Volga River.
Nightfall in Kazan is especially beautiful. Head to Bauman Street in the downtown section of the city, a pedestrian zone filled with cafes, shops, bars, kiosks, and street performances. Grab some chak-chak, Tatarstan's so-called "national sweet," and begin your walk down the lit-up promenade, filled with statues reflecting important Tatar cultural and historical scenes. From there, head down toward the banks of the Volga river, where you can take a leisurely midnight stroll against the backdrop of the city. From down below, be sure to look up and catch site of the Kremlin complex, where an illuminated Qolsharif stands out against the night sky.
The "Third Capital" is an Islamic oasis on the Volga. Travel to Kazan is not only an amazing experience, but also an unforgettable trip to a rarely seen side of Russia!