Saratov is one of the most beautiful cities, standing on the banks of the Volga River. The city is located on the bank of the Volga River, in the center of the vast plain of European Russia. The Saratov region is one of the most developed and densely populated areas of Russia.
Saratov – the home city of the State Technical University of Saratov - is rather old. It's history goes back to the late 16th century, when Duke Grigoriy Zasekin founded a town on the southern border of Russia on July 2, 1590. As its neighbors - Tsaritsyn and Samara, Saratov was a fortress, protecting Russia from nomads.
As the time passed the city kept growing and gained more economic and trades importance. By 1797 it became the center of Saratovskaya Guberniya (Saratov Region) - a huge area stretching from Penza in the North to Tsaritsyn in the South.
Saratov stands on the bank of the Volga River, having delicious sturgeons with caviar, supplied to other regions. There used to be plenty of delicious sturgeons with caviar in the river. This peculiarity was pictured on the city's coat of arms, which shows 3 sturgeons shaped as a star on the blue background. Nowadays the sturgeons are almost gone due to the changes produced by a dam. Today the sturgeons are bread by special fish-farming organizations).
Today Saratov is a big city with a population of over one million. Being a large urban area with a fairly well-developed entertainment infrastructure (the city has 5 theaters, the oldest circus in the country, a wonderful art gallery, known also as "The Volga Hermitage", a variety of nightclubs, movie theaters, and restaurants), it's, at the same time, very quiet and pleasant to stay in.
Visitors enjoy strolling along the streets of Saratov, watching its architecture and visiting its parks. There are a lot of well-known historical places in and around the city, such as the landing site of the first cosmonaut - Yuri Gagarin, and the birthplaces of famous Russian people. The history of Saratov is closely connected with Russian history and culture, and such names as Peter the Great and Yemelyan Pugachev.
Saratov has moderately continental climate with warm and dry summers and with plenty of sunny days. In summer temperature in Saratov rises above +25C, which is perfect for relaxation the huge beach in the middle of the Volga river. Winters are slightly freezing (sometimes very cold) and bring a lot of snow. The temperature usually stays around -10..-15C. One of the most popular activities of Saratovites in the cold season is skiing and snowboarding.
Famous Places of Saratov
Saratov has a lot of recreational and sightseeing opportunities. One of the places, where residents and visitors of the city can relax, is Kirov Avenue. It is a traffic-free zone, with a great number of the shops, night clubs, cafes and restaurants, where one can have a wonderful meal.
There are many monuments in Saratov. For example, open-air Military Museum (Victory Park) on the Sokolovaya Hill has a huge monument with cranes on its top dedicated to the memory of Saratov citizens who perished in the Great Patriotic War. Other monuments are connected with the names of famous people. There is a world famous picture gallery (the Fine Arts Museum) in Saratov which was opened to the public on July 26, 1885. It is one of the largest picture galleries in Russia. Named after Radishchev, the museum contains more than 15000 outstanding works of Russian and European artists. One can also visit the Museum of Local Lore. There you can learn about the history, ethnography, flora and fauna of the region.
Every visitor to Saratov is irresistibly drawn to the Opera Theatre and Teatralnaya Square, the historic and spiritual centre of this city. You can visit the square at any time, day and night, without worrying about opening hours and entrance tickets. Opera Theatre is open only at a fixed time.
Saratov has a lot of theatres: the Chernyshevskiy Opera and Ballet Theatre, which stages Russian and world classics, the Drama theatre, which presents classical and modern plays, and the Theatre of Young Spectator. There is also the Theatre of Musical Comedy and the Puppet Theatre for children.
The widespread interest in classical music is reflected in large audiences of concerts in the Saratov State Sobinov Conservatoire and Philarmonia. Saratov has lots of palaces of attraction, where one can spend a good time.
The Russian National Circus was founded more than a century ago by the Nikitins Brothers. It was the first Russian permanent circus. Now it is very popular among children and adults. Saratov citizens are proud of their city, of its architecture, history, traditions and culture.