Atop the Privolzhskaya hill on the banks of the immense Volga River (longest and largest river in Europe) sits Ulyanovsk, the beautiful Russian city with a wealth of history and culture. The birthplace of countless poets, writers, artists, photographers, historians, actors, and architects such as I.A. Goncharov, N.M. Yazykov, S.G. Skitalets and more, Ulyanovsk is a treasure trove of art and culture, much of which is preserved in its many museums, theatres, orchestras and architec-ture till today. Its long and illustrious history is also worth a mention; originally founded as the fortress of Simbirsk in 1648 by Tsar Alexey Mikhailovich, it was subsequently renamed after the leader of the October Revolution Vladimir Ulyanov (who was born in Ulyanovsk and subsequently changed his name to Lenin) in 1924.
Today the city of Ulyanovsk is prospering; it has a population of more than 630,000, and is one of Russia’s leaders in the automobile and aircraft industries.
Public transport networks in Ulyanovsk are extensive and efficient - tourists can make use of the city’s buses, trams, and trolleys at relatively affordable prices. Unfortunately, though, non-Russian speakers may have difficulties getting around as little to no information is available in English (as of March 2015). As such, grabbing a taxi off the street may be a more effective solu-tion for tourists, as they are quite readily available and not too expensive.
Getting to other parts of Russia is a breeze from Ulyanovsk, though, as it is considered one of the region’s transport hubs. The city boasts 2 airports, about 3 rail stations and a river port.
What to see and do
If you’re in Ulyanovsk, visiting the city’s museums are a must. Have a look at the Ulyanovsk Re-gion Art Museum, one of the oldest in the city that is famous for its treasured collection of his-torically-important ancient art. Here you can enjoy pieces from the 16th and 17th centuries, cre-ated by artists from all around Europe.
After that, mosey over to the V. Lenin’s House Museum for a look at the home of Vladimir Len-in, the city’s most famous resident and namesake. The simple wooden building was the first house that the Ulyanov family had ever owned, and their stay there lasted for 10 years in the late 19th century. Look through the late family’s prized personal possessions, as well as various ex-hibits on the city and museum’s history.
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