The City of Chelyabinsk

The city of Chelyabinsk was the first city on my way to Irkutsk where I made a stop during the hitchhiking trip to Siberia in 2009. I had limited time to explore the city, since I was waiting for a call from the driver, who was going to drive me all the way to Novosibirsk. Yet, I liked Chelyabinsk with its new and old buildings and people wearing big fur hats. Chelyabinsk is the administrative center of Chelyabinsk Oblast of Russia and is located on the Miass river, just to the east of the Ural mountains. The city takes its name from the fortress of Chelyaba, which was built on the site in 1736.

While Chelyabinsk sure has its unique beauty in winter when snow covers the streets, roofs, and everything else around, I would still recommend to visit the city in summertime. Exploring the city when it’s -30°C is not a very pleasant thing to do. Well, unless you like extremely cold temperatures.

Note: Click on the image to see full-size

The oldest street of the city is the Kirovka street, also called the Arbat of Chelyabinsk, in association with Moscow’s Arbat. In 2004, the mayor of the city decided to turn it into a cultural monument. The street was closed for any vehicles, several bronze statues and monuments were installed, it became pedestrian only. Today, Kirovka serves as a tourist attraction site, although locals, too, like to come here for a walk.

The XIX-XX century 2-storey buildings are the architectural dominant of Kirovka, and architecture addicts will sure like it a lot. The first level of the houses is made of stone, while the second level is wooden with beautiful carvings on windows. Although I have to say that the shop signs and the ads on the buildings ruin the whole picture.

On the photo below is the Svyato-Troitsky Church, a historical and cultural monument built in 1914. I don’t know much about the history of this church, but I know that people with backpacks are not welcomed there at all. Whenever I am in a new city, I always visit churches, or temples, or mosques because usually they give a clear vision of the local community’s history. But as I entered the Svyato-Troitsky church, a lady aprroached me, saying, “Go out. You cannot enter the church. It is not allowed to come to church with backpack, don’t you know? Go out!”

I left the church and never came back, since I had no more wish to stay there after such a negative welcome. Instead, together with my friend we went to walk along the Miass river, then drank tea in a local café. When the driver called me and said he’s ready to continue our trip to the East, we took a bus to the train station to meet him. And then I left. But I came back to Chelyabinsk at least two times again on the way to and back from Southeast Asia. Each of my visits was during winter.

The Hitchhiking Trip to Siberia – 2009
On the road from Moscow to Irkutsk:
Part One // Part Two // Part Three // Part Four // Part Five // Part Six


9 thoughts on “The City of Chelyabinsk

  1. Pingback: Hitchhiking Siberia: The Urals, The City of Chelyabinsk and The Accident « On The Road

  2. Pingback: Hitchhiking Siberia: The Cold Night, The Sunset and The Euphoria « On The Road

  3. Pingback: The Siberian Hitchhiking Trip – 2009 « On The Road

  4. Pingback: The Siberian Hitchhiking Trip – 2009 | On The Road

  5. Pingback: Hitchhiking Siberia: The Cold Night, The Sunset and The Euphoria | On The Road

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