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Volgograd

Federal District: Southern
Founded: 1589
Population: 1 016 137 (2016 Census)
Area: 859,353 km2
Federal City Day: 1st Sunday of September

Volgograd is an important industrial city located on the banks of the River Volga. The city was founded as the fortress of Tsaritsyn in 1589 to defend the southern flank of the Russian Empire and played a major role in the Russian Civil War and the development of the Soviet Union. From 1925-1961 the city was known as Stalingrad, and became famous due to the renowned battle of WWII- the ‘Battle of Stalingrad’. The battle is seen by most scholars as the pivotal battle of WWII, in which the tide was turned against Hitler’s fascist invaders. Over 2 million Soviet and fascist troops died in the battle which lasted over 6 months.

To honour such a momentous event there is a huge memorial complex situated on Mamayev Hill, which was the site of some of the fiercest conflict. On top of the hill there are hundreds of monuments, the main focus being the 85m high “Motherland Calls”. Also of interest is the Panorama Museum which is located on the banks of the Volga River and contains artefacts from WWII.

Volgograd is the largest river port in the whole of Europe, which is how most people get to the city. Otherwise, you can arrive by train or plane from Moscow and St. Petersburg.

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