Finally, Jekatarina, that founded this city, gets her place in Krasnodar. The city started out as a Kozak fortress that fell to the grace of tsarina Jekatarina. The town that came to be around the fortress and along the river Kuban was named Jekatarinodar (Gift of Jekatarina) at first and only in Sowyet times changed to Krasnodar (beautiful gift). After the communistic times, this city desided to maintain this name, which did not have any refernce to Sowyet leaders or statesmen. However, Jekatarina now gets her monument near the new church and the Krasnodar Kray Duma. In 2005 only the sockel was ready, the statue is being prepared somewhere else and will be raised in 2006.
Krasnodar has many educational institutes of which the university is the most important. Though quite different as in Western countries, students have to really study hard to get the paper and degree. Many other professional schools are around Krasnodar, such as the Sports academy and the Technical school.
Two houses jump out in an endless row of remarkable buildings within Krasnodar centre. On Pushkin Square a wonderful fine decorated house in blue-greenish and white. The house belonged to a wealthy family in the days of Jekatarinadar (old name of Krasnodar) and also is now-a-days a museum. The rooms are in old styles and give a good impression of the times before the revolution. Another house is the house of Fjodor Akimovitsh Kobalenko. He lived here from 1884 until 1912. This rich man had a considerable art collection that he gave to the city of Jekatarinodar in 1903 and part of it went into the historical museum.
In stead of waiting until circus comes to town, the most Russian towns and cities have their permanant circus that offers a changing programm throughout the seasons of the year. Circus is truely something East European and therefore also Russian. Not for nothing, many of the best circus artists originate from this country.
When we are in Krasnodar, almost every day we drive over Severnaja Ulitsa into town and pass a red brick, bright blue topped Russian Orthodox Church. It has been my favourite Orthodox church in Russia ever since. It's beautiful form and colours are a lust for the eye in a region that is actually quite falling apart. When you get the chance to get out a little during your stay in Krasnodar, this might be a wonderful target. Follow Severnaja Ulitsa from Krasnaja Ulitsa (centre) for about 400 meters. On the right hand side the towers will arise.
Russia honours his war victims like no other country ni the world. It's no wonder, as especially in the second worldwar this country alone lost over 30 million souls. Sadly enough the Sowjet powers didn't learn that war never is a means to make a statement with Afghanistan as clear example (the Russian Vietnam). Nevertheless, important to honour those who fell in these political coloured wars. In the city's Northern park, the fallen hero's are commemorated.
Krasnodar, the Black Sea coast (Sochi, Anapa), Azov Sea (Temrjuk) and the Kavkas-mountains have an enormous attraction towards the Russians themselves, but ... as non-Russian you will be a stranger among them as only very few foreigners come to this corner of the largest country in the world. Most visit Moscow and Saint Petersburg and already fewer amounts see the country flashing by in the Trans-Siberian express. So, more "off-the-eaten-path" you can't be here, unless ... you're Russian.