Central Federal District
Time: Moscow Time Zone (MSK/MSD).
Local time now:
Federal district: Central Federal District.
Main cities: Kurchatov, Lgov, Shchigry, Zheleznogorsk.
Land and Resources: The oblast occupies the southern slopes of the middle-Russian plateau. The surface is hilly, and intersected by ravines. The central part of Kursk oblast is more elevated than the Seym Valley to the west. The low relief, gentler slopes, and mild winter make the area suitable for farming, and much of the forest has been cleared. The region borders on Bryansk Region in the north, Orlov and Lipetsk regions in the east, Voronezh and Belgorod regions in the south, and Ukraine in the west. It has an area of 29 800 km2 and is about equal in size to countries like Switzerland, Belgium, Moldova, or Albania. Kursk Oblast contributes to two major drainage areas—the Dnieper River and the Don River. There are 902 rivers and streams in the oblast. Major rivers are Seym, Psyol, and Kshen. The inland waters of Kursk oblast consist of 145 artificial lakes and about 550 small ponds.
Climate: Kursk Oblast`s location at the center of the European part of Russia gives the region a medium continental climate: warm summers and relatively mild winters. In July, the average daytime high temperature is 19.3 °C (66.7 °F). In January the average high is −8.6 °C (16.5 °F). The maximum of the rain falls during June and July.
Transportation: Kursk is the transportation center. There are air, railway and highway (Moscow-Simferopol) connections with other regions. There is an airport “Vostochny” in Kursk.
Kursk has a rich historical past, and the 1000 years of its existence are reflected in a large number of historical and architectural monuments, most of them built between the 17th and 19th centuries. Architectural monuments such as Sergievo-Kazansky and Znamensky cathedrals, the Romodanov and Baryatinsky palaces, the historical buildings of the Korennaya Hermitage, the former building of the Assembly of the Nobility (now the Officers` House), and many more, attract tourists to the city.
The oldest building in Kursk is the upper church of the Trinity Monastery, a good example of the transition style characteristic for Peter the Great`s early reign. The oldest lay building is the so-called Romodanovsky Chamber, although it was erected in all probability in the mid-18th century, when the Romodanovsky family had ceased to exist.
The city cathedral was built between 1752 and 1778 in the splendid Baroque style and was decorated so sumptuously that many art historians attributed it to Bartolomeo Rastrelli. Although Rastrelli`s authorship is out of the question, the cathedral is indeed the most impressive monument of Elizabethan Baroque not to be commissioned by the imperial family or built in the imperial capital.
The cathedral has two storeys, with the lower church consecrated to St. Sergius of Radonezh and the upper one — to the Theotokos of Kazan. The upper church is noted for an intricate icon screen which took 16 years to complete. The three-storey cathedral belltower derives peculiar interest from the fact that Seraphim of Sarov, whose father took part in construction works, survived an accidental fall from its top floor at the age of 7. The Resurrection Church is also shown where St. Seraphim was baptized.
The monastery cathedral of the Sign (1816-26) is another imposing edifice, rigorously formulated in the purest Neoclassical style, with a cupola measuring 20 metres in diameter and rising 48 metres high. The interior was formerly as rich as coloured marbles, gilding, and frescoes could make it. During the Soviet period, the cathedral was desecrated, four lateral domes and twin belltowers over the entrance pulled down. There are plans to restore the church to its former glory.
There are also modern shrines and memorials commemorating the Battle of Kursk, both in the city and in Prokhorovka.
The Command Station Bunker & Museum was built specifically in memorial of the courageous Russian T-34 tank units that fought in the Battle of Kursk, where a T-34 tank is on display. Over 6,000 armored vehicles fought in close range over the open territory near Kursk in 1943. This battle stopped the German advance into the Kursk Salient, and was a turning point in WWII on the Eastern Front.
Nearby is Tsentralno-Chernozemny Zapovednik, a large section of steppe soil that has never been plowed. It is used for a variety of research purposes.
Easter Procession in the Region of Kursk, painting by Ilya Repin (1880-83).
Sergievsko-Kazansky Cathedral in Kursk, 1752-78.
Cathedral of the Sign
Central Bank of Russia building
Kursk Oblast`s natural attraction is the State Central-Chernozem national park, which offers great opportunity for hiking. Oblast`s forests and others undeveloped areas are ideal for hunting, fishing, and camping. Traditional art and architecture are preserved in the town-museum of Rylsk and others historical towns of Kursk Oblast.
The Regional Museum of Archeology and the Museum of Local History have many unique exhibits of items of everyday life and a variety of figurines found during archeological digs. The Museum of Local History also acquaints visitors with the history of Kursk land in the historical sections "Pre-Soviet", "Soviet", and "The Modern Period". Regional museums display alternating thematic exhibits. The city`s Museum of the History of the Locomotive Depot is interesting as a reminder of the battle of Kursk. Museums and institutions devoted to other historical and cultural fields are also of great interest, for example, the Zoological Museum of Kursk Pedagogical University, the Motor Transport Museum, the A.A. Deineka Regional Art Gallery, an exhibit of exotic aquarium fish and plants, and the Museum of the History of Electric Transport in Kursk.
Kursk is also famous for its theaters: the Pushkin Drama Theater, the Rovesnik Young People`s Theater and the Kursk State Puppet Theater.
Monument to heroes of civil war
building of the Central Bank of Russia (along the street Lenin)
Encarta World Atlas
http://region.kursk.ru/ - Administration of Kursk Region