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Kazan is the capital of the republic of Tatarstan and is a beautiful and interesting city. It is home to the Tatars — descendants of a nomadic Turkic tribe and part of the Golden Horde that wreaked havoc across Russia in the Middle Ages.

Kazan's Kremlin with Kul Sharif mosque within its wallsYou will see bilingual street signs and the green, white and red Tatar flag fluttering throughout the city, giving it a different atmosphere to other Russian cities. Ivan the Terrible conquered Kazan in 1552, building St Basil's Cathedral in Moscow as a celebration of the fact.

Ivan forced the local Muslim population to convert to Christianity, but now you will see mosques in the city. The Kremlin is the jewel in Kazan's crown and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000. A stroll within its walls is a must when visiting this historic city.

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Map of Kazan

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