Monument to the founder of Yoshkar-Ola I.A. Obolensky-Nogotkov
Among the numerous localities in Russia, there is a place with an unusual name - Yoshkar-Ola. The only city in Russia that begins with the letter "Y" is the capital of the Republic of Mari El, which is sometimes called "Europe in the heart of Russia" due to its architecture that echoes the buildings of famous historical cities. Two embankments in Yoshkar-Ola are called Bruges and Amsterdam.
Yoshkar-Ola is located on the Malaya Kokshaga river. The name of the capital is translated from the Mari language as Red city. According to 2020 data, about 290 thousand people live in it. The capital of the Republic of Mari El was founded in 1584 by decree of Ivan the Terrible as a military fortress. The construction of the fortification was due to the fact that the population on the conquered lands of the Kazan khanate refused to obey.
The fortress was the headquarters of the regular troops, who kept order on their lands. Gradually, the fortress grew due to its security, and due to the increase in the number of artisans and merchants serving the military. So there was a "Tsarev city on Kokshaga", later renamed in Tsarevokokshaisk.
Due to economic development and the concentration of the population around the fortress, it began to grow settlements around the Fort. Farmers cultivated the land and grew hops, merchants established trade relations with other cities of Russia, and artisans and builders built the city. For a long time, Tsarevokokshaysk continued to perform tasks to pacify the rebels and remained an outpost for launching military campaigns to expand the borders of tsarist Russia.
The eighteenth century was marked by the development of industry and the construction of the first stone houses in the city, which began to replace wooden buildings. Despite this, by the beginning of the XX century Yoshkar-Ola remained a provincial city with few streets and buildings. The city's budget was mainly formed at the expense of agriculture.
After the October revolution of 1917, the Communists renamed the city from Tsarevokokshaysk to Krasnokokshaysk, but in 1928 it was renamed Yoshkar-Ola, in accordance with the Mari national identity, and became the capital of the Mari Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic.
During the Great Patriotic War, large factories were evacuated to Yoshkar-Ola. This served to develop the city's industry, which grew due to new jobs.
Today, the city is rich in cultural and historical attractions. You can start exploring it from the Patriarch's square, where the sculpture "12 Apostles" is installed. The square offers a beautiful view.
The Yoshkar-Ola History Museum is located in the old house of merchant Chulkov. The Museum's exposition includes about 24 thousand exhibits covering the history of the city and rural life.
An attractive place to visit can be considered the house of merchant Pchelkin, covered with mysticism, known for its secret rooms and secret underground passages.
On Republic square and the Blessed Virgin Mary, you get the feeling that you are in Moscow, thanks to the Annunciation tower, which is a copy of the Kremlin's Spasskaya tower. The square is home to the Annunciation Cathedral, an Italian Park, a sculpture of the Virgin Mary with the baby in her arms, and the largest fountain of Yoshkar-Ola with a towering sculpture of the Archangel Gabriel.
From the square, you can take a walk along the longest pedestrian street of Yoshkar-Ola - Chavaina Boulevard, named after the first Mari writer and playwright.
Perhaps the most favorite character of the townspeople is the bronze Yoshkin cat, installed in 2011 at the expense of a local patron. If you sit down next to the cat and say your heart's desire, it will certainly come true.
Visiting the beautiful city of Yoshkar-Ola, you will discover a lot of interesting and unexpected things. It is nice to know that this is one of the few cities in Russia where population growth and dynamic development continue.