Brest is located in the western part of Belarus, near the Bug and Mukhavets Rivers, close to the Polish border. Brest is the administrative center of Brest voblast.
Brest was founded in the first half of the 11th century as a town in Kiev Rus. The town was later belonged to Poland and Lithuania; and it was rebuilt after the Mongol invasion. The town was renamed as Brest-Litovsk in the 16th century, as it became part of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. At the end of the 18th century Brest became part of Russia. Under the Russian rule a large fortress was build in and around Brest in the 19th century.
In the Brest-Litovsk fortress, the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk was signed in 1918, ending the war between Russia and the Central Powers. Brest changed hands several times between 1918 and 1945. After the Yalta Conference in 1945, Brest became part of Belarusian Republic of the Soviet Union; and it is now part of the country of Belarus.
Brest’s main tourist attraction is the Brest Fortress. The fortress houses an archeological museum, now. Soviet style war memorial was constructed on the site of the 1941 battle. The town also has an outdoor railway museum.
Its Jewish synagogue dates back to the 16th century. Brest City Park is about 100 years old.
Belavezhskaya Pushcha National Park is a biosphere reserve, about 70 km north of Brest.
Brest Fortress, Belarus (Photo: GNU)