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Russia’s Gate to the Orient

By Linda Tancs

In the 17th century, Astrakhan was developed as Russia’s gate to the Orient. As a result, it was settled by many merchants from Armenia, Persia, India and Khiva. To this day, it remains a hub for commercial activities, strategically located on the Volga delta where the river meets the Caspian Sea. It’s also where you’ll find the Astrakhan Kremlin, a fortress built in the 1500s at the command of Ivan the Terrible. Its walls and towers served as a blueprint for the development of other fortresses in the Russian State. During World War I there was an infantry regiment there; cannons arrived during World War II to protect the city against German air raids. Today this historical landmark serves as a museum.

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To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

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