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Top-10 of What to Do in Kazan During the 2018 World Cup

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Tatarstan's capital Kazan is one of the cities which will play host to the 2018 FIFA World due to kick off in Russia in June. Sputnik has created an unmissable to-do list for all the tourists and fans who will be in Kazan during the main footballing event of the year.

Echpochmak and Chak-Chak

The national Tatar cuisine is something even the most discerning tourists will appreciate – it’s not only very tasty it’s also quite cheap!

Chak-chak
© Sputnik / Vadim Braydov
Chak-chak

When in Kazan, you must try echpochmak, an appetizing pasty with meat and potatoes, as well as chak-chak, a dessert which is made of dough filled with Kazan-made honey and which is used to greet guests.

The Old-Tatar Sloboda

The Old-Tatar Sloboda is a historical district of Kazan, where local poets and 'enlighteners' once lived.

View of Lake Kaban and Old Tatar quarters from the helicopter pad of the Grand Hotel Kazan. (File)
© Sputnik / Maksim Bogodvid
View of Lake Kaban and Old Tatar quarters from the helicopter pad of the Grand Hotel Kazan. (File)

Walking across the streets of the old Tatar settlement, one can see authentic wooden houses, monumental mosques and cozy courtyards. In the numerous artisan shops you can find original handmade souvenirs.

The Syuyumbike Tower

Syuyumbike is a leaning tower in Kazan which is enveloped in myths. Legend has it that in the 16th century, the Queen of Syuyumbike decided to commit suicide by jumping from the tower in a show of protest against Russian Ivan IV the Terrible's proposal to marry her.

The Syuyumbike Tower in the Kazan Kremlin. (File)
© Sputnik / Maksim Bogodvid
The Syuyumbike Tower in the Kazan Kremlin. (File)

There is also a legend that if you lean your head or your back against the tower and make a wish, it will almost certainly come true.

The Cat of Kazan

Kazan cats are said to have saved the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg from rats in the past, and their descendants currently protect the St. Petersburg State Hermitage Museum's masterpieces from rodents.

The sculpture of the Cat of Kazan. (File)
© Sputnik / Maksim Bogodvid
The sculpture of the Cat of Kazan. (File)

The Cat of Kazan monument is installed on the city's Bauman Street where residents and tourists can pat the bronze animal just for luck.

Great Orthodox Shrine

The miraculous list of the Icon of the Kazan Mother of God was transferred to Kazan by then-Pope John Paul II in 2005.

Believers by the Icon of Our Lady of Kazan in the Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross at the Kazan Monastery of Our Lady
© Sputnik / Maksim Bogodvid
Believers by the Icon of Our Lady of Kazan in the Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross at the Kazan Monastery of Our Lady

Nowadays, it is kept in the Holy Cross Cathedral, which was built on the historical site where the icon was found.

Pancakes Made on Sviyazhsk Island

The island city of Sviyazhsk located thirty kilometers from Kazan is known for its delicious treats, such as domestically made bread or flat cakes.

The Cathedral of the Joy of All Who Sorrow, on the right in the background, in the island town of Sviyazhsk
© Sputnik / Maksim Bogodvid
The Cathedral of the Joy of All Who Sorrow, on the right in the background, in the island town of Sviyazhsk

Tourists will especially appreciate hot pancakes directly from the stove, served with honey, sour cream or jam.

Muslim Architecture of Great Bolgar

The town of Great Bolgar near Kazan includes the remains of an ancient Bulgarian civilization on the Volga River, such as fortifications, the famous White Mosque and many more artifacts.

Ak Jami Mosque in the city of Bolgar is seen here during the Izge Bolgar Cıyenı holiday marking the day of Volga Bulgaria's official conversion to Islam
© Sputnik / Maksim Bogodvid
Ak Jami Mosque in the city of Bolgar is seen here during the Izge Bolgar Cıyenı holiday marking the day of Volga Bulgaria's official conversion to Islam

In the museum-exhibition complex "Memorial sign in honor of the adoption of Islam by the Volga Bulgars in 922," tourists can see the world's largest printed Koran, the sacred book of all Muslims.

Selfie Near the Farmers' Palace

The unusual facade of the Farmers' Palace continues to attract tourists and photo bloggers from all over the world.

Palace of Farmers in Kazan. (File)
© Sputnik / Aleksandr Wilf
Palace of Farmers in Kazan. (File)

The facade's central feature, which is built in the form of the "tree of life", is said to be especially suitable to make selfies.

Frogs and the Raifa Monastery

Raifa Monastery is a friary located not far from Kazan.

A view of Raifa Monastery of Our Lady, Raifa village, Zelenodolsky District. (File)
© Sputnik / Maksim Bogodvid
A view of Raifa Monastery of Our Lady, Raifa village, Zelenodolsky District. (File)

A picturesque pond where frogs live is situated near the monastery and legend has it that the frogs do not croak so as not to interfere with the prayers of the monks.

The State Theater of Galiassgar Kamal

The theater presents various performances in the Tatar language, including comedies, dramas, musicals, as well as masterpieces of world classics and works of national authors.

Simultaneous translation into Russian and English is provided for those spectators who do not speak Tatar.

Apart from Kazan, ten more Russian cities will host matches of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, due to be held between June 14 and July 15.These include Moscow, Kaliningrad, St. Petersburg, Volgograd, Nizhny Novgorod, Samara, Saransk, Rostov-on-Don, Sochi and Yekaterinburg.

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fans, cuisine, tourists, football, 2018 FIFA World Cup, Russia, Kazan
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