Brest is mostly famous for its fortress, but there are many other places for sightseeing and leisure. Searching for bargains at the markets, feeling the Soviet atmosphere at Belarusian or Uzbekistan restaurants, ordering a spanking session for your friend in a night club - those small things turn any trip into a really remarkable experience. And, when you finish with sightseeing, the best guide to shopping, eating, and partying in Brest is here to enhance your journey.
Pedestrian Sovetskaya Street can also act as a shopping street of Brest. You will not find international brand stores, but many shops with random clothes, jewelry, groceries, and so on. In the end, you will get to the main shopping center of Brest - "TSUM". If you want to buy food, the Brest Central Market is open daily. It has a unique circus-like grocery store with food from small plants and local farmers.
Brest is home for several clothing and garment factories. Some, like «Nelva», «Lakbi» and «Elema», are well known in Belarus and have their brand stores in Brest. As I explained in the «Minsk shopping guide» article, Belarusians usually go shopping to markets, rather than shopping streets. And that's also the case in Brest. Many producers export their clothes to Russia and have no brand stores around Belarus. The only way to find their clothes and to shop like a local is to visit clothing markets in Brest. To get to the «Staryi Gorod» open-air market, take a trolleybus #8 from «Ordzhonikidze» stop near the train station and leave at «28 Iyulya» stop. The «Na Graevke» market sells goods at a higher price, but that is definitely a better option when it is cold or rainy. Take the marshrutka (small yellow bus) #9, #17 or #19 from the Central Railway Station to the «Vodokanal» bus-stop.
Three cozy «Paragraph» cafes serve great coffee and desserts. The same goes for «Times Cafe», «Royal Coffee», «Ugol 73», «Dom Fani Bravermann,» and «Sonet» - all along the pedestrian Savietskaya Street. For burgers, check the «Burger Club» and «Freedom». In the «Buffet» you take food like in a canteen - a perfect option for a quick and possibly even healthy meal in the city center. «Svoyaki» is a Russian slang word for «relatives». Restaurant with this name serves traditional Belarusian cuisine. Cooks in "Venezia Caffe" prepare pizza in a traditional Italian stone oven. Uzbekistan cuisine restaurant «Tashkent» offers more than 40 Mid-Eastern dishes. Two last places are located at Internatsionalnaya Street above the Mukhavets River. And if you came earlier for your train, the Central Station Restaurant is a very classy Soviet-style must-visit.
If you are collecting achievements in the «Untapped» app for beer-lovers, your quest is to get to the Brest Brewery bar-shop and try their beers. Finish the mission in «True Pinta» or «Draft House».
I can not find the better way to describe the clubs in Brest, then how the «Korova» club cloakroom attendant explained it. If you want something glamorous, stay at "Korova". If you want to feel young among schoolkids - check "Loft", it is next door. If you enjoy a good fight, «Planeta-rock» is your place. And if you want to have fun - go to the "Coyote" bar, but the people there are strange. I can personally tell that the last bar tries to follow the «Coyote Ugly» movie concept to its fullest. I loved the live music and kinky pranks that visitors ordered from the menu list for their friends. Also, if you’re always hesitating on which food to order, they have four options of «something random» at different prices.
There are three ways to get to Brest from Minsk by public transport. Trains depart every 1-2 hours, and prices vary from 6 BYN (3 $/€) for a sit to 22 BYN (11 $/€) for a bed in a closed four-person compartment. Please beware, when you leave the train in Brest, you would need to walk up to the bridge. It will seem logical to go in the direction of the train station building. And it makes sense if you want to buy tickets or eat at the restaurant. But, the central part of the city is in the opposite direction, with no buildings at the end of the bridge. There is no sign in English about it, and people go both ways, so it is easy to get confused.
Buses from Minsk depart daily at 00:10, 6:30, 10:40, 13:30, 14:35, and 19:00 and cost 15-23 BYN (7-12 $/€). Brest Bus Station is close to the bridge and the city from the railway station. The trip from Minsk to Brest takes around four hours.
You will only know that this guide to shopping, eating, and partying in Brest is the best when you actually live it. Locals are friendly, and to get the most of your trip, be polite to them. Learn several words in Belarussian or Russian and be open - talking to people is the key to any place you travel to.
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