Location: the Republic of Khakassia (South Siberia, on the border with Mongolia)
What to ask for: Health
Lost in the middle of nowhere, the Republic of Khakassia is literally covered with menhirs – thick slabs vertically dug into the soil, scientists from all over Russia have been struggling with the question of their mysterious origins for more than a century. It is unclear how slabs weighing 50 tons were moved from the mountains to the plains. The slabs’ age is more than 4,000 years, but their purpose is still unknown. In ancient times, magic rites were performed at these places located near the fault lines, and the lumps themselves were used to treat disease. One of the most famous ones is the menhir Khurtuyakh Ulus-Tas, which means "a large stone statue of an old woman," recently listed in the UNESCO World Heritage List. On the slab, there is a carved face, chest and abdomen of a woman – it is believed that if the statue's face is smeared with cream or milk, it will help cure infertility. The rest of the menhirs do not specialize in any specific diseases, and in general are able to improve one’s vitality – it is enough to just walk around the menhir clockwise three times, to touch him and visualize your wish.
Location: the Chelyabinsk Region (South Urals)
What to ask for: spiritual solace
Not as famous as Stonehenge, but no less unique, the Arkaim fortress-settlement is one of the most attractive places for pilgrimage and esoteric tourism in Russia. In a careful study of this annular structure by archaeologists and astronomers, it was revealed that the city is more than 4,800 years old. Modern scientists were amazed at the complexity and accuracy of implementation of the "project", especially since no traces of earlier and simpler structures were found. Arkaim is also considered to be the largest observatory in Eurasia due to the number of astronomical events observed. The place where the archaeological site is located is considered a "sacred one", and having "positive energy" capable of refining a person spiritually and healing some diseases. If you stop at the Arkaim reserve for only a few days, your dreams will either come true by themselves, or you will realize that everything in this world is so perishable, and that dreaming is worthless.
Location: Kazan, Republic of Tatarstan
What to ask for: love
The Suyumbike tower is part of the Kazan Kremlin and is one of the main symbols of Kazan. Its spire is deflected from the vertical of the building by nearly 2 meters. A sad legend has it that the tower was built on the orders of the Russian Tsar Ivan IV with the nickname the Terrible, which speaks for itself, seven days after his seizure of Kazan (the capital of the powerful Khanate of Kazan at the time). Ivan the Terrible asked the hand of the Kazan princess named Syuyumbike, and she, in turn, demanded that the Russian tsar builds a seven tiered tower in the shortest possible time (7 days). When everything was ready, Syuyumbike threw herself from the tower. The leaning landmark helps those who ask for good luck in love (since Ivan the Terrible didn’t get any). It is believed that what you wish for will come true if you stand with your back against the tower and say the name of your beloved.
Location: St. Petersburg, Fortress
What to ask for: wishes fulfilled
The Peter and Paul fortress laid on Hare Island, is where the history of St. Petersburg began. Soon, bastions and other military facilities were built on Hare Island, many of which have survived intact to the present day. Near the Peter and Paul Cathedral, after which the fortress was named later, a tomb for kings and great princes was built with sixty crypts beneath the floor. Most Russian rulers of the 18-19 centuries were buried there. They say that if you make a wish while looking at the golden Archangel, located on the spire of the cathedral, it will definitely come true.
Location: the Nizhny Novgorod region (Volga, Voskresenskiy district)
What to ask: wishes fulfilled
Lake Svetloyar is one of the most legendary lakes in Russia. The origin of the lake is still unknown, but it is known all over the country for two reasons. First, its water has a unique feature – it can be stored for many years in a closed vessel without losing its purity, clarity and taste. Secondly, there is a legend about it, which is known by every schoolboy in Russia – it talks about the most interesting event in the primary school history textbooks – the Legend of the Invisible City of Kitezh, which sunk to the bottom of the lake without surrendering to the enemy army. The Orthodox believers, after praying, crawl on their knees around the lake three times and ask God for their wishes to be fulfilled. Many believe that if you attach a lighted candle to a board or a piece of bark and let it float on the surface of the lake, you'll hear the ringing of the church bells at the bottom of the lake. Of course, along with the Altai, it is considered to be one of the contenders for the title of the Russian Shambhala.
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