Vitebsk is among the most ancient cities of the Republic of Belarus, the most northern oblast center, a major administrative, industrial and cultural center. Vitebsk was first mentioned in chronicles in 947. The city occupies an area of 9,585 hectares; its population is 350,800 people.
Vitebsk has an advantageous geographic location, as it lies on the routes from Russia to the Baltic States, from the Baltic States to the southern regions of Russia, Ukraine, Central and Eastern Europe. Vitebsk is 800km away from Warsaw, 514km away from Riga, 638km away from Brest, 602km away from St. Petersburg, 281km away from Minsk, 500km away from Moscow, 360km away from Vilnius, 580km away from Kiev. Vitebsk is connected with other cities and regions by a well-developed network of railways, highways and air routes. Direct trains can take you from Vitebsk to Warsaw, St. Petersburg, Minsk, Kiev and Moscow. The Vitebsk airport can accommodate all kinds of aircrafts.