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Penza, Russia

General Information

Founded: 1663

Area of Jurisdiction: 43,200 sq

Population: 517,311 

Height: 204 m above sea level

Location: Located on the Sura River, 625 kilometers (388 mi) southeast of Moscow.

Twin city agreement signature date: July 19, 2007

Official site of Penza: http://www.penza-gorod.ru

On July 19, 2007 a Sister City agreement was signed between the city of Ramat-Gan and the City of Penza.

Penza was founded in 1663 as a frontier outpost on the (then) southeastern border of Russia. The town bears the name of the river that it was originally built upon. In a topographical sense, Penza greatly differs from the cities around it because of its rolling hills and dense surrounding forests.

Natives of Penza include Vsevolod Meyerhold, Andreï Makine, Nikolai Ishutin, Aristarkh Lentulov, and Ivan Mozzhukhin. The poet Mikhail Lermontov grew up near Penza in the manor of Tarkhany, which belonged to his grandmother.

Currently, the city of Penza is seen as a regional center for higher education. It has six universities (The Penza State University, The Pedagogic University, The Academy of Agriculture, The Technology Institute, the Institute of Civil Building, and The Artillery and Engineering Institute), 13 colleges and 77 public schools. Besides this, Penza is home to three theatres, four museums, and three art galleries.

Tourist Information

Penza is, perhaps, one of Russia’s most historic and fascinating cities. It is a charming and relaxing town in the midst of a beautiful countryside and can offer a variety of historic and cultural sites to explore.

Penza lies on the rivers Sura and Penza, which gave the name to the settlement, and is 709 kilometers east of Moscow.

Penza can boast a legitimate theatre, a puppet theatre, a philharmonic hall, a circus and 8 museums: regional Museum of Local Lore, Museum of Literature, Museum of dramatic art, a picture gallery and others. There is also a juvenile railway and a wonderful zoo in Penza.

What to see in Penza:
The ancient centre of the city with over 100-year-old buildings is located along Moscow Street. There is a musical fountain within a several-minute walk from there. Going up to the viewing point, just next to the Museum of One Painting, is the old breastwork’s ruins and a winter house, where small Misha Lermontov and his grandmother spend winter holidays. Besides, you can have a look at the first monument of Karl Marx and observe a Katyusha Rocket Launcher. You can visit Akhuny Resort located within the city limits and a secret corner named “zaseka” in the west part of the city.Lermontov’s country estate Tarkhany, museum of glass and crystal in Nikolsk, the cave Troitse-Skanov Monastery and the museum of Abashevotoy.