As the capital and major cultural centre of Belarus, Minsk is also the capital of the Commonwealth of Independent States. 80% of the city was destroyed during the World War II, and then rebuilt in 1950. Minsk is full of Soviet bloc buildings which makes it an interesting spot for those who love Soviet Union history.
Minsk National Airport is located 37km from the city centre. Headquarters of the national airline Belavia, Minsk airport receives passengers from Russia, Kazakhstan, many European capitals and Central Asia. It's also a common stop for those travelling to Vilnius, Moscow and Warsaw. No low cost companies operate at Minsk airport, although most of them offer cheap tickets every now and then.
Minsk Train station is one of the most modern railway stations in the CIS. Also known as Minsk Passazhirsky Railway station, it receives daily trains from Berlin, and also from neighbouring capital cities such as Kiev, Moscow, Vilnius and Warsaw. It is also a stop for other international links such as the Vienna-Moscow express, the Amsterdam-Moscow Eurocity and the Sofia-Minsk express.
In Minsk there are three international bus stations: Central Bus Station, Eastern Bus Station and Moscow Bus Station. Most of the coaches to Russia and Europe depart from Moscow Bus Station. The bus is often preferred, due to the poorer quality of the train services, and consequently this creates long queues to cross the border (be prepared to spend 1h 30min waiting).
Taking the bus, tram or metro are all cheap and reliable options to get around Minsk. Taxis are also available 24/7 and the metro operates from 5am until midnight. Be aware that any information related to public transport might be written in Russian! Hiring a car is also a good option as the streets are not too congested.