An ancient city, Oryol, Russia, is known as the birthplace of 19th-century novelist and playwright Ivan Turgenev (author of Fathers and Sons and A Month in the Country) and 20th-century philosopher of culture and language Mikhail Bakhtin (author of Rabelais and His World and Toward a Philosophy of the Act).

Although some sites in Oryol are associated with Turgenev, ardent followers will want to make the pilgrimage to nearby Spasskoye-Lutovinovo, the author's well-preserved country estate. The Bakhtin Museum is also worth a visit. Oryol merits an overnight trip from Moscow, 210 mi/340 km to the northeast.

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