Earth : Europe : Russia : Chernozemye
Chernozem is the exceptionally fertile "Black Earth" belt in European Russia along the border with Ukraine, famous for its rich, deep, black soil. Its cities are best known to the English-speaking world for the vital importance they played as the principal battleground around the turning point of World War II, home to the massive tank battle of Kursk. Despite its enormous importance throughout Russian history, and its central location in the heart of European Russia, there is relatively little to sightsee, as most of the region's architectural heritage was destroyed during the war. Consequently, this is an off-the-beaten path destination in Russia, for independent travelers looking to travel deep into the "real" Russia.