Citadel of the Bender Fortress
Bendery Fortress is one of the oldest structures on the territory of Transdniestria, an outstanding monument of fortification architecture. The citadel of the fortress was built by the medieval Genoese, and after Bender became part of the Ottoman Empire in 1538, the castle was significantly rebuilt already by the Turks. The citadel, preserved to our days almost in its original form, has eight towers.
Both Cossack detachments and armies of Moldovan princes repeatedly unsuccessfully attacked the walls of the fortress. During the Russian-Turkish wars of 18-19 centuries, the fortress was in the epicentre of the struggle of two empires and was taken by Russian troops three times. After Bender became part of the Russian Empire, the fortress served as a stronghold of the Russian army.
At the beginning of the 21st century, the unique historical site was in a deplorable condition. In 2007, large-scale restoration work began, which continues to this day. During this time, the fortress territory and the moat were cleared, the towers of the citadel and the lower fortress were restored, and the Main (Tsaregradsky) gates were recreated.
In the well-preserved ancient powder cellar of the citadel the Historical Museum was opened, nearby it – the Museum of medieval instruments of torture, as well as a souvenir shop.
Around the citadel there are a number of monuments to famous historical figures, whose
life was connected with the history of the fortress itself or with the Transdniestrian region: A.V. Suvorov, M.I. Kutuzov, P.A. Rumyantsev-Zadunaysky, P.H. Wittgenstein, M.B. Barclay de Tolly, N.N. Raevsky, M.G. Miller, J.P. Kulnev.
The Pantheon of Russian Glory is located at the southern wall of the citadel, along which there are busts of famous military leaders of the Russian Imperial Army.
A separate memorial site is dedicated to the captain of the Russian Imperial Army, the hero of famous stories, Baron Karl Jerome von Munchausen – a real person who took part in the campaign against the Bender fortress in 1738. There is also a symbolic cannon ball on which, according to the famous story of R.E. Raspé, the baron flew during the siege of the Bender fortress.