Welcome to Oryol
The town is most known for its literary legacy, with some 12 local writers – most notably Turgenev, Bunin and Leskov – and their work is remembered in several small house-museums. It's also the ideal base for visiting Ivan Turgenev’s beautiful estate, Spasskoe-Lutovinovo, and is the gateway to Orlovskoye Polesye National Park.
A fortress is thought to have stood on the bluff overlooking the confluence of the Oka and Orlik Rivers since at least the 12th century. Legend has it that an eagle (oryol in Russian) alighted on the fortress, giving the settlement its name. The city reached its peak during the 19th century, when a surprising number of the gentry (19,000 out of a population of 32,000) lived here.