Belarus, the hidden gem of Europe
Belarus Travel Information | Belarus Country InformationBelarus has not been on the radar of many tourists, while the country has much to offer. Such as untouched nature, hospitable people and a rich historical heritage combined with modern lifestyle.
There are few more reasons why you MUST travel to Belarus:
Minsk is the least visited capital of Europe among western tourist, which makes it very exotic and fun to visit! Imagine your friends surprised faces when you tell them that you are going to Minsk! What?! Where?! Why?!
Another reason to visit Belarus is that there are no visa requirements for tourists from most Western countries if they arrive and depart by plane.
One more reason is that Belarus and its capital Minsk will bring you back to the Soviet times. Discover the Soviet architecture, streets, parks and partially even the way of life.
But Belarus is much more than only Minsk! Many of locals here choose to live or spend their weekends in a countryside. Have you ever heard about ‘dacha’? It’s a summer house somewhere in the village or nature where Belarusians spend their free time relaxing, going to ‘banya’ (Belarusian sauna), growing plants and spending time with the family or friends. And you have a great chance to experience this unique and very Belarusian tradition!
Also there are some UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Belarus. For example, Belovezhskaya Pushcha National Park - the largest animal bred in Europe where you can see the massive bison (‘zubr’ in Belarusian/Russian). Or two castles in Mir and Nesvizh with their exciting history.
Other Belarusian cities are also worth a visit! You can go to Brest which is located near the border with Poland where you can visit an interesting Soviet memorial Brest Fortress. It was built in the middle of the 19th century and became a Hero Fortress for the courageous Soviet soldiers during the fight against the German army in 1941. Visit Hrodna city which looks a bit different from other Belarusian cities because it wasn’t damaged as much during WWII. You can also go to the oldest Belarusian city Polatsk founded in 862 where you will find Saint Sophia Cathedral - one of four churches in the world dedicated to Saint Sophia. Oe visit the ‘cultural capital’ of Belarus - Vitebsk - the hometown of famous painter Marc Chagall and his teacher Yehuda Pen.
Belarus is also a perfect place for eco tourism. Come to Augustow Canal - a hydraulic engineering installation from the 19th century for doing some sport activities or chilling out and enjoying the nature around. Also you can visit the biggest most clear in the country Narach lake which is located in the largest resort region of Belarus National Park Narochansky.
Very special attention should be paid to the recently opened PSRER, the Belarusian part of the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. This evacuation zone of the Chernobyl disaster has become the PSRER, the Polesie State Radioecological Reserve. Abandoned since May 1986. And, unlike Pripyat in the Ukraine, only became accessible since the beginning of 2019.
Here, too, a step back in time, overgrown villages, rusting away agricultural machinery, abandoned classrooms, concert halls where the memories of the last May 1 celebration are dusting, a rusting ferry that previously brought passengers to Kiev.But also, one of the largest nature reserves in Europe.
Because no people have been coming here for over 30 years, many wild animals have settled here. Bison, wolves, moose, deer, bears, lynx. This has become a unique area where nature has gained the upper hand over man.