Belarus and the USSR
Highlights of this trip to Belarus and the USSR:
– the various museums and monuments in memory of WW2
– a visit to the Olympic stadium
– optional: a meal in a nostalgic Soviet restaurant or Soviet apartment!
Minsk still has much of Soviet legacy to show for and this 5-day program you will encounter a variety of it. From Soviet architecture and WW2 museums to a sports complex and the wonderful metro. Included are also optional dinners in a typical Soviet home and Soviet style cafe, and tickets for a performance in the National Opera and Ballet Theatre. Welcome back in the USSR!
A visa is no longer required for stays up to 30 days with arrival and departure at Minsk Airport since July 2018, for most countries.
Read more about the highlights of travelling in Belarus, plus practical advise, here.
Start of your tour in Belarus and the USSR!
Welcome in Minsk – the capital of the Republic of Belarus, and its political and cultural centre. It was first mentioned in the chronicles of the XIth century. Today, it is a dynamic city with expansive boulevards, modern and historical buildings, endless parks and well-developed infrastructure. The city is an impressive example of the Soviet planning on a grand scale. However Minsk has a number of outstanding historical sights, proving the city’s rich history.
Overnight in Minsk.
Minsk is a classic Soviet-time city: wide avenues, typical architecture and lots of monuments and memorials. The architectural ensemble of the Independence Avenue, for example, is one of the best-preserved examples of the Stalinist epoch architecture. It included buildings of KGB, GUM, the House of Government with Lenin monument, the Academy of Sciences and more.
During the city tour tourists will also visit «The Isle of Tears» and the Victory Monument, which commemorate heroic pages of the Soviet history. The sightseeing tour will also include other attractions of Minsk. Like the Upper Town with the City Hall, Holy Spirit Cathedral and the Cathedral of Holy Virgin Mary, the Trinity Suburb. The National Library of Belarus (included into the list of the most outstanding buildings of the world) is also waiting to be explored.
Several museums related to the USSR and WW2
You will visit the museum of the 1st Congress of the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party. It tells a story about major social democratic groups and first communist acting on the territory of the Russian Empire. The congress was held in total secrecy – even a stove was kept burning in case secret papers had to be burnt.
Next you will visit the Azgur museum. Zair Azgur is one of the most famous Soviet sculptors. He portrayed political leaders, artists, heroes of war and labor, philosophers… Tourists will see sculpture busts of Stalin, Lenin, Marx, Khrushchev and even Roosevelt and Churchill.
The World War II museum, next on the program, was the first museum in the world to reveal the story of this disastrous war. It was opened already in 1944, during the Nazi occupation! Among the museum’s first exhibits were the partisan movement chronicles, handwritten and printed books, handmade weapons.
And we finish with a visit to the Minsk metro, with each station presenting a page of Soviet history.
Optional: visit to the National Opera and Ballet Theatre (constructed in 1939).
Overnight in Minsk.
The Stalin Line is an open-air museum of military fortifications. Including the defensive line with trenches, anti-tank obstacles and ditches, anti-personnel obstacles and machine-gun pillboxes. Visitors can walk around a pillbox and sit in a gun emplacement, stroll along the trench system and clamber over a tank. The guides are dressed in uniforms of the day. To feel the atmosphere of that by-passed war you should also try the sample rations eaten by soldiers of the time!
Optional: visiting families residing in “Stalin’s” (Stalin epoch) or “Khrushchev’s” (Khrushchev epoch) apartments and dinner with the family.
Overnight in Minsk.
We start with a visit to the Olympic Sports Complex Raubichi, built in 1974. It’s at its busiest during winter, with cross-country skiing and ski trampolines for practicing aerial skiing. Local and world championships are held here too. During summer, there’s swimming, tennis courts and small-boat rentals.
Then, onwards to to the Mound of Glory, which was constructed in 1969 at the point where four Red Army divisions met on their drive towards Berlin in 1944. It is honoring numerous soldiers who fought for their Motherland during the war.
Optional: dinner at café “Tovarishch (Comrad)”, with true Soviet interior and all traditional Soviet-time dishes.
Transfer to the airport (or train station) and return back home. End of your trip in Belarus and the USSR!
At two people the price of this program is €835 per person, at four people it is €625 per person. For other group sizes please send us a mail for an offer.
Included in the offer are:
– Letter of Invitation (LOI) for the visa
– a total of four nights of accommodations in 3* hotel Belarus (or similar) in Minsk. Breakfast included, stay in TWIN rooms
– transfers during days 2-4 in a car with driver & guide-interpreter (resp. a minivan when 3-6 people), maximum eight hours per day
– services of an English speaking guide during days 2-4 for a maximum of eight hours per day
– entry tickets for all museums and sites as mentioned in the program
– transfers airport-hotel-airport (resp. train station-hotel-train station)
Not included in the offer are the international flight tickets, the visa, lunches & dinners and services not mentioned.
Single supplement is €100.
Optional excursions: €17-80 for a ticket to the National Opera and Ballet Theatre; €30 for a dinner at a Belarus family in a Soviet-style apartment on day 3; €23 for a dinner at cafe “Tovarishch” on day 4.
Finally we charge €15 per booking as a contribution to the GGTO Guarantee Fund.