– Chernobyl: Spend 2 days and 1 night in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, explore the ghost town of Pripyat, visit the “Russian Woodpecker” and the site of the disaster Reactor No.4.
– Kiev: Walking tour, enjoy the city’s many highlights visiting the Chernobyl museum, the 100 meter tall Mother Land Statue along with the National Museum of the History of Ukraine.
Upon your arrival at our hotel “Tourist Hotel Complex, Kiev” we will get you checked in and settled into your room before we meet up as a group for the first time. We choose to hold our welcome meetings in a relaxed environment over some delicious local cuisine, it’s a great way to break the ice and for you to get to know us and your fellow travellers.
Tourist Hotel Complex 3* – Breakfast
The town of Chernobyl is located around 90 kilometres northeast of the Ukrainian capital Kiev, in normal circumstances it would have been unlikely to have ever come to worldwide prominence, but on the 25th – 26th April 1986 an event occurred that would cause the name Chernobyl to be known around the world. On that date reactor No. 4 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant suffered a catastrophic failure during a supposedly routine test. The immediate failure produced a destructive steam explosion and later an open-air graphite fire. The fire sent plumes of fission products into the atmosphere which, in turn, led to radioactive fall-out over a large part of the western USSR and Europe, the effects of which are still being experienced today. Chernobyl would prove to be the most significant nuclear power plant accident in history. The immediate blast effects at the power plant caused two deaths and twenty-nine firemen and employees died in the following months from acute radiation syndrome.
Three kilometres from the power plant the city of Pripyat was built for the plant workers and their families, at it’s peak the city had a population of 49,360 inhabitants. Pripyat was not evacuated immediately, it would take days to organise the two thousand buses needed for the evacuation.
By December 1986 what remained of the reactor No.4 reactor was encased in a large concrete sarcophagus which acted as a radiation shield to protect the crews still working at the undamaged Chernobyl reactors, some of which were still producing electricity well into the 21st century.
Up bright and early for a 7:45am pickup, our journey to Chernobyl begins. We should hit the exclusion zone checkpoint around 10:30 am, this is the main entry checkpoint where you will need to present your passport to the military to gain entry.
Through the checkpoint on our way to Pripyat. Before we arrive in Pripyat we will make several stops, visiting abandoned villages, the Chernobyl fire station for a photo opportunity of the amazing statue “To Those who Saved the World”. Not forgetting the machinery scrapyard to see the very equipment that helped in the clean-up of Chernobyl.
Next, we will head to the town of Chernobyl, this is where our hotel is located. A quick stop for lunch which is typically traditional Ukrainian food at the hotel then back on the coach on our way to Pripyat.
Exploring Pripyat you will see the main square, Lenin Street, the Polissya hotel, the palace of culture, the supermarket, etc. All so ordinary, but now extraordinary because of the way they have been left behind from the rest of the world. Perhaps most poignant place in Pripyat is the town school, where you can see the half-marked registers and schoolbooks abandoned in the rush to get out once the order to evacuate was given. You will also see the ferris wheel from the fairground which was due to open only hours after the disaster, but which was never used, and has instead become a symbol for the abandoned town, and the impact of the Chernobyl disaster.
Basic Accommodation (Basic Hotel or Hostel) – Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Another early start, today you will be visiting Chernobyl 2 aka “The Russian Woodpecker” (Duga radar) which was a top secret “over the horizon” early detection radar station against the threat of ballistic rockets. Chernobyl 2 is an immense structure that you need to see to believe it.
Next up we will head off to the unfinished “Chernobyl Cooling Tower” once inside of this massive structure the acoustics are truly unbelievable with the slightest sound echoing around its concrete walls.
Making our way to reactor No.4. By December 1986 what remained of the reactor No.4 was encased in a large concrete sarcophagus which acted as a radiation shield to protect the crews still working at the undamaged Chernobyl reactors, some of which were still producing electricity well into the 21st century.
The original sarcophagus would only have a 30-year shelf life, at the end of 2016 a gigantic new sarcophagus was built on-site and placed over the old failing sarcophagus. It’s believed to be the largest movable structure in the world today.
We will get to within approximately 100 meters from reactor No.4. Reactors 1,2 & 3 are viewable along with the unfinished 5 & 6
Before leaving the area, we will have the unique opportunity to have lunch at the onsite canteen which is close to the reactor, the canteen serves the workers working across the site. Again, the food served is traditional.
Once we leave the reactor site will start to make our way back to Kiev, making a few more stops along the way before we leave. We will pass through a number of checkpoints where we will all be required to go through radiation detection machines to make sure we are not taking any trace amounts out of the zone.
Tourist Hotel Complex 3* – Breakfast & Lunch
Today you will enjoy a walking tour of Kiev, it will be another busy day as we visit many of Kiev ‘s most popular historical sights with our local guide. From our hotel, we will take the metro into the city centre which is a short ride, approximately 5 stops. Meeting our guide we will make our way to Kiev’s oldest church St. Sophia’s Cathedral with its iconic golden domes and 76 meter tall wedding-cake bell tower setting the scene. The interior of the cathedral is breathtaking with large parts of the mosaics and frescoes dating back to 1017-31.
We will also visit the Ukrainian National Chernobyl Museum, which houses many artifacts and visual media relating to the 1986 disaster. See the colossus Motherland Statue, towering 100 metres high the statue was built to honour the heroes of the former Soviet Union.
Tourist Hotel Complex 3* – Breakfast
Trip ends. Checkout time at the hotel is around 10:00am.
For those looking to extend their trip we have an amazing addon which will take you into Belarus where you will explore the Belarus side of the exclusion zone. Once your Chernobyl trip comes to an end on day 5 we will travel to Kiev airport where we will board our flight to Minsk. Upon arrival you will have a little free time to explore the city before we board our overnight sleeper train down to the exclusion zone.
This trip is very similar to that of Chernobyl, you will spend two nights on the train and one night in the exclusion zone with two good days exploring. The trip ends upon arrival back in Minsk.
Whats included? Flights from Kiev to Minsk, Transportation, Train, Accommodation, Permits and Tours around the exclusion zone.
4 day trip, 1 night basic hotel, 2 nights sleeper train – Breakfasts
Your safety is our number one priority, to ensure your safety we impose a few simple rules.
Over the course of your two-day trip in Chernobyl you will be exposed to approximately 10μsv (microsieverts) which equates to 0.01mSv (millisieverts). To put that into context, your total exposure for the trip will be around what you would receive from a dental x-ray which is 10μsv (microsieverts) or 0.01mSv (millisieverts).
You will actually be exposed to much more radiation on the flight over, for example on a 3 hour 45 minute flight your radiation exposure would be approximately 10.35μsv (microsieverts) or 0.01035mSv (millisieverts). This information can be verified using a flight radiation calculator https://www.omnicalculator.com/everyday-life/flight-radiation
This trip is for those aged 18 and over. This is a rule set out by the Ukrainian government and is strictly enforced.
Please make sure you have your passport to hand when visiting Chernobyl. It’s a requirement of entry to present your passport to the guard, failure to do so will result in you being denied entry into the exclusion zone. We will remind you to have your passport accessible on the morning we depart.
Please wear clothes that fully cover your body, so no shorts, skirts or dresses, tshirts or short sleeved clothing. No sandals or flip-flops.
No alcohol is to be consumed before or during our time out exploring Chernobyl. You are free to enjoy a drink once we get back to our hotel between the hours of 7pm and 9pm, it’s the law within the exclusion zone.
For those who smoke including the use of ecigs we will have designated smoking stops on the trip.
Food and Drink (outside).
No eating in the open air, we will have regular stops on the trip for food and refreshments. Drinking from bottles and cans is allowed. You must not drink from any water sources including lakes, wells and rivers. Water in the hotel is perfectly fine to wash and shower. While the water in the hotel is safe to drink we recommend bottled water to avoid any unwanted stomach bugs.
Do not touch anything.
Please don’t touch anything including buildings, belongings within the buildings, any vegetation including grass, flowers or trees. Please do not sit or kneel on the floor, be mindful where you are placing any bags or camera equipment. Above all never take anything out with you, not only because these are people’s belongings but it could be dangerous. When leving the exclusion zone you will need to pass through a number of radiation detection machines.
Photos and Video.
You are free to take photos and video. However please never photograph or film any checkpoints, guards or government officials without the consent of your tour leader. More information will be supplied about what can and can’t be filmed.
Please listen to the instructions of your guides, they are there to help keep you safe as well as providing an unforgettable trip.
– Price promise: We have some of the most competitive pricing in the industry, however, if you find a like for like trip cheaper we will match the price. The price advertised is the price you will pay, we will never increase the price once you are booked on and if we reduce the price of your trip we will refund you the difference.
– Small group travel: “Small groups, Big adventure” is our company motto. Travel is all about discovery and unique experiences, sometimes too many people can spoil individual experiences, that’s why we limit most of our trips to just 18 travellers.
– Accommodation: The accommodation used on this trip is classed as “Standard”. The hotels are usually rated between 2* to 4*. We always aim to be within walking distance of the city centre however we can’t always guarantee it. The accommodation for the one night in Chernobyl is “Basic” simple hotel or hostel.
– Trip pace: Our “Full On” trip pace category is for travellers who like their trips full of daily activities, visiting as many amazing locations as possible. Often these trips involve early morning starts and some long days.
– Detailed trip notes: Are you wondering if this is the right trip for you? For a more in-depth look at the trip please view our Detailed trip notes.
We are a family run company with a passion for travel & customer satisfaction. Luna Travel is a young company with fresh ideas and drive to make travel affordable to the many rather than the few.