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Hrodna is learning to handle more foreign tourists
Around 1,100 tourists, a record number, visited Hrodna Region between 26 March and 2 April 2017, according to Belta news agency. Since October 2016, it is possible to visit the region for five days visa-free. This growth in tourism has...
27 July 2016
Why Belarus Fails to Attract Foreign Tourists

In April 2016 the NGO Priceconomics published an article entitled Which Countries Are the Most / Least Overrun by Tourists? in which Belarus was ranked the 11th least popular country for tourists. The fact that a central European country is...

22 July 2016
Searching for Ancestors in Belarus

Louis Mayer, one of the founders of the Hollywood studio Metro-Golden-Mayer and the ‘inventor’ of the Oscar award was born in Minsk. Isaac Asimov, Marc Chagall and Leon Bakst were born and grew up in Belarus. Fifteen Nobel Prize laureates,...

27 May 2016
Invisible Minority: Surviving with Disability in Belarus

On 5 May 2016, Minsk hosted a rally of Belarusians on wheelchairs, who gathered to remind the society of continuing discrimination. Neither the state nor the public noticed this desperate cry in the desert, ignoring the needs of about 500,000...

14 January 2016
Western Belarus: What To See and Do

For many first-time visitors to Belarus the limit of ambition and adventure often extends no further than the boundaries of inner city Minsk, yet a voyage of discovery exists elsewhere in the other major cities, museum towns and the...

22 December 2015
Mercenaries in Ukraine, Tourism Declines – State Press Digest

The Belarusian authorities threaten mercenaries originating from Belarus who participate in the Ukraine conflict with large prison terms. Belarusians cancel their New Year tourist plans because of terror attacks at popular tourist destinations. The trade ministry tries to regulate the...

14 December 2015
Accommodation in Belarus: Where to Stay

Until a decade or so ago, the choice of hotels here was limited to one out of one; Soviet-style brutalist concrete monoliths, crumbling and ill-cared for, often with brutalist standards to match. Yet as Belarus reaches out to establish a...

11 November 2015
Automobiles, Trains and Buses – Getting Around Belarus

For the first-time visitor from the West, a scheduled flight to Minsk provides the most direct means of access to Belarus. Some venture no further than the capital itself, yet getting out of Minsk and beyond the façade of...

30 October 2015
Unusual Aspects of Travelling to Belarus – a Westerner’s Perspective

In geographical terms, Belarus lies at the heart of Europe. It borders the European Union. Its capital Minsk can be reached from London by plane in less than three hours. Even so, the first time visitor may encounter a...

16 October 2015
Minsk – Getting to Know the ‘Hero City’

By any known measure, Minsk paints a vivid tableau of itself as a major European capital city. Vibrant and buzzing with activity, a visitor can nevertheless feel instantly relaxed and at ease upon arrival without even knowing it. Almost two...

29 September 2015
Belarus – Why Visit?

Belarus Digest starts a series of articles on tourism in Belarus prepared by Nigel Roberts, a a UK-based freelance travel writer specialising in Belarus. I first visited this extraordinary and much misunderstood country in 2001. I have returned many times...

14 January 2015
Why Do So Few Tourists Visit Belarus?

Belarus remains a blank spot on the map for many foreigners. A mere 137,000 tourists visited the country in 2013—twenty-one times fewer than the number who visited tiny Estonia. Onerous visa requirements, combined with an underdeveloped service industry, undermine the...

11 September 2014
An Insider’s Guide to Minsk: Beyond Mainstream Sightseeing

Minsk attracts more and more foreign visitors. Tourism clearly develops. The Ice Hockey World Championship in May of 2014 marked a big mile stone here. It brought numerous first time guests to Minsk. Many guides provide a standard list...

30 May 2014
World Ice-Hockey Championships in Belarus: What did Journalists See beyond Sport?

The world knows little or nothing about Belarus. The ice-hockey championships opened up the country not only to tourists, but also to journalists. How did they use this opportunity? Barring presidential elections, the World Ice-Hockey Championships was the first event...

5 May 2014
Tourism in Belarus: Things to Do

More than 70 thousand tourists are heading to Belarus ahead of the 2014 IIHF World Ice Hockey Championship. Many plan to take advantage of the temporary visa-free regime this May.  Though numerous wars and rebellions have resulted in the destruction of many architectural landmarks, Belarus has plenty of...