Nowadays, you can visit the 30 km Exclusion Zone. It will start at Dityatky checkpoint and will continue up to the heart of the place, only 300 meters from the infamous Reactor #4. You will ride by the Red Forest – patch of pines that have turned red due to heavy radiation; see the “Cemetery of Vehicles” from a safe distance; visit deserted ghost town Pripyat – once a cozy home for plant workers with apartments blocks, stores, kindergartens, libraries, schools and a theme park; visit fully buried Kopachi village with a kindergarten one still can enter and see abandoned toys and toddlers’ beds; visit the Firefighters’ Monument with a short line – “To those who saved the World”, and a new memorial named “The Star of the Wormwood”. On a private tour, should you wish you can also meet “self-settlers” – those elderly people who were so homesick that came back to their homes in the Zone They say that nothing has changed for them, and life there is none worse than anywhere else. They live in their home villages already for years, and say it is better to die from radiation than from homesickness. But after this, they always add that water is clean, air is wonderful, mushrooms, berries, fish and fowl is abundant and tasty. They trade to each other milk of their cows and potatoes they dig in their backyards. The nuclear plant workers and staff in Chernobyl continue their work. Although the nuclear plant operation was stopped, the equipment requires control and maintenance. Chernobyl has become a workplace for ecologists and scientists. Woods and animals are growing fast and look happy. Asphalt roads have turned into green meadows lining depths of the forest. The skies are still blue and sun is shining, only dead silence is a reminder of what has happened here in 1986.
You will hear the versions of why the accident has taken place, get answers to your questions and see the sarcophagus covering the Reactor #4. You might be lucky to see and feed enormous catfishes lazily swimming in the pond, or encounter a wild boar family in the forest. Please, be aware of possible radiation contamination, no matter how interesting what you see may seem – follow the rules strictly.
IMPORTANT: The tour can be booked no later than 2 weeks prior to the date. Two weeks is a minimal time required for issuing personal passes to the Zone.
Participants of the tour should be at least 18 years old.
SAFETY: Tour is safe if safety regulations are followed strictly: not to step on moss, grass, soil, not to touch anything or drink/eat anything that grows or was produced in the Zone. Tour guide will have a Geiger counter and you will see that levels of radiation are about those at e.g. airplanes.
Upon entering the 18 km area from Chernobyl you will be checked for radiation levels. You will undergo the same procedure on the exit. Beware not keeping to the rules, one has a chance to “catch” the radioactive particles that would cling to your skin or clothes.
It is advisable to wear clothes protecting your body the most – long sleeves, no shorts or skirts, closed shoes, hats.
Food that will be served for lunch on the tour is safe and clean – it is brought from Kiev.