Belarus is much more than Minsk and its museums, restaurants, nightclubs and local attractions. If you would like to take a glimpse into the history of Belarus, plunge into the authentic atmosphere of a local village and its way of life, you should definitely plan a visit to an ethnographic museum or open-air complex around Minsk.
There are plenty of such places around the capital of Belarus. There you can see old wooden houses, listen to folk songs and become part of ancient customs and rituals, watch craftsmen working with golden straw or clay, taste the national Belarusian cuisine and try famous traditional drinks. It is definitely a must-do when you are visiting Belarus, especially, for the first time.
Museum complex of ancient crafts and technologies Dudutki
Dudutki museum complex is one the most popular folk museums in Belarus. Here visitors can taste products of the local brewery, home-distilled alcoholic drinks, crisp homemade marinated cabbage and cucumbers and, of course, salo. All these snacks and food products are cooked on site according to the old recipes. At Dudutki you can also visit handicraft shops and see how blacksmiths, woodworkers, straw and willow weavers work. You can participate in interesting workshops and buy souvenirs to take back home.
Another local attraction is a shed with such vintage cars as Chaika, Willis, Volkswagen Beetle and Fiat Topolino among others.
There is also a small zoo with horses, ponies, donkeys, cows, goats, rabbits and birds. Unlike an ordinary zoo, here at Dudutki you see these animals in traditional barns, so the aroma there isn’t particularly welcoming.
On the territory of Dudutki museum complex there is a cafe and a bar, hotel and a guest house with traditional sauna. So if you are not in a rush, you could stay here overnight, enjoy the picturesque surroundings and sleep sound after hot sauna.
Distance from Minsk: 40 km.
Prices: please find fees on the official website of Dudutki museum.
Strochitsy Belarusian folk museum of architecture and rural life
Strochitsy Belarusian folk museum of architecture and rural life is another fantastic open-air complex to visit to learn about local Belarusian traditions and authentic ambience. The skansen museum complex represents a whole village of architectural specimens of the 17th-20th centuries and three key regions of Belarus – central Belarus, Poozerye and the Dnepr river region.
Today at Strochitsy among the many historical objects and buildings visitors can see 18th century Pokrovskaya church, a windmill, blacksmith’s shop, tavern, bathhouse and houses which used to belong to rich and poor peasants.
Many folk festivals and concerts are organized on site of Strochitsy Belarusian folk museum of architecture and rural life throughout the year, such as spectacular mass battles of Medieval knights, celebrations of traditional holidays with folk bands and animated programmes, games, fortune-telling and much more.
Distance from Minsk: 20 km.
Prices: please find fees on the official website of Strochitsy folk museum.
Park museum of interactive history Sula (Panski maentak Sula)
The first Belarusian park-museum of interactive history Sula is located on the picturesque shore of Sulskoye Lake. On the territory of the museum there is an 18th century Belarusian mansion and a large park ensemble where you can see such historical artifacts as an ancient settlement, vikings’ pier with a drakkar boat, wine vaults, chapels and much more. All these places of interest take you on an interactive and exciting tour of the history of Belarus.
Here visitors can take a ride on a drakkar boat, taste Belarusian dishes and drinks cooked according to the ancient recipes, touch ancient cromlech stones and visit an old Slavic heathen temple.
One of the most important gems is the Oracle Stone. It was worshipped by our ancestors who prayed to it asking for a long-awaited child and prosperity. Just touch the stone and ask it for health and strength, and this ancient fifty-ton giant will surely help you.
Distance from Minsk: 50 km.
Prices: please find fees on the official website of park-museum Sula.
Etnocultural complex Nanosy – Novoselye
The etnocultural complex Nanosy is located on the shore of Lake Naroch – the largest lake in Belarus – a picturesque sight with fascinating flora and fauna, picturesque views, clean water and fresh air. Nanosy were designed to help visitors immerse into the atmosphere of the rural life of the bygone days.
On the territory of Nanosy complex you will find more than ten decorated authentic wooden houses, traditional watermills and windmills, an unusual museum of samovars with over 500 unique exhibits and the popular museum of samogone (vodka) distillation equipment, and a shed housing a collection of vintage cars.
This is an ideal place for those who are coming to Belarus to explore its authentic past and become part of its traditional rural life. Here you can rent a guesthouse, rest and visit excursions along the way.
Distance from Minsk: 150 km.
Prices: please find fees on the official website of the etnocultural complex Nanosy – Novoselye.
We hope that this list will help you explore Belarus and plunge into the atmosphere of a local village and its authentic way of life. If you need any help with your trip to Minsk or organization of activities here in Belarus, you can always write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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