January 24, 2017
Finally, Belarus has become visa-free for travelers from 80 countries who visit Belarus via Minsk National Airport and stay in the country for up to five days. We will tell you what to do and see in Belarus during these five days to explore and experience the real Belarus!
We have already covered the best places where to stay and where to eat in Minsk, so now we shall explore the country outside the capital city of Belarus.
The itinerary includes the most popular local attractions and places to visit, brought to you by MeetnGreetMe locals. Here are top things to do in winter 2017 in Belarus.
As soon as your flight to Minsk has landed in Minsk National Airport you have 5 days and yet lots of energy to see the major local attractions.
That’s why it’s high time to head for Raubichi, Silichi or Stayki for exercising after a flight and using your energy. These are three major sports complexes near Minsk where you will not get bored either in winter or in summer.
Winter sports complexes near Minsk
Raubichi (“Раубичи”) is a great place to visit in winter.
It is the Republican center of Olympic training in winter sports, so if you are an amateur of biathlon, freestyle and other winter sports – you are in the right place! They have four independent biathlon circles: 1.5 km, 2.0 km, 2.5 km and 3.0 km for the most enduring athletes. There is a shooting zone and a roofed shooting gallery to practice and improve shooting skills. Or go to Raubichi freestyle complex with a modern acrobatic freestyle slope and after that head off to a covered training ice rink with an IIHF standard hockey arena and sports grounds. Raubichi offers accommodation in one of three hotels and a few guest houses, a conference hall, sauna, bath-house and, a few restaurants and cafes on the territory of the sports complex. At your disposal you will have a gym, a fitness room, a football pitch and a tennis court, a basketball ground and a covered ice rink, a roller-skating track for biathlon and skiing, etc.
Prices: for prices for accommodation, sports complex and equipment check the official website.
Another great sports complex is called Silichi (“Силичи”). Located not far from Lahoysk some 40 minutes from Minsk, it offers more fun things to do in winter for non-professional sportsmen and those who just want to have fun in nature. They offer so many things to do that they can be divided in summer and winter activities. In Silichi in winter you can access 9 ski slopes for newbies and pros with artificial snow when it’s above-zero temperature, you can take skis and sports clothing for rent, or choose ice skating rink with skate rental. After that have fun on tubing and ride on a snowmobile on a 2.5 km track. Silichi offers accommodation, restaurants, bath-houses, relaxation and SPA, summerhouses, paintball, carting, various sports, etc.
Prices: just to give you an idea, one hour for an adult on a weekend would cost 18BYN (9USD) plus equipment 11BYN (6USD).
Staiki (“Стайки”) is the Republican center for Olympic athletes and the biggest sports complex in the country where national teams of the Republic of Belarus get prepared on more than 20 sports. It is a big complex with hotels and facilities for tennis, football, snooker, boats rent, cafes and more. Stayki are located some 15 minutes to the South-East from Minsk. It will take some 20 minutes to reach Stayki from Minsk National Airport.
You woke up in one of the guest houses in the described sports complexes and you are full energy. This means that it’s high time to dedicate this day for history of Soviet Union and the World War II. The Great Patriotic War is a very important page in history of Belarus because it was a very tough time from 1941 till 1945 when each third Belarusian citizen died.
War-time memorial places
First, we shall go to Khatyn (“Хатынь”) memorial complex. Khatyn was an ordinary Belarusian village in Minsk region until German Nazis invaded Belarus. On March 22, 1943 they encircled the village with 149 innocent people – kids, women, old people – and drove them from their houses out in the shed. Only three kids managed to escape, all the rest were locked in the shed and the Nazis set it on fire with almost 150 people in it. Among victims there were 75 children with the youngest of only 7 weeks old. The whole village was looted and burned to the ground. Khatyn is a symbol of monstrous acts of German Nazis, there were hundreds of similar episodes in the history of Great Patriotic War in Belarus.
Today there is a memorial complex built in commemoration of those Belarusian villages and their villagers who became victims during the Second World War. Schoolchildren and university students regularly visit Khatyn to remember about such tragic events in Belarusian history.
Prices: an excursion around Khatyn would cost 8BYN (4USD) per person for groups up to 20 people and 16BYN (8USD) per person for groups with more than 20 people. Guided tours are organized only in Russian or Belarusian language, but they can be arranged in English in advance.
After Khatyn go to Stalin Line (“Линия Сталина”). It is a historical and cultural complex opened on June 30, 2005 to the 60-years anniversary of the Soviet people’s victory in the Great Patriotic War. Generally, Stalin Line was a system of fortified areas along the Western border of USSR; this system was built from 1928 till 1939. Today Stalin Line is an open-air military and historical museum with military equipment, tanks, aviation, small arms. Today they offer many things to do in addition to excursions: to shoot with dummy weapons, ride tanks, shoot in a rifle range, fly on a helicopter, play laser tag, organize corporate leisure activities, etc.
Prices: entrance fee is 10BYN (5USD) per person. 20BYN (10USD) would be a sum to pay for an excursion organised for a group up to 20 people. Excursions are not held in English, so an interpreter would be needed. You can hire a MeetnGreeter to help you out. You can also shoot from guns or ride a tank for extra payment. For example, to ride a tank PT-76 it would cost 200BYN (100USD) from a group of up to 10 people.
Once you finish riding tanks at Stalin Line drive to Dudutki where you will sleep one night in a hotel or a cozy guest house.
Explore Belarus national culture and history
Dudutki (“Дудуткi”) is an open-air complex and museum of Belarusian ancient crafts. Originally Dudutki was a village first mentioned in chronicles in the 11th c. In 1994 the museum complex of Dudutki was opened and welcomed its first visitors. Today the open-air museum has more than 30 places to visit and see that will let you experience the real rural life in a Belarusian village a few centuries ago. Climb the real windmill, see the Orthodox church, go to the cheese factory, grab a snack in the Shynok pub, buy traditional souvenirs in the wood- making shop or in the Blacksmith shop, attend a pottery, a straw weaving and weaving workshop, visit its bakery and a beekeeper’s house, go to the zoo and a farm, ride a horse, and do many more fun activities for every age.
Prices: entrance fee is 10BYN (5USD) for an adult, an excursion would cost 18BYN (9USD) per person for a group of more than 4 people, however, it needs to be arranged in advance.
You still have time for another destination – Mir castle (“Мирский замок”) listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. It is a must place to visit in Belarus and learn more about its history and culture. Mir Castle was first mentioned in 1434 and it has an interesting history that you’ll hear during an excursion. There are the following excursions offered in Mir Castle.
Prices: entrance fee is 10BYN (5USD) for an adult, an excursion would cost from 20BYN (10USD) and their costs depend on a type of an excursion.
After exploring this local attraction stay in one of the rooms in Mir Castle hotel. Have you ever slept in a medieval castle?
Discover the historic castle and Brest
On the fourth day of your travel to Belarus visit Niasvizh historical and cultural museum- reserve. Niasvizh castle (“Несвижский замок”) was a residential castle of the Radziwill family in the city of Niasvizh. The castle has more than 30 fully refurbished state rooms, a magnificent inner courtyard and a park ensemble for you to spend a few hours walking around. Niasvizh castle constantly holds various exhibitions and festivities. In the complex you will find plenty of street food vendors so you can make a picnic right in the gardens.
Prices: entrance fee is 13BYN (7,5USD) for an adult, an excursion in English would cost 36BYN (18USD) for a group of up to 25 people.
After Niasvizh castle tour head for Brest because the road takes three hours. If you still have time and energy, visit one of Brest museums: Museum of Railway Technology, History of Brest Museum, Brest Art Museum or Berestie Archaeological Museum. After road you can stay in one of Brest hotels.
The famous Belovezhskaya Pushcha
This day shall start with your visit to Brest Hero Fortress Memorial Complex, or shortly to Brest fortress (“Бресткая крепость-герой”). It is the main local attraction and it is dedicated to the Second World War. Since Brest is a border city it suffered drastically from German troops when they started their invasion of Belarus on June 22, 1941. Brest fortress bore the brunt of the first attacks and put up a stout defense during the first days of the war. Bravery of Soviet soldiers astonished German troops and Brest fortress fought on for more than Germans expected. This became a symbol of Soviet resistance. Today there is a memorial complex commemorating the defenders of Brest fortress.
Prices: entrance fee in the museum is 5BYN (2,5USD) for an adult and 19BYN (9,5USD) is the cost of a guided tour for a group.
Now we advise you to visit Belovezhskaya Pushcha (“Беловежская пуща”) national park located within the parts of Brest region and Grodno region. It is a preserved part of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites because it is the last primeval forest in European woodlands. European bison of a symbol of Belarus and Belovezhskaya Pushcha is home to a large population of the heaviest land animals in Europe. You can also visit Belarusian Santa Claus in his estate right in this park, go to the museum of ethnography, nature museum, a restaurant and a café.
Prices: entrance fee to the Nature Museum is 3BYN (1,5USD) for an adult visitor and 2,50BYN (1,3USD) for an adult to see an open-air zoo with the famous bisons and other animals.
The fifth day of your travel to Belarus is ending and this means that you should head for Minsk to be in time for your flight back home.
We have gathered the most prominent, interesting, diverse and fun things to do so that you would understand the country, learn Belarusian history and culture and see many places and local attractions. These are remarkable places for every Belarusian citizen and we hope you’ll like visiting them and seeing them in real life.
Would you like to add these amazing local attractions in Belarus to your must-visit list? Hire our MeetnGreeters to help you out! If you are travelling in a group, feel free to contact MeetnGreetMe to arrange everything for you. We would love to make your trip to Belarus as enjoyable as possible!
Or just have fun in Minsk. The city has a lot of nice things to offer.
Thanks for your comment! Minsk is truly great.