A Step Back in Time

Belarus

If you didn’t get a chance to visit the Soviet Union before its demise, Belarus is the place to catch a glimpse of it. The architecture of its main cities is still post-war Soviet time warp, and monuments to those lost in WWII dot the countryside. It’s not all grim and gray, though; the country has a lively cultural scene, including an acclaimed international arts festival in Vitebsk, Chagall’s hometown. Rural folk customs are still vital, and along the Polish border lies a vast ancient UNESCO-listed forest where the rare European bison, the wisent, roams.

Why Travel with MIR to Belarus
  • 30 years of Belarus travel experience
  • National Geographic Traveler honored MIR small group tour, Belarus, Ukraine & Moldova, as a “Tour of a Lifetime”
  • Travel programs such as Stanford University alumni and the Commonwealth Club have chosen MIR to guide them to Belarus
  • Twice named one of National Geographic Adventure’s “Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth”
  • On-the-ground support and quality you can trust
  • Personalized travel planning from start to finish
  • Guides and tour managers that clients rave about
Signature Experiences

We regularly garner applause from our travelers for the inspired opportunities we provide to help them get to know the distinctive art, architecture and accomplishments of Belarus.  Below is just a sampling of the Belarus experiences MIR has designed to take our clients far from the familiar.

  • Inspect the “Hero-Fortress” of Brest
    Admire powerful 19th century Brest Fortress, which the garrison defended from the Nazis for a full month before it fell; hence its title of Hero-Fortress. The fortress today is a museum...
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    Inspect the “Hero-Fortress” of Brest

    Belarus

    Brest, Belarus

    Admire powerful 19th century Brest Fortress, which the garrison defended from the Nazis for a full month before it fell; hence its title of Hero-Fortress. The fortress today is a museum and memorial to the defenders and to the city of Brest.

    Journeys with this Signature Experience

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  • Pay your respects at Khatyn
    Make your way to the village of Khatyn, razed in a Nazi reprisal in 1943, and to the nearby Graveyard Villages, honoring 186 villages that the Nazis annihilated...
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    Pay your respects at Khatyn

    Belarus

    Khatyn, Belarus

    Make your way to the village of Khatyn, razed in a Nazi reprisal in 1943, and to the nearby Graveyard Villages, honoring 185 villages that the Nazis annihilated.

    Journeys with this Signature Experience

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Ways to Travel to Belarus with MIR

Belarus has a special place in our hearts at MIR. We remember the strangeness of the Soviet Union with something like a perverse nostalgia, and Belarus retains the most “Sovietness” of all the former republics. But not for long – the time to visit is right now.

Take a look at your options, from small group escorted tours to independent, custom and private travel:

Small Group Tours
Belarus, Ukraine & Moldova

Belarus, Ukraine & Moldova

An In-depth Study of Three Unsung Countries

Travels to: Belarus, Central and East Europe, Moldova, Ukraine

13 Days / Departures in May, August 2017

Small Group land tour from $6,795, plus $480 internal air

See Trip

Rail Journeys by Private Train

At the moment, we don’t offer any rail tours that include this destination. However, we do have a variety of options for rail journeys by private train, including those that travel along the legendary Trans-Siberian Railway.

Custom and private travel is our specialty. We’ve been designing unforgettable custom itineraries though the modest little towns of Belarus for 30 years; a majority of our guests travel on custom itineraries.

For ideas, peruse one of our Regional Travel Planners, a roundup of the must-sees from our savvy staff.

Read more about how to design your own trip and also, consider this:  You can customize our Belarus, Ukraine & Moldova tour to match your preferred dates of travel.

Design Your Own Custom Trip

Traveling privately on a custom program means flexibility:

  • You set the dates, the focus and the level of accommodations.
  • You are met on arrival and seen off at the end of your trip.
  • Your in-country transportation is pre-arranged hassle-free.
  • Your own expert local guides ensure that you get the most out of your visit.
  • And the best part? You travel at your own pace on an itinerary exclusive to you.

Check out just a handful of our Belarus signature experiences below and then get in touch with a MIR Private Journey Specialist to craft an itinerary that suits your travel goals, budget and style.  Or get started planning now.

Suggested Itineraries for Private Travel

Whether you’re looking for a compact trip with all the highlights or something a little roomier with some of the extras, MIR’s Private Journeys department can suggest places to see and things to do based on our local knowledge, and design a one-of-a-kind itinerary for you, your family or your group of friends.

Find out more about our custom & private travel expertise or connect with a Private Journey Specialist to get started.


Weather
Our Favorite Places in Belarus
Belarus

Minsk

Minsk is the capital of Belarus and is also the headquarters of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). In the 13th century, in order to avoid capture by the Mongols, Minsk became part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Annexed by the Russian Empire in the 18th century, Minsk was not free again until 1990. The city is a living testimony to the atroci­ties of World War II; nearly half of its population perished during the war, and most of its architecture dates from after 1945. Explore the monumental Square of Independence, Victory Square, the square of Belarusian writer Yakuba Kolosa, the Central Road, and Kupalovski Park.

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Journeys that travel to Minsk

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Belarus

Brest

Brest is located near the Polish border on the Berlin-Moscow rail­way. Founded by Slavs, the city was captured by the Germans in WWI and became part of Poland until the Soviet Union annexed it in 1939. After the war, Brest remained a part of Soviet Belarus. Czar Nicholas I had the Brest Fortress built between 1838 and 1842 on the territory of the Old Town. The crenellated red brick citadel became the main Russian outpost on the western border. In 1941 the garrison at the fortress defended it from the Nazis for a full month before it fell. Pay a visit to the fortress, today a museum and memorial to the defenders and to the city of Brest.

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Journeys that travel to Brest

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Belarus

Dudutki

Located just south of Minsk, the town of Dudutki is an open-air ethnographic museum dedicated to 19th century Belarusian country life. Wander through a town built from materials like hay and straw and purchase handmade crafts, or visit a working farm and see farmers working the land as they did for centuries. There are cheeses, bread, sausages and other items sourced from local ingredients and prepared onsite using traditional methods and recipes.

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Journeys that travel to Dudutki

Contact a MIR Private Journeys Specialist at privatejourneys@mircorp.com or 800-424-7289 to plan a custom & private trip to Dudutki.

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When to Travel to Belarus

Victory Day, throughout Belarus (May)

A ceremony of army/militia officers being held at the Brest Fortress“Victory Day” commemorates victory over the Nazis in World War II (known as the Great Patriotic War) and is marked with a parade of war veterans in Minsk’s Victory Square, sadly getting smaller each year. The celebrations continue in the city parks and concert halls, and usually end in a festive fireworks display lighting the sky of Minsk and other Belarusian cities.

Independence Day, Minsk (July)

In Belarus, Independence Day marks the 1944 liberation of Minsk in 1944 from the German army. The occasion is marked with a large military parade in Pobeditilei Avenue, which includes tanks, artillery and sometimes jets flying overhead.

Kupalle, throughout Belarus (July)

Kupalle is an ancient pagan holiday celebrated yearly in Belarus on the summer solstice. Folk singing and dancing, fire-jumping and night swims are included in the festivities. Since it is an important folk holiday, each village has preserved its local rituals to continue the Kupalle traditions of their ancestors, such as the practice of young girls floating wreaths of flowers on rivers to predict their futures.