Great Chernobyl tour!
We had an amazing experience using SoloEast for our tour of Chernobyl. They were super helpful in figuring out a tour and getting drone permissions (which some other tour companies won’t do.) We had Igor as our guide, who was super nice, knowledgeable, and gave us a great experience in Chernobyl. We learned a lot while we were there, Igor explained a lot of the history of the town and the reactors, and got to see interesting sites. I would highly recommend going for 2 days, there is so much to see and 1 day doesn’t sufficiently cover it.
Chernobyl may be the most interesting place I’ve been – it’s so unique to visit a place that was once growing and over 50k people and is now completely abandoned. Igor and SoloEast did a great job of showing it to us and ensuring we had a great experience visiting the exclusion zone.
Dark Tourism to Chernobyl
I loved, loved, loved the tour so much. This place is unbelievable and terrifying. Something you would never ever forget. It stays with you. It comes back to you with memories. It actually makes you want to come back. Time stopped in that place. I will create a short movie of my trip and post as well. Thank you SoloEast Travel team: my super special thanks to our tour guide Konstantin, our wonderful driver Sergey and manager Victoria.
(ES) Inolvidable e increible
La mejor agencia para ir a Chernobil, un viaje inolvidable, te llevan a sitios que ninguna otra agencia va, puntualidad total, el guía, Constantine fue increíblemente bueno, te explican todo, se esforzó muchísimo, la dirección de la empresa es atenta y está en constante contacto con el cliente, gracias Natalia y Victoria. La comida incluida estuvo bien. Salimos a las 8 de la mañana y llegamos a las 20h, vimos muchísimas cosas, increíble. Para repetir, una experiencia increible, volveré pero con Soloeast.
También nos organizaron la entrada en Ucrania, los test covi, los transfer de ida y vuelta al hotel. En continuo contacto con el cliente, preocupación absoluta por todo, educación, seriedad y muy puntuales, si pudiera dar más nota lo haría.
Unforgettable Tour with Solo East
Viktoria organised my trip via WhatsApp and Diana was the tour guide. Both were very professional and always there to help you. Diana was a great tour guide who was full of knowledge and enthusiasm for Chernobyl and the surrounding areas. As we went during COVID, the tour even went ahead with just 3 people (making it like a private tour). Diana was very accommodating and always asked you about your preferences before deciding the format for the day. Her pace suited the group and we managed to see a lot even if it was just a day trip. For these reasons, I think it’s best to go with a smaller outfit like Solo East as opposed to the big popular tour groups.
Unique private tour
Unique private tour with Alex
We booked the tour three days in advance and i have to say that everything perfect. Even better than expected. We picked up our tour guide Alex with our private car. At first I have to say that we were super lucky with Alex. He knew literally everything about the happenings of Chernobyl/Pripyat.We went to the exclusion zone and he told us all important facts and showed us videos which gave us all the necessary information of the incident. We went together to all the main spots and it was really a great adventure. In addition to that we have learnt about ucranian and sowjet history. All in all i would highly recommend to book a tour with SoloEast travel and especially with Alex.
Awesome trip - can highly recommend
Booked the Chernobyl Day Trip and everything was perfectly well organised by SoloEast.
After meeting at 8am we drove to Chernobyl in a Van where they showed video documentaries.
Igor was our perfect guide being very dedicated, very kind and very informative. He showed us all the best parts you can see in Chernobyl and Pripyat and explained everything very well. We got back to Kiev at around 8pm. Altogether I can highly recommend the trip.
Special thanks to Igor
The tour itself is a unique experience that should be on your list if you are in Ukraine. SoloEast deserves 5 stars as they provide excellent service, with their extensive experience allowing them to offer a quality tour as expected.
For my tour, I had Igor as the guide and honestly I would go again just because he is an awesome guide. He did his best to run everything as per schedule, to answer all the questions I had, to show unique spots in the Chernobyl area, and to entertain us.
Igor is a very nice person in general and then an excellent tour guide, the perfect combination.
Thank you again for the experience!
I had an amazing trip. Even going alone is still fun because you will meet people on the trip. We had a great guide Igor who was very helpful and really knew what he was talking about.
Absolute blast of a tour with SoloEast's Diana!
We (2 people coming from Germany) took a two-day tour to Pripyat and Chernobyl with SoloEast in July. We had booked the tour well ahead of COVID lockdowns and stuck to our booking throughout in hopes of relief. After Ukraine had opened its borders for entry again, we double checked with SoloEast that the tour was still going to take place. The e-mail communication with the company was smooth and timely, perfect in our opinion.
The COVID situation turned out to our advantage as well, as my mate and I were the only ones on the tour, literally making it a private one. Talking about the good side to everything. 😉
Our guide and driver was Diana. She was convincing in both roles, getting us safely in and out of Kiev, and around the Exclusion Zone, while providing us with information and insight about everything with a great sense of humour. Our “working language” was Russian, since my mate’s English is not enough for an easy communication and my Russian is okay. We agreed upon me translating important stuff into German as I see fit. However, Diana’s command of English is absolutely fine and would be sufficient to conduct the tour and all talking.
SoloEast kindly offered to collect us at our apartment, thus saving us the “fun” of Kiev’s Metro in the morning hour. The car arrived on time and Diana was waiting outside our apartment. After sorting out financial side, we were ready for take-off. Diana was well accustomed to driving on the local roads (which can be quite challenging at times) and handled her comfortable VW Golf with ease. 130 km to the Zone were anything but boring and we had a great time chatting about the days ahead and getting acquainted with the code of conduct in the Zone.
One of the advantages of a private tour is that you get to “pick the cherries” and try and see and do more off the beaten track, which we did. I am strongly advised not to talk about any “not coordinated or potentially illegal” activities, but I can tell you this: two days and an undivided attention of your guide let you see a (and do) lot. Several rules, however, must be followed while inside the Zone, and if you do, you’re up for a fantastic experience. Be prepared to do a fair amount of walking, to face ruthless mosquitoes and for generally quite a rough terrain in some corners of Pripyat. You will see a lot if you can and are willing to walk a lot. We recommend a Giger counter that you can borrow (at extra cost) from SoloEast so that you can have fun discovering radioactivity around you as you go.
We also highly recommend getting some basic information on Chernobyl and the disaster of 1986 prior to coming there, especially if you are a part of a larger group. The guides know their way around town and will provide you with tons of background details but they won’t be able to give you all the numbers or answer every question. On the other hand, Diana gave us information bits that would be hard to find on Wikipedia.
Given the time and enthusiasm, we covered many places, both in the centre of Pripyat and surrounding areas. Starting at the central square we have worked our way through the sights of interest, ending up at Duga, which was our last stop on the second day. In Chernobyl itself we have visited several monuments and a church but did not spend much time at it as our focus was on Pripyat. We could have possibly seen even more these two days, but we’d rather come again. 🙂
If you are going to the Zone for a couple of days, chances are that you will stay at Chernobyl’s Hotel “Desyatka”. This is the place to be if you are into Post-Soviet charm – with plenty of green and empty houses all around the area. Beware of the dogs though, that are chilling on many corners and seem to have a vivid interest in tourists. 😉 It may be important to know that alcohol is only sold at the bar of the hotel from 7 to 9 pm so it might be a great idea to stock up in town before you return to the hotel. Meals at “Desyatka” may be challenging and could by no means count as haute cuisine, so you might want to bring something with you to please yourself. It is also forbidden to eat while walking around the Zone, keep in mind.
All in all it was a great experience and we give 5 star rating for SoloEast’s tour organisation, our tour guide Diana and her way to conduct raids around the Zone. You will have a massive fun, be stunned and possibly creeped out and will return with tons of pictures and memories.
Thank you to the whole SoloEast crew and a special thank you to our guide Diana.
Private solo last minute tour of Chernobyl
Review of: Chernobyl Private Tour (SHORT NOTICE BOOKING)
The private tour attention and just walking around exploring the areas with my guide Victoria who is also an excellent driver.
Amazing guide Igor and company
With Igor we had the most amazing tour today and I would wish anyone a Day with him in Chernobyl.
He took his time to explain everything and anything and knew what he was doing. The tour was very save, educational and above all we had a lot of fun.
The compact Solo East was great too. Very flexibel, fast and friendly communication.
Anyone who likes An adventure I can recommend this tour!
Chernobyl Private Tour from Kiev
Date of experience: July 2020
If you want to see Chernobyl I would highly recommend going with SoloEast. It was very easy to organise via email and they were very accommodating helping me along the way with a few issues I had.
The private tour was definitely worth it, Pasha my guide was extremely knowledgeable and could answer any questions I had. He took me to visit all the spots I had always wanted to see and then a few more I didn’t even know existed. If you are interested in Chernobyl book a tour with these guys.
I’m not a big photographer, but if you are booking the private tour will be worth the extra money.
Top notch tour with Diana
Our tour with Diana into the exclusion zone exceeded our expectations. She is very knowledgeable and knew just the spots to make our Geiger sing. It was so nice to have a guide with such good English speaking skills. We thoroughly enjoyed each and every site we visited but Pripyat was my favorite.
A walk on history
We’ve had a great and unforgettable experience yesterday. The tour was a good mix of overgrown ruins, info related to the NPP accident and visits at special places. If you like dogs, bring some treats! 🐶
We can highly recommend our tour guide- ask for Igor!- he has over 10years experience and a good ear for individual interests!
if u are looking for a tour, you just book soloEast. guide was supercool, they show you everywhere on route with a photos. Thank you.
Excellent exciting exclusive trip in the exclusion zone!
The group was supposed to be 4 people but the two others didn’t show up so I went on the trip only with my friend and with the guide Pasha in a car.
He met us up on time on Majdan, showed us an interesting documentary on Ipad while on the road.
we made a short coffee break halfway.
He told us a lot of interesting things about Soviet times, Chernobyl, there was literally nothing he couldn’t answer regarding Chernobyl.
Crossing the checkpoint went smoothly, then he treated us with lunch.
We walked around in an abandoned village in the exclusion zone. Everything was completely overgrown by nature, so the word “abandoned” got a new meaning for us that day.
We saw the sarcophagus, the abandoned town directly next to it with the famous fun fair.
He showed us a lot of exciting details, then we finished the tour at the enormous Duga radar.
Go on this trip with Solo East, because both the price and the knowledge of the guides is definitelt worth it! Thank you, Pasha! 🙂
What a day. First of all, igor was great. He arrived on time at 8am and was extremely welcoming to me and my friends. Our day in Chernobyl was amazing – getting so see stuff we could have only dreamed of. The Pripyat part of the tour was a highlight. Igor was very insightful, describing greatly the history of the place and taking us to places which told the true story. We also enjoyed his dry humour in the journey. If you are going to book this fantastic tour make sure you do with Igor. Brilliant day. Thanks
Fantastic tour with a great guide!
This was a great tour that I recommend anyone visiting Kyiv or Ukraine take!
The tour covers most of the highlights of Chernobyl that you can reasonably fit into a day including the power plant, the towering Duga radar station, as well as an extensive review of the abandoned city of Pripyat. There were a couple landmarks that were temporarily unavailable due to renovations – like the Monument To Those Who Saved the World, but I know that this is traditionally available otherwise. We paid a small additional fee to rent a geiger counter for the day, which I’d wholeheartedly recommend. It was very cool to see how the levels of radiation differed throughout various locations in Chernobyl.
A decent lunch is provided, and well-equipped mini-vans transfer you from Kyiv to Chernobyl and back. The overall price is very reasonable in my opinion. The tour groups are still fairly small, which was nice and meant that you were still able to converse with your guide frequently.
I’d also have to make special mention to our tour guide Igor! He was a very experienced tour guide and had tons of information about Chernobyl and its history, as well as the individual landmarks. There were no questions that he couldn’t answer. You can tell that he is very passionate about the site. He’s also very funny and I enjoyed the humor that he added to the tour. His jokes and quips made the 2 hour journey back to Kyiv fun. We were very lucky to have him as our guide, and I’d definitely recommend requesting him if you get the chance!
Day trip to Chernobyl...absolutely amazing!!
We went on the Chernobyl tour on 14/03/20. Our tour guide was Constantine, and our driver was Vadim. Got picked up at 8am but had a delay in leaving as we were waiting for 2 passengers (who never arrived). However we got on our way eventually! We watched 2 documentaries on the way, about the original disaster and the latest sarcophagus installation, which passed the time and built the anticipation! I’ve got to say, Constantine absolutely MADE the trip! His commentary was brilliant, really informative and punctuated with lots of funny anecdotes. He and Vadim could not have been better! The tour itself was INCREDIBLE…nothing will prepare you for what you will see. We walked for miles (my step counter was over 21,000 steps) but you just don’t notice it. Constantine has an album of photos of various places, and when you stand in the spot where the original photo was taken, he holds up the A4 photo so you can see the ‘then and now’… brilliant idea. You can tell he has a real passion for the place and he was unfailingly polite, interested, courteous and enthusiastic. Chernobyl is an experience you will never forget, and we were lucky to have such brilliant people taking us. I can not recommend this company highly enough. Book it as soon as you can!
Tania was our tour guide and the whole experience was amazing! She went into depth and explained everything as we passed it and spoke brilliant english. I definitely would reccomend anyone to go here you will not be disappointed! I learnt so much even when in the bus we had a videos that we watched so the trip there flew by, so glad i chose this company and got the best tour guide and driver! Thanks Tania for such an amazing experience. Laura and Darren
Amazing experience. Tour guide knowledgable
This tour was very professionally done.
There was a toilet stop on the way to the exclusion zone and plenty of toilet breaks once there (something I was concerned about!).
The driver was excellent and very careful. The tour guide had excellent English and was more than happy to answer any questions. She clearly wanted to make sure we had a good day. She was very knowledgable and helpful.
I was collected from my hostel on time and dropped back about 7.30pm after the tour.
Lunch was better than expected and filled me.
Stops included; an abandoned village, chernobyl monument, kindergarten, power plant 4, swimming pool, fairground, swimming pool, stadium and many more.
100% recommend for professionalism, keeping in contact before the tour, sights seen and friendliness.
Excellent and interesting visit!
We had an excellent guide in Yulia. She was efficient, knowledgeable and kind. The tour was well organised with a delicious lunch in Chernobyl. We were surprised at how close we were able to get to the main sites. It was a memorable and moving experience. I highly recommend Solo East if you wish to visit this area. Thank you Yulia! And, of course, our driver!
Amazing tour! Choose SoloEast when booking!
Couldn’t recommend this tour enough. Had a great day. Diana our tour guide and Alex the driver were fantastic. Diana was very knowledgable, showed us as much as she could during the day. Asked us what we were particularly interested in seeing in Pripyat and tried to accomodate us and her English was amazing. Bus ride was comfortable, there were informative videos played throughout the trip. Lunch was good, we had plently of rest room breaks and we stopped on the way for any refreshments. Well worth the money. 5*
We booked this two-day trip with SoloEast after extensive research and recommendations, and it did not disappoint. I would strongly recommend the two day tour over the one day tour, as at some points we could see the one-day-trippers looked rushed and did not have the time to do more than take a picture. We were picked up on time, the mini bus was clean and comfortable, and we were shown interesting documentaries related to the tours theme on the way there. The mini bus also had WiFi and USB charger points which were very useful. There was also room for larger bags in the boot if needed.
The first day was busy but interesting, with lots of time in Pripyat. I would advise comfortable footwear as there was lots of walking, though done at a comfortable pace. I’d recommend boots during the winter months due to the mud and puddles.
The overnight hotel was decent, bathrooms were shared but beds were comfortable and room was warm and clean. The food was good, with the option to purchase extra if you were still hungry. Lunch and dinner were good, vegetarian options were available. There was free WiFi available at the hotel which was half decent.
The second day was just as interesting, with lots of time to appreciate the history and various points of interest along the tour. One thing to note, there are LOTS of very friendly dogs who are more than happy to be stroked and fussed – I wish I had taken some treats or biscuits to give them! Lunch on the second day was not as good as the first day, however plenty to eat and was again, still tasty.
Worthwhile noting that during the two day tour you will need it take some cash with you as there are a couple of shops located in the exclusion zones (mini supermarket and souvenir) and donations for gifts for the re-settled villagers. There is sporadic 3G and 4G available in the exclusions zones.
Leaving the best till last, our guide Igor was fantastic. He was friendly, warm, and extremely knowledgable about the exclusion zones, points of interest, and the history behind them. This knowledge was invaluable, especially as he knew lots of little things such as how the Bridge of Death really got its name. Igor also seemed to really know the re-settled residents personally which made this part of the visit feel special and warm. His English was excellent and he was patient. You could clearly see he was so passionate about leading tours & sharing his knowledge. He sent us a short video afterwards with pictures he had taken.
I would massively recommend you request Igor as a guide, and if we return in the future we will be asking for him.
Really really good day
Booked as it was £20pp cheaper than the others and I figured they will all do pretty much the same. The reviews were good and we had a fantastic time. Pascha was our tour guide and he spoke perfect English knew everything about everything, was really informative.
Lunch was actually a lot better than I expected
On the journey to the exclusion zone there were informative documentaries which were really good as it’s a long drive
Chernobyl power plant itself isn’t that exciting so if you have the time to plan it as it’s booked up until autumn our tour guide said pay the extra to go in the reactor.
Also the general consensus from everyone on our trip was that they would have preferred to skip some of the earlier stops at little villages and had more time in Prypiat.
20 in our whole tour which was a good number and we were amazed it wasn’t that busy which led for loads of good photo’s without bustles of people in the pictures.
Great company to book with and cant fault anything
Truly fascinating day trip to Chernobyl Exclusion Zone
What a trip!
We were picked up at 8am in Independence Square by our Guide Globa and our driver Sergei. Globa spoke incredibly clear English and made the tour enjoyable as well as really informative. She is very knowledgeable and answered all the questions we had.
After the 1.5 hour drive to the zone, we explored Chernobyl town, some of the abandoned villages, Reactor 4, had a walk through Pripyat, the town sign, sped past the Red Forest whilst our Decimeters went off the scale and finally the Duga Radar installation.
We then headed back and arrived in Kiev around 7:30pm.
The whole day was amazing. Globa and Sergei were amazing and stopped off to let us get the best pictures and showed us the ‘Hot zones’ where the radiation has pooled over the years.
Would definitely recommended this trip to anyone wanting to go and see the Exclusion Zone. The VW Crafter van even had WiFi, unbelievable!
Tip. Definitely hire a Decimeter, really cool to be able to see where the radiation spikes around you. There are also loads of friendly dogs that wander around the zone, so take some dry food for them, they’re expecting it!
Fantastic tour. 10/10!
With SoloEast we booked a trip to Tsjernobyl during our stay in Kiev. The trip was very well organised and our tourguide Igor made it a great and impressive day we will never forget.
At the agreed time Igor showed up at our hotel in the city center of Kiev. We were happily surprised with the means of transport. An almost new Mercedes Sprinter minivan with enough space for the eight of us. The minivan was well equiped and had even wi-fi on board. After Igor checked our passports in order to ensure a smooth entrance into the exclusion zone, he put on a documentary about the Tsjernobyl disaster in 1986 on the built-in screen. Igor appeared himself in the movie because he was also the tourguide showing around the documentary maker.
The ride to Tsjernobyl took quite some time, approximately 3,5 hours. Before the lunch we drove around in the city of Tsjernobyl and visited the impressive Duga radar installation. After lunch we entered the exclusion zone and we drove to the reactor no. 4. Igor explained a lot during the tour and thanks to his good knowledge of English we were able to ask questions and make conversation during the day. After visiting the sarcophagus we walked through the city of Pripjat which was also very impressive. On our way back we were all full of impressions and Igor drove us smoothly back to our hotel.
If you want to book a trip to Tsjernobyl we highly recommend to ask Igor to be your guide.
Probably the best guided tour of my life
First of all I never was a big fan of guided tours, but unfortunatelly there is no other way how to see Chernobyl legally.
To my big surprise this was the first guided tour that I’ve actually really enjoyed. We were lucky that we were part of a group with just 2 other people (5 total) and we got really experienced guide. This brings me to the next part.
The guide. Igor roams around Chernobyl guiding people for around 10 years. Not only he is very knowledgeble about the place and its history in details, he is also fun and time to time he cracks a nice dark joke.
Overall it was beautiful experience and the only thing that bothers me is, that we didnt pick 2 or 3 days trip.
Unrecognisable City brought to life.
My father and I were collected from out hotel in Kyiv city by our tour guide Pasha. The drive from Kyiv to the exclusion zone is about 2 hours with a small stop on the way. Pasha our guide was a really nice guy, and we spoke most of the way about what the 2 day tour ahead would entail. His knowlage was fantastic and when we got to the city he made sure that the tour did not disapoint. from ex military bases to hidden dentist factories he knew where everything was and was able to answer almost every obscure question that came from us. The hotel was a museum to 1986 however was good enough to get some sleep in and the food while I was there (for a big lad) was great. The final day my father and I were discussing what we thought over all. we have to say it didnt just meet expectations but It easily surpassed them. 100% worth visiting and would recommend requesting Pasha as a guide if possible.
Exceptional trip could not recommend more
Me and my partner came to Kiev to do the two day tour with Solo travel. Victoria was our guide for two days and we could not recommend her enough. Her energy and enthusiasm was really refreshing and she was great to be around. The first day was out of this world. Surpassed any expectation I had and we were so lucky we had a small group and just felt like we had the whole of Pripyat to ourselves. We saw some incredible sites and the information Victoria shared was really informative and we learnt so much. The food throughout the trip was great. So I didn’t have high expectations for the food or the hotel but was massively pleasantly surprised. The shower in the hotel was lovely and hot and the rooms were clean and roomy. The second day was spent Roaming more sites. Victoria really went out of her way to show us the best locations. I have traveled the world a lot and this has definitely been the best tour I have ever been on. Thank you so much Victoria and solo travel I would definitely recommend to anyone looking at this tour.
Friendly and efficient communication before the tour and very helpful when I wanted to book transport from my hotel. Pickup was on time and on the return, I was so glad I had booked this as my hotel was quite a way from the drop off point.
Sorry, I can’t remember the driver/guide’s name but he was brilliant as was the whole day. As others have said, use the toilets at the service station as the border ones don’t seem so good but the ones at the restaurant were fine too.
The ride, though long, was fine as they should some of the series and a documentary and coming back, we were all tired. The tour was well placed and the guide told us plenty of information but didn’t overwhelm us.
I am so glad I took this tour and going solo wasn’t a problem at all. Lunch time was a great time to talk to some of the others. The meal wasn’t bad and they provide a bottle of water.
I don’t think you need a personal dosimeter (which I paid for) so I’d save the money,
I can’t recommend this tour and this company enough.
Amazing trip. Highly recommend
Perfect trip with a very good driver and the best tour guide – Alex.
I was made to feel very welcome and Alex made time to speak with me as he knew I was traveling solo.
I got to see all the sites I wanted to including the amusement Park area and the reactor itself – we got surprisingly close to it.
My only criticism is that for the high price I paid I would have expected to have had rental of a dozimeter Included. I was disappointed to have one and for £80 I would expect to have had use of one for the day to have fun checking stuff for radiation.
Once again, Alex was fantastic and I had a great time.
Bizarre, impressive and frightening...
My friends and I made a private tour to Chernobyl with SoloEast on January 5th. We were been picked up from the hostel at 08:00 a.m. and after a two-hours ride we reached the evacuation zone. It was very impressive to see spots that we have just known from TV like the sarcophagus of reactor # 4 of the former nuclear power plant or the once flourishing city of Pripyat that had 50.000 inhabitants and that was evacuated within a couple of hours after the disaster. During our full-day trip we received a lot of information on the 1986 disaster and related topics. The amount of radiation we were exposed to during that trip was comparable with a one-hour flight in an airplane. We felt safe during the trip and it was not made up as a ‘sensation tourism’ tour. Thank you, Alex, for all the explanations during the trip and thanks Sergey for getting us around safely for almost 12 hours.
Great tour by a great company.
The driver went out of his way to pick us up from our airbnb, which they dont normally do. The minibus was modern and clean and the guide was great. We were told in detail what the tour involved and what was required of us. We watched a documentary on the bus on our way and made a pitstop at chernobyls cafe for food. We visited reactor 4 and got really close and then went on to pripyat itself where we visited all of the places you would be familiar with. Ive wanted to see that ferris wheel for 15 years and now i got to see it. We got a lot of information during the tour by a very knowledgeable guide. We went into an apartment block and saw it all from the inside. There are a lot of dogs there, which can be fed, but we were advised not to pet them, even though they had rabies jabs, they still may hav3 been a risk due to them hanging out with the wolves!!! We also visitet the Duga radar (russian woodpecker) and learned about the conspiracies behind it and the disaster itself. It is HUGE!!! if you go with any tour operator, go with solo east!
Fantastic guide, fantastic experience
Igor, our driver and guide, definitely took this trip from ordinary sightseeing to an insightful, entertaining and spectacular tour.
I would highly recommend this tour to anyone who is interested in an authentic experience of these ruins; in learning the history behind the place and where it’s going in the years (decades) to come.
* Bring a camera with spare batteries. There are some amazing sights here that a phone camera would struggle to capture well. Some sights are better recorded and some are better photographed.
* Bring gloves, scarfs, and wear at least 3 layers including a thick outer jacket. It gets cold in winter.
* Bring some cash/a card for the shop in Chernobyl! Don’t bother with tourist kiosk outside the exclusion zone – there’s cooler and cheaper stuff inside from authentic, genuine shops! (means you’re supporting the locals too!)
* Buy a panini or two at the convenience stop early on! The lunch is filling and delicious, but the tour is a full day and you don’t wanna be hunger! Ukraine is cheap to western tourists, so this is hardly gonna dent your pocket!
* Allow yourself to be immersed in this tour. It’s an amazing and unique experience.
Finally: If you’re lucky enough to get Igor as your guide, have a chat with him! He is hilarious and very knowledgable.
Solo East Travel
Amazing experience. I would recommend the 2/3 day tour as there is so much to see. Our tour guide Alex was brilliant. Very welcoming and extremely knowledgable of the area.
Great Tour! Awesome Guide!
I just came back from the 1 day Chernobyl tour from Kiev and loved every minute. My guide Igor was a fountain of knowledge and really took me to all the interesting spots as well as ( and this was the highlight) to meet some old resettlers in the zone. Drinking moonshine with the babushka was the highlight. Great Tour, great guide, great company! Will go again 100%!!reat Tour! Awesome Guide!
An incredible day out
If visiting Kiev this is an excursion well worth spending a day on.It is a long day leaving Kiev at 08.00 and not returning back until 21.00.However the day is jam packed with stops ,,all of which are fascinating in their own way.the highlight is the abandoned town of Pripyat ,although other stops included abandoned villages.The trip gets close to the reactor and included a meal at the workers canteen-an experience in itself.The two guides were excellent,very knowledgeable and able to answer most questions.
Wow! Interesting, educational and more than I had hoped for
This company really knows how to host an amazing tour. Oleg was knowledgable and passionate about showing us lots of areas around the Exclusion Zone. I am not sure I can say enough about how good this tour was and how my expectations were exceeded. There is so much to see and experience – this is definitely a must see and SoloEast is definitely the group to see it with!
First; the van. It was clean, it was comfortable and every seat had a USB plug to charge our phones. On the way towards Chernobyl they played clips from the HBO series and other documentaries to give us an overview of the sites and reason for the explosion. The can was at the pick-up early so that, being cold outside, we could wait inside if we wanted to! Also the driver was great!
Second; the guide. Oleg was informative and honest. He let us know what was save and pointed out hot-spots (there are very few). He also gave us time to explore a little which was nice. We were running ahead of schedule so Oleg mixed up the itinerary giving us more time to see stuff (like the Russian Woodpecker).
Third; the time of year. Go in the late fall. There was no one there (well, almost no one) so it was easy to get pictures with no one in them, it was quite and the check-points were quick. Plus, since you have to be fully covered, cool weather means you are not overheating in long tops and pants. Finally, the damp air and leaves result in less dust in the air. Less leaves on the trees also means that you can see lots of the abandoned buildings along the roads and the views of the reactors are not obscured by trees. The tour is a little shorter because of the length of the day, but this is made up for because you are not waiting in line or competing with other people for the best photos.
Four; lunch. This is one of the few tours that includes lunch, which is really handy since you cannot eat outside. We had a good filling hot meal at the (only) restaurant in the old town of Chernobyl. This also means a stop to wash hands before eating and plumbing!
There is a lot to take in in one day and I would be tempted to go back and do the two-day tour. I am told you visit the same places but get to spend more time everywhere. Note that you are no longer allowed into the buildings – they are dangerous as they have had no maintenance in over 30 years.
This tour is brilliant. And it is safe. At no point was I fearful or worried about radiation. Oleg was great at explaining the risks and ensuring that we didn’t touch or do anything that could endanger us!
Thanks for the great experience!
I had two tour in November with Alex: he’s an amazing guide, he knows so much information concerning history both on a technical and human side. Those have been two magnificent tours that have enriched me with new knowledge towards a story I’m carrying in my heart in my whole life. Thanks for the great service you do.
Great Tour-Ask for Diana
Absolutely great tour with Diana!! She is amazing!! Great conversationalist, guide, and just alot of fun to be around. She knows the area extremely well, and is very knowledgeable about all aspects of the diaster, the clean up, and ongoing efforts to dismantle old reactor #4. If you decide to tour Chernobyl, you will not go wrong with Soloeast, and ask for Diana, she is amazing
Fantastic fun tour
FaAbsolutely amazing tour ran by our guide Alex and driver Alex visited lots of different places upon entering the 30km exclusion zone. Alex brought humor to the group and was extremely informative. It has made me want to come back and do the two day tour. Food was a little bland in Chernobyl Town, we chose the vegetarian option of fried veggies and rice. The other options were a chicken breast and rice or pork chop and rice. Alex took us to extremely cool places and came away with memories and photos for a lifetime.
Outstanding 🙂 Fantastic, Cool... Also good for dog lovers..
If you want to see and learn about ‘Chernobyl’ then these are the people to do it. I even came away with a knowledge of Uranium and its effects relating. SoleEast Travel provided me with a safe, enjoyable, educational, rewarding and informative visit to the Chernobyl exclusion zone. My guides were Tanya and Alex and I have a few mates who will be booking with this company in the springtime. A few highlights being taken up to the monument adjacent to the now covered reactor number 4. A nice meal in Chernobyl Town, educational videos on the journey, a walk around a deserted village in the forest, a walk around the most famous town of Pripyat, safe passage through the 30 and 10 mile exclusion border posts, your own dossimeter and group geigercounters for readings, the massive Russian over the horizon radar known as the woodpecker and other photo opportunities and a central pick up point from Independence Square. And not forgetting to mention lots of beautiful wild but passive friendly dogs around the checkpoints that descend from those left behind in 1986 so PLEASE take some dog and show the love. Once again I had an absolutely fabulous day and highly recomend this trip to the reader.
Interesting day trip with a fantastic guide!
We booked a day trip to Chernobyl on a Wednesday and so glad we did, it was quiet not too many tour buses and once past the first checkpoint we only came across one other group. Solo East Tours were great, the mini buses were very comfortable with a TV showing interesting clips about Chernobyl from a number of documentaries on the 2 hour journey. Our guide Oleg was fantastic, he spoke good english and had so much knowledge about not only Chernobyl but the history of the soviet union. Having a great guide like Oleg really makes the trip more enjoyable!
I would certainly recommend booking with Solo East, they have been operating tours much longer than other companies that have simply jumped on the band wagon since the HBO series created a big increase in tourism, and Solo East haven’t increased their prices either as we had planned to book a trip a few years ago until our flights got cancelled.
All in all a unique, eerie and very interesting experience I would highly recommend!
We visited Kiev and took a trip to Chernobyl on the Sunday. We were picked up from near McDonalds in the city centre by Igor. Our bus was a small bus which was great, during our trip I seen busses that heald maybe 20-30 people, the good thing about this trip was that there was only 9 of us, it was very personal. We were driven to Chernobyl and watched a documentary on the bus on the way there. We were taken through security by Igor who explained everything to us and made sure we were dressed appropriately. (Make sure you check your documents as to what is acceptable to wear as you won’t get in if you are dressed inappropriately). We were taken through the green and amber zones, had a couple of stop points to take photos and visit buildings, we had lunch in a hotel which was included in the price and was a lovely meal. From there we headed to the red zone, we were taken to a hospital, Kindergarten, School, block of flats and to reactor 4. This trip was so interesting and to be honest, it was our guide Igor that made the whole experience! he is so knowledgeable about Kiev and Chernobyl itself. We were taken to Pripyat too and details of the disaster were explained to us. Igor is so professional, he speaks really good English and you can tell he really loves his job and wants to give you the best experience possible. Im so glad we took this tour with this company and had Igor as our guide rather than a tour with a different company with more people on each trip. I really felt like everything was explained to us, the history, the background and the aftermath of the disaster. I would really recommend this tour and hope you get Igor as a guide. 100% worth doing if you’re in Kiev. Hopefully i’ll go back one day. Thank you so much Igor!!
Private Day Tour
Had a fantastic day tour with SoloEast to Chernobly. Picked up from my hotel and driven to the zone by my expert guide Pasha, he was first class. Its a long day, about 12 hours including travel there and back. A very good quality lunch is included in the price and we ate at Chernobyl`s only privately run hotel. Having initially booked a group tour, I decided to change it to the private one. It was about $300 more expensive than the group tour, but Chernobly is a place you tend to visit only once in your life. We were very lucky and avoided the crowds, that morning 306 people were booked to do tours.. I got to visit the amusement park, NSC New Safe Confinement over reactor number 4, hospital, Doga radar station, the hotel, supermarket and other incredible places. If you visit Chernobyl in the summer, take LOTS of water and insect replant, you will need them both. It was one of the most incredible days of my life. Thanks to Pasha and SoloEast for making this happen 10/10 from me 🙂
Amazing day trip
I did the day tour with Solo East tours, Kiev. It was absolutely fantastic. The amount of places we were able to visit was incredible and the whole day was run with pin point efficiency. The price included a modern, comfortable mini bus and and a tasty and generous hot lunch. The sights and locations alone are of course great, but what really elevated the day to the next level was our tour guide Alex. He was funny, spoke brilliant English and was great at working with our group on what we wanted to do / gave us options for how long we wanted to spend at each location. What I liked most about Alex was that he wasn’t scared to give his unbiased and honest opinions about the events and politics surrounding the incident and everything associated with what is still generally still a sensitive subject in this part of the world. He also gave us a good overview and understanding of Ukrainian history and it’s people, which was very informative and I wouldn’t have learnt otherwise. Highly recommend
Chernobyl 2 Day Tour
Probably one of the coolest experiences I have ever been on! I am very glad I did the 2 day vs the 1 day tour as the group was very small, and we had plenty of time to explore everything. There were only 6 of us, and that gave us a little more latitude on what we did, how long we stayed at a particular place, etc… Igor went above and beyond to make sure we had a great time! He even made a video for us that he sent at the end. I couldn’t recommend this tour and this company enough! The only down side was the food at the hotel in the zone. There was zero choice on what we got, and they happened to serve the one food I won’t eat (cucumbers) at every single meal. Also just a warning the hotel has community bathrooms. It is what it is though, it was worth it to get to stay in the zone!
The best tour i have ever experienced, would highly recommend it
Myself & my brother booked a two day Chernobyl tour with Solo East tours, i would recommend anyone who wishes to visit Chernobyl to do the two day tour, there is some much to see & learn, & i believe a one day tour would not do it justice.
Our guide was Alex Liudvikovskiy, in my opinion solo east tours are very lucky to have Alex on their payroll, i can not express enough the professionalism of this young man. Alex was extremely knowledgeable about the Chernobyl disaster, his english was perfect, & answered so many questions with ease. Alex also has great sense of humour which made our tour very enjoyable. Alex also had photos of what the old buildings looked like before the explosion, it provided a envision prior to 1986 disaster. The tour was very well organised.
Chernobyl was a experience i will never forget, i would suggest anyone who has interest in visiting do so before the buildings fall down, they are not maintained so its only a matter of time before they are all gone.
Pripyat is the biggest abandoned town & its like a time capsule from the Soviet era. It also feels very apocalyptic, the silence is so eerie, the buildings are so run down & old, paint peeling off the walls. When i looked up at the so many private apartments it gave me a great sense of loss to think that at one time that was once a family home, now completely deserted, & personal items looted many years ago.
It also felt terribly sad that so many people who had hopes & dreams were forced to abandon it all, the average age was 26 years, & almost all of its nearly 50,000 residents had some connection to the nuclear powerstation, three kilometres away.
It was also so sad that so many people feel ill due to the radiation, & criminal that the Soviet government did not evacuate the population immediately.
The saddest ending has to be firefighters & liquidators who not only risked their health, but also their lives to make not only the USSR at that time, but also Europe a more safer place, without their braveness i can not bear to think what kind of world we would be living in today.
We had many stops at different locations, eg abandoned villages, Radio Duga, abandoned trains, docks, memorials, bridge of death, cooling towers, the amusement park with its famous ferris wheel that was never used, view of the red forest, & of course reactor number 4 with its huge new sarcophagus.
The hotel we stayed in Chernobyl was very nice, clean & the food was lovely.
Our tour bus was modern, clean & comfortable, we could even charge our phones.
Chernobyl hits all emotions, sadness, feel angry, loss, curiosity, eerie feelings, time capsule, & the hope that a accident like that will never happen again.
All in all, i’m so glad i did the Chernobyl experience.
It was simply amazing!
It was my second time I’ve visited the Abandoned Zone. I’ve arranged a very nice package through Solo East with airport transportation, 2 overnights in the Orane Cottage (very very cosy!), a visit to the power plant itself and the most amazing part of the tour, a 4 private visit to the Zone itself. To be short … it was simply amazing! Together with a friend we’ve visited lots of locations that resulted in lots of pictures (nearly 1400!) . I definitely recommend going with Solo East if you are planning a trip to Chernobyl. Make sure to ask the staff of Solo East to have Igor as guide. He is a very nice man that knows a lot about the Zone and can tell everything in a nice and comprehensive way. He can also show you some incredible places that you don’t see on regular visits.