Step into an alternate dimension.
Minsk, Belarus' capital can feel bombastic. Think wide avenues lined with monolithic Soviet buildings. The vast squares have monumental centerpieces. Modern skyscrapers and shiny new gold-tipped orthodox churches are everywhere. The streets are clean and well maintained. Everything is in its place in Minsk. Belarus is the capital of a dictatorship after all, so none of this should come as a surprise. Minsk has a full set of everything you'd expect from a former Soviet Republic. But it has the added advantage for the visitor that it hasn't been abandoned, ignored, or torn down. Instead it has been revered, or even celebrated. Among the city's highlights are the striking new National Library building, main market hall, and the shining, newly finished All Saints Church.
You'll find statues of Lenin and other Communist greats all over the place, as well as a striking number of American fast food chains. McDonald’s and KFC are a given. Cinnabon and Papa John's might come as a surprise. Our favorite place to spend an evening in Minsk is the Old Town, which is undergoing significant rebuilding. It features architecture on a much more human scale, and is the city's liveliest neighborhood in the evening. Yes, locals can have fun too, as long as they don't make a mess and aren't too rowdy. For dining, we recommend keeping to places serving local dishes. As long as you're a fan of meat and potatoes, you can eat well enough for a few dollars. Restaurants serving foreign cuisine are pricy and more about showing off than enjoying great food.
What I love about Minsk
Minsk isn't necessarily a city one CAN love, but it's certainly interesting, in part because it serves as a "what if" for its neighbors, who followed very different routes after the fall of communism.
Where to stay in Minsk
We’ve checked out all the best hotels in Minsk. There’s something for every taste and budget. You could go for some Communist-era nostalgia, a more homely feel, a renovated monastery, or a sleek new skyscraper-style hotel. Once we start preparing your customized itinerary we will present our recommended options for you to select from.
A comfortable hotel in the heart of the city, this is a great choice for convenience.
This five-star hotel is one of the finest in the city. The ideal choice for elegance, service and style.
Modern design and comfort meet in this creative hotel in the arts district.
Things to do in Minsk
A city tour is a must for getting oriented. There’s plenty to do in Minsk. There are several interesting buildings to visit, like the National Library and the Great Patriotic War Museum. The main market hall is worth a visit too. Outside of Minsk, the most popular day trip is to the Mir and Nesvizh Castles. They are close to each other, so a trip to visit both is a day well spent. When we send you your customized itinerary you will be able to choose additional excursions to include in your vacation package or consider for adding later.
Heritage of the Soviet Union Private Tour
Minsk City Private Walking and Driving Tour
Private Day Trip to Nesvizh and Mir Castles
Gastronomic tour "Belarusian cuisine"
Jewish Heritage Tour in Minsk