Miscellaneous: In the Lufthansa air-plane we got an information about the so called custom declaration we should fill before we enter Belarus. I read a lot of stories about cruel Belarus custom staff who makes you a lot of problems if you don't have a declaration and so on. Let me tell you something, that story is a fairytale. Nobody asked me for a custom declaration and I had a walkman and a digital camera. So, take my advice and don't believe everything you hear on BBC, CNN and the other propaganda lies.Related to:
- Budget Travel
Sorry but....... Toilet Paper!
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Winter is bitterly cold apparently.
We went in summer which was hot & humid. But be prepared for a downpour and have your waterproofs ready. I was impressed one morning when the sun dissapeared and the rain came down. Out of nowhere, the locals all produced their umbrellas and carried on as usual.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Toilet paper is cheap and readily available. It is rather tough and if you have a sensitive skin you had best bring your own supply from home.
The most important thing is to always have some with you. Public toilets rarely have any. In fact, avoid public toilets too! If you are in a town then try to use a restaurant or hotel toilet. If you are in the countryside, there are plenty of trees and bushes to facilitate your needs!
Miscellaneous: A russian phrase book. It might just save your life!Related to:
- Road Trip
- Family Travel
Luggage and bags: Take plenty of warm clothes if you travel in Winter temp can reach -30 degrees in the outlying villages.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Take whatever medical cover (Insurance) and make sure it is a good policy and covers Russian teritory. Also take whatever bandages and plasters you think you may need in the event of a small accident. Paracetamol tablets and just whatever you think as a person you may need. Finding the most simple medication in this country can prove difficult.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Take as much medical supplies as you feel would apply to yourself in cas of a minor accident.
Photo Equipment: A real must take I would say two camera's one with a short lense and another second body with a larger angle lense. If one should break then you have a backup, if the lenses are inter changeable then this is all the better.
Miscellaneous: Learn some Cyrillic. You'll thank me when you return! If you are not prepared to speak a little Russian, make sure you can read it. (Even so, it's hard to avoid speaking it entirely.) Unlike Moscow and St. Petersburg in Russia, you will not find many people here who speak English (or French or German). They simply don't see many tourists; Belarus is not a tourist destination. This is changing a little, particularly as many Jews from the West return (as I did) to trace their roots. But the numbers are insignificant. I went to many places that a tourist would be expected to go, such as museums and better restaurants and shops selling art of different kinds. Almost without exception, no one spoke anything except Russian (which, you should realize, is actually a foreign language here, although almost everyone speaks it. There is a separate, and yes, it's different, language called Belarussian. Often, it is similar but occasionally there are completely different words.) Sometimes you will find restaurants with menus or parts of their menus, in English. But don't plan your stay around finding them.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: If you travel to Belarus in the summer, don't forget to bring your umbrella. June ans July are the most wet months of the year, and the most warm at the same time.
If your trip is planned for the winter, bring more warm clothes. It could be inhumanly cold here, just a bit better than at the North Pole... :)
Miscellaneous: Some info about visas for entering Belarus.
It is possible to get a visa at an embassy or consulate of Belarus in a foreign country or at the consulate in the National Airport 'Minsk' upon arrival to the country. The most cheap is tourist visa (USD60 for residents of those countries, which have a representation of Belarus on their territory, and USD45 for others). The price for business or guest visa is USD140 and USD100 according to the gradation mentioned above. You will have to pay twice less, if you are able to wait five days, while they would have your visa issued. It is necessary to have an invitation (for business or guest visa), confirmation of hotel booking and travel vautcher for tourist visa. When have arrived to Belarus, every foreigner should be registered with local department of foreign affairs or at the hotel of staying no later than in three days.
More info you can find on www.mfa.gov.by
Luggage and bags: If you're going to Belarus in winter, bring warm clothes and shoes, you'll defenetly need them. As for summers, the last three of them have been really HOT! In July the temperature didn't fall below 34-28C
Internatsionalnaya Str. 28, Minsk, 220030, Belarus
Good for: Solo
For Soviet citizens it was always practically impossible to lodge in a hotel "Intourist". The best...more
13 Kirova str., Minsk, 220040, Belarus
Satisfaction: Very Good
Good for: Solo
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