Chernobyl

Category: Resorts » Tourism in CIS » Ukraine | Author: biker | Views: 3928 | 23-06-2012, 02:42
Chernobyl

Official name: Chernobyl;

The total area of the exclusion zone: 225 ha;

Location: it is city in Kiev region, Ivankov district, Ukraine;

Climate: temperate continental;

Population 500 persons;

Ethnic groups: Ukrainians, Belarusians, Russian and Polish;

Official language : Ukrainian;

Religion: Orthodox;

Currency : Hryvnia (UAH, code 980);

Интернет-домен: .ua , com.ua ;

Telephone code: +380 (4593);

Local Time: UTC +2, in summer UTC +3.

 

 

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Chernobyl

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Chernobyl

Map of Chernobyl   

Chernobyl

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Information about Chernobyl

Chernobyl is the city in Ivankov district of Kiev region in Ukraine. It is tragic known because of the Chernobyl accident (1986).  The population of the town had been 12,500 before the accident. Today, the city's population is about 500 people, it composes only from employees of institutions and enterprises of Exclusion Zone, who work on rotational basis (in Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant) and squatters. 

 

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The population of the town of Chernobyl

Despite the fact that there is a restriction of residence in the exclusion zone, many people who had been evacuated during the accident, returned to their homes.

According to different sources, after the explosion in 1986, 1,200 people returned and lived here. At the beginning of 2007 their number was 314. Local residents of the exclusion zone are called squatters. These people live separately in 11 localities of the Exclusion Zone.

Most squatters (or they are also called - samoposelentsy) - are people of old age. Their average age is about 63 years. Squatters live in such settlements as Zalesie, Ilintsi, Opachichi, New Shepelichi, Otash, Ladyzhichi, Rudnya-Ilinetskaya, Chernobyl, Teremtsy, and Kupovatoe Paryshiv.
People, who live in the zone, collect mushrooms, and berries, fish and do gardening which helps them to survive.

Photos of Chernobyl 

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Geographical position of Chernobyl

Chernobyl is located on the Pripyat River, near the Kiev water reservoir.


The Chernobyl nuclear power station is located in the eastern part of the Belarusian-Ukrainian Polesie in northern Ukraine, 11 km from the border with Belarus. To the west of the station there is abandoned city of Pripyat, 18 km south-east of the station there is a former regional center - the city of Chernobyl. Distance to Kiev is 110 km.

 

Climate of Chernobyl

Chernobyl exclusion zone is the zone of temperate-continental climate with a positive balance of humidity. This type of climate characterized by relatively high temperatures and low humidity in summer and low temperatures, high humidity and snow cover in winter.

The climate of the exclusion zone is well studied, because there are three meteorological stations in the exclusion zone.

 

Flora and fauna of Chernobyl

Scientists have an answer to the question how Flora and Fauna managed to survive in radioactive area. Flora has adapted to the radiation.

According to scientists from Ukraine, Slovakia and the United States, Chernobyl disaster has not so much affected the environment, because different types of plants growing near the nuclear power station (CNPP) have adapted to the soil with a high level of contamination. But scientists failed explaining how plants were able to compete with radiation.

Forest, meadow and marsh vegetation grow on the territory of the Chernobyl exclusion zone. Couch grass and reed land are dominated in forest free area. But the Chernobyl meadows have recently begun to be overgrown with pines and birches. Scientists estimate that over 40% of grasslands have been covered with woody vegetation.

Fauna of the Chernobyl zone has changed after the accident. After people’s leaving, many species of animals, which had not been seen for centuries, began to live and breed in the area. For example, in the empty city you can see moose or wolf crossing the road, and in the bushes near the house - crouching boar. The exclusion zone is inhabited by hares, otters, beavers, foxes, muskrats, moose, deer, wild horses and bisons and a few dozen animals, which are listed as endangered. For the first hundred years, bear and lynx have been seen here.

In the Chernobyl exclusion zone the prosperity of the unique ecosystem can be observed, which would not have been possible if people lived here. Among birds you can see gray cranes, white-tailed eagle, swans, grouse, black storks, eagles, ducks, and several species of owls and many bats. Interestingly, many species of birds have not been seen in Ukraine for over 50 years, and no one knows why they liked this place.

Since there is enormous number of insects, amphibians, reptiles and fish, there is plenty food for everybody. There are many rare species of plants, even orchids.

There is an opinion that the Chernobyl exclusion zone is a place where a lot of mutants live. It is not true. It is the reproduction of individuals, the most resistant to radiation. Mutant individuals can not survive in a system because of natural selection.

Flora and fauna in the Chernobyl exclusion zone shows us that nature has the power to cope even with consequences of such terrible disaster. 


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History of Chernobyl

Chernobyl is one of the oldest cities in Ukraine, with unique and interesting history. The city has always been at the center of historical events, and influenced on the development of both Kievan Rus in ancient times, and the former Soviet Union in the recent past (some historians believe that the Chernobyl accident has undermined the economic power of the USSR that eventually led to its collapse.)

In historical sources Chernobyl was first mentioned in 1193, although archaeologists have found evidence of settlements at the beginning of X century. It is also important fact that in the Chernobyl region the remains of the oldest settlements have been found. According to them people lived here for about two and a half thousand years ago.
Unfortunately, nowadays historical and archaeological studies of Chernobyl are not conducted. Last time the archaeological expedition conducted in 1913, during which an ancient treasure was found.

Chernobyl accident happened on April 26, 1986 (1:23 minutes) on the fourth power unit. 190 tons of radioactive substances were released into the atmosphere .Big fire started on the  station which lasted for almost 2 weeks and let out in the air a lot of other dangerous substances.

12,500 people had lived in the city before the accident.  If to compare with atomic bomb in Hiroshima, people living in Chernobyl were affected 90 times more. Nearly 200,000 square kilometers was contaminated by radiation. According to a UN report (1995) the Chernobyl accident has directly and indirectly affected 9 million people.

There are several possible reasons of the accident. According to experts of the IAEA the main reason is imperfection of the RBMK-1000 reactor, which had several disadvantages. There were also errors of the personnel of the 5th shift on the 4th block which led to self-poisoning of the reactor, because the control rods had been withdrawn from the reactor core, which was prohibited by the regulations. The chain reaction in the fourth power unit ended with a thermal explosion, which destroyed the building. Also, there were 27 cases of equipment failure which had not been adequately investigated. Wrong station design made the situation worse and led to the meltdown of the reactor containment and release of clouds of radioactive fallout.
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Where to go in the area Chernobyl
Nowadays every adult person can walk through the deserted streets of Pripyat, to see the abandoned village, and the sarcophagus over the destroyed fourth block of Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. To make an excursion tourists have to get permission, because the exclusion zone is protected from the outside world by barbed wire, so after passing the check point you can easily get there.

The first town on your way to Chernobyl will be Zalesie village. People who live in modern cities are very impressed with this place. It used to be the village, and than it disappeared and became empty ... There are still streets, but without names.
Tourists like to visit the abandoned city of Pripyat. The whole population (46 000) were evacuated from the city for a few hours, and the city, looks as fallen into hibernation. It has very weird atmosphere. There are many trees on the empty roads; some of them run into the house. There are empty multi storied buildings with broken windows. The walls of buildings are destroying and shrubs and grass are growing on its foundation. Such an empty city both  amazing and scaring view...
Town of Pripyat is located on the banks of the Pripyat River in the Kiev region. It was founded February 4, 1970. The city had a distinct center - office buildings (City Council), recreation and culture centre (cinema "Prometheus", the palace of culture "Energetic"), and various shops.
Pripyat had Soviet architectural style. The main idea in the design of Pripyat was the "triangular" buildings, which were invented and perfected by several Moscow architects, headed by Nikolai Ostozhenka. After some changes the construction was finally adopted. It should be mentioned that several soviet cities were built in the same architectural styles. For example, some districts in  Kurchatov and Semipalatinsk, Volgodonsk and Motor City of Togliatti have much in common with the residential quarters of Pripyat. The main advantage of this design is the alternation of the small houses with multi storied buildings, which creates visual free space between the buildings. Another interesting thing is that with such location of streets and avenues the city was not afraid of traffic jams. So far, the cities of Volgodonsk and Togliatti have no traffic jams at all.  Pripyat would not have them also.
First of all Pripyat will impress you with the destroyed school number one. It is very sad to look at it. After this "tour» you will feel like after leaving the hospital - you start to appreciate life and love morepeople around you. Also, it is interesting to look the abandoned military and engineering machines which had been left in the city.

The city of Chernobyl will not leave anyone indifferent either. In spite of the fact that about 170 "squatters" and about 2,000 personnel of the enterprises of the Exclusion Zone are living there, a large part of the city is abandoned and gradually overgrown with vegetation. And the most importantly think - you will be able to see the culprit of the tragedy - the Chernobyl nuclear power station.

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Excursions to the Chernobyl zone (one-day and two-day trips)

Day trips

Chernobyl can be called the most mysterious place in Ukraine. The events which took place here are very tragic. You will have the unique opportunity to learn how the environment has adapted to the radio active conditions and developing without men’s interfering.

Many people after visiting the exclusion zone have changed their views on everyday life. And it is perhaps the main sense of the trip.
In the Chernobyl zone, of course, there is a radiation-dangerous place. That’s why the tourists are accompanied with the guide, who knows the safe routes.

 

Two-day trips


For one day, it is impossible see the whole Chernobyl zone. The two-day trip can offer you much more than only visiting the main objects of the Zone (Chernobyl, the Chernobyl nuclear power pstation, the town of Pripyat,): you will be able to visit people who live in the area - squatters, to see their lifestyle, to stroll through the wonderful forests, where any no human foot stepped.
 
The level of radiation in Chernobyl is the same as in Kiev - the normal, not dangerous to humans.

 

Schedule of Russian-speaking excursions to the exclusion zone:

 

May: 12, 19, 26

June: 09, 16, 23, 30

July: 07, 14, 21, 28

August: 11, 18, 25

September: 01, 08, 15, 22, 29

October: 06, 13, 20, 27

November: 03, 10, 17, 24

December: 01, 08, 15, 22, 29


Price of the trip to the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone is about $120 for the citizens living in Ukraine and CIS countries, and for guests of our country. The price includes lunch,
During the tour you will learn much new information about the tragedy that occurred in 1986, the tour to Chernobyl, includes the visiting of Elias Church, Park of Glory, a river port. Also during the tour you will see the Chernobyl nuclear power station, make stop at the observation deck at the gates of the 4th unit with views of the "Sarcophagus. Then you will go to the town of Pripyat, where you visit the hotel "Polesie", school, kindergarten, swimming pool and some abandoned homes.

 

What you should know and remember:

 

During the time which you spend at Chernobyl, you will receive the same level of exposure to radiation, as if flying a flight on a jet plane. Even the conventional radiography gives you several times more radiation.

 

Children under 18 years are not allowed to trips to Chornobyl and Pripyat.

 

Without passport you can not get in Chernobil zone.


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Interesting Facts about Chernobyl

  • The explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power station released into the atmosphere 400 times more radioactive than the bombing of Hiroshima.

  • More than 600 thousand people worked on the liquidation of the Chernobyl accident.

  • After the accident the economics of Belarus lost $ 235 billion U.S. dollars, and 70% of its territory was radioactive poisoned.

  • Until now the compensation is paying to seven million people.

  • In the fourth reactor under the sarcophagus there is 97% of the radioactive material. The construction of new demands more than 2 billion dollars.

  • From 1 January 2011 the Ministry of Emergencies of Ukraine allowed the tourists to visit Chernobyl and Pripyat.
  • According to Forbes magazine the territory of the Chernobyl nuclear power station has been named the most exotic place for tourism in the world.
  • In the exclusion zone, scientists have identified an abnormal mutation of earthworms, which are normally hermaphrodites, but after the nuclear disaster in this area they were divided into males and females.
  • Regardless of the fact that the exclusion zone has got a big amount of radiation, flora and fauna of the Chernobyl area is in blossom.  It is inhabited by a great variety of plants and animals. Some of them are even listed as endangered species.
  • It should be mentioned that one of the most popular computer games "Stalker", which is based on the subject of Chernobyl and Chernobyl exclusion zone, has been created by the Ukrainian developers- the company "GSC Game World". The first version of the computer game has become the most   expected computer game in the world. It has been developing for 5 years. It is interesting that the area, location and names of the zones have been taken from the real map and the location of areas in the Chernobyl exclusion zone.

 

Conclusions 

Chernobyl is the city in Ivankov district of Kiev region in Ukraine. It is tragic famous because of the Chernobyl accident (1986). Chernobyl can rightly be called the most mysterious place in Ukraine. The events which took place here impress everybody with its size and tragic consequences. You will have the unique opportunity to see how the environments had adapted to the radioactive conditions and developing without people’s inferring. 

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