Category Archives: Soviet History & Architecture

Slavutych, Ukraine: The Soviet City Built for Chernobyl Refugees

Housing block in Slavutych, Ukraine

I have witnessed the Chernobyl disaster go from being a globally-recognized mass tragedy to a clichéd source of trite tourism where travelers go in with their cameras hugging their hips, all ready to shoot the perfect photo (which has inevitably been taken 3,790 times already that same month) for bragging rights about how they visited such a creepy […]

Duga: The Russian Woodpecker inside the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone

The Soviets never did anything in an unostentatious manner.  Not even radars that were supposed to be kept a secret from the rest of the world.  Such is the case with “Duga” (meaning “arc” in English), commonly known as the Russian Woodpecker. I have long had a desire to travel to the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. […]

A Travel Guide to Soviet Kharkiv, Ukraine

Derzhprom in Kharkiv, Ukraine from a Soviet Travel Guide to Kharkiv

I remember the moment that I booked that train to Kharkiv from Kyiv’s central station.  I wasn’t sure what I was doing, but I knew I had wanted to head east and Kharkiv just seemed like the obvious option.  I booked my ticket a few weeks in advance on the ‘fast train’, but I never […]

Issyk-Ata: A Soviet Sanatorium in Kyrgyzstan

Issyk-ata Soviet Sanatorium in Kyrgyzstan

My first experience with a Soviet sanatorium was back in Sukhum, Abkhazia in 2013.  I had booked a place on Couchsurfing to stay that ran me $1 (free accommodation was illegal at the time in Abkhazia so the hosts were mandated to charge something) and upon my arrival in the city, I was unable to […]

Thoughts and Photos from My Time in Chernobyl and Pripyat

My first trip to Ukraine was all the way back in 2011.  I say ‘all the way’ back because, unless you have been ignoring all major world news in recent years, you surely have heard about the revolution that took place in Ukraine and is still unraveling today.   Ukraine in 2011 is a very […]

A Travel Guide to Soviet Dnipro, Ukraine

Old Circus building in Dnipro, Ukraine

Most travelers familiar with Eastern Europe are aware that the farther east you head in any of those countries, the more ‘Russified’ the place becomes.  This doesn’t necessarily stand true for Central Europe or the Balkans, two regions often classified as Eastern Europe (and it kind of bothers me), but rather for Ukraine, Belarus, the Baltics, […]