Chernobyl Exclusion Zone

Polesia’s heartland both historically and geographically. Initially inhabited by 120,000 people living in Chernobyl and Pripyat and 187 small settlements, most of this area is now forest and marshland. On geographic maps, all settlements are marked as uninhabited but do not appear as settlements. During the Second World War, the woods around Pripyat were a focal point for partisan resistance. A method of evading guards and returning into the woods that allowed evacuated residents to return home.

In the wake of the Chernobyl disaster, the Soviet government commission headed by Nikolai Ryzhkov established a “rather arbitrary” on the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone on May 2, 1986. An evacuation zone surrounding Reactor 4 of a radius of 30 kilometers has been identified. Three subzones of 30 kilometers were initially established.

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Within 30 km of Reactor 4, there is an area adjacent to it within approximately 10 kilometers and another 30 kilometers beyond the reactor. Each subzone had a different level of protection and facilities. Based on the revised dose limit of 100 mSv, additional evacuation areas were designed based on updated maps of the contaminated areas in 1986. 

Further, three zones were created to counter population and access to the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. 

  • Black Zone: Evacuees were not allowed to return to the Black Zone
  • Red Zone: After normal radiation levels are achieved, evacuees might return to the red zone
  • Blue Zone: From summer 1986 to the present, children and pregnant women have been evacuated from the Blue Zone

Later in 1986, the military was granted special permission to access and control all facilities. There were no immediate evacuations, but ultimately 91,200 people fled these areas.

Several companies offer daily trips from Kyiv to the Exclusion Zone, and the number of visitors to the area has increased each year. Further, Ukrainian tour operators can arrange multi-day excursions with ease. Tourists staying in Chernobyl’s Exclusion Zone hotels are the bulk of overnight tourists. 

Approximately 50 licensed exclusion area tour guides work for approximately nine tour companies, according to an exclusion area tour guide as of 2017. Visitors must present their passports when entering the Exclusion Zone at the 10 km checkpoint and at the 30 km checkpoint.

The Exclusion Zone can also be entered if an application is made directly to the zone administration department. Former residents of Pripyat have started a tradition of visiting their former homes and schools each year to commemorate their lives en route to safety. A single Eastern Orthodox Christian church exists in the Chernobyl area, the St. Elijah Church.

Despite radiation levels being “well below the zones’ average,” Chernobyl disaster liquidators consider that a miracle. President of the Ukrainian Chernobyl Union Yury Andreyev calls the radiation levels on the site “miraculous.”.

Scientists and journalists have been able to visit the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone since it was created. Earlier examples included Elena Filatova’s account of a solo bicycle ride through the zone she allegedly took.

Then a tour guide claimed Filatova was part of an official tour group, gaining her Internet fame. Later, this was alleged to be a hoax. Millions of people were informed about the nuclear catastrophe by her story.  As a result of Filatova’s visit to the zone in 2004, several papers began publishing articles.

Here are the most essential features that we offer you during your visit to the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. 


The background radiation in the Exclusion zone varies between different areas. Sometimes it’s practically zero, sometimes it’s relatively high. Due to this reason, we have come up with a perfect safety design that allows you to enjoy a unique route. This route is absolutely safe and secure to travel. And there is someplace in the area where the radiation levels are far less than that of radiations level found in Kiev.


There is no particular dress code for visiting the area. But one thing that ensures your safety more is to wear full sleeves. And try to avoid wearing t-shirts, shorts, or slippers so that you are no longer exposed to radiation. Although they are very minimal in the area you are about to visit, we want your safety first, so please act on the precautionary measures. 

Moreover, if you feel that this is not the type of clothing you want to wear during the visit. There are further options that would allow you to wear the special chemical protection suit. And with this suit, you are free to form all the radiations, a minute or heavy. And furthermore, with this type of suit you are wearing, you can enjoy your trip to another level by taking some exotic pictures. 


English, Russian, and Ukrainian are the languages we offer. If a group is multilingual during the excursion, the main points will be translated into several languages, including the language most people speak. Regardless, nobody will get bored – the Exclusion Zone offers countless sights and experiences that will keep you engaged.

Here at UrbanMatter, we pride ourselves on leading the charge when it comes to entertainment. Need ideas? News? Info? From venues, restaurants, and bars to events, festivals, and music — we’ve got you covered.

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