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Radioactive tourism: Chernobyl is open for tours

People will pay money to see "weird things" like : bearded woman, half-man/half-alligator, Auschwitz,abundant prisons, swamps, catacombs/caves, cult/occult places, and even the world's most notorious nuclear power plant, Chernobyl.

I've read about "unofficial tours" of land surrounding the Chernobyl plant long time ago, and knew that some day it would eventually become "an attractive tourist destination".

At first it was mostly people looking for "mutants". In fact some animals and foliage have passed on some traits of genetic mutation caused by the incident, but according to the scientists they never resembled the monsters described in the media and all died out quickly.

Now it is one of Ukraine's most visited sites. Roughly 6,000 tourists—most of them Europeans—stream through this area annually on private tours unsanctioned by the authorities. But starting this year, the government is also looking to cash in on the plant's notoriety, with plans to open up the zone to official tours, as well as boost its safety by building a giant concrete shell to encase the reactor by 2015.

The Ukrainian town of Pripyat, which is just miles from the nuclear power plant, is The Ghost Town and the highlight of the tour. The town is an eerily mundane time capsule, buried in dust and left almost exactly as it was when its roughly 50,000 inhabitants were forced to flee in 1986. The long aluminum fence and barbed wire surrounds the town and opens its doors only to workers and to small groups of tourists interested in how the world would look like if all people would have disappeared in one moment.

After the four-hour tour and a prison-style meal, visitors stand on a contraption that looks like a time machine. If it flashes green—no radiation—then you are good to go. On your way out of the exclusion zone, you (and your vehicle) must go through a similar radiation x-ray of sorts.

But the radiation is still here : invisible, odorless, tasteless, it permeates the buried buildings, cars and cattle, the earth that covers them, the rivers that flow nearby. And it will do so for a long time to come...

Interested ? Have fun ! - Chernobyl and Pripyat tours

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