If they had told me before that one of the countries that I will visit while studying in Europe was going to be Belarus, I would’ve been like “you mean Russia, right?”.
KIDDING! I mean, sort of. I knew Belarussia was not exactly in Russia, and that it was located somewhere around Europe but I had no clue about its culture, language, heritage or history.
This trip certainly opened my eyes to the underrated gem that this country is. Their people are the nicest, most friendly and helpful I have ever met on any trip. Guys, when a stranger hops inside your bus to help you find your destination that happens to be in the other side of the city. You can be certain that you are in a nice place.
Aside from lots of problems with the visa procedure and crossing the border, that I will definitely share with you guys later, it was certainly a place full of things to explore and do. But first let me share with you some random facts I discovered in my trip to Belarus…
1| For starters, Belarus is located between Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Ukraine, and Russia and it has around 9.5 million inhabitants. The main language is Belorussian, and it is most similar to Polish language than Russian. Its capital is Minsk.
2| It is a super flat country, I didn’t even saw a small hill on the horizon. That is because its tallest mountain, Mount Dzyarzhynskaya, is only 346 meters high. It has a lot of dense forests though.
3| Belarus is like cheese heaven. And it’s know for its top quality dairy products. Some cheeses tasted like a combination of butter, mayonnaise and cheese, and when I inquired about them they seriously told me that it was just cheese. Mind-blowing delicious!
4| Minsk is like a Phoenix, it has been destroyed in 8 occasions. The last time it was rebuild was after WW2 with a Stalin Classical Style architecture.
5| The capital, Minsk, is older than Moscow. They have found historical references dated from 1067!
6| Their most important national holiday is Freedom Day on May 9. They celebrate the end of the German Occupation during WW2.
7| The first Nobel price winner in Democratic Belarussia is a woman. Her name is Svetlana Alexievich and she won it this year (2015) for her work in literature.
8| Belarus is known as “Potato Nation” because they have over 300 potato recipes. They even have potato pancakes, and they are amazing!
9| Belarus has develop a really competitive and productive IT sector. It has produced the world famours Viber Messenger app and the game World of Tanks.
10| Though this fact is still a little debatable, Isaac Asimov was born in what was Belorussian territory.
What did you guys liked the most about this country?
From the sunny side of this,