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Cycle Belarus Short Break
Belarus - Trip code CBE Cycling
Days 5
Deposit From £102
Price from £1020
Flights inclusive
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Why book this trip?

Join us on this short break exploration of Belarus by bike. Starting in Minsk we dedicate a full day to explore the capital by bicycle and on foot. Leaving the monumental Stalinist architecture of the city behind, we discover the countryside on a cycle ride between 15th century Mir Castle and Nesvizh Castle, both UNESCO World Heritage sites. Finally we cycle through self-sufficient eco village Rosy, a community project where we can learn about post-soviet transition and life in modern day Belarus.

    • Included meals

      Breakfast: 4

      Lunch: 1

      Dinner: 1

    • Trip staff

      Explore Tour Leader / Cycle guide

      Driver(s)

      Local Guide(s)

    • Transport

      Bus

      Bicycle

    • i

      Accommodation

      4 nights standard hotel

    • i

      Cycling grade:

      Easy

    • i

      Group Size:

      10 - 16

    Itinerary

    Itineraries on some departure dates may differ, please select the itinerary that you wish to explore.

    Day 1 - Join trip in Minsk

    Your trip starts this evening in Minsk. Almost completely razed to the ground in the Second World War, much of Minsk was constructed in Soviet times often with grand Stalinist architecture. Set on the banks of the Svislach River, the city was first settled by the Early East Slavs back in the 9th century AD. The reconstructed downtown suburb of Trinity is pleasant to wander through and gives a feel for how Minsk looked before the war. Our hotel in Minsk is conveniently located just a few minutes' walk from the Partyzanskaya Metro Station and it's then a 15-20 minutes journey into the very centre of the city. Close to our hotel is a very large tractor factory, dating back to Soviet times, which employs an astonishing 17,000 people. The hotel and the surrounding area have a very Soviet layout and give us a glimpse into what normal local life is like in the city.

    No cycling today.

    Accommodation:

    Grade: Standard Hotel

    Single room available

    Meals Provided: None

    Day 2 - Explore Minsk by bike and on foot

    We have planned a full and busy day to make the most of our time in the capital, starting with a short drive into the suburbs to start our bike ride. After being equipped with our bikes and making any necessary adjustments we spend the morning discovering Minsk on two wheels. On our exploration we will ride mostly on a bike path that runs across almost the entire city from northwest to southeast, following the Svisloch River. We will need to occasionally ride on the pavement as many roads do not permit bicycles. Along the way we plan to see places of interest such as Pobeditelei Avenue, Brazilian street art, Victory Park, Yanka Kupala Park, Loshitskiy Park and Gorky Park. We end the cycle tour at the fascinating Great Patriotic War Museum where you have time to visit (unguided, 1 hour). After some free time for lunch we continue our day without the bikes, walking and using the tour bus to get around town. We plan to visit the central market and tractor plant area. If time and energy permit we may even take a short walk around Minsk after dinner when buildings are illuminated.

    Our total cycling distance today is approximately 20 to 27 kilometres.

    Accommodation:

    Grade: Standard Hotel

    Single room available

    Meals Provided: Breakfast

    Day 3 - Cycle between UNESCO-listed Mir and Nesvizh Castles

    The drive to Mir town should take us around 2 hours. Upon arrival we have a guided visit to the UNESCO listed castle of Mir. Construction began here at the end of the 15th century and it has sections in Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque styles. After the visit to take to our bikes again and cycle on paved roads, past forest and farming land to the impressive UNESCO World Heritage Site of Nesvizh Castle, which has been home to the Radswill Family for over 400 years. The terrain is generally flat and traffic levels are quite low becoming slightly busier close the castles. Our ride ends at Nesvizh and we plan to have a guided visit of the fortress on arrival. Our hotel for tonight has a great location set within the walls and compound of the castle itself.

    Our total cycling distance today is approximately 41 kilometres.

    Accommodation:

    Grade: Standard Hotel

    Single room available

    Meals Provided: Breakfast and Dinner

    Day 4 - Cycle to eco-village and try local produce

    Another day to explore the countryside around Minsk we start with a two hour drive to Ivenec where we start our cycle ride. Today's bike route goes on a mixture of paved and unpaved roads and the first stop is after about an hour or so at the community of Rosy village. There are around 40 self-sufficient homesteads that farm around 5 acres of land with crops and livestock. A local representative will introduce us to this alternative way of life, explaining the history of the place and it's inhabitants and we may get the opportunity to try some of the local produce, for example organic tea, bread and honey. We continue cycling and our next stop is for lunch at Martinova Goose - a farmstead providing simple rural accommodation and meals. Along the way we will learn something about the remarkable 'partisan' war waged against the Nazis from the nearby forests. We end the ride today at the town of Piarshi. From here we drive to a farm created by local musician and artist Ales Los where we have the chance to learn about Belorussian folk music and folklore, which have made a revival since the end of Soviet rule. Finally we travel the final 55 km back into Minsk by bus which should take around 1.5 hours. A final chance to see Minsk tonight.

    Our total cycling distance today is approximately 24 kilometres.

    Accommodation:

    Grade: Standard Hotel

    Single room available

    Meals Provided: Breakfast and Lunch

    Day 5 - Trip ends in Minsk

    The trip ends in Minsk this morning after breakfast.

    Meals Provided: Breakfast

    Trip information

    Country information

    Belarus

    Climate

    Belarusian climate is moderately continental, a transitional form from maritime to continental climatewith mild and humid winters, warm summers and damp autumns. Average July temperatures range from +17 C to +18.5 C, January temperatures vary from -8 C to -4.5 C.

    Time difference to GMT

    +3

    Plugs

    2 Pin Round

    Religion

    Orthodox

    Language

    Belarusian

    Budgeting and packing

    Clothing

    When cycling: quick drying cycle tops, padded cycle shorts, lightweight wind and water proof jacket and warmer breathable layers where local conditions require.
    General: Pack essentially for warm or mild weather depending on the time of the year plus some warmer clothes for colder nights.

    Footwear

    If you are not bringing cycle shoes then try to bring stiff-soled shoes as these are better for cycling - transmitting your energy into the pedals more efficiently. This becomes more relevant and recommended the more demanding the grade and distances to cover. SPD cycle shoes are not well suited to tours that combine sightseeing with cycling.
    Comfortable shoes, trainers, sandals or flip flops are useful when not on the bike.

    Luggage

    20kg

    Luggage: On tour

    We recommend you bring a daypack and one main piece of luggage (total allowance: 44lb/20kg) which will be transported between hotels while you cycle. Check the bike details section to see if a pannier or handlebar bag is provided on the bike. Remember that you'll have to carry your own luggage so don't overload yourself.

    Equipment

    On all Explore cycle holidays we strongly recommend you bring along and wear your cycle helmet. In case of an accident resulting in personal injury, certain insurance policies are invalidated in cases where a helmet was not being worn. Cycle glasses to protect against dust, pollen and the sun, padded cycle gloves and a water bottle or water delivery system (e.g. camelback or platypus) are also useful. You may choose to bring your own gel seat cover for added comfort. Bring an eye mask for sleeping during white nights. Other items to consider bringing are a sunhat and sun cream, torch, earplugs and insect repellent. Please carry some or all of your cycling equipment e.g. helmet as part of your hand luggage.

    Tipping

    Explore leader
    At your discretion you might also consider tipping your Tour Leader in appreciation of the efficiency and service you receive.
    Local crew
    Although entirely voluntary, tipping is a recognised part of life in this region of the world. Some local staff will look to members of the group for personal recognition of particular services provided. In order to make things easier for you, the Tour Leaders may organise a group's tips kitty and if this is the case, they will account for it throughout the tour.
    International Departure Taxes
    None

    Belarus

    Food and drink

    The costs for meals may vary depending upon location, type of restaurant and number of courses eaten and so the prices given are an average guide. Local restaurants located off the beaten track may be less expensive, whereas an upmarket restaurant located in the centre of a major city may charge more.


    Lunch price
    £6
    Dinner price
    £11
    Beer price
    £2.00 - 4.00
    Water price
    £0.4
    Foreign Exchange
    Local currency
    Ruble
    Recommended Currency For Exchange
    USD or Euro
    Where To Exchange
    Most major towns - your Tour Leader will advise you on arrival.
    ATM Availability
    You might find it difficult to obtain money from some ATM machines using Maestro and Visa cards due to difficulties in reading the card.
    Credit Card Acceptance
    Restaurants and shops in major towns.
    Travellers Cheques
    Are difficult to cash on this tour.
    Transport, Accommodation & Meals

    Transport Information

    Bus, Bicycle

    Accommodation notes

    Standard - Our mid-range accommodation offers a good level of service often with other amenities such as a restaurant, bar, garden or swimming pool. Generally rooms will be comfortable with en-suite facilities.

    Essential Information

    FCO Advice

    We strongly recommend that you check your government's travel advisory for up-to-date information and advice about your destination: safety and security, entry requirements, health, local laws and customs. For UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office advice click here.

    For more information from Explore about travel advice, click here
     

    Under 18 immigration guidance

    Please note that some countries require proof of parental consent when travelling overseas with under 18s. Please check requirements with the relevant embassy or consular office well in advance of travel if this applies to your party.

    Price Guarantee

    Once your booking has been confirmed we guarantee the price will not increase, whatever the circumstances. Before booking please ensure you have read our important tour pricing information.Booking Conditions

    Visa and Passport Information

    Belarus: All national passport holders from the UK and Ireland, USA, Australia, New Zealand and Canada (except those entering on a diplomatic or official passport) can now enter Belarus for a maximum of thirty days without a visa. Please note that the day you arrive counts as day one, regardless of your arrival time and entry and exit will only be permitted at Minsk International Airport. On arrival you will need to show your passport, documentation proving that you have medical insurance valid in Belarus and valued at a minimum of €10,000, and funds equivalent to €25.00 per day (so €125.00 in total for five days). This can be in the form of cash, credit cards or travellers cheques in any currency. You should ensure that your passport has at least three months' validity from the date of entry into Belarus.

    A maximum of 90 days stay in Belarus in any one calendar year is permitted. If you wish to stay longer than thirty days then a visa is required. If you're travelling from/to any Russian airport then this visa-free arrangement doesn't apply and you'll need a visa.

    There are 80 countries in total that the visa free arrangements apply to and a full list of these and further information can be found on the Belarus Embassy website: http://uk.mfa.gov.by/en/consular_issues/visas/

    Other nationalities should consult their local embassy or consular office.

    All visa information is subject to change. You should confirm all visa related questions with the relevant embassy prior to departure.


    If you do require assistance in obtaining a visa then you may consider applying through Explore's recommended visa service in the UK, Travcour. See www.travcour.com to download the relevant visa application for your trip, if applicable (UK citizens only), along with details of how to apply for your visa through Travcour. The Team at Travcour will be happy to answer specific questions relating to visa applications, please call them directly on 0208 5431846.

    It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of a full passport, with the correct validity for your chosen destination.
     

    Booking conditions

    Before booking your Explore trip, please ensure that you read both our Essential Information and Booking Conditions.

    Transfers

    Find out more about Trip Transfer Terms and Conditions before you book.

    Booking a land only package with Explore

    Customers who have chosen to book on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements of our tour, please ensure that you have checked your tour specific ‘Joining Instructions’ prior to booking your own travel arrangements. Your joining instructions can be found below in the dates and prices information. 

    You may also be eligible for the Free Explore Transfer.


    Joining Tour Abroad

    Customers booked on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements will now receive a Free Transfer, provided you arrive and depart on the tour only itinerary start and end dates. The transfers will be from the Explore designated airport or train station to the joining point of your tour, and then back from the ending point to the designated airport or train station. The exception to this rule is customers who are booked on a tour where the joining and ending point is at the designated airport or train station.  

    Free transfers are not available for Self-Guided, Polar, Tailormade or Tours for Churches customers.

    If you are not eligible for the Free Transfer then you will need to make your own way through to the joining and ending point. On a majority of our tours Explore will be able to provide a private transfer at an additional cost. Please ask for a quote at the time of booking.  


    For more information regarding the Explore Free Transfer click here

    Insurance

    It is a condition of booking with Explore that you have adequate valid travel insurance. It is your responsibility to arrange appropriate travel insurance and ensure you have read and understood the full terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for all activities you intend to undertake whilst on the tour, including all optional activities. Your Insurance Policy must fully cover you for medical expenses and emergency repatriation to your home country. Please ensure your policy includes medical emergency helicopter evacuation in the event of illness or injury and covers the entire duration of your holiday. If you are trekking at altitude please ensure that there is no upper altitude limit which may limit or exclude cover for your trip. The cost of many of our Polar Voyages will exceed the capped amount covered by standard insurance premiums and you will be required to pay an additional premium to cover the full value of your trip. Please ensure that you are covered for the full amount of your holiday cost, as insufficient cover could invalidate a claim under the policy. Medical and repatriation insurance cover is not mandatory for UK residents who are travelling on trips within the United Kingdom.
    Read more information about what travel insurance is required.

    Flight information

    Explore offers a wide range of flexible flying options to make joining and leaving our trips easy. Read more about them here.


    Flight Information

    You are able to book this tour on a 'land only' basis or as a ‘flight inclusive’ package. Your flight inclusive package will be fully protected by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) ATOL protection scheme.

      

    Booking a flight inclusive package with Explore

    We have a good selection of flights not only from London but from many regional airports around the UK allowing us to compare fares between scheduled carriers as well as low cost and charter airlines. Our dedicated flights team will match the best flight options to your arrival and departure airport.

    On our website we display a UK flight inclusive package guide price which is generally based on a London departure. To avoid paying supplements or to secure your preferred flight option, we recommend booking as early as possible, especially for peak travel dates.

    Belarus

    Vaccinations

    Nothing compulsory, we recommend protection against Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Rabies, Tetanus, Tick-borne encephalitis, Tuberculosis and Typhoid. Please check the latest requirements with your travel clinic or doctor prior to departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at Explore Travel Health and from your local healthcare provider. Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed by you before travelling.

    Cycling information
    CBE distance chart
    General cycling information
    On this trip we cycle 85 km over three days (an average of 28 km per day). We mostly follow quiet paved and unpaved roads, some cycle paths and the routes are generally on the flat. A support vehicle will accompany our rides except in Minsk and transports our luggage throughout the trip. We have graded this route as easy.
    Bike included
    7 gear Kalkhoff hybrid bikes with front suspension or similar.
    Bike information
    Your included bike is a 7 gear Kalkhoff hybrid bike with front suspension and will be the correct frame size for your height. A rear pannier is included and there is the facility to fit your own saddle (male frame stem size 27.2 mm; female frame stem size 30.4mm) if you wish to bring it. A support vehicle accompanies the rides throughout the tour except in Minsk. We provide spare parts and take care of the day to day maintenance. All you need to bring is your own helmet.
    Cycling grade
    Easy
    Additional Information

    Why book this trip

    Unlike many other operators, we include the hire of your bike in the overall cost of the holiday: you don't need to bring your own or pay extra to hire one locally. We also provide a support vehicle, spare parts and take care of day to day bike maintenance. All you need bring is your own helmet.

    Dates, prices and booking

    All holidays are subject to availability and prices are subject to change
    Wed 29 May 2019 - Sun 2 Jun 2019 Guaranteed departure
    CBE_2019
    Price from £730
    Save was
    Single room option +£55
    All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

    These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
    For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
    Joining Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time and place
    21:00 at Hotel reception
    Ending Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time
    09:00
    If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
    Wed 10 Jul 2019 - Sun 14 Jul 2019 Guaranteed departure
    CBE_2019
    Price from £730
    Save was
    Single room option +£55
    All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

    These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
    For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
    Joining Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time and place
    21:00 at Hotel reception
    Ending Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time
    09:00
    If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
    Wed 7 Aug 2019 - Sun 11 Aug 2019 Guaranteed departure
    CBE_2019
    Price from £730
    Save was
    Single room option +£55
    All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

    These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
    For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
    Joining Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time and place
    21:00 at Hotel reception
    Ending Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time
    09:00
    If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
    Wed 4 Sep 2019 - Sun 8 Sep 2019 Guaranteed departure
    CBE_2019
    Price from £730
    Save was
    Single room option +£55
    All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

    These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
    For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
    Joining Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time and place
    21:00 at Hotel reception
    Ending Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time
    09:00
    If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
    Wed 18 Sep 2019 - Sun 22 Sep 2019 Guaranteed departure
    CBE_2019
    Price from £699
    Save was
    Single room option +£55
    All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

    These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
    For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
    Joining Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time and place
    21:00 at Hotel reception
    Ending Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time
    09:00
    If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
    Wed 29 May 2019 - Sun 2 Jun 2019 Guaranteed departure
    CBE_2019
    Price from £1050
    Save £45 was £1095
    Single room option +£55
    All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

    These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
    For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
    Joining Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time and place
    21:00 at Hotel reception
    Ending Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time
    09:00
    If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
    Wed 10 Jul 2019 - Sun 14 Jul 2019 Guaranteed departure
    CBE_2019
    Price from £1050
    Save £45 was £1095
    Single room option +£55
    All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

    These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
    For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
    Joining Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time and place
    21:00 at Hotel reception
    Ending Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time
    09:00
    If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
    Wed 7 Aug 2019 - Sun 11 Aug 2019 Guaranteed departure
    CBE_2019
    Price from £1050
    Save £45 was £1095
    Single room option +£55
    All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

    These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
    For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
    Joining Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time and place
    21:00 at Hotel reception
    Ending Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time
    09:00
    If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
    Wed 4 Sep 2019 - Sun 8 Sep 2019 Guaranteed departure
    CBE_2019
    Price from £1099
    Save was
    Single room option +£55
    All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

    These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
    For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
    Joining Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time and place
    21:00 at Hotel reception
    Ending Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time
    09:00
    If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
    Wed 18 Sep 2019 - Sun 22 Sep 2019 Guaranteed departure
    CBE_2019
    Price from £1020
    Save was
    Single room option +£55
    All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

    These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
    For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
    Joining Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time and place
    21:00 at Hotel reception
    Ending Point
    Town
    Minsk
    Time
    09:00
    If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
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