Adventure travel company Explore has revealed an astonishing “fourfold rise” in travellers wanting to tour to the site of the world’s worst nuclear disaster in Chernobyl.

We learned of the new trend during our chat with Explore’s Global Managing Director Joe Ponte during his visit to Australia this week.

Explore started its five-day Discover Chernobyl short break five years ago but Joe said a new hit series about the tragedy (which first aired earlier this year) has “sent interest through the roof”.


“After the series aired Chernobyl was our number one enquiry for four days and it was in our top five throughout June. To see interest punch up to that level has been remarkable.”

Explore’s Global Managing Director Joe Ponte

Joe himself has been to Chernobyl, describing it as “one of the coolest things” he has done in his life.

Explore’s Discover Chernobyl trip visits the incredible abandoned sites reclaimed by nature in the Exclusion Zone (which was created after the Number 4 reactor exploded back in 1986).



The trip begins in Ukraine’s capital city, Kiev before visiting the fascinating Chernobyl Exclusion Zone.

Within a 30 kilometre radius of the power plant, there was a population of up to 135,000 people – all were evacuated after the accident and most of these towns and villages including Pripyat are now ghost towns.

In 2011 Chernobyl was declared safe enough to be recognised as a tourist attraction (Joe says you’ll receive the same about of radiation there as you would on a flight from Australia to LA).


Guests will get the unique experience of staying within the Exclusion Zone in a small hotel within the town of Chernobyl as well as speaking to people still living within the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone known as self-settlers.

Click here to read full details on Explore’s fascinating Discover Chernobyl itinerary.