Chernobyl Museum

The National Chernobyl Museum is one of the most emotionally powerful and historically unique places not only in Kyiv, but in all of Ukraine. Its exhibition portrays the events and consequences of the biggest atomic energy disaster in history – the meltdown of the fourth reactor of Chernobyl’s Atomic Power Plant (CAPP), which took place happened on the April 26, 1986.

The location of the museum is symbolic: it occupies the former fire prevention office building that played a key role in the fighting the fire that engulfed the CAPP. Over seven thousand objects – which include declassified documents, pictures, personal belongings of the disaster victims, and much more – not only introduce the events that took place in Chernobyl, and allow the viewers to comprehend the scale of the tragedy. They also make visitors think about the usefulness building nuclear reactors. Such thoughts are particularly encouraged by the world map on the ceiling in one of the galleries. On the map, atomic power plants blink alarmingly all over the world.

The museum’s numerous installations help to understand the terror of the Chernobyl tragedy. To grasp its scale, one passage that leads to the main gallery is full of plaques commemorating the 76 ‘dead’ settlements, which were abandoned after the disaster. In the main gallery, a wall of icons taken from a church the forbidden zone commands attention. Figures of recovery workers in protective suits stand nearby.

Unique photographs and videos about the consequences of the nuclear meltdown are also presented in the museum. You can see photos of children, born soon after the disaster. But it is the images of the animals, mutated by the radiation exposure, that are the most difficult to forget. The museum’s main attraction is a model of the fourth reactor and the diorama ‘Chernobyl atomic power plant before, during and after the breakdown’, which shows the explosion itself, the destruction caused by it, and the construction of the sarcophagus over the reactor.

A separate part of the museum is devoted to heroic and selfless firemen, soldiers, and civil and military specialists, who participated in the rescue mission and clean-up, giving their health and the lives to this cause.

The cost of group tour in Russian - 40 UAH; in English or German - 100 UAH. The cost of a listening audio-tour in Russian - 20 UAH, in English or German - 50 UAH.

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