Auschwitz: A Harrowing and Moving Experience

DSCN1436There has been a lot of debate about so-called dark tourism and Auschwitz certainly falls into that category. Is it acceptable to visit a place where so many suffered so miserably and died so pitifully? I’ve long been of the thinking that it is important for people to visit such places as we should never forget the unfortunate souls who toiled and died within them. Donations from tourists also help to keep the sites properly maintained and it would be nothing short of a disaster if places like Auschwitz were allowed to fall into disrepair. Dark tourism might not appeal to everyone and visits might sound morbid, but places such as this death camp serve as a reminder of past atrocities and a warning against repeating those mistakes in the future. Visiting Auschwitz is a difficult, powerful experience. Is it pleasant? Not at all. Is it worthwhile? Absolutely. Continue reading

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Kiev

DSCN3601I’ve always been morbidly fascinated by end of the world scenarios, even going as far as writing a book based on the subject. Chernobyl has captivated me for the longest of times, ever since I discovered photographs of the area taken by a biker group many years ago. Of all the places in the world, where else would offer a more genuine glimpse at life after the apocalypse? When I found a return flight to Kiev for £80 late last year I decided it was an opportunity I couldn’t miss out on, despite the unstable political situation in the country at the time. Continue reading

Chernobyl

DSCN3559I will start boldly by saying that my visit to Chernobyl was the most fascinating trip I’ve ever taken and it will take something very special to depose it from the top of that list. I’ve always had an unusual obsession with all things post-apocalyptic so Chernobyl has intrigued me since I was a child. Where else in the world can you visit that will give you such a vivid glimpse at what a future without human life could look like? I knew I would be captivated by all Chernobyl had to offer but my experience far surpassed even the lofty standards I had anticipated. Continue reading

Kiev: Eat, Drink and Stay

Places to eat and drink

shatoSlavutych Shato Brewery (Ukrainian)

In Kiev you rejoice when you stumble upon a place with an English menu. Shato is one such place. Although it is pricey by Kiev standards it is definitely worth a visit thanks to its English speaking staff, English menu, great view for people watching and tasty beer. You’ll recognise it easily owing to the giant pint glass sign hanging above its entrance! Continue reading