Belarus shares many rivers with its neigbouring countries, so it's no big surprise that in Belarus each major city has a riverport and possibilities for river cruises. The easiest way to check departure times, routes and availability is to call Belarussian River Steamship Company (http://www.rtupbrp.com/Ko...) and/or Belarusian tourist companies (http://eng.belarustourism...). PLEASE NOTE! Cruice inquiries are recommended to do with phone. If you cannot reach one number it is good to call other numbers that same company have Phone numbers and e-mail addresses change in rapid phase in Belarus
Belarusian border crossing cruises are such as from Belarus, Polotsk into Latvia's Daugavpilis and Poland's Augustow chanel. Augustow chanal cruises departure from Belarusian city called Grodno and the route is via Neman river.
If you're at one of the double town crossings, e.g.
there may be some places where you can cross by foot - e.g. because you're on the last day of your Belarus visa and you want to be sure not to overstay - but more likely you'll have to befriend some people in a car who will adopt you for a few hours and will implicitly pretend that you're travelling with them. The border guards have no problem with this. Remember that the people in the car are taking a risk as well as you - as far as they know you might be a National Endowment for Democracy agent who will be discovered by the Belarus border guard and get them into a heap of trouble. So if they are Belarusians and they ask for a fee of US$5 consider it fair. See the section By car above for what happens in your adopted car.
Persons flying to Belarus via Russian airports i.e. you change planes in Russian territory must get a Russian transit visa, which, generally, must be obtained in your country of citizenship or residence. Flights to Belarus use the domestic terminal at Russian airports and you therefore must pass through Russian customs and transfer to the domestic terminal. If you do not have a transit visa and are lucky, you can expect many hours of bureaucratic delay or else, in many cases, be forced to find another flight without leaving the international terminal. Therefore, flights to Belarus from European Union airports are highly recommended.
If you do go through Moscow via Sheremetyevo airport, there are two terminals and you will need transportation from terminal 2 the international terminal to terminal 1 the domestic terminal. There is a free shuttle that runs between the two terminals every 30 minutes. You can catch the Aeroexpress shuttle bus on the ground floor of the recently completed airport train station. Taxi fares between the two terminals can be high, but you can easily negotiate lower fares with individual drivers.
Several European airlines have flights to Minsk operating at National airport Minsk (http://www.airport.by situated approximately 40 km from capital Minsk). Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, Lot Polish airlines, Air Baltic, Czech Airlines, and some other carriers offer this destination. The only national airlines - Belavia (http://www.belavia.by) and Gomelavia (http://www.gomelavia.com-) could be competitive due to attractive ticket prices. If you opt to land in Minsk National Airport, you should be aware of certain issues that might keep you slow when going through the airport procedures.
Flying directly to Belarus is expensive if you do not book tickets early in advance. For example, Estonian Air (http://www.estonian-air.ee/) sells tickets for â¬92 if you make reservations 4 months in advance. If you buy the same ticket a week before the trip, the price is much higher.
If you have time and want to save some money, fly to Vilnius or Kaunas, both in Lithuania and take a train to Minsk. The train ride from Vilnius is only four hours and generally trains leave twice per day. You will save a great deal of money compared to a short notice direct flight. Visas are, of course, still required.
Some of the entry/exit points along the Poland/Belarus border include:
You can take a local train between the two corresponding border towns.
Timetable information are available on sites like: Deutsche Bahn DB (http://reiseauskunft.bahn...), Polish trains PKP english (http://www.pkp.pl/english...) polish (http://www.pkp.pl), Commonwealth of independent states CIS trains and others (http://www.poezda.net/en/), Latvia trains 1 (http://www.ldz.lv/?object...), Latvia trains 2 (http://www.pv.lv/index.ph...) train timetables (http://www.litrail.lt/wps...) and bus timetables at Baltic countries (http://www.1188.lv/Belarussian) railway timetables: (http://www.rw.by/?language=1)
N.B. There is no direct train from Estonia, but via track Tallin-Tartu- Valga/Valka (Valga/Valka is city at the Estonian/Latvian border. There are a few trains that go to Riga. The name of the train station in Valka is Lugazi. There are plans that direct trains will start in 2010, removing the need for changing in Valka/ Valga, from Estonia, Tallin to Latvia, Riga.
Taking a bus from any border of the country of Belarus is easy. From all the Baltic countries there is a lot of bus traffic to Belarus here are some samples:
Taking the bus from Vilnius to Minsk is a quick 4 hours and fairly comfortable ride, as long as you stick to western international carriers such as Eurolines. From Kaunas you may travel to Minsk by Kaunas based Kautra company. It's advisable and cheaper to book tickets in advance by internet (http://www.autobusubiliet...). Journey takes about 5,5 hours. Buy your ticket in advance. Before beginning travel to Belarus remember to check that all your papers are in order meaning you have valid visa & Belarus state travel insurance for your trip. For example quick, easy and comfortable way to begin trip is to begin trip from one of the Baltic cities that have Belarussian embassy or consulate.
At the Terespol/Brest crossing, there are about six different controls. As of August 2009, the Polish side seems to work quite slowly. Being on the outer border of the European Union, they check whether one isn't exporting a stolen car, isn't wanted by European authorities etc.
After crossing the bridge over river Bug and getting on the Belarusian side, one has to show passports and gets a piece of paper with the car's registration mark on it. Then one goes to either green or red channel depending on whether a customs control is needed. In the green channel one has to complete two checks, the completion of each check is recorded on the paper received on entering the Belarusian side.
First passport/visa/migration card checks are done by an officer who comes towards your car. They also check medical insurance and it is quite likely you will be forced to purchase the state compulsory medical insurance at the border. The cost for two weeks was about 5 euros.
Second is the transport/car check, for which one needs to go to a special window towards the end of the customs area. You will be required to produce a "green card" proof of insurance valid for Belarus, or will have to purchase a compulsory car insurance at the border. In August 2009, the insurance for 14 days was 17 euros just over 20$, and there was no problem buying it at the Terespol/Brest crossing. You will also get another piece of paper with your car registration mark. You will need to show this one on the way back.
With the stamped paper, one can go forward towards the last barrier. The officer there just takes the paper, checks that you have completed the controls, and lets you into Belarus.
It would be nice to believe that there's a geiger counter to check for stuff which is radioactive from the Chernobyl accident, but it's unclear if this is used in practice - it's not done in any obvious way.
On leaving Belarus, one has to pay a special "environmental" tax before being allowed to enter the border control area. It costs 1 euro, and in Brest is sold in a large building just before the border on the right.