Now I've heard everything:
On April 26, 1986, Chernobyl's reactor Nr. 4 exploded, quickly becoming the most devastating nuclear accident in history. Many of the images stemming from that day have become iconic: the destroyed reactor, little more than a smoking hole after the blast; the convoys that evacuated more than 200,000 people from the danger zone; the wolves, European bison and wild horses that roam freely through the abandoned villages 30 years after the disaster; older residents who refused to leave, living off of half-legal, irradiated potatoes, even though the entire area within a 30 kilometer (19 mile) radius of the nuclear reactor is officially off-limits.
But there is another Chernobyl that doesn't make it into the headlines quite as often. This Chernobyl is a favored "dark tourism" destination, celebrated on websites such as Atlas Obscura. It is a brand of tourism that attracts people with nightmare destinations rather than dreamy beaches. Hiroshima, Verdun, Gettysburg, Pompeii -- places of horror, pain and sadness....
Our next stop is the exploded reactor, huge, threatening and sheathed in concrete, the so-called sarcophagus. The radiation dosage here is over 3 micro-sieverts per hour, about 20 times the normal contamination one is exposed to in a big city. On the other hand, though, it is much less than the radiation dosage one receives during a trans-Atlantic flight -- at least according to a brochure passed out in the bus.
Photo from Der Spiegel article