47 Interesting Facts About Belarus

The Republic of Belarus is a country located in Central Europe. People from the country are known for being good humored, friendly and kind. The country has patiently endured endless war, but it values peace. Let’s explore more about this country with the following 47 interesting facts!

Facts about Belarus’ history, geography, economy, people and sports

1. The term Belarus means ‘White Russia.’

2. The first signs of settlements in ancient Belarus date back approximately 100,000-35,000 years.

3. Belarus became independent on December 26th, 1991. It celebrates its independence day on the 3rd of July.

4. In terms of land area, Belarus occupies the third spot on the list of European countries behind Great Britain and Rumania. It is generally flat with a significant amount of marshland.

5. The Belarusian economy is mainly dependent on the agriculture and manufacturing industries.

6. The unemployment rate in Belarus is 5.9%.

7. Dzyarzhynskaya Hara is the highest point in Belarus at 345 meters (1,130 ft) above sea level.

8. There is very little protection of property rights and a high level of corruption in Belarus.

9. With the passing of the Constitution of Belarus, the office of the President of Belarus was created in 1994.

10. It is interesting to note that Alexander Lukashenko has served as the president of the country since his election in 1994. Thus, he is the first and only president of Belarus to this day.

11. The personal income tax rate in Belarus is 13%.

12. The country is heavily dependent on subsidized Russian energy.

13. Simon Kuznets became the first Belarusian to win a Nobel Prize. He won the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1971. There are a total of Five Nobel Prize winners from the country, including Simon Kuznets, Svetlana Alexievich, Zhores Ivanovich Alferov, Shimon Peres and Menachem Begin.

14. Białowieża Forest in Belarus is home to 800 European bison, Europe’s heaviest land animal. The forest is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an EU Natura 2000 Special Area of Conservation.

15. The forest covers a total area of 141,885 ha.

Belarus on Map with bordering countries
Interesting facts about Belarus: Belarus on Map with bordering countries

16. According to worldometers.info, Belarus is the 92nd most-populous country in the world as of the time of this writing (2016).

17. Russia is the largest political and economic partner of Belarus. Russia accounts for some 48% of Belarus’ external trade, while Belarus accounts for around 6% of Russia’s trade.

18. Athletics, football, gymnastics, skiing, biathlon, ice hockey, tennis, fencing, wrestling, volleyball, handball, swimming, chess and checkers are among the most popular sports in Belarus.

19. Ice hockey is one of the country’s most popular sports.

Interesting facts about Minsk – the capital of Belarus

20. Minsk—the capital city of Belarus—is the most economically developed city in the country. It is the industrial as well as the educational center of Belarus. The transportation system in the city is well developed and is supported by buses, trams and a metro system.

21. Minsk is a green city with more than 844,000 trees and an area of 72,766 m2.

22. 54 bridges traverse the Svisloch River, which runs through Minsk.

23. The country’s capital has had to rebuild itself several times, as it has burned down 18 times in its history. Extensive bombing during World War II caused heavy damages to the city’s architecture.

24. The city of Minsk has also been given the title of a “hero city” for its ability to make a comeback every time it’s been devastated.

Did you know?

25. The game “World of Tanks,” and the famous Viber App originated from Belarus.

26. Belarus has four UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Learn more.

27. ‘Independence Avenue’ in Minsk is the longest street (15 km) in Belarus. The name of this street has been changed 14 times so far.

28. Belarus received about 60% of the contamination that fell on the former Soviet Union from the Chernobyl disaster in 1986.

29. Chemical and nuclear pollution in the country are among its major environmental problems.

30. World War II took the lives of almost 25% of the population of Belarus.

31. Primeval lowland oak woods can only be found in Pripyatski National Park, which is in Belarus.

32. About 45% of the country is covered by forest land.

33. Belarus also has the distinction of printing one of the first-ever bibles. This was done in 1517 in Prague.

34. The National Library of Belarus contains 8 million items of various media. Each day, the library sees more than 2,200 users and delivers 12,000 documents. It was founded on September 15, 1922.

National Library of Belarus
National Library of Belarus. It has 22 floors and is 72 meters high. Image credit – Dennis Jarvis

35. Every city in Belarus has a Lenin street named after Vladimir Lenin – a Russian communist revolutionary, politician and political theorist.

36. During World War II, more than 800,000 Jewish people were executed by the Germans in Belarus.

37. The Minsk botanical garden is the third largest in Europe.

38. Belarus is slightly smaller than the state of Kansas in size.

39. There are approximately 5,786,572 internet users in Belarus.

40. The country has 101,700 km of highways, and 5,491 km of railways.

41. Belarus has produced at least 68 Olympic champions in the past 50 years.

42. Belarusians can make at least 300 different recipes with potatoes. They can even make pancakes using potatoes.

43. The death penalty has been completely abolished in all European countries except for Belarus.

44. Approximately 40-45% of the country’s population is 25-54 years old.

45. The country spends approximately 6% of its GDP on health care and has a 99.7% literacy rate. 

46. The country experiences a moderate continental climate.

47. “Lacinka” is the name of the Latin-script in Belarusian writing.

Do you know more interesting facts about the country? Share them with us in the comments section below.

Quick facts about Belarus

Capital CityMinsk
53°55′N 27°33′E
Largest CityMinsk
53°55′N 27°33′E
Total area207,600 sq km
Population9,589,689 (July 2015 est.)
Official LanguageBelarusian and
BordersLatvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Ukraine.
CurrencyBelarusian ruble (BYR)
ReligionJudaism, Islam, Christianity.
Life expectancy72.48 years (2012)
Life expectancy at birth indicates the number of years a newborn infant would live if prevailing patterns of mortality at the time of its birth were to stay the same throughout its life.
Terraingenerally flat with much marshland
Natural resourcestimber, peat deposits, small quantities of oil and natural gas, granite, dolomitic limestone, marl, chalk, sand, gravel, clay
Birth rate10.7 births/1,000 population (2015 est.)
Death rate13.36 deaths/1,000 population (2015 est.)
Sex ratio0.87 male(s)/female (2015 est.)
Government typepresidential republic in name, although in fact a dictatorship
Independence25 August 1991 (from the Soviet Union)
National symbolno clearly defined current national symbol, the mounted knight known as Pahonia (the Chaser) is the traditional Belarusian symbol; national colors: green, red, white
National anthem"My, Bielarusy" (We Belarusians)
Industriesmetal-cutting machine tools, tractors, trucks, earthmovers, motorcycles, televisions, synthetic fibers, fertilizer, textiles, radios, refrigerators
Exports$28.63 billion (2015 est.)
machinery and equipment, mineral products, chemicals, metals, textiles, foodstuffs
Imports$29.72 billion (2015 est.)
mineral products, machinery and equipment, chemicals, foodstuffs, metals
Internet country code.by
Internet users5.968 million
percent of population: 62.2% (July 2015 est.)
Time ZoneFET (UTC+3)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$17,700 (2015 est.)
Calling Code+375
Drives on theRight


  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Library_of_Belarus
  • http://www.themoscowtimes.com/beyond_moscow/minsk.html
  • http://www.insidebelarus.com/article/intesresting_facts_about_minsk
  • http://www.ducksters.com/geography/country.php?country=Belarus
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Nobel_laureates_by_country
  • http://en.people.cn/90777/7954238.html
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vladimir_Lenin
  • http://mynativebelarus.blogspot.in/2012/07/interesting-facts-about-belarus.html
  • http://www.belarus.by/en/about-belarus/geography/minskcity
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effects_of_the_Chernobyl_disaster
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belarus%E2%80%93Russia_relations
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capital_punishment_in_Europe
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/President_of_Belarus
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bia%C5%82owie%C5%BCa_Forest
  • http://www.heritage.org/index/country/belarus
  • http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/population-by-country/
  • https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/bo.html
  • http://www.everyculture.com/A-Bo/Belarus.html


  1. Hey, great list, thanks! Though, you didn’t actually crosscheck the statements. Therefore, your list has some serious mistakes. For example, no way ‘Belarus’ means ‘White Russia’, it means ‘White Rus’. Or, you say that there are ’88 UNESCO World Heritage Sites’, but it has only 4! (though I wish we could have so many of them!) Also, in quick facts about Belarus you say that there are 9.4 mln people living there, but in 39. you say ‘there are more than 9.6 million internet users’. So, more users than people living? 🙂 Btw, according to the International Telecommunication Union the perecentage of individuals using internet in Belarus is 59%.
    So, hope you may take another look at actual facts about Belarus so that your list would be more accurate and informative. Good luck!

    • Hello Serge, thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. We are grateful to you for pointing out the errors. Two of those have been corrected. Regarding referring Belarus as “White Russia”, here is some text that will justify the fact mentioned in the article. Please have a look.

      The name Rus’ is often conflated with its Latin forms Russia and Ruthenia, thus Belarus is often referred to as White Russia or White Ruthenia. The name first appeared in German and Latin medieval literature; the chronicles of Jan of Czarnków mention the imprisonment of Lithuanian grand duke Jogaila and his mother at “Albae Russiae, Poloczk dicto” in 1381. In some languages, including German and Dutch, the country is generally called “White Russia” to this day (Weißrussland and Wit-Rusland respectively).
      Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belarus