Abandoned By The Soviets

August 20, 2015

Curated by Dissident

Buzludzha Monument, Bulgaria

The Buzludzha Monument, formally known as the House-Monument of the Bulgarian Communist Party, was built on the historical Buzludzha peak of the Central Balkan Mountains. Construction began in 1974, and the strange edifice on a hill officially opened in 1981. Here it is on Google Street View.

 

Credit: Michael Kötter

Buzludzha Monument, Bulgaria

The Buzdluzha Monument was built by the communist regime to commemorate the Bulgarian Social Democratic Party which began the socialist movement in Bulgaria.

 

Credit: Timothy Allen

Buzludzha Monument, Bulgaria

The monument was designed as an arena for state functions and celebrations, and became headquarters for the Bulgarian Communist Party.

Buzludzha Monument, Bulgaria

Inside the saucer-shaped building there are symbols of the Soviet Union, including murals of Marx, Lenin, and Stalin. The brutalist structure was abandoned after the communist regime fell in 1989.

Pripyat, Ukraine

Pripyat was founded in remote north-central Ukraine on February 4, 1970, making it the ninth nuclear research site, or “nuclear city,” in the Soviet Union. Here it is today on Google Maps.

 

Credit: Flickr

Pripyat, Ukraine

This model Soviet city was home to more than 50,000 workers from the nearby Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant.

Pripyat, Ukraine

On April 26, 1986 the worst nuclear disaster in history took place at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. The following day the Kremlin evacuated the entire city.
Credit: Flickr

Pripyat, Ukraine

Nature is slowly taking back the derelict buildings in this eerie and radioactive ghost town. Trees and plants now grow in the abandoned buildings.

 

Credit: Michael Kötter

Pripyat, Ukraine

Nature is slowly taking back the derelict buildings in this eerie and radioactive ghost town. Trees and plants now grow in the abandoned buildings.

 

Credit: Michael Kötter

Bozi Dar, Czech Republic

The Soviets invaded Czechoslovakia in 1968. About 30 miles northeast of Prague, they built a closed off town called Bozi Dar—“God’s Gift” in Czech—and took pains to keep it secret from nearby villages because it housed nuclear warheads. Here it is on Google Street View.

 

Credit: Daniel Bardsley

Bozi Dar, Czech Republic

Bozi Dar is filled with Soviet-style apartment blocks and military barracks. It had its own cinema, powerplant, farmland, and airstrip. The walls of many apartments are still plastered with 1970s Russian newspapers, including Pravda—the Soviet Communist Party’s official newspaper.

 

Credit: Daniel Bardsley

Bozi Dar, Czech Republic

The town was abandoned by its Russian inhabitants in 1991 after the collapse of the Soviet Union. The land around Bozi Dar is said to be contaminated, driving away any interested developers.

 

Credit: Daniel Bardsley

Pyramiden, Norway

Named after the pyramid-shaped mountain just outside town, Pyramiden is a deserted coal mining settlement founded by Sweden in 1910 and sold to the Soviet Union’s state-owned Trust Arktikugol in 1927. Here is on Google Street View.

Pyramiden, Norway

Pyramiden had a population exceeding 1,000 at its height, and boasted the northernmost monument to Lenin in the globe.

Pyramiden, Norway

In March 1998, the last of the coal was extracted from the mine, and all of the residents left by the end of the year. Pyramiden remained abandoned and untouched for years.

Credit: Anders Lazen

Pyramiden, Norway

In 2007, Trust Arktikugol—which still owns the town—tried to turn Pyramiden into a tourist attraction. The town’s hotel was renovated along with some infrastructure. However, the town fails to attract many tourists.

Hara, Estonia

On the coast of the Baltic Sea, across the bay from the town of Hara, Estonia, lies an abandoned Soviet submarine base opened in 1958. Here it is on Google Satellite.

 

Credit: Paul Chibeba

Hara, Estonia

Hara was a major operation base for the Soviet navy, until Estonia won its independence in 1991. It has been abandoned ever since.

Credit: Paul Chibeba

Vogelsang, Germany

Vogelsang is a small Soviet military town in central Germany. Built in 1952 by the USSR, it housed an atomic weapons arsenal, making it the Soviet Union’s western most nuclear base. Here it is on Google Maps.

Vogelsang, Germany

The town, which was off-limits to non-essential military personnel, had 550 buildings. There was a theater, shops, a gym, offices, a school, medical facilities, and a statue of Lenin—as well as tanks, anti-aircraft missiles, tactical missiles, and nuclear weapons. Vogelsang was the third largest Soviet base in Eastern Germany during the Cold War.

Vogelsang, Germany

When the Russian army withdrew in 1994, part of the town was demolished. What remained is now being re-claimed by the woods. Part of the town is still restricted, due to ammunition residue in the soil.