Visit Sunny Chernobyl And Other Adventures in the World's Most Polluted Places

Andrew Blackwell

Rodale Books




320 Pages



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For most of us, traveling means visiting the most beautiful places on Earth—Paris, the Taj Mahal, the Grand Canyon. It's rare to book a plane ticket to visit the lifeless moonscape of Canada's oil sand strip mines, or to set sail for the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. But in Visit Sunny Chernobyl, Andrew Blackwell embraces a different kind of travel, taking a jaunt through the most gruesomely polluted places on Earth.

Visit Sunny Chernobyl fuses immersive first-person reporting with satire and analysis, making the case that it's time to start appreciating our planet as-is—not as we wish it to be. Equal parts travelogue, expose environmental memoir, and faux guidebook, Blackwell careens through a rogue's gallery of environmental disaster areas in search of the worst the world has to offer—and approaches a deeper understanding of what's really happening to our planet in the process.


Praise for Visit Sunny Chernobyl

"[Blackwell] presents vivid descriptions of these wretched places, along with both their polluters and the crusaders who are trying—usually without success—to clean them up."—The New York Times Book Review

"A wise, witty travel adventure that packs a punch—and one of the most entertaining and informative books I've read in years. Visit Sunny Chernobyl is a joy to read and will make you think."—Dan Rather

"In this lively tour of smog-shrouded cities, clear-cut forest, and the radioactive zone around a failed Soviet reactor, a witty journalist ponders the appeal of ruins and a consumer society's conflicted approach to environmental woes."—Times-Picayune (New Orleans)

"Andrew Blackwell is a wonderful tour guide to the least wonderful places on Earth. More than just entertaining, Visit Sunny Chernobyl will teach you a lot about the environment and the future of our increasingly polluted world."—A.J. Jacobs, New York Times bestselling author of The Year of Living Biblically

"Andrew Blackwell turns the typical travelogue upside down."—

"Witty and disturbing . . . Call this the anti-guide book."—New York Post "Required Reading"

"A darkly comic romp. Blackwell takes eco-tourism into a whole new space."—Elizabeth Kolbert, The New Yorker, and author of Field Notes From a Catastrophe

"Blackwell is a smart and often funny writer who has produced a complex portrait in a genre that typically avoids complexity in favor of outrage."—The Wall Street Journal

"Devastatingly hip and brutally relevant."—Booklist (Starred Review)

"Humor and dry wit lighten a travelogue of the most polluted and ravaged places in the world . . . With great verve, and without sounding preachy, he exposes the essence and interconnectedness of these environmental problems."—Kirkis Reviews (Starred Review)

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Andrew Blackwell

  • Andrew Blackwell is a journalist and filmmaker. He is a 2011 Fellow in Nonfiction Literature from the New York Foundation of the Arts. Visit Sunny Chernobyl is his first book. He lives in New York City.