Calvert Journal: Ukraine’s museum of cosmos in a wooden church

“Gagarin went to space and he saw that God was not there!”, as Soviets joked. So the champions of the space race hanged his parachute in a church. And much more.

Article published on the website of The Calvert Journal, on 01/07/2019

Pictures: Niels Ackermann / Lundi 13

Step inside the unorthodox Museum of Space Exploration.

If you’re a space enthusiast, it’s likely you’ll be familiar with the Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics in Moscow. Die-hard fans might have even toured the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. If you happen to be in Ukraine, there’s another space-themed attraction worth seeking out. The Museum of Space Exploration lies 80 kilometers outside of Kyiv and is one of the 30 historical buildings open to visitors at Pereiaslav-Khmelnytskyi’s ethnographic park. Its small collection boasts several rare objects including Gagarin’s red training parachute, the scaphanders of various cosmonauts, and a real-scale model of the space capsule. What makes the museum unusual, however, is that it is situated in a wooden church.

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