A British event operator has outlined plans to attempt a full circumnavigation of the infamous Bikini Atoll in the middle of the Pacific that decades ago functioned as a US nuclear bomb testing site for 12 years and has since remained deserted, the Daily Mail reports. The firm, called Rat Race Adventure Sports, promises “a 110 per cent one-of-a-kind, never-been-done, world-first trip”.
The agency noted that the micro-islands have remained deserted since the 1950s, with only a few divers going there annually.
“It has, though, been declared safe enough for travel via the UN Nuclear Weapons Inspection teams and could be the experience of a lifetime for those brave enough to take the plunge”, founder Jim Mee told the British outlet.
The Daily Mail points out that even though experts from Columbia University confirmed in 2016 that the radiation levels on Bikini Atoll allow for staying there for a short period, it is not an easy task just to get to the islands. Those who plan to visit the testing site, which witnessed 23 nuclear detonations over the course of 12 years, including a bomb 1,000 times more powerful than the blasts at Nagasaki and Hiroshima, will have to fly from Los Angeles to the Marshall Islands for ten hours, then get on a charter vessel before landing at a restricted US military zone for visitors with a special permit. The price of the trip is expected to be as high as $7,000.
The announcement came amid a spike in interest in another destination plagued by radiation, Chernobyl, where the world's worst nuclear accident happened in 1986. The HBO-produced TV series “Chernobyl”, which focuses on the catastrophe, has augmented the interest of people in the actual site. As one tour agency organising trips to the deserted area around the nuclear plant reported, bookings to the Exclusion Zone have spiked by 40 percent.