I was here about five years ago and was surprised by the up-beat good energy of the place. Good cafe culture and a good sampling of restaurants offering up various ethnic cuisines.
Minsk is incredibly polished, modern and clean, more so than I expected. With long, wide boulevards and an efficient train system (which feels like stepping back in time due to the Soviet paraphernalia in them), it's relatively easy to navigate the city, even without speaking the language. There's many fascinating historic monuments, lush green parks and outdoor cafes serving traditional Russian and Belarusian specialties, like blinis. Minsk is definitely worth visiting, as it feels like a hybrid of Western and Eastern Europe. This is also true in its restaurant and hotel prices, which are generally higher than neighboring Poland or Ukraine: without much of a tourism industry, anything related to tourism paradoxically costs more.
If you like a glim authoritarian country that is home to red cross and repressive regimes then you will love Minsk. Go for mushrooms and stay for cheap beer. Spend millions of rubles like they are hundreds because they are.
Very clean and safe city. With huge and very good roads and monumental buidings at the centre of the city. I've been living in Minsk as a child for few years so I have special feelings about this city. My beloved place is the Botanical Garden. And memory of the Big Green Dragon :D