Today, planning a journey abroad is as simple as coming out for a walk. Just a bit longer. You can surf the Internet and easily find answers on these traveling FAQs: where to stay, what to try, where to go and what to buy? Though most of us are not an obsessed “tour planning geeks”, we still try to sketch out at least a few must-visit places. Kyiv is full of them!
Why to go to Kyiv?
Kyiv is ancient, historical and very beautiful capital city from high modern buildings to old paving stone roads. In 1982 Kyiv celebrated its 1500th anniversary. This atmosphere is so real, you are totally involved in it.
So, after this preview, those who are not very interested in the historical background would say: “Is that it, the thing I should visit Kyiv by overcoming thousands of kilometers?” Then, the answer for them is: “Book your flights from New York to Kiev and come to see its modern style mix. You will not be disappointed for sure”.
FAQs: where to go?
Get this list and point this places on your map (for “culture hunters”).
St. Volodymyr’s Cathedral
It is one of the main churches in Kyiv. Every day many citizens visit it. So if you want to experience Orthodox service, you should come here. The Cathedral is serviced from 8 am till 5 pm on the weekdays, 7 am, 10 am and 5 pm – on the weekends.
Taras Shevchenko National University
You can get there from St. Volodymyr’s Cathedral moving up along the boulevard seeing a red eye catching facade. KNU is ranked within top 500 Universities in the world founded in 1834. Here is also a park and Shevchenko itself (monument built to commemorate the well-known Ukrainian poet).
National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet
It is a piece of French Renaissance in the center of the city, considered the oldest and one of the most successful musical theater in Ukraine.
As the history tells, it is a monument of Ancient Kyiv named due to the Golden Gate of Constantinople. The main entrance to the historical center (included in the UNESCO World Heritage List) was constructed in the 11th century during the reign of Grand Prince Yaroslav the Wise with fortification needs (his monument is also here). For now, it became a museum.
St. Sophia’s Cathedral and St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery
These are two well-known churches, closely located to each other, built at the times of Kievan Rus flourishing.
St. Sophia’s Cathedral achieved its present Ukrainian baroque performance after its reconstruction in the 17th century as far lived partly destruction and fire.
The same reconstructions St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery also lived. Some of the Monastery buildings were destroyed in the mid-30s. Its reconstruction was finished only in 2000.
After Maidan revolution in 2014, all holidays and festivals (such as Easter eggs exhibition (called “pysanka”), New Year and Christmas Holidays, City Day celebration at the end of May, etc.) take place between two bell towers, on the Sophia`s and Michael’s squares.
St. Andrew’s Church
As most of the churches in Kyiv St. Andrew’s Church experienced damages and number of reconstructions. It is very picturesque and marvelous, being situated on a high slope and opening a wonderful panorama view. The slope is called Andriyivskyy Uzviz or Andriyivskyy Descent, which leads right to the Podil. Here a remarkable two-story house №13, where Mikhail Bulgakov (famous Russian writer) lived and worked is situated. To find out more about the history of the Andriyivsky Descent, its buildings and owners, check out the Museum of One Street. Here you can find a plenty of souvenirs either typical such as — “vyshyvanka”, handmade or something rarity, non-traditional — canvas, clock or household items.
FAQ: Must try
Lviv Handmade Chocolate (Andrew’s Descent, 2B): good atmosphere and delicious chocolate!
Try traditional cuisine in modern serving at Canapa restaurant (Andriyivsky uzviz, 19).
Visit “Druzi Cafe” (Andriyivsky uzviz, 2-D) where international atmosphere and good friendly service hidden in a small courtyard nearby the hostel “Druzi” (in english means “Friends”).
For a good craft brew beer come to Solomenska Browarnia (8,7 at Foursquare) at Andriyivsky uzviz, 28A. Summer Ale, Pilsner, Weissbier, American Amber Ale, Hoppy Lager, Stout — you will find something good for you! Check the schedule, you can find live music evenings here.
It is definitely a lovely place among citizens and foreigners. What makes it so special and popular — is a mix of modern and old-fashion style simultaneously. A good example of how can be the old city arranges a modern culture. Here you can notice a high concentration of foreigners and youth, so you could probably meet here a company for the evening!
FAQ: Must try
This region is full of loud places and coffee shops. It seems coffee was here from of its old routes.
Must-visit — Vozdvizhenka. Places for “non-historical” travelers — Projector (art co-working), Escapist (wine and books), Lyubchik (authentic fish restaurant), One Planet (vegetarian cuisine), 32 Vozdvizhenka ARTS HOUSE (32 Old Fashioned Bar and Old Fashioned Radio), Rebra & Kotlety and Chicken Kiev (to try famous Chicken Kiev).
For one of the best burgers (as youth admits) come to — “The Burger Mexico” (8,6 at Foursquare) at Nyzhniy Val, 17/8.
Statue-monument “Mother Motherland”
Museum was opened on May 9, 1981, in honor of the Soviet victory in World War II. Being a part of the Museum of Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945 this structure (102 meters in total height) is ranked 18th of the world’s tallest statues.
Visitors have an opportunity to lift up at the observation decks located at a height of 36.6 and 91 meters (the price is 200 UAH for upper and 50 UAH for lower level up.).
Almost near the Mother Motherland the oldest monastic complex, called the second Jerusalem — Kiev-Pechersk Lavra (protected by UNESCO) is situated. It is erected in the 11th century. For now, it occupies the territory of 30 ha. Visit hours — 9:30 am – 6 pm.
Let`s move to the center.
FAQ: symbol of the city – chestnut tree
Chestnut is assigned to be a symbol of Kyiv. A plenty of these trees are at the central part — Khreshchatyk and Maidan Nezalezhnosti. An ice-cream “Chestnut” (plombir covered with thin chocolate layer) is widely spread in Kyiv.
FAQ: Must try
Kyyivsʹka perpichka (8,4 at Foursquare) — is legendary Kyiv fast-food located at Bohdana Khmelʹnytsʹkoho, 3.
A large indoor market is located on the square with analogy name (Besarabsky), which is on the western end of Khreshchatyk. Strange at first sight but beautiful domed inside.
FAQ: Must try
GREEN13 Cafe Vegano Hooligano (8,8 at Foursquare) — vegetarian/vegan restaurant, health food store and fast food restaurant located at Bessarabian Sq., 2.
FAQs: modern Kiv
To see Kyiv from another side visit the following: Palace of Sports, Ploshcha Lʹva Tolstogo, NCK “Olympiyskiy”, Palace Ukraine (the biggest concert hall), Velyka Vasylʹkivsʹka St, The Sculptures Alley, etc. That will show you a modern architecture inserted inside the old one.
Where to shop: TSUM, Gulliver, Ocean Plaza, Skymall, Silver Breeze (Left Bank of Dnipro River).
FAQs: Where to enjoy Ukrainian cuisine?
BEEF meat & wine, Kureny, Khutoretsʹ na Dnipri, Restaurant and grocery store “Kartata Potata”, Vatra, Bessarabyya, Chicken Kyiv, Rebra & Kotlety, Kiflyk, Lyubchyk, etc.
Kyiv cannot be put in this small article, so come and experience it. As the proverb says: “Better one time to see than 100 times to read”.