SIGHTSEEING IN UKRAINE
Lviv temples and monasteries. Lviv is a very poetic city steeped in legends both ancient and relatively new. Narrow medieval streets paved with stones, architectural decoration done in different styles – all preserved in its original form. In ancient times Lviv was the capital of a mighty Slavic state called the Galicia-Volyn principality. Being a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and then Poland contributed to the formation of the city’s unique image. In spite of all the whims of history the city has not lost its Ukrainian spirit, and thank God, Lviv’s delicate architecture has not suffered from monstrosities of the Soviet Era. So it is no wonder that the central part of the city is included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage. Today Lviv is famous for its cultural and music festivals as well as delicious restaurants and cafes.
Kyiv, the Ancient and Modern Capital. Kyiv is the capital of Ukraine and one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. It has been standing on steep hills overlooking the Dnipro River for more than 1,500 years. Since then, Kyiv has flourished into a valuable center of culture and civilization of East Europe. Only a handful of European cities can claim a history spanning such a long time. The city is the cradle of Eastern Orthodox Church where pilgrims from all over Ukraine and abroad come to offer up prayers in ancient Golden-domed cathedrals, churches and majestic monasteries. These unique monuments of high-spiritual aspirations, talent and consummate skills of people born at this land are rightfully claimed as masterpieces of ancient Rus and Ukrainian architecture.
As the сountry’s administrative and financial center, Kyiv is a place for Ukrainian Parliament (Verkhovna Rada), Presidential Administration, and ministries and governmental departments. Its financial part consists of the National Bank of Ukraine, as well as investment companies and funds, representative offices of foreign financial institutions, exchange markets, and over 150 commercial banks. In Kyiv, more than 2,000 objects are placed in the list of historical, cultural, and architectural monuments.
Odesa, the “Pearl of the Black Sea” is the 3rd largest city in Ukraine, the largest city along the Black Sea, and the most important city of Ukraine for trade. Odesa’s mild climate, warm waters and sunlit beaches attract hundreds of thousands of people year around. Odesa was founded in 1794 as a seaport that provided protection and guard of the southern borders of the Russian Empire. In order to contribute to the construction of the new city, energetic and brave representatives of various countries came to Odesa. Among the pioneers, were Ukrainians, Russians, French, English, Jews, Moldavians, Greeks, Bulgarians and many others. From this ethnic “cocktail”, the original nationality of Odesites was born. The business-mindedness peculiar to the Odesites and the favourable conditions of a Porto-Franco (a free port regime) which attracted migrants and merchants from many European and Asian countries soon turned Odesa into one of the richest cities of the Russian Empire. In his time, Mark Twain even cited the Odesa phenomenon as an example for big American cities. Today, Odesa is the biggest seaport as well as a prime historical and cultural treasure of Ukraine.
Kamyanets-Podilsky, one of the oldest cities in Ukraine, is considered a phenomenon of great cultural importance. A rocky island skirted by the tight loop of the Smotrich River flowing in a picturesque canyon, served as a unique pedestal on which over more than a thousand years both well-known and anonymous masters created a miracle in stone. Kamyanets-Podilsky is striking for the harmonious blend of landscape and architecture. A stroll from the new bridge takes you through the cobbled quarters of this once divided community, past beautifully renovated churches, crumbling palaces and forgotten pieces of the once beefy defences, to the town’s impossibly picturesque fortress, surely one of the highlights of any visit to Ukraine.
Mukachevo was probably the part of Kievan Rus from the 9th to 11th centuries. Mukachevo was captured by Hungarians in 1018. During the 15th century, Mukachevo city became an important craft and trade center of the region. In the 16th century, Mukachevo became the part of Transylvania Principality. In 1646 first gymnasium was established in Mukachevo.
The town Yaremche is a popular tourist center in Precarpathian area (70 km from Ivano-Frankovsk), it is situated in the forest Carpathian on the left bank of the river Prut on the altitude 665 m above the sea level. It is a classic Carpathian town with the marvelous architecture which includes every Carpathian element. You’ll be impressed with the unique mountain landscapes, the waterfall Probij and the 20 m long bridge over it.
Chernivtsi, or what it means to be tolerant. Founded in the 12-th century, Chernivtsi is one of the oldest cities in Ukraine. It is a fascinating mix of all the different cultures that have converged on the region: Ukrainian, Jewish, Romanian, German, Polish, and later – Russian. Otto von Hapsburg in his work called “Chernivtsi, or What it Means to be Tolerant” described the picture of an ideal town, a home to multiethnic and multi-religious citizens. “In Chernivtsi, there was a synthesis of national consciousness and of something higher… so to speak, European attitude. Here, it was proved that various peoples… could be united in the framework of common culture…” he wrote. In Chernivtsi, the former Residence of the Bukovyna Metropolitan is not to be missed. The palace built in the traditions of the Vienna Academy now hosts the Yuriy Fedkovych National University of Chernivtsi. Chernivsti has a perfectly conserved Art Nouveau theater built in 1905 by the Viennese architects Fellner and Helmer, the authors of the famous Vienna and Odesa opera theaters.
Uman dendro park Sophievka is the world’s landscape architecture masterpiece of the end of 15th and the beginning of19th centuries. The park is spread over the territory of 154,7 h. and is situated at the outskirts of the ancient town Cherkassy, Uman region. It is considered to be the standard of the landscape composition of water, land, architectural works and sculptures. This masterpiece, which was created in the shortest period of time, still astounds the imagination of visitors. Unique sceneries, exotic plants and rare trees, sky-blue ponds, fountains and cascades, grottoes and antique sculptures…all this you can see visiting the park.