As the capital in Uraine, Kiev is the city lined with the Dnieper River and famous for the historical museums, religious structures and monuments. For one thing, Kiev Pechersk Lavra is a pilgrimage district and monastery, comprising multiple domed churches. With the collection of gold ornaments from the old Scythian period, the catacombs together with the burials of Orthodox monks are among the well-known sites in the area.
KIEV (KYIV), UKRAINE – MAY 26, 2015: People walking at the famous Independence Square (Maidan Nezalezhnosti) in Kiev, Ukraine (Yulia Grigoryeva / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – AUGUST 14: Morning in the center of city with the Gate of Archangel St.Michael on Independence Square on August 14, 2012 in Kiev, Ukraine. Ukraine gained independence in 1991. (Radiokafka / Shutterstock)
A closer shot of the archangel Michael (Copyright: Buturlimov Paul)
KIEV, UKRAINE – JUNE 2014: Saint Andrew orthodox churc and Andrew’s descent is the major tourist attraction. It is area of many souvenir shops and art galleries. (Marynka Mandarinka / Shutterstock)
Panoramic view of Kiev Pechersk Lavra Orthodox Monastery from Dnieper river in Kiev, Ukraine (Copyright: Dmitri Ometsinsky)
KIEV, UKRAINE – MARCH 14, 2016: Morning View of Maidan Nezalezhnosti Square and Khreshchatyk Avenue in Kiev, Ukraine. (Evgeny Sosnovsky / Shutterstock)
KIEV , UKRAINE – NOV 1, 2015.Building of Ukrainian Parliament (Verhovna Rada). November 1, 2015 in Kiev, Ukraine (Sergey Kamshylin / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – FEB 09, 2016; Chocolate House was built in 1880 in the style of the Venetian Renaissance. Today it is Childrens Art Gallery that is a branch of Kiev National Museum of Russian Art. (berna namoglu / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – MARCH 11, 2016: Monument to Yaroslav the Wise in the center of Kiev, near the Golden Gate. (badahos / Shutterstock)
UKRAINE, KIEV – September 11,2013: Girls in historical costumes sell sweets for tourists (DmyTo / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – AUGUST 5: the Girls in national costumes sell sweets in the event travel to Kiev, August 5, 2013. (Igor Simanovskiy / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – April 10, 2016: Daily life in Kiev. People photographed with magnolia flower in a botanical garden named after Academician Alexander Fomin. (Nazar Furyk / Shutterstock)
KIEV (KYIV), UKRAINE – August 25: The tourist souvenirs market on Andrew’s Descent in Kiev, Ukraine. Popular tourist street with souvenirs (Dmitriy Linchevskiy / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – FEB 05, 2016; The tourist souvenirs market on Andrew’s Descent in Kiev, Ukraine. Popular tourist street with souvenirs and paints to buy. (berna namoglu / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – FEB 05, 2016; Souvenirs in tourist market on Andrew’s Descent in Kiev, Ukraine. (berna namoglu / Shutterstock)
KIEV (KYIV), UKRAINE – MAY 26, 2015: Jars with different jams and marmalades on a food market in Kiev, Ukraine (Yulia Grigoryeva / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – OCTOBER 01: In Suvorov Street in the center of Kiev, opened supermarket “Sil’po” on October 01, 2013 in Kyiv, Ukraine (Dmitrydesign / Shutterstock)
KIEV , UKRAINE – NOV 1, 2015. Flea market in downtown. Marauder sale Ukrainian Civil War military items. November 1, 2015 in Kiev, Ukraine (Sergey Kamshylin / Shutterstock)
KYIV, UKRAINE – JUNE 6, 2015: Group of happy girlfriends with bottle of white wine and glasses on the Kiev Food & Wine Festival on June 20, 2014. Ukrainian capital, Kiev has population near 2,900,200 (Radiokafka / Shutterstock)
KYIV, UKRAINE – JUNE 6, 2015: Young women in glasses buying wine from bartender at outdoor bar during Kiev Food & Wine Festival on June 20, 2014. Ukrainian capital, Kiev has population near 2,900,200 (Radiokafka / Shutterstock)
Street artist paints a portrait of a girl. The artist paints a portrait of a girl on a poster paper with a pencil. The twentieth anniversary of Independence of Ukraine. August 24, 2011. Ukraine, Kiev (Anatol Tyshkevich / Shutterstock)
KIEV,UKRAINE – OCT. 04, 2015: A girl dressed in vintage clothes ride a bicycle during a retro parade on bicycles “Retro Cruise” or “Tweed run” in Kiev, Ukraine, 04 October 2015. (viewimage / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – JANUARY 7: Folk Ukrainian Group celebrating Christmas Day in the orthodox churches. Museum of Ukrainian Folk Architecture and Rural Life PYROGOVO, on January 7, 2015 Kiev, Ukraine (Mikheyev Viktor / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – FEBRUARY 04, 2016: Fashion lingerie model at Kyiv Fashion 2016 show in KyivExpoPlaza exhibition center. It was the 30th edition of popular Kyiv Fashion International Vogue Festival. (Sergiy Palamarchuk / Shutterstock)
KYIV, UKRAINE – DECEMBER 12, 2015: Boxing ring girls holding a board with round number during WBO Intercontinental cruiserweight Title fight Oleksandr Usyk vs Pedro Rodriguez at Palace of Sports (katatonia82 / Shutterstock)
KIEV,UKRAINE – 7 November, 2015: Girls body builders train backstage, during the Cup of Kiev of bodybuilding (classic bodybuilding,body fitness,and bikini), in Kiev, Ukraine, 10 October 2015. (Nazar Furyk / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – FEBRUARY 04, 2016: Children fashion models at Kyiv Fashion 2016 show in KyivExpoPlaza exhibition center. It was the 30th edition of popular Kyiv Fashion International Vogue Festival. (Sergiy Palamarchuk / Shutterstock)
Kiev, Ukraine – September 22, 2015: Girl examines the gun at the specialized exhibition “Arms and Security – 2015” (DmyTo / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – Aug 24, 2015: Girl in a military uniform on march of Independence on the occasion of 24th anniversary of Independence of Ukraine on Khreshchatyk, Kiev (Drop of Light / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – November 29, 2015:A girl in the image of a fortune-teller, during the festival of horrors named ”Necronomicon”,for fans of cosplay,mysticism,fantasy and computer games heroes. (viewimage / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – MAY 03, 2013: Sightseeing bus in the center of Kiev. Ukraine (Igor Rozhkov / Shutterstock)
KIEV (KYIV), UKRAINE – MARCH 6, 2016: Kiev funicular (1905) connect historic Uppertown and lower neighborhood of Podil through steep Volodymyrska Hill. (Kiev.Victor / Shutterstock)
Saint Nicholas “on the water” church in Kiev, Ukraine (Copyright: Verkhovynets Taras)
Famous Pechersk Lavra Monastery in Kiev, Ukraine (Copyright: Verkhovynets Taras)
KIEV, UKRAINE: 26 OF JULY 2014. Golden Gate at dusk in Kiev (Gorinov / Shutterstock)
KIEV, UKRAINE – JANUARY 5, 2015: Shopping and entertainment center Ocean Plaza in Kiev. Ukraine (Nykonchuk Oleksii / Shutterstock)
Kiev City Guide For Travelers
By Polina Kryuchkova
You are planning thoroughly your trip to Kiev, surfing the web for information on Kiev best sights, restaurants and night clubs, and thinking how to plan your stay the best, what to see and where to go to… You are packing your new camera in order to make beautiful photos of golden domes, Khreschatik Street and Kiev parks… You are thinking what to wear and checking weather forecast for the days of your visit… In a few days or weeks you will get to another world with smiling people, ancient brick streets, monuments and cathedrals…
Status: capital of Ukraine
Number of regions: 10
Date of foundation: fifth century AD
Area: 839 km2
Elevation: 179 m above sea level
Geographical coordinates: latitude 50°27’N; longitude 30°30’E
Climate: moderate continental with mild winter and warm summer
Temperature: average Kiev temperature in January is 6 degrees below zero Celsius, average in June is 20 degrees above zero Celsius; lowest temperature in winter is 25 degrees below zero Celsius; highest temperature in summer is 32 degrees above zero Celsius.
Population: 2,6 million (2005)
Density: 3178 people/km2
Car code: AA
Phone code: +380 44
Kiev Mayor: Leonid Chernovetskiy (since 2006)
The legend says that there was a prince family of three brothers named Kiy, Schek and Khoryv and a sister Lybid. Kiy ruled a powerful Slavic tribe and was looking for a place to settle a new home for his people. When they came to the beautiful hills upon Dnepr river and saw wonderful panorama of blue river and seven hills covered with chestnut trees, they liked that place very much and decided to settle there. They established a city and gave it the name Kiev in honour of their oldest brother Kiy more than 1500 years ago. Prince Kiy and his family lived on one hill, Schek settled on another hill which got the mane Schekavitsa, and Khoryv settled on the third hill called Khorevitsa.
Since 882 Kiev became the capital on ancient powerful state called Kievan Rus. In 998 Kiev Prince Vladimir introduced Christianity in Kievan Rus by baptising Kiev population in Dnepr river. In 1240 the city was demolished by mongol-tatars who invaded Kievan Rus, and later it was rebuilt. Since 1362 Kiev and major part of Ukraine belonged to Lithuania and Poland and in 1654 it became part of Russian Empire and then USSR.
In 1991 Ukrainian people voted for independence of Ukraine and Kiev became its capital. Since that time it is the center of Ukraine’s political, economic and cultural life.
In November 2004 Kiev was the central place of Orange Revolution when hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian people protested against election falsification in the streets and later elected another ruling party and the President of Ukraine.
Most visitors to Kiev prefer apartment or hotel accommodation. Kiev hotels provide security and a certain level of service according to their level (three star, four star, five star), Kiev apartments allow greater privacy and flexibility. Average single room in Kiev hotel will cost $100-130 per night, while a 1-room apartment with all amenities will cost $40-60 depending on its location, space and extra facilities like jakuzzi, home cinema, etc.
Kiev sights rating
I recommend you to visit:
Golden Gate of Kiev – the ancient gate to Kiev, which is now located in its very center, it is made of wood and stone with a small golden dome above
St Sofia Cathedral – one of the most beautiful Kiev cathedrals with Bell Tower and chestnut trees around the cathedral
St Michael Cathedral – newly rebuilt cathedral with beautiful blue walls, ornament and large golden domes
St Vladimir Cathedral – cathedral in Kiev center where official orthodox religious ceremonies take place
St Andrew Church and Andrew Descent (Andreevskiy Spusk) – a popular place with tourists with numerous souvenir booths, old brick descent, art galleries and museums
Kiev Cave Monastery (Lavra) – the ancient monastery where you can see the caves where monks lived in ancient times, several churches and the largest Bell tower in Kiev
Russian Art Museum and Ukrainian Art Museum – art connoisseurs will get much pleasure seeing masterpieces of world art in Kiev museums
Kiev Opera and Ballet Theater – an enjoyable experience of listening to live classical music and watching dances
Pirogovo ethnic village – an opportunity to see old village houses, windmills and household appliances of different Ukrainian regions
War Museum – you can see there numerous tanks and war airplanes and the gigantic metal statue of woman symbolizing Homeland
Kiev Botanic Garden – in spring and summer you can see there beautiful trees and blossoming flowers
Mariinsky Palace – a majestic palace where official government ceremonies take place, it is surrounded by green park with panorama of Dnepr and its left bank
Independence Square – the very central part of Kiev, from which the distances to other cities are calculated, it has a large underground shopping center, central Post office, banks and restaurants
Khreschatik Street – main street in Kiev where people can walk on the highway on Saturday and Sunday
Vladimir Mount – a park on the mount with large statue symbolizing Prince Vladimir with cross when he introduced Christianity and baptized Slavic people.
What to wear
If you come to Kiev in summer, it would be nice to take a summer jacket, jeans and T-shirts, sandals or baskets and probably shorts or dress for the case of heat. For spring or autumn it is better to take a few warm things and a jacket. For the winter you will need a winter coat or a warm jacket, a few sweaters, a scarf, gloves and cap.
If you go inside a church or cathedral, women have to cover their head with a shawl, while men need to take off their hats.
Eating out in Kiev
To try delicious Ukrainian cuisine we recommend you the following Kiev restaurants:
Pervak restaurant – a medium-price restaurant located in 2, Rognedinskaya St. You can taste borsch and vareniks, small pies and various meat and fish dishes. The dinner will cost you about $30-50 per person depending on the food and drinks you choose.
Taras restaurant – located in Shevchenko park near major Kiev Museums, close to Kiev University. You can order various pancakes as well as national cuisine dishes. The dinner will cost you $35-55.
USSR restaurant – located near Kiev War Museum and Kiev Lavra Monastery in 42/1 Sichnevogo Povstannya St. and decorated with USSR symbolics. The dinner will cost you $35-55.
Puzata Khata (Big Bellied House) fast food restaurant which combines original interior in peasant house style, tasty Ukrainian food, vast choice of dishes and low prices. It is located in very center, 1/2a Basseinaya St., in the beginning of Khreschatik. Here you can try traditional Ukrainian pampushky, Chicken Kiev, different salads and main courses. On the first floor you can also choose one numerous cakes and even order fresh made juice. The dinner cost is $3-10 per person.
Zdorovenky Buly (Good Health to You)
That’s a very popular fast food restaurant located near Khreschatik metro station which probably has the largest choice of different foods: salad bar, pancakes, varenyky, pizzas, soups, tasty desserts. Its comfortable rooms are decorated in various styles: Chinese, Indian, Egyptian and Greek. It also has Tea bar with cakes where one can sit and talk. Dinner: $3-10 per person.
You can buy various Ukrainian souvenirs on Andrew Descent (Andreevskiy Spusk): embroidered towels, matrioshkas, wooden painted plates and eggs, glass souvenirs, small dolls in national clothing, paintings and clothing. There is also a souvenir section in Kiev central magazine (Tsum), located in Khreschatik St and a souvenir shop near St Sofia Cathedral.
Polina Kryuchkova is running an Advance-Tour travel company in Kiev, Ukraine. You can find more articles about Ukraine, travel tips, as well as information on accommodation, excursions in Kiev and Ukraine at the http://www.kievtravel.com.ua website.