This post is written by a traveler and a friend, who has visited Kiev from Australia, and has been kind enough to share his thoughts and experience, so thanks you Traveler Hints!
My thoughts on Kiev
Beautiful Kiev City, located in Ukraine is the best city to visit in Europe. Unluckily nobody seems to know it. This is not only the best city but also one of the most beautiful, attractive and flashingly enticing cities.
In it, you are able to witness, traces of medieval period, and communist brutalism coupled with classical central European architecture with boulevards and cobbled side streets.
This city enjoys the grace of nature with its lush green vegetation and this city is one of the best cities I have ever visited in all my life. Hard it is, to walk without going past picturesque parks if you chose to do so.
The breathtaking spectacular, charming river the Dnipro meanders through the middle of the city nurturing a series of Islands in the centre of Kiev.
Seemingly endless woodlands and sandy beaches with recreation areas are in the heart of the city. Oh mate, it was really an awesome experience!
Kiev, indeed, is a conservative place with Western style. However, you are able to see belles in short skirts. They display the ever so sexy glamour which you could see in the whole of Ukraine.
This, though not sightseeing, is a smashing, eye-catching attraction to you if you ever tread upon this glamorous city.
Wherever you look you will find traditional gender roles. The tendency is that the Ukrainian girls look for their ‘Mr. Right’ to make a family, which throughout their lives, becomes really, really important.
In fact. Ukraine is infested with poverty and as a result, any woman would genuinely tell you of the absence of enough, eligible partners for them to find amongst the ‘bachelor boys’.
Friendliness and helpfulness of the people are to be appreciated here in Ukraine and in Kiev city at large.
This, indeed, is an attractive quality among the younger generation who has a tendency to speak English for they fervently try to master the language.
Despite their effort to conquer the language barrier, there still seem to be a situation in which the language problem appears to be a real problem.
But, mate it is not a problem at all, your friendly tour girl Alexandra will escort you around the city, yeah, everywhere possible for she knows where true attractions are and you will prefer her company more than any guide on your visit.
That is to say, your fulfillment of every expectation you had to achieve will be well addressed. This, for sure, will make your tour more than a mere success.
So, you guys should capitalise on this great opportunity and make much of your visit.
As a person with first hand experience I assure you of the ability to make the best use of your visit to this wonderful city – Kiev.
Also Alexandra will adjust herself to your needs of touring. For sure, you will find your tour arrangements catered to your best of interest.
It could very well be a half a day tour, a day tour, a 2 days’ tour or a 3 days’ tour or else it could very well be a nightlife tour around Kiev City, Ukraine.
Planning my tour with Alexandra
If you like, you can trust Alexandra to arrange your flat/ hotel stay and airport pickup during your stay in Kiev.
Her knowledge of the city allows me to be a good judge when it comes to choosing good hotels, hostels and hotel-type private apartments for any budget.
Alexandra herself and very friendly smiley driver will pick visitors up and will drive you in a private car to your place of stay and assist you with orientation.
We communicated with FB messenger and WhatsApp, to determine exactly what I want to see and experience in Kiev.
She made personalized itinerary for day time activities, and suggestion on where to stay, eat or explore.
My sightseeing went like this:
10.00 – Visiting historical centre, square of independence, Main street of Kylv, St.Michael Cathedral, St. Sophia Cathedral (this is historical with a history of 1000 years) and Sophia Square.
14.00 – Trying Ukrainian traditional food. Lunch in a restaurant.
15.00 – Coming to the Kontraktova Square. Visiting the museum of Chornobyl.
16.00 – Returning to the Maidan.
10.00 – Visiting the deepest metro station in the world.
10.40 – Visiting the museum of Holodomor in Ukraine.
11.30 – Visiting Kiev Pechersk Lavra which is world’s legacy of UNESCO Heritage Listed.
12.30 – Lunch in a restaurant.
13.30 – Going to WW2 museum ( It is a huge territory under the open sky and also with museum inside).
Taking pictures near the statue of Motherland. (It is higher than the Statue of Liberty).
Looking at all the weapons outside and go inside of the museum (if you wish).
10.00 – Going to kyiv national aviation museum. You will have opportunity to see great planes. Make sure you inside of them and see the history of aviation.
13.00 – Lunch time.
14.00 – Going to the museum of Ukrainian crafts and traditions.
Top places we visited in Kiev
Ukraine Aviation Museum
The Ukraine State Aviation Museum (museum of planes) offers a marvelous collection of Soviet built aircraft’s.
Even if you are not interested in aviation this is still a great place to visit. Kiev is home to the Antonov Design Bureau.
You will see rare Antonov types on display. There are plenty of examples from the other builders as well.
Tupolevs, Ilyushins, Sukhois, Yakovlevs, MiGs range and more besides these. The entrance fee is very reasonable and you have to pay a little extra to take photographs. There are no inside exhibits. Everything is outside.
Andrew’s Descent (Andreevsky Decent) is one of the oldest and most popular streets in Kiev.
Andrew’s Descent is a historic road connecting kiev’s upper neighbourhood and the historic commercial neighbourhood.
The road is regarded as the “Montmartre of Kiev”. It is a major tourist attraction and is proudly included in the list of national landmarks.
In addition, Andrew Decent is also a part of the old city (ancient Kiev).
Maidan, or independence square is the central square in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. It is one of the city’s main squares. It is located on Khreshchatyk street in shevchenko Raion.
The square has been known under many names, but it is simply called Maidan (square).
St. Sophia’s Cathedral
St. Sophia’s Cathedral is the world famous historical and architectural monument of the first half of the 11th century.
The name of the cathedral comes from the Greek word ‘Sofia’ which means wisdom. Built in the times of Yaroslav Mudry, the cathedral served as a social, political and cultural centre of Kievan Rus, where foreign ambassadors were received.
Chronicles were recorded and the first Russian library founded by Yaroslav Mudry himself functioned.
Yaroslav Mudry’s ruling was the time when art, education and culture prospered.
St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Cathedral
The sky blue St. Michael’s Cathedral with its fabulously shining domes, is one of the most beautiful and important Orthodox temples in Ukraine.
Built in the 90s it is a remake of the destroyed St. Michael’s Cathedral, which stood in the territory of the oldest monastery of Kievan Rus for over eight centuries.
The grandson of Yaroslav the wise, prince Sviatopolk founded the cathedral in the early 12th century.
It is named in honour or St.Michael – the protector of kyiv. Its nickname ‘the golden – domed’ cathedral, comes from the fact that it was the first and only church with such extravagant domes in ancient Rus.
Byzantine, master architects participated in the Cathedral’s construction. Yet, elements of Ukrainian architectural style also come through clearly. At the same time the cathedral was built smaller buildings also sprung up around it.
The church became the most honoured religious monument among the residents of Kiev. Its importance grew in 1108 after it got its main shrine – the relics of St. Barbara, brought to Kiev from Constantinople.
Since the original Cathedral was destroyed these relics have been kept in St. Volodymyr’s in Kiev.
St Andrew’s Church
Rare in its beauty and grace, the St. Andrew’s Church, stands on a hill in the historic center of Kyiv. It is one of the most famous Orthodox temples in the capital of Ukraine.
This amazing construction, rightfully considered to be a real work of art, is among the most remarkable of the city’s landmarks.
Khreshchatyk (Ukrainian: Хрещатик, Khreshchatyk;) is the main street of Kyiv, Ukraine. The street has a length of 1.3 km (0.81 mi).
It stretches from the European Square (northeast) through the Maidan and to Bessarabska Square (southwest) where the Besarabsky Market is located.
Along the street are the offices of the Kiev City Council which contains both the city’s council and the state administration, the Main Post Office, the Ministry of Agrarian Policy, the State Committee of Television and Radio Broadcasting, the Central Department Store (TSUM), the Bessarabka Market, the Ukrainian House, and others.
The Motherland Monument
The Motherland Monument (Ukrainian: Батьківщина-Мати, Russian: Родина-мать) is a monumental statue in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine.
The sculpture is a part of the Museum of The History of Ukraine in World War II, Kiev. The stainless steel statue stands 62 m (203 ft) tall upon the museum building with the overall structure measuring 102 m (335 ft) and weighing 560 tons.
The sword in the statue’s right hand is 16 m (52 ft) long weighing 9 tons, with the left hand holding up a 13 by 8 m (43 by 26 ft) shield with the State Emblem of the Soviet Union.
Ukrainian National Chernobyl Museum
The National Museum “Chernobyl”is a multifunctional institution combining scientific, cultural and educational activity with a modern museum conveying the history of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster as the most severe radioecological disaster of the XX century.
The after-effects of it have no analogy and differ from other natural or manmade catastrophes.
The National Museum
The National Museum, “the memorial to Holodomor victims” (Ukrainian: Національний музей Меморіал жертв Голодомору) , formerly known as the Memorial in Commemoration of Famines’ Victims in Ukraine, is Ukraine’s national museum and also a world-class centre devoted to the victims of the Holodomor of 1932-1933. The museum was opened on the day of the 75th anniversary of the Holodomor in 2008.
It also gained the status of a national museum in 2010. The museum is located on the Pechersk Hills on the right bank of the Dnieper river in Kiev, adjacent to the Kiev Pechersk Lavra.
There is a place in the center of Kyiv, which is hidden from the crowded streets and by houses from one side.
It is pleasant to the eye by the breathtaking view of historic Kyiv and the mighty Dnieper from the other.
It is the Landscape alley which has become the stamping ground for Kyiv residents and the most exciting place for the tourists who are keen on walking itinerary.
Alley is located on the Old Kyiv Hill, which was in the centre of ancient Kyiv long ago. Today, when walking along the Ukrainian capital, turn off from the crowded Velyka ZhytomyrskaStreet to the stone arch.
There you will find yourself back in the world of childhood, fairytale and imagination. On the one hand you get a magnificent view on Podil, Dnieper River and Castle Hill (Zamkova Hora).
Oh, What awesome things there are for the eyes to feast on for sensuous you in this smashingly dazzling city of Kiev.
If ever you travel to this travel destination you will find yourself in a dreamworld. Not only that you will also find yourself lost among history and imagination and beauty and entertainment.
Oh, what else should there be for the fulfillment of your varying desires and the satisfaction of your weary soul!