Ukraine is a major player in Eastern Europe due to its size. Tourism there is severely underappreciated despite the fact that millions of people call the place home. Although the eastern part of the country has seen its share of unrest, the rest of Ukraine remains a wonderful tourist destination with plenty to offer. Also, it’s ridiculously low-priced!
Top 10 Places to Visit in Ukraine
Ukraine is about as far from being a tourist trap as you can get, with its unique culture and dense concentration of fascinating history. See magnificent basilicas and monasteries, Orthodox churches and castles, verdant highlands and Black Sea shores. Check out this list of top Ukrainian attractions.
Located in the middle of Ukraine, on the banks of the Umanka River, this settlement serves as a pleasant stopover en route between Odesa and Kyiv. Uman was originally constructed as a stronghold against Tatar attacks and was first documented in 1616 when under Polish administration.
Most well-known for the bloody uprisings of the Haidamak in the 1700s, it is now a holy location for Hasidic Jews from all over the world. You won’t have any trouble finding your way around this easygoing city, since all of Uman’s major sights are clearly marked.
Check out the daily market or visit the town centre to view the obelisk and the Pearl of Love fountain show in Rabbi Nachman Sofiyivka Park. The Basilian Monastery (1764) is the oldest structure in the city and is worth visiting for history buffs.
Uman is fantastic if you’re fond of natural settings. Sofiyivka Park is a great place to take a stroll and is also a major hub for horticultural study. The Dendrological Research Center offers tree tours for anyone interested in nature. Uman also features museums, memorials to the Second World War, and a beautiful pastel-hued church, all of which add to the city’s visual appeal.
Rakhiv may not be the literal “geographical centre of Europe,” but it is the tallest city in Ukraine. Located in the western Ukrainian Carpathian Mountains, this alpine hamlet is a fantastic destination for outdoor enthusiasts.
Rakhiv, in the southern Carpathians, is a great starting point for hikers and campers wishing to experience the region’s breathtaking scenery, which includes scenic slopes and swinging footbridges leading across the raging Tysa River.
Rakhiv’s charm lies precisely in its lack of activity. Get away from the hustle and bustle of the city and head to the tranquil mountain village of Dilove. Visit in September for the Hutsul Brynza Festival to get a feel for the local customs and traditions.
Cheese, wurda, brynza, and folk music and dance are served during this celebration in honour of the shepherds who travel down from the Carpathians every winter.
Chernihiv is among Ukraine’s earliest settlements. Year of founding unknown; it was first referenced in the Rus’-Byzantine Treaty between Prince Oleh and Byzantium in 907. Chernihiv was considered the second most significant city in Ukraine after the capital, Kyiv, in this agreement.
Situated in northern Ukraine on the Desna River, Chernihiv serves as the provincial capital of Chernihiv Oblast. It has several stunning examples of mediaeval architecture, like the golden cupolas of St. Catherine’s Church and the five-domed Transfiguration Cathedral from the 11th century.
Chernihiv is the birthplace of a well-known Ukrainian beverage, Chernihivske, and hence is a paradise for beer lovers. Don’t miss out on seeing the city’s two historic cave monasteries or the Kachanivka Palace and its neoclassical architecture, lovely gardens, and lake from the 18th century.
Ukraine’s most popular ski resort, Bukovel is a winter wonderland. It’s the biggest ski resort in all of Eastern Europe, in fact. This luxurious alpine ski resort is surrounded by three mountains, the highest of which being the Carpathians.
Bukovel, in the mountains of western Ukraine, is a fantastic destination for people of all ages. With almost 50 kilometres of prepared runs, it is suitable for skiers and snowboarders of all abilities.
You can hang out in the snow park, the bicycle park, or the ski school when you’re not out trying the powder. Bukovel is ideal for a skiing break from December to April, with the deepest snowfall occurring in January.
Located in western Ukraine at the base of the Carpathian Mountains is the city of Chernivtsi. The city was once part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, which explains why its architecture has been affectionately dubbed “Little Vienna,” after the Austrian capital.
The city is more than simply a gorgeous look, though; it also has important cultural and historical significance. Archaeological evidence suggests that Chernivtsi was settled as early as the Neolithic period.
In the days of the Halychian principality, the northeastern coast was home to a walled city. It was largely destroyed by the Mongol invasion and earned the nickname “Black City” due to the dark colour of its city walls. The stronghold is still standing in part.
It’s a great location to relax and take in the low-key vibe because its cobblestone lanes are lined with cafes, Baroque buildings, bookstores, and parks. The National University is one of the largest universities in Ukraine and is housed in a magnificent palace.
6. Kamianets-Podilskyi Fortress
The Kamianets-Podilskyi Fortress dominates the skyline of the western Ukrainian city of Kamianets-Podilskyi. It’s a big draw for people to come to this magical city. The fortress is spectacular, standing tall above the Smotrych River; it is among the most beautiful fortifications in all of Eastern Europe.
The city, however, is not limited to its defensive structure. See the wonderful street art that narrates the story of the city as you wander the cobbled alleyways of the ancient Old Town with its charming pastel-colored buildings.
Try your hand at archery on the Castle Bridge or soar into the air on a hot air balloon, two of the city’s most popular activities. In the spring, there is a spectacular event including hot air balloons.
Chernobyl is a grim dive into the past for the history buff. It was the scene of the tragic nuclear accident that killed thousands in 1986. The Chernobyl exclusion zone, today an eerie ghost town in northern Kyiv Oblast, was recently revisited in an HBO documentary and is expected to become a big tourist attraction. As soon as you can, please leave!
If you go inside Chernobyl, you may see the ruins for yourself, including the homes and belongings of individuals who were forced to flee the city. There are guided tours provided so that visitors can hear firsthand accounts of the disaster. As part of a larger plan to make the exclusion zone safer for tourists, the Ukrainian president has vowed to relax a ban on recording there.
Odesa, in southwestern Ukraine, has a fascinating history that may be learned via the city’s numerous outstanding museums. It was first occupied by the Greeks, then the Ottomans, and lastly the Russians.
Odessa is now a modern city with beautiful Art Nouveau buildings, cute cafes where you can observe the locals, and breathtaking beaches. Situated on the northwest coast of the Black Sea, it is frequently referred to as the “Pearl of the Black Sea.”
Arcadia is home to Odessa’s vibrant nightlife, including clubs on par with those in Ibiza, shopping destinations any woman would covet, and excellent wineries. Take all of that into consideration, and you have the perfect summer holiday spot, devoid of the usual hordes of foreign visitors.
Things to do in Odessa are plentiful. Spend time at a beach club’s pool, catch a play, or go for a walk along the boardwalk. Odessa’s enticing labyrinth of underground catacombs, which stretch for thousands of kilometres beneath the city, are only one of the numerous reasons why so many people flock to this lively metropolis.
Lviv, the largest city in western Ukraine, has a charming old town that is worth checking out. Capital city of Ruthenia; founded in 1240; named for King Leo’s eldest son, Leo; passed back and forth between Polish and Russian control multiple times before gaining independence in 1991.
Lviv is bursting at the seams with historical landmarks and museums, as well as ancient structures housing artefacts dating back to the 5th century. Lviv is well recognised as a cultural centre in Ukraine, and the city is home to numerous museums and art galleries.
From opera and ballet performances to quaint café culture, there is no shortage of options for a cultural day trip. Bars and knaipas (local pubs) of all shapes and sizes line the alleys and alleyways of this city.
The capital city, Kyiv, in north-central Ukraine, is the most popular travel destination in all of Ukraine. This European metropolis packs quite a wallop thanks to its impressive Soviet-era buildings, monasteries, churches with golden domes, and attractive avenues. Plus, it’s still relatively undiscovered, so there aren’t any overpriced tourist traps to be found.
Kyiv, Ukraine, is one of the oldest cities in all of Eastern Europe, having been founded in 482. It has a unique Ukrainian flavour because it has been occupied by both the Russians and the Germans. The modern Ukrainian state and the mediaeval East Slavic civilization both owe a great deal to the contributions of Kyiv.
Kyiv of today is a thriving metropolis. See the interesting history of Eastern Europe by visiting one of the city’s many museums, taverns, or sidewalk cafes. Go to one of Europe’s most extensive open-air museums, the Museum of Folk Architecture and Ethnography.
Despite this, one of the oldest and most significant monasteries in Ukraine, Kyiv Pechersk Lavra, is by far the most visited site in the Ukrainian capital. Andriyivskyy Descent is a steep cobbled roadway adorned with Art Nouveau buildings and gargoyles that should not be missed.
Kyiv is also a major cultural hub, so don’t forget to bring your A-game when it comes to theatre, opera, and music!