Etched with a fascinating historical narrative, beautiful landscapes and ancient traditions, Ukraine is too often underrated. Planning a trip and wondering what to do in Ukraine? Here are our top things to see and do across the country.


1. Marvel at Kiev's Saint Sophia's Cathedral

It goes without saying: a visit to Ukraine wouldn't be complete without a day or two in its vibrant capital, Kiev. Dating back as far as the 5th century, Ukraine's city of golden spires has an intricate centuries-old narrative that’s recounted through every cobbled street, monastery and museum.

Don't miss out on the opportunity to see the city's oldest standing church, built in 1037. The beautiful St Sophia's Cathedral is one of Kiev's best known landmarks and the first heritage site in Ukraine to be inscribed on the World Heritage List. 


2. Take a day trip to Chernobyl

The nuclear disaster site of Chernobyl is synonymous with Ukraine, so it's no wonder that thousands of people who cross the border into Ukraine make it a stopping point on their trip.

Having forced 234,000 citizens to flee amid radiation fears, the site is now eerily desolate. Tick off historic landmarks including Kopachi Village and its abandoned kindergarten, the power plant itself and Reactor #4.


3. Meander through the cobbled streets of Lviv

Arguably one of Ukraine's most 'Ukrainian' cities, Lviv is also the country's least Soviet – and it shows. A city of cosy coffeehouses, rambling trams and quaint cobbled streets, oozing charm and romance, it's no wonder people quickly fall in love.

Best explored on foot, take a stroll past fairy-tale architecture, stopping for numerous coffee breaks, and dipping into the art galleries, monuments, cathedrals and museums that have made the city so popular.


4. Venture inside Kamianets-Podilskyi fortress

Nestled in the depths of Western Ukraine lies the stunning Kamianets-Podilsky fortress, built of wood in the 10th and 13th centuries before being redesigned in the 18th century.

The fortress's overall impression is breathtaking, and the view from the Turkish Bridge leading to the fortress is certainly worth bringing your camera for!

After venturing inside, take a wander through the ancient town itself and its elevated 11th-century Old Town, which stands on a tall rock 'island', connected to the fortress by a narrow strip of land. 


5. Discover the ancient Hutsul tribe

Step back in time with a visit to the country's Hutsul tribe, a key part of Ukraine's national identity. Living deep in the Caparthian mountain range, their life is centred around herding sheep, agriculture and forestry, surviving off a diet of mountain ingredients. 

Visit the traditional mountain village of Verhovyna in Western Ukraine where they reside, and learn about their culture, traditions and Ukrainian embroidery.


6. Witness the beauty of Bukovel during summer

A ski resort throughout Ukraine's snowy winter months, come summertime, Bukovel blossoms into life. Lush, green mountains make a spectacular backdrop, while the resort's vast lakes make for great swimming.

Come here to get involved in an array of summer activities, or simply to sit back and soak up the views: the choice is yours.


7. Go shopping down Khreschatyk street in Kiev

Kiev's most famous and well-trodden street, stretching on for 1.2km, Khreschatyk street is a hub of life and activity.

For the best experience, walk down Khreschatyk street during weekends and public holidays, when it's closed to create space for fascinating street performers and musicians.

Lined with tempting shops and places to eat and drink, it's also along here that you'll find the iconic Independence Square, which since the revolution in 1990, has become a focal point for political rallies. 


8. Sample local Ukrainian cuisine

One of the easiest – and most enjoyable – things to do in Ukraine is to sample plate after plate of the country’s delicious, and cheap, national cuisine.

Ukraine’s neighbouring countries, climate, rich soil and dedicated people have influenced the nation’s dishes, making way for a generously flavoured cuisine (with garlic often the main seasoning) and contradictory tastes.

Bes sure to try Potato Varenyky and Paska (Easter Bread) and the classic Chicken Kyiv, famous around the world.

Inspired by our list of things to do in Ukraine? Join us in 2020 on a solo city break to Kiev and Chernobyl, or drink in the highlights of western Ukraine on our 9-night Discovery tour


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