We are in 2017, and still by far the oldest standing hostel in Kiev ! 10 years !
During this time, we showed the way to many backpackers in Ukraine and always suggested different activities as tours and as exploring the city.
The city is plenty of things to do, not mentioning that Kiev still off the beaten path in Europe, even for us all those years, we still can find different crazy, old, new and all traces of the transformation the city has since it’s medieval period.
Crazy, Brutal, Architecture is one of them ! Spread all around the city, if you enjoy treasure hunt, get lost and dig the books after old photos of the city and try to compare to nowadays !
It’s sad, but true. Chernobyl and Pripyat were very well planned during Soviet Times to be one of the most incredible military bases as much as Dream Town. The city had so many features for it’s inhabitants that if you think about 35 years ago, all the leisure structure, advanced hospital rooms, planned schools, jobs, restaurants, everything. All ruined by the accident that created a vast uninhabited area, now becoming a forest again and housing wild animals that were about to be extinct.
Visiting Chernobyl it’s a must do, even if it’s not cheap, but really…. don’t miss it it’s unique and the biggest radar-antenna from Soviet Union (Duga – Russian Woodpecker) still there, but not for much longer, since the authorities got a plan to dismantle it.
Ukraine it’s far from being a rich country. Corruption, low investment levels, aging population and low salaries keeps many from developing, but at the same time, this land still in transition and we believe with a very promising future.
There are not many shops selling clothes or articles, people still like old fashioned way of doing things and nothing is thrown away, Ukrainians always think they will be able to use that old piece of metal for something.
That’s the fun part: Visiting the Bazaar or exchange markets. You will never imagine you would really wanna buy an old rusty metal jug, but you will end up taking one !
New Kids on The Block came a bit late comparing to the real meaning of Kids on Blocks, according to USSR.
They are huge, many of them super confusing to walk around and very interesting designs and ideas to fit a lot of people in a small vertical space !
If you take a look at any online map and pan around, you will realize how the living neighborhoods could have interesting plan.
In the north of Kiev, the last metro line Heroi Dnipro has several of them, as much as the east bank on the way to Borispol Airport. Both of them doable by metro or very long (I mean long…. you have no idea) tram rides. Yes, that tour costs about 0,13EUR cents one way. In the center you can also wander and find hidden gems, just by the hostel you have a few of them !
Did I mention churches ? Do you like them ?
Me neither, but there are a lot of them and however it’s not the thing I love to do, you will walk by several of them and many of them are very nice, golden, blue, star, metal, green, wooden domes, making at that point more interesting.
A good thing it’s that most of the cathedrals are on the way to something, a hidden passage and parks, monuments and they are very important to the city plan, since Kiev it’s built on the hills, they create amazing scenery and will convince you to walk trough their yards.
Soviet Union and it’s monuments and signs are low in the market….
The law imposed on 2014 brings down any remains from the Soviet past, leaving the tourists a bit lost when come to historical landmarks, but many of them are still there. They are nice and you can climb and enter almost anywhere, specially because some are quite abandoned.
But as the one above, the equivalent to Moscow’s VDNKh (Exhibition Center) in Kiev. Not as big but very nicely built buildings and with luck when you are in Kiev, maybe there will be an event or concert that can bring two things together.
During summer they open a public swimming pool, where you pay per hour, but it’s nice and you can reach by metro.
Yes ! Kiev sounds magic when I write here.
I guess it’s, there’s always a rainbow behind St Michael Cathedral, no matter the weather.
Also to think about:
- Beer: 0,5EUR-2.5EUR (That’s a regular draft to a Craft Draft beer)
- Meals: 3EUR-6EUR (from a Steak/Fries/Salad to a nicer place dinner…. we prefer the 1st place)
- Transportation: 0.13EUR (Metro, Mini-Buses-Marshrutka) – Trolleybuses and Trams are cheaper
- OUR Hostel… come on, how many places in Europe you sleep from 6EUR !?
- Trains: 500km distances usually around 6-8EUR, sleeping car, 2nd class, not talking about 3rd
- Missile Base, Chernobyl, Aviation Museum, tallest TV antenna in Europe, Motherland Statue (taller than Liberty’s Statue)
No ! I din’t forgot to mention the people ! They are the most friendly you would find in Europe I guess ! You won’t find many english speakers, but they will scream at you until you understand what they said (usually it’s let’s go have a drink).
Ukraine it’s safe, there are no issues regarding the revolution and any war. There are no more thieves than any other town, I would say there are much less, the winter it’s cold but nice blue skies and the hot summers are great to stay at the river banks !
I wouldn’t write anymore, just come to visit us !