Ukraine is a stunning country with a long history. You should realize up front that no history of a country is without its downsides, negative points, and terrors. But that’s what makes a country interesting in the long run. We should all have a healthy respect for the history that came before us. As they say, those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it.
Traveling to satisfy your thirst for knowledge isn’t always easy. But if you really want to expand your historical tourism footprint, a stop in Ukraine’s capital could be what you’ve been looking for.
Why the capital and not another town? The capital of Ukraine has its own place in Ukrainian history. It’s one of the oldest cities in Eastern Europe, as well as being one that attracts plenty of visitors already. Everyone is very friendly, but you may want to brush up on some Ukrainian catch phrases in order to get around. Russian is definitely on its way out, as the country has experienced a new rise in nationalist feeling. It’s a good day to be Ukrainian, even though the country is plagued by conflict and tension with Russia. The Ukraine was part of the USSR until the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. That’s not a very long time to be an independent country, and people take it very seriously. They want to be known as Ukrainians, not Russians. Talk to people about their history, rather than Russian history.
As far as things to see in the city, there are a few sights that we can definitely recommend:
The Kiev Pechersk Lavra, otherwise known as the Cave Monastery. It’s an incredible sight to see, because it’s completely underground! You get to tour the whole place for free, with the only expense being a small candle to light your way. It’s a small donation for the church, but it’s truly worth it. Some people like to leave a little more, given that it’s a holy place.
You should also check out St. Sophia’s Cathedral, one of the oldest churches in the region. There’s also a brilliant reproduction of the Golden Gate, which was destroyed during WWI.
It would be virtually impossible to get into all of the places you should see and go without making this guide longer and longer. It’s tough to cover an area so rich in culture and historical significance. If you’re going to go to Ukraine, make sure that you give everyone your respect. The country has gone through some significantly hard times, and it’s important to avoid making assumptions about anything. Let the people tell you their heritage and background. Let the places actually speak for themselves. You’ll get a lot more out of the experience that way.