Kyiv, where head office of ARKTUR group is located, is the capital of Ukraine.
Kyiv a city with more than 1500 years of history. A charming city with splendid architecture, ancient golden-domed cathedrals and numerous parks on both sides of the mighty Dnipro River, Kyiv is a tourist’s delight. During a city tour you will have the possibility to visit the famous Andriyivsky Uzviz Descent where numerous artists and craftsmen offer their works; the Golden Gate – the remains of a huge wall that was erected in the 10th century to protect the city, and the Parliament building situated in a beautiful park. The enormous territory of the city makes it hard at first to find one’s way through but luckily there are two helpful points – the Dnipro and the Metro. The river crosses the city in a north-south direction; the old town is situated on the high right bank, while new districts occupy the left bank. In the Old Kyiv (the Upper Town), known as the “Mother of Rus cities”, there are lots of ancient monuments that show the art of the builders and culture of the Ukrainian people. Although the city has changed its visage to a modern face, nothing can change the greatness the ancient monuments and the mighty Dnipro . Near the Upper Town and Podil (where ships are docked) is Pechersk, one of the oldest districts of the city. Its name is closely connected to Kyiv Pechersk Lavra Monastery (“pechery” means caves), the most significant Monastery of ancient old Kyiv Rus state and uptil now one of 6 shrines and places of worship of Orthodox Christianity – 6 Lavra monasteries , spread out throughout the world .
Khreschatyk street and Maidan Nezalezhnosti (Independence Square)
The main and most popular street in the city, Khreschatyk was reconstructed several times and is now one of the most beautiful places in the capital. Khreschatyk combines the features of a vital business center with the charming historic and architectural scent of the 19th century. The street leads to the main square of the city, Maidan Nezalezhnosti (Independence Square), that, since 2004 became the center of all breakpoint milestone events in the history of modern Ukraine, including Orange Revolution in 2004 and the Revolution of Honor in 2014, and , thus, a symbol of Ukrainian Independence. After tragic events of the 20th of January 2014 when over 100 civilians were killed during the Revolution of Honor, widely known as EuroMaidan, Maidan Nezalezhnosti hosts a huge memorial with photos of those who perished, placed all along “Geroyev Nebesnoy Sotni” street (street of Heavenly Hundred). For Kievites, Maidan Nezalezhnosti, that before 2014 was widely treated as a place of light joy and entertainment, house of street music in the underground passageway, known as “Truba”, meeting point with friends, source of new positive emotions, changed forever with its new sense of sadness brought by all the grave events that happened.
Maidan Nezalezhnosti is definitely one of main Kyiv must sees.
On weekends Khreschatyk turns into a pedestrian zone and people can stroll right down the middle of the street. Nightlife on Khreschatyk, with its wide range of emotions, will only complement your daily impressions of the city.
Andriyivvsky Uzviz (St. Andrew’s Decsent) is known for its bohemian atmosphere. Whatever the weather is like , you can always see artists displaying their works there. It is the best place to buy souvenirs made by Ukrainian craftsmen. Andriyivskiy Uzviz has become a traditional place for fairs, festivals, concerts and Days of Kyiv. Many museums and art galleries tell the history of this legendary street, as well as of all Kyiv. Numerous shops, studios and cafes – everything you find here – is absolutely perfect for a good rest.
The main adornment of the street is St. Andrew’s Church. It was designed by the famous Italian architect Bartolomeo Rastrelli and is a wonderful example of the 17th century Baroque architecture. Especially valuable is the interior, boasting numerous carvings and iconostasis painting.
Statue to Prince Volodymyr the Baptist
One the slope of Volodymyrska Hirka (Hill) overlooking the Dnipro River is a monument to Grand Prince Volodymyr, who is also called the Baptizer of Rus. It was he who introduced Christianity to Kyiv Rus in 988 a.d. The bronze statue of Grand Prince Volodymyr was erected in 1853.
The Gate was the main part of the city’s fortification complex built in 1037. The complex marked the borders of old Kyiv during the time of Grand Prince Yaroslav. For centuries it served as a line of defense against many enemies. This important historical landmark was rebuilt in 1983. Today it houses the Golden Gate Museum, which is open to everyone eager to find out how the atmosphere of Medieval Rus left like.
Kyiv Pechersk Lavra Monastery
The Kyiv Pechersk Lavra Monastery, that is included into UNESCO World Heritage shrines’ list, is one of the oldest monasteries of Kyiv Rus. It is the most sacred place in the city, the spiritual center of Ukraine and a second Jerusalem for Orthodox Christians. The Lavra was built more than a thousand years ago over a labyrinth of caves. The first temples were located underground. Later on, golden-domed temples were built above the caves, while the miles-long caves were turned into a necropolis for Orthodox saints. The shades of the underground vaults shelter 123 saints, who have been resting in glass coffins for many centuries. Today their relics are worshiped by thousands of Orthodox Christians from all over the world. Scholars fail to explain how human bodies defeat time and don’t decay without being embalmed. Even the most hard-nosed materialists have to admin the possibility of a spiritual interpretation of this phenomenon. Another phenomenon is the unique old frescos preserved on the walls of the labyrinth.
St. Sophia’s Cathedral
Scholars say that St. Sophia’s Cathedral of Kyiv is a perfect example of the synthesis of art reflecting the glory and majesty of Kyiv Rus. Kyiv’s St. Sophia ensemble is included into the UNESCO list of World Heritage sites. Built in the 11th century according to the order of Grand Prince Yaroslav the Wise, Kyiv’s Sophia was the spiritual , political, social and cultural development center of Kyiv Rus. This was where Kyiv’s princes were crowned, foreign ambassadors were received and important interstate treaties were signed. It is here that Grand Prince Yaroslav founded the first library in this part of the world. Sophia also served as a burial place. The sarcophagus of Yaroslav the Wise is still kept at the cathedral. Grand Prince Yaroslav is a prominent figure in the history of Kyiv Rus. He was the one who established close dynastic relations with leading European countries of the time. His daughter Anne became the Queen of France (Anne de Russie) in the 1050s. Her statue is still one of the main decorations of the Alexander Bridge in Paris. \
Mykhailivsky Zolotoverhy Cathedral
Reconstruction of the Mykhaylivsky Zolotoverkhy (St. Michael’s Golden-Domed) Cathedral has become a symbol of true spiritual recovery in Ukraine. The original building of the Cathedral, destroyed during Soviet era, since the 12th century inspired warriors to defend Kyiv Rus from foreign invaders. However, the Cathedral was demolished during the atheistic campaigns of the Communist regime during the 1930th. In 2000-2001, the careful hands of Ukrainian architects reconstructed the cathedral in strict compliance with and respect to the old design. Today it entices and enchants thousands of visitors on a daily basis with its original beauty.
Monument to Princes Olha
Grand Princess Olha ruled the state of Kyiv Rus during the period of 945 – 964 a.d. Olha was a wise and proactive ruler who managed to rearrange the previously separated Rus lands into a well-organized prosperous state. Olha was the first ruler to adopt Christianity in Rus. Princess Olha’s statue is flanked by the figures of the Apostle Andrew the First and the great ancient scholars Cyril and Methodius, credited with developing the modern-day Cyrillic alphabet.
St. Nicolas’ Roman Church
The Church was constructed during the period of 1899-1909 by prominent Kyiv architect Vladyslav Horodetsky. This magnificent architectural masterpiece, built in traditional Gothic style, stands out from the architectural ensemble of the nearby buildings and can right away recognized by its two-needle-like towers stretching to the sky. Today it serves as a functioning Catholic church as well as a concert hall that welcomes everyone who admires organ music.
St. Volodymyr’s Cathedral
Constructed in 1882, this Orthodox Church carries features of the Neo-Byzantine architecture style. The interior, decorated by famous local and foreign artists, has considerable artistic value. Great Venetian masters laid out the mosaics. However, the most fantastic thing about the cathedral is its choral singing – something we strongly recommend not to miss.
The palace of blue and cream in the midst of a wonderful park was constructed in 1750 as per the designs of famous Italian architect Rastrelli as Kyiv residence for the Russian royal family. Today, it is an official venue for government receptions, presidential meetings and international conferences. It is here that state awards are presented. Mariyinskiy Palace is also open to group tourist visits.
Architect Horodetsky’s Chimera House
This building, located in a lovely part of the city center of Kyiv, is definitely among the most interesting in Kyiv. It was built by architect Vladyslav Horodetsky in the Modernist style. The front and the roof of the mansion are decorated with statues of animals, mystical figures and hunting elements. The entire architectural composition captivates onlookers with its perfection and plunges viewers into a world of fantasy.
National Ballet and Opera House
Opened in 1901, this temple of music has been attracting viewers with the skillful performances of renowned operas for more than a hundred years. The Italians Verdi, Puccini and Rossini take the lead in the repertoire. The orchestra plays with inspiration; shows in the National Ballet and Opera House in Kyiv are always performed with virtuosity. Here opera connoisseurs can enjoy the original lyrical and coloratura soprano of Prima Donna Maria Stefiuk, known not only here but also at Italy’s La Scala.
National Museum of Ukraine in the 2nd World War
National Museum of History of Ukraine in the Second World War with its impressive massive 62 m tall titanium statue of Motherland, grasping a 12-ton sword and a shield. The Motherland Monument is one of the visiting cards of Kyiv. The sculpture is a part of the museum, symbolizing the feat accomplished by people during the war. The author of the monument is sculptor Vasyl Borodai. A huge number of sculptors, architects, scientists and different kinds of workers took part in creating of this building. The idea and the decision to create a museum of the War appeared in June 1943, in the middle of the battle for liberation of Ukraine of Nazi invaders. However, other priority issues, like reconstruction and development of the economy and social issues postponed the implementation of this decision till mid-1970s of the previous century. Focus on the Ukrainian factor in the exposition, interpretation of history of the largest military conflict of the 20th century without straightness and simplicity, the expansion of all forms of the museum activities, social and political realities have become the definite reasons that actualized the change of the name of the museum. The institution was renamed as a National Museum of History of Ukraine in the Second World War (former name being World War II museum) by the Decree of the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine on 16th July, 2015. The staff of the National Museum continues active work focusing all activities on the humanitarian dimension of the global war tragedy.
Museum of Folk Architecture and Everyday Life
The open-air Museum of Folk Architecture and Everyday Life in the village of Pyrohiv displays more than 150 wooden constructions representing different eras and brought from all regions of Ukraine. The museum is a popular site for various folk festivals.
Boat Trip along the Dnipro River
In summer, don’t miss the wonderful opportunity to observe the old Kyiv and listen to the music of the Dnipro waves. The golden domes of St. Andrew’s Church, the Kyiv Pechers Lavra and the monumental steel statues of the Motherland will pass by your eyes. Regardless of the weather Dnipro boat trip with Arktur will be an unforgettable experience. Boats depart from Kyiv River Port every hour during the season time (navigation on the Dnipro is open from April till early October).
St. Kirill's Chirch
St Kirill's Church is one of shrines of Kyiv together with St Sophia Cathedral. This is one of the oldest churches of the Kyiv, with its history dating back to over 1000 years ago. These days St Kirill's Church is a part of St Sohipa Cathedral reserve and is not only an active church but also a museum, protected by UNESCO. The foundation of the church began in 1139 A.D. under the rule of Prince Vsevolod. During its existance, that lasts for over 9 centuries, St Andrew Church was under constant threat of destruction. The frescoes of St Kirill's Church, that occupy 800 square meters space of the interior area of the church, are truelly a wonder and are considered to be the main treasure of this wonderful location.