Ultimate City Guide to Kiev

Ultimate City Guide to Kiev

Need help planning a trip to Kiev? Look no further! Here is your ultimate guide to the wonderful city of Kiev!

Supermarkets

I’d like to start with this as it’s one of the fun ones and environmentally friendly!

Go to the supermarkets and buy ice cream in sausage tubes and milk, mayonnaise and yoghurt in squidgy packets!

Ice cream from a supermarket in Kiev
It really is ice cream!

Sometimes some of the best experiences come from the supermarket and it’s a great way to get to know the culture your visiting!

Packets of milk, mayonnaise and yoghurt
Packets of milk, mayonnaise and yoghurt

Souvenirs

Buy a family of Ukrainian nesting dolls! The choices are endless and it feels like a good, culturally relevant souvenir to leave Kiev with.

Ukrainan nesting dolls
Ukrainan nesting dolls

Money

The currency in the Ukarine is called the Ukrainian hryvnia.

Ukrainian hryvnia
Ukrainian hryvnia

You might be hard pushed to find anywhere that stocks the Ukrainian hryvnia before you reach the Ukraine, so your best bet would be to take some cash out of an ATM as soon as you get to the airport.

Also, its worth knowing that your money will go pretty far in the Ukraine.

Typically a loaf of bread will cost 30p (0.40$ or 0.33€) so eating out, transport and tourist attractions will not be break the bank. Good news!

This is a good excuse to really throw yourself into everything Kiev has to offer as you’ll find it really affordable!

Language Barrier

If you are worried about not being able to communicate your needs once you get to the Ukraine – don’t! There are more than enough Ukrainians that speak more than enough English in the shops, restaurants and attractions so you will be OK!

Those that don’t speak English are still keen to help out and with a bit of sign language and lots of smiling you will get there in the end.

Also, if you cant read the menu or there is no translation, just have a go and order something anyway! Be adventurous!

We did this for the whole of our Chinese trip and we were pleasantly surprised with what we got to try!

Subway Station

Shop and eat in the subway!

All over Kiev you will find subterranean shops, cafes and even malls!

We found these underground treasure troves really quite exciting as you never quite know what you are going to uncover as you make your way down the stairs.

We had lunch in one such place and we loved it! It was convenient, cheap and the kids enjoyed looking at all the toys and goodies in the shops!

Worlds Deepest Metro

Visit the worlds deepest metro station Arsenalna Metro near Pechersk Lavra.

It was opened in 1960 and is just over 105 meters below ground – that’s about as long as a football field!

If you compare this with the deepest underground station in London at 58.5 meters, which you will find in Hampstead on the Northern line, it’s a clear winner!

Kiev’s Most Beautiful Subway Station

Visit one of the worlds most beautiful metro stations (according to the Business Insider) at The Zoloti Vorota. The station is filled with intricate mosaics and impressive chandeliers.

Said to be one of the worlds most beautiful subway stations
One of the worlds most beautiful subway stations

The metro comes out opposite the Golden Gate. Very easy to get to from Pivdenni central station especially if your coming or going from the airport.

Golden Gate

It is an ancient fortification and part of the old city walls. It was built in the 11th century and then fell into disrepair. The wooden shell you see today was constructed to preserve the ruins and you can pay to go inside and learn about it’s history.

Golden Gate
Golden Gate

Walk Pedestrianised Khreschatyk Street

Walk on Khreschatyk St as the main road in the city becomes pedestrianised Saturday night to Sunday night. It’s the perfect way to enjoy the bars, restaurants and nightlife without the busy roads. It’s a great idea!

Pedestrianised Khreschatyk Street in the heart of the city
Pedestrianised Khreschatyk Street in the heart of the city

Orange Flavoured Everything

When in Kiev take the opportunity to try everything in orange flavour! Chocolate, biscuits, tea, and croissants – orange is king!

Try everything in orange flavour
Try everything in orange flavour

Memorials and Graves throughout the city

The memory of the Euromaidan victims can be seen all over the city. Memorials, pictures and even gravestones commemorate the revolution of 2014.

Alley of the Hundred Heavenly Heroes
Alley of the Hundred Heavenly Heroes

It’s a sombre reminder of what the Ukrainians have fought for and against to get the Ukraine they want. If you want to know more about the Euromaidans and the events of 2014 click here.

Kiev’s Best Parks and Statues

There are statues everywhere in Kiev and most of them you will find in Kiev’s green spaces and parks. If you want know more about exploring Kiev’s parks take a look at Kiev’s 5 Best Parks

The money frog in Khreshchatyi Park
Learn all about the money frog in Khreshchatyi Park from our 5 of Kiev’s Best Parks post

Army and Police Presence

You will find a fairly large police and army presence in Kiev, especially in the main busy streets and also outside Mariyinsky Palace.

It can be a little unsettling as they tend to walk around in quite large numbers. However, as in all countries, keep your distance and don’t give them cause for concern.

Roshen Chocolate

Roshen chocolate shops may be some of the prettiest shops I have seen!

Roshen chocolate shop
Roshen chocolate shop

The chocolate is yummy, the shops stock a huge variety of everything chocolate and it’s still very cheap! It’s a chocolate lovers heaven!

Cake in a box
Cake in a box

You also need to get yourself a cake in a box. I’m not sure what they are called but they are for sale everywhere in so many different flavours and colours!

Cake in a box
We had to sample one ourselves

Animals on the Street

Only in Kiev can you walk down the street and get the opportunity to hold a falcon, peace dove and even a monkey dressed in a ski jacket and jeans.

We gave it a miss, but it’s pretty crazy what you can see!

Motherland Statue

Motherland Statue

Visit the 18th largest statue in the world by climbing up the hill to it or catch a glimpse while visiting Pechersk Lavra.

The Best Murals

There are plenty of beautiful murals around the city, and half the fun is discovering where they are for yourself. Here are some examples of the sorts of street art you will discover.

The Best Ukrainian Cuisine

Dumplings and pancakes filled with sweet and savoury fillings, chicken Kiev and cabbage rolls are just some of the foods you can try to give you a true taste of Kiev.

If you want to know our top picks for some great food in Kiev click here!

A taste of Ukrainian cuisine
A taste of Ukrainian cuisine

Kiev’s Amazing Churches

I have said this before and i will say it again – people should go to Kiev to see its amazing Orthodox Christian Churches like they go to see Thailand’s beautiful temples. To see more on these architectural gems check out our guide to the best of Kiev’s churches, cathedrals and monasteries.

St Andrews
St Andrews

Kiev’s History

Monument of Independence
Monument of Independence

Visit Maidan Square where you can learn about the 2014 revolution; the holocaust museum where you can learn about Joseph Stalin’s cruel intentions for the Ukraine in 1932 and Pechersk Lavra where you can discover hundreds of years of history and culture!

If you want to know more about these three places and discover more about the history of the Ukraine click here!

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Plan your trip to Kiev through 5 of Kiev’s Best Parks

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. I never realise just how pretty Kiev is, those churches and subways are stunning!

  2. I love how this article makes Kiev sound like a totally approachable foreign country. I would love to visit here – looks like tons of things to see and experience!

  3. Enjoyed this post. The packaging at the grocery stores are so interesting! I also appreciate visiting a place where my dollar goes further.

  4. What an awesome place to explore, I’m definitely adding this to my list! I can’t get over how beautiful their subway station is, definitely a big improvement over the ones in New York that I’ve been to!

  5. I’ve loved seeing your pictures from this trip. Kiev is definitely on my radar now.

  6. Love how thorough this post is! Looks like a fantastic city to explore! Booking marking this for when we go!

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