Have you heard about the Chernobyl disaster?
– Maybe it’s a silly question, but I come from Poland, that borders Ukraine, so I heard the name “Chernobyl” thousand times. It may be not so obvious for people from outside Europe.
In 1986, in Chernobyl, a catastrophic nuclear accident happened.
One of the reactors at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant exploded during some tests and the consequences were horrible; probably they’ll be seen for thousands of years… 🙁
Currently, Chernobyl (or nearby Pripyat, but I’ll just write Chernobyl) is a ghost town with a few people living there (they came back after the evacuation, despite the pollution, they wanted to live their old life in their houses…).
Chernobyl is located 90 km from Kiev. From the Ukrainian capital you can take a trip and visit Chernobyl. I didn’t go there and I’m so so sure about visiting the place; maybe as a scientist, otherwise, I don’t’ know… Would you like to go there?
p.s. Today’s picture is not from Chernobyl, I even didn’t take it nearby Chernobyl. As I said, I didn’t go to Chernobyl. This picture somehow fitted the best for today’s topic, because it shows a wreck (and water – water was actually one of the reasons of the disaster).
In almost each capital (or city) you’ll find some contrasts; a very poor and extremely rich areas.
Here you can see an old building in Kiev, not in the best shape, that hosts casino; a limousine is standing in the front of it.
What to visit in Kiev?
– Well, it depends how much time you’re going to spend there.
In each place, I always recommend to walk in a city center, without any goal, just to follow your “travel-instinct”. It works the best, when you have time. If your trip is short and you want to visit some of the most characteristic places, start with Khreshchatyk Street. Then check churches or monasteries, e.g., St Andrew’s Church (yesterday’s photo), St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery (today’s picture), St Sophia’s Cathedral (see post from 06.06.2017), St. Volodymyr’s Cathedral, Kiev Monastery of the Caves, Golden Gate of Kiev, and Independence Square (Maidan Nezalezhnosti).
There are many churches listed above, but they are so unique, so it’s worth to visit all of them.
I guess, many of you heard that Ukraine hosted this year (2017) the Eurovision Song Contest.
If you like music, especially traditional music, you should know that it’s likely to meet some musicians on the streets.
In Kiev, I met the man from today’s picture. Do you maybe know the name of his instrument?
I think, it’s a bandura, however, other Ukrainian musical folk instruments e.g., kobza or torban look quite similar.
I saw somewhere statistics presenting nationalities of tourists visiting Ukraine. Tourists mostly come from the neighborhood countries, so from Belarus, Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Russia, and Slovakia (not in this order). I guess, it’s usually the case, that we visit our neighbors.
However, it was the situation before 2014. I believe that number of Russians visiting Ukraine dropped drastically…
Let’s stop with politics and continue discovering Ukraine. 🙂
Ukraine has plenty attractions, e.g., mountains, Black Sea, nature reserves, as well as interesting cities and towns.
Until 2014, Ukraine was a very popular European destination. After the conflict with Russia (see post from 11.06.2017) many people got scared and decided not to go to Ukraine. There are some “unstable” places in Ukraine that should be omitted by tourists, but there are still many safe sites. So, if you think about visiting Ukraine – do it, just check the general advises from your embassy. 🙂
Today, one more fact from “politics”. It also affects tourists, so I should mention it here.
When I was visiting Ukraine, Crimea was treated as a part of Ukraine (so I’ll show you in June, some places from the Crimean Peninsula).
Since 2014, Russia has controlled the region and claims that it’s a Russian territory. Ukraine and almost all other countries consider Crimea as Ukrainian.
I don’t want to write how difficult all situation is. Just as a tourist, be aware of problems you may face while entering Crimea; e.g., to enter Crimea (currently), you need a Russian visa. However, for Ukraine, it’s an illegal way of entering Ukrainian territory.
It’s all complicated…