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…
I guess, almost everyone knows who is the president of USA. Ukraine is not a very powerful country and many people may not be even aware where it is situated. However, there is lots of going on in Ukraine. Maybe you heard words like “Orange Revolution”, “Euromaidan protests”, “2014 Ukrainian revolution” or “Crimean crisis” – that’s all from Ukraine!
As I already wrote before, it’s a travel blog, so I don’t want to write about politics, so I’ll only mention basic facts.
And look at today’s picture – it’s like saying – “Stop! I have a headache. No more politics.”. 😉
Before writing this post, I was wondering what I was eating in Ukraine. I couldn’t really recall anything, so I though Ukraine is a big country, so food is also quite diverse depending on the area. Then, I asked my Ukrainian friend, what are her favorite Ukrainian dishes. Her answer sounded to me like describing some of typical Polish dishes. So that’s why I didn’t’ remember Ukrainian food, because it’s too similar to Polish cuisine. 😀 Of course, there are also many differences between Ukrainian and Polish food.
So what you should try while being in Ukraine?
according to my Ukrainian friend:
-Varenyky – boiled dumplings with mushrooms, potatoes, cottage cheese, or berries, etc.
-Borscht – soup made of beetroots
-Golubtsi – kind of stuffed cabbage
-Deruny – potato pancakes
p.s. Varenyky is my number 1. 😉
In today’s picture, you see a “place” where you can buy a traditional Slavic or Baltic fermented beverage called “Kvass”.
Ukrainian flag is very simple, it consists of two horizontal bands, a blue and a yellow one.
You can find different explanations why this flag looks like that. My favorite explanation says that Ukrainian flag represents a typical landscape of Ukraine – yellow field and blue sky. 🙂
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