If you decide to go on journey around the world, how will you plan it? What objects will become the ‘must see’ for you in each country? That is exactly when a UNESCO World Heritage List might come in handy.
The scientists of participating countries, as well as experts from UNESCO, have made a list of sites that are invaluable for understanding the history of humankind and the Planet Earth. For today, the World Heritage List includes 1031 sites in 163 countries, and Ukraine is proud to be one of them.
Here are some UNESCO-listed travel attractions in Ukraine that are definitely worth visiting:
1. Sophia Cathedral, Kiev, Ukraine
St. Sophia is an Orthodox Cathedral, built by Kievan Prince Yaroslav the Wise in the 11th century. This is an outstanding monument of Kievan Rus’ period. The interior of the cathedral is decorated with original mosaics and frescoes of the 11th century. The main ornament and the pride of St. Sophia Cathedral is a 6-meter-high mosaic The Virgin Orans (Oranta). It stayed untouched during the invasion of Batu Khan, who almost destroyed Kiev in the 13th century; it survived the wars and revolutions, while the other parts of the cathedral were damaged and rebuilt. The wall with Oranta is called Unbreakable and it is a symbol of integrity of Kiev.
St. Sophia Cathedral is one of the main highlights of the Ancient Kiev walking tour.
2. Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, Kiev, Ukraine
The second site of the Kiev UNESCO complex is Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, founded in 11th century. For ages, it has been the center of Orthodoxy for Eastern Slavs. The complex of Kiev-Pechersk Lavra consists of two parts: the upper one is a territory of National Reserve, while the lower one is a cave monastery.
Initially, the monks lived and prayed in underground cells, and many of them were buried there. Nowadays, pilgrims and tourists can visit the Near and Far Caves, where the imperishable relics of the Kiev-Pechersk saints are kept.
The territory of the National Reserve includes a number of beautiful churches of 18 century, an impressive Bell tower, various museums and exhibitions. Among them, there is the Museum of Historical Treasures of Ukraine, which displays unique examples of Scythian gold jewelry of 4 century BC.
If you want to learn interesting facts about the history and present of the monastery, you may take a guided tour of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra.
3. The Ensemble of the Historic Center, Lviv, Ukraine
Lviv is a charming and creative, mysterious and romantic city of the Western Ukraine. It has always been a multi-ethnic city, so it’s not surprising that the architectural masterpieces of Lviv reflect the influence of different epochs and nationalities. From the Middle Ages to the present days, the buildings of the Historic Center of Lviv constitute a harmonious architectural ensemble that is famous all over the world.
Walking through the cobblestone streets of Lviv you will see magnificent churches and beautiful mansions, stunning museums and cozy restaurants. You may feel a charming of this city and learn its centuries-old history on a Small-Group Lviv Old Town Tour.
4. Residence of Bukovinian and Dalmatian Metropolitan, Chernivtsi, Ukraine
A Czech architect Josef Hlavka built the Residence of Bukovinian and Dalmatian Metropolitan in the end of the XIX century. Today this stunning building hosts the University of Chernivtsi and is the main attraction of the city. The architectural ensemble consists of three parts – the main building of the Metropolitan residence, the seminary wing with a Church of the Three Hierarchs to the left, and a former presbytery to the right. A scenic fence with impressive entrance gates surrounds the territory of the University. In the backyard of the residence, there is a charming park. The interior of the Residence of Bukovinian and Dalmatian Metropolitan is also very impressive, especially the Marble and the Red Halls.
5. Wooden Tserkvas of the Carpathian region of Ukraine and Poland
Welcome to the Carpathians – fantastic region of Ukraine. It has incredible nature, unique wooden architecture, and rich traditions. In 2013, the complex called Wooden Churches of the Carpathian region of Ukraine and Poland was included to the World Heritage List. Communities of Orthodox and Greek Catholic denominations built 16 churches in two countries in the period from the 16th to the 19th century. They combined the canonical elements with unique local elements in architecture and interior decoration. 8 Ukrainian churches are located in the picturesque villages of Ukraine as well as in the city of Zhovkva, Lviv region. These churches are a priceless example of folk architecture that preserve the traditions of previous generations.
Don’t miss these spectacular tourist attractions of Ukraine, when traveling around the world. You will get some great colorful elements for the World puzzle.