Blogs from Kiev, Ukraine, Europe - page 4


Europe » Ukraine » Kiev July 21st 2013

Tonight I had the pleasure of being taken for about $150.00. Here is how it went down. This guy walks past me at a rapid pace. He reaches into his fanny pack as he is walking and drops a plastic bag with bills inside. The outside bill is one US dollar. I see him drop his money, so I yell at him, “Hey! hey ... you dropped your money.” Immediately, I am suspicious, because, who keeps a wade of one dollar bills in a plastic bag with a rubber band on the outside? But he turns and says, “Oh my god you saved my life, what if someone dishonest and watched me drop it, I would be in so much trouble.” Then he looks in his fanny pack, and says, “My Euros are missing, did you ... read more

Europe » Ukraine » Kiev » Chernobyl May 10th 2013

Dan's movie trailer he made... worth a few yucks Igor It was here, finally. A journey over a year in the making. An idea born out of a flippant comment and in less than 12 hours, it would be done and dusted. We hoped it would be worth it. Breakfast was an early affair and we then regrouped in the hotel lobby. We were being picked up at 08:10 by our tour guide. We found him outside sat in a very clean looking mini-van... almost too clean for Kyiv, where everything was a lada or worse. The driver jumped out and introduced himself. Igor. One of the few people we'd met in Ukraine who's English was not limited to 3 words and a grunt. He opened the van up and warned us not to sit on ... read more
Heading into the village
The Village Shop
Nature is reclaiming the area one building at a time...

Europe » Ukraine » Kiev April 7th 2013

Arrived in Kiev in the early morning after an overnight train journey from Warsaw. Around midnight the Ukrainian border guards had woken us and taken our passports away for a couple of hours, whilst we waited in a desolate train garage in an unidentified location, listening to the crashing and banging of train works all around us. Our passports were returned and we reached Kiev on time, but feeling flat and sleep-deprived. Early impressions of Kiev station didn't lighten the spirits: one of the first sights was a huge board of photos of cherub-faced missing children. We sat down in the waiting area to collect ourselves but found that this area of the station is the sleeping place of a number of sad, down-and-out homeless alcoholics. They didn't bother us, but then a larger-than-life, tough-looking old ... read more

Europe » Ukraine » Kiev January 4th 2013

Istanbul to Kiev – an hour layover – Kiev to New York. I was going back West, and that was how I was getting there. On paper, at least. I got as far as Kiev before things came to a screeching halt; the airplane’s questionable brakes were only the beginning of the problem. Airport employees were being vague to say the least, but from what I could gather, AeroSvit hadn’t paid their docking fees. Or they hadn’t kept up the maintenance of their aircraft to American standards. Either way, all of their flights out of Kiev were canceled for all foreseeable future. It sounds like the beginning of a bad story, but it’s actually the tale of the single best airport experience I’ve had – ever. Misery loves company, and in this case, it made for ... read more

Europe » Ukraine » Kiev December 19th 2012

Ukraine is a quite poor nation, but at the same time is a beautiful place that deserves a trip, expecially if you like to visit locations that are different compared with Western Europe. My trip started in Kiev, where I arrived by plane from Milan, it continued in the Crimean peninsula and ended in the sunny and rowdy Odessa. Kiev Kiev is the capital of Ukraine and is setted in the North of the country, quite near to the border with Belarus. In my opinion, Kiev is a wonderful city, absolutely a must-see place if you're going to Ukraine. My stay in Kiev lasted three days, completely adequate to visit with calm all the interesting places and to enjoy one of the main attractions of the city, the beautiful gardens of Kiev. One of the locations ... read more
Livadia Palace

Europe » Ukraine » Kiev July 17th 2012

Today is our last day in Kiev. We packed our bags and left them at the hostel, and after some breakfast and blogging at the cheap café nearby we set out for Caves monastery. The monastery is Ukraines most important religious site, and consists of two parts, the wall surrounded Upper Lavra and the Lower Lavra where the most important religious places are. After a few kilometers of walking we arrived to the Caves monastery. There was a 5€ per person fee to get into the Upper Lavra for, for cameras it was more expensive so we left them in their bags. The Upper Lavra was nice, but not that special. There was one impressive church and some smaller museums (without any English texts), but the two main things we were interested in, the museum of ... read more
Johanna decent enough to see the mummified monks
Less warlike tanks next to the iron lady
The iron lady watching the skies of Kiev

Europe » Ukraine » Kiev July 16th 2012

16.7.2012 Kiev We had an early wake up at 7.30 and even though we hadn't stayed up particularly late the night before, we were kind of tired all day. But, we had to get our bureaucratic stuff done, so couldn't stay in bed. We will return home by train, bus and boat, and the quickest route goes via Belarus. To go to Belarus we need a transit visa, which gives us permission to stay for 48 hours. So, first thing in the morning (after a heavy breakfast consisting of sausages, fried potato pancakes, fried mushrooms and coffee) we headed to the Belarus Embassy via photo shop to get passport pictures done. When we arrived at the embassy, we were first directed to some slightly shady office on the other side of the street, where a man ... read more
One of my favorite buildings in Kiev - there should be more colors everywhere!
Slacking in Kiev involves lots of sitting on park benchs with cool colors

Europe » Ukraine » Kiev July 15th 2012

With a quiet room, good beds and some sleeping debt from our train ride we slept late. Johanna was the early bird and went out before me to do some shopping, while I prioritised my pillow over the womens wear shops she was going to visit. When I finally got up I went for brunch at a nearby restaurant (soup and bread for 1,5€!) and then we met up with Johanna at the Independence square. We took the metro a few stations north and went down to Dnipro to look around. This side of the river didn't however look very inviting, so we quite quickly went away from the river and found ourselves some coffee, and after this we went to St. Andrews Descent, a curvy street leading from the lower town to the upper town. ... read more
St. Andrews church
Back at the Independence square
The view from St. Andrews church

Europe » Ukraine » Kiev July 14th 2012

Our train arrived in Kiev at around 7 o'clock in the morning. We didn't have a room booked and didn't really feel like staying in at someone's apartment again, so we took the subway from railway station to the center to find breakfast and wifi to find a hostel. We managed to book a room at DownTown Hostel and walked there with our backpacks. Luckily the room was immediately available so we could get settled and freshen up a bit. Since we were tired after the night on the train we didn't want to do any heavy sightseeing, but decided to do a walking tour which was descibed in our guidebook. It was supposed to last about two hours but for us it was more like six. We took a few breaks, but we were quite ... read more
me and a local babushka
St Sophia's Cathedral

Europe » Ukraine » Kiev June 2nd 2012

Geo: 50.4536, 30.5038So I had done little reconnaissance trips Wednesday evening and Thursday morning, cracked paying for and working out the way around the metro, so when Liz arrived on Thursday afternoon we were all ready to get out to see the sights. And we have walked our feet to stumps over the last 48 hours. Thursday it was St Michaels monastery of the Golden domes, St Sophia Cathedral and St Andrews church together with viewpoints over the river, walk through a park, awful art on display and dinner in Mafia restaurant in the middle of town with a very nice bottle of dry white Georgian wine. Friday morning off early =metro and walk - to Kyevo Pecherska Lavra, historic site where chritianity first came to Russia and the heart of the Russian Orthodox church, now ... read more
And more
How many golden domes?
Mother Ukraine

Tot: 1.702s; Tpl: 0.012s; cc: 8; qc: 88; dbt: 0.0396s; 1; m:saturn w:www (; sld: 1; ; mem: 1.5mb