Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Kiev

It was a pleasure to take the fast train from Lviv to Kiev. Our seats were great; in a new-ish 3 x 3 across car. The 15 or 16 car train rolled along at speeds up to 155 kmh and made just a handful of stops. Although it was an uphill walk from Kiev Station to city center, we settled in a older hotel near the Opera House and soon were touring the city, the capital of Ukraine.

Kiev had a few surprises for us. One, it seems that one is always either walking up or down a long hill. Two, the many cafes and restaurants are busy with local customers, not tourists. Three, one is definitely not quite in Europe anymore.

Being a capital city, the architecture of Kiev ranges from stodgy government buildings and monuments to beautiful Art Nouveau churches. Lots of photos follow. Enjoy!

On the platform in Lviv station, coffee in hand, waiting for our 6:07 to Kiev/Kyiv (left) to pull out.
Kiev, Ukraine

In route.
Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev Station.
Kiev, Ukraine

Our neighbor the Opera House.
Kiev, Ukraine

Independence Square is the center of Kiev, the capital city of Ukraine, complete with monumental monuments, souvenir hawkers, and tourists of all types ie locals and foreigners.
Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

And the nearby Friendship with Russia monument - not friends today.
Kiev, Ukraine

Viewpoint overlooking the Dnieper River.
Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

Saint Vladimir Monument and river view.
Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

St Michael's was torn down by the government in the late 1930's and recently rebuilt.
Kiev, Ukraine

View from St Michael's to St Sophia's.
Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

And a tasty dinner with a Ukrainian beer at Dacha Restaurant next to our hotel.
Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

Our hotel was very close to St Volodymyr's Cathedral; the mother cathedral of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.

Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

We started our 2nd day in Kiev with a ride on the Kiev Metro, said to be the deepest metro (subway) in the world. Wow!
Kiev, Ukraine

After 2 very long, seemingly endless escalator rides down, the station and the old 5-car train was a bit underwhelming.
Kiev, Ukraine

Followed by a long ride up a series of escalators. Very cool indeed. Although when you ride just a few stops, as we did it, seems that half of trip was spent on the escalators. ;-)
Kiev, Ukraine

A video production of some sort at the Eternal Flame.
Kiev, Ukraine

Looking back to the Eternal Flame.
Kiev, Ukraine

We rode the Metro in order to visit the Kiev Monastery of the Caves, one of the highlights of the city. Although after visiting the first cave with dark narrow passages in which the mummified bodies of monks are entombed we opted to forgo further caves and just enjoy the buildings and grounds. This photo is of the Upper Gate.
Kiev, Ukraine

Looking across the grounds.
Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

There were more than a few churches in the Monastery. Our favorite was the Church of the Refectory with its Art Nouveau interior.
Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

Walking along the river to catch the Metro back to town.

Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

Lunch Ukraine-style at Puzata Hata.
Kiev, Ukraine

House with Chimaeras.
Kiev, Ukraine

House of the Weeping Widow.
Kiev, Ukraine

A modern skyscraper.
Kiev, Ukraine

Typical downtown scene.
Kiev, Ukraine

Restored Synagogue.
Kiev, Ukraine

National Opera House.
Kiev, Ukraine

Sun-Ling likes it when we have a hotel room with a window seat.
Kiev, Ukraine

More Art Nouveau.
Kiev, Ukraine

We finally make it into St Sophia's, another church that charges an entrance fee and then closely guards its treasures ie "no photos". At first we thought ho-hum but then made it up to the galleries where the frescoes and mosaics revealed their yellow, green, and blue beauty. Sorry no photos inside.
Kiev, Ukraine

The old firehouse.
Kiev, Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine

The 2nd synagogue we walked by has an active Jewish community.
Kiev, Ukraine

We ride the funicular.
Kiev, Ukraine

And the Ukrainian word for funicular is funicular just with a different alphabet.
Kiev, Ukraine

And thanks for staying with me to the end!

2 comments:

Kathy said...

Looks really interesting - wish I were there!

Neat variation on the caryatids.

Sun-Ling said...

For some unknown reason, Kiev had been on my list forever. While I was not disappointed, it was not as exotic as I imagined. I guess all this traveling has worn it away. I used to feel conspicuous in orthodox churches, now I feel right at home.