Top 7 Walks to Feel the Summer Breeze in Kiev
The temperature is 25 degrees, the sun is shining brightly and the sky is completely blue. People wear fewer clothes and are looking for a place to relax. What does all this mean? Finally, summer has come, a season full of delights and exciting events to look forward to!
In summer, most people prefer going out for a walk rather than just sitting at home. That’s great of course! It’s a well-known fact that being outside is health-giving, and what’s more, fresh air can stimulate your own creativity. Summer is not a season for staying stuck within four walls.Take your sunglasses and a bottle of water and join me for a stroll around the city. And after our short tour, you’ll probably be inspired to write a new musical masterpiece or paint an uplifting picture.
Postal Square and Dnipro Quay
As it’s hot enough in June, let’s start our walk not far from the river, in order to completely enjoy the experience. Both Ukrainians and tourists like to start their walk along the quay from Postal Square, considered one of the loveliest places in Kiev to take a rest. There’s an additional way to get here, via Saint Volodymyr Descent, through the newly-built observation deck, which gives you the chance to extend your walk along Dnipro Quay. In the centre of the square, there’s a wonderful multi-colored fountain which attracts much attention, especially in the evening. You’ll see many children and even some brave adults splashing water and playing in the fountain’s cooling jets during the day. The River Boat Station is also here in Postal Square. Dnipro Quay is one of the best locations for photo shoots – the natural environment and the nearby buildings combine to create a stunning backdrop.Today, you can take a ride on a river tram along the Dnipro, enjoying picturesque panoramas of our colorful capital. A renovated cycle track, an underground parking lot and free WiFi will also be available soon, to make your visit here more pleasant and convenient.There are usually crowds of day-trippers at the weekend. So if you would prefer a more tranquil walk, read on.
How to get there:from Poshtova Ploshcha metro station (Blue line) or take a funicular railway.
If you turn right from Postal Square you’ll reach the Parkovy, or as it’s also called, the Pedestrian Bridge. It’s a light construction, 400 m long, connecting Kiev to the park area of Trukhaniv Island.This is the only bridge constructed specifically for pedestrian traffic over the Dnipro. If you are daring enough, try bungee jumping from this bridge and experience a huge adrenaline rush! Having crossed the bridge, you arrive at Trukhaniv Island. This place can provide you with a wide choice of leisure activities, so you’re bound to find something that meets your desires exactly.
First of all, it’s a great landscape for riding a bicycle, roller-skating or just strolling.There are few cars there, the paths are not too narrow, and there are well-placed benches where you can take a break.There are also pitches for playing football and volleyball, a rope park, various cafes, and free-of-charge beaches where you can swim and sunbathe. If you prefer a more luxurious location, there are some private resorts with facilities such as swimming pools, tennis courts and banqueting halls. At night,Trukhaniv Island becomes a small State of entertainment with its nightclub, Southern Coast of Kiev. It’s Kiev’s own Ibiza, in brief! The island is usually full of people, enjoying cocktails and loud music, dancing and chatting with new friends. In summer, a variety of festivals happen here. At the end of June, Ostrov Festival 2017, a vibrant festival of electronic music will take place on Trukhaniv island, showcasing top acts and well-known DJs. Don’t forget that you are near the Dnipro river, so take full advantage of the amazing views of Podil, the Pedestrian Bridge, illuminated so brightly at night that wherever you stand, its beauty is unmissable. Take a deep breath, enjoy the fabulous vista and be happy you are here.
How to get there:walk from Poshtova Ploshcha metro station (Blue line) to the Pedestrian Bridge, which leads to Trukhaniv Island.
There’s no doubt that Obolon Quay has recently become one of the most popular places with both Kiev residents and tourists. It’s such a romantic and attractive place that a walk there will bring you great pleasure at any time, and in any weather. However, it does get very busy at the weekend, with people walking their pets, roller-skating, fishing, playing with their children or just relaxing in the sun. Sometimes it seems as if there are even more people here than in the city center! The whole quay is pedestrianised, so you can wander at will, enjoying the fresh breeze blowing across from the bay. As for wheeled vehicles, there are only bicycles and scooters. Special tracks have been made for cyclist-friendly riding without disturbing pedestrians. In summer it’s also a great place for sunbathing and swimming, as the shoreline along the quay has now been developed into a full beach. There are remarkable sculptures of ancient Greek heroes all along the embankment, such as a striking sculpture of Apollo and the Muses. Among Kiev residents, Obolon Quay is unofficially called “Kiev Europe”, because of the great variety of upmarket restaurants, cafes and bars with wonderful outdoor terraces. In the evening, it can seem as if you are somewhere in Turkey, and after a few cocktails you could even imagine you’re in the heart of Spain. What else is there to see? Well, there’s the beautiful Church of the Nativity near the quay, playgrounds, a private golf club and countless other attractions to seek out. In short, Obolon Quay is well worth a visit. If I haven’t persuaded you yet, come and check it out for yourself soon 🙂
How to get there:walk from Minska or Obolon metro station (Blue line), through Heroiv Stalingrada Prospect in the courtyards. Your landmark is the Church of the Nativity.
Rusanivka Quay and Navodnitskii Park
If you’re weary of the concrete walls of the big city, Rusanivka Quay is an ideal place to find refuge from the hustle and bustle and gather your thoughts. It’s located on the left bank of the Dnipro river, so already that suggests fewer people than in the center. It’s a green space with plenty of benches, playgrounds, places to take part in sporting activities and magnificent views of the Motherland Monument, Kiev Pechersk Lavra and the right bank of our city itself. It’s no secret that Rusanivka Quay is the best spot in Kiev to watch the sun go down, especially in summer. There’s also a monument in honor of the Russian writer of Ukranian origin, Mykola Gogol, a sculpture, called “Stairs”, and other unique artworks. Rusanivka is perfect for picnics and family events. Pick up a pizza and enjoy eating it al fresco! Or if you prefer spending some time in a bar, a cafe or a restaurant, there are plenty to choose from along the quay and on the opposite street. An absolute must-see at Rusanivka Quay is the astonishing array of 15 geyser fountains along the waterfront. In the evening, soaring jets of water are illuminated by lanterns.This enchanting spectacle has become a main attraction in this residential area and in our capital in general, a huge draw for locals and visitors alike. The fountains start functioning from May and operate until the middle of autumn. If you come to Kiev, take just an hour of your time to discover our city from the other side. Places like this will make you feel completely part of Kiev.
Not far from Rusanivka Quay there is yet another popular place – Navodnitskii Park. You can walk here along shady pathways, admire the views of the Dnipro river, examine unique plants and take pictures of famous monuments. One of them is the symbol of our capital – the monument in honour of Kyi, Shchek, Khoryv and their sister Lybid, shown in a bronze boat – the founders of Kiev, according to legend. Navodnitskii Park is a traditional place to visit for all newly-weds to take photos and throw bouquets for luck. The park provides a truly spectacular setting. And following local tradition, if you manage to throw your wedding bouquet and land it right in the founders’ boat, your marriage will be long and peaceful. If you’re not a honeymooner, you might want to dine at one of the numerous floating restaurants, made in the shape of old sailboats, just down from the park, perfect for unwinding and resting after your walk.
How to get there:the nearest metro station is Livoberezhna (Red line). After leaving the metro, turn right and walk past the stalls. Your landmark is three new buildings on Raisa Okipna Street, 10, 10a and 10b. Behind them there is a bridge you need to cross, and then you reach the quay.
Landscape Alley is one of the more unusual places in Kiev, thanks to its talented and imaginative creators. The original plan was to found some historical buildings there, but in 2009 a fabulous alley with amazing benches made in the form of a cat, birds and rabbits, fountains with zebras and elephants, and sculptures of famous cartoon heroes appeared here. All the exhibits are made of mosaic, which makes the alley even more colorful and exceptional. A cat-centipede, 30 metres long, is the most popular with keen photographers. Nowadays, this area is protected by UNESCO and is part of the reserve known as Ancient Kiev. Landscape Alley is a must-visit place with children or even without. It will remind you of your own childhood and really cheer you up! Visitors here are treated to a panoramic view of Podil and Castle Hill (Zamkova Hora). You can take some snacks with you or visit a restaurant near the alley. There’s so much greenery there, so don’t be afraid of the summer heat. There are plenty of shady places. When the weather grows cool, it can be a little windy. Landscape Alley is situated not far from the Andriyivsky Descent, the National Museum of the History of Ukraine, and the center itself, so you can easily continue your walk further after visiting this fairyland.
How to get there:take trolleybus №18 to the Gonchara Street stop, or go on foot from the Maidan Nezhalezhnosti or the Golden Gates: in Velyka Zhytomyrska Street turn into the courtyard between houses №36 and №38. Address: 2 Volodymyrska Str. / 34 Velyka Zhytomyrska Str.
How can we imagine summer without a trip to the beach? If you are fond of swimming and sunbathing or playing volleyball and would like to feel as if you’re at the seaside, you must pay a visit to Hydropark. It’s a vast landscaped area with tennis courts, swimming pools, cafes, restaurants, discos, playgrounds and equipment for playing ping-pong. Whatever you need to cater for your relaxation needs, in fact. There are many clean beaches where you can rent a boat, a catamaran or a water scooter. The amusement park is also situated in Hydropark, with endless attractions, loved by children and by adults too. “Is that all?” I hear you say. But there’s more! At the open-air free gym you’re likely to run into many men training their muscles. And when you tire of this kind of activity, we offer you food for the spirit – a visit to the famous park called Kiev in Miniature, also located in Hydropark. It opened in 2006 and quickly became a convenient opportunity to observe different Ukrainian places of interest in a short time, perhaps finding a new destination for future travel. All the exhibits are faithful renditions of the original locations. The park covers an area of 1.6 hectares, with about 60 models, all made by hand. Just imagine being able to touch the top of the Motherland Monument, survey the domes of Kiev Pechersk Lavra, or walk through the alleyways of Chernivtsi National University. It will take you around 30 minutes to explore all the exhibits, but you will get so much pleasure from them, and memories to keep for a lifetime.
When it’s hot and you’re longing to go somewhere for a swim, or you would like to eat a shish kebab by the water, or just take a stroll in the fresh air, Hydropark, on the banks of the Dnipro river, is one of the best solutions in the city.
How to get there:from Hydropark metro station (Red line).
The Kiev Sea
If you’re a sea-lover, but can’t afford to take a break at the moment, we have our own Kiev Sea not far from the city. It’s not the type of sea with sun loungers and girls in bikinis though. The area is tranquil, but with a touch of the wild, and very inspirational. Swimming is forbidden, but it seems that this place was never destined for swimming, more for standing and staring, listening to nature and to your inner self. At some moments you’ll really feel that you are near the sea, and this illusion will bring a gentle sense of harmony inside. The Kiev Sea is one of the six reservoirs in cascade on the Dnipro river within the Kyiv and Chernihiv regions, created with a dam by the Kiev hydroelectric station. An interesting fact is that a stage of the Formula 1 Powerboat World Championship was held in the area of the Kiev Sea in 2011. Some of the powerboats achieved a speed of more than 200 km/h. Today, there are also convenient tracks for cycling beside the sea, and scenic spots for picnics.
How to get there:located near Vyshhorod. You can take a bus to Vyshhorod from Heroiv Dnipra metro station (Blue line).
Kiev is a versatile city with many places of interest, so we’re sure you’ll find the ideal type of leisure activity to make your stay in Kiev unforgettable. When you plan your schedule for tomorrow, don’t forget to set aside some time for walking outdoors. Let the summer start!