Kiev South Pechora Tour (Self Guided), Kiev

The Pechorsky district is one of the most interesting and picturesque sites in Kiev. Its southern section has several important monuments, sites and monasteries. The Botanical Garden occupies a big chunk of the Pechorsky district and includes some other hot spots listed in the current guide.
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Kiev South Pechora Tour Map

Guide Name: Kiev South Pechora Tour
Guide Location: Ukraine » Kiev (See other walking tours in Kiev)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 7
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.6 Km or 3.5 Miles
Author: Cathy
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Ivan Gonchar Museum
  • Museum Of Great Patriotic War
  • Mother Homeland Monument
  • Monument of Kiev founders - Ladya
  • Vydubitsky Monastery
  • The Saint Trinity Yoninsky Monastery Church
  • Botanical Garden
Ivan Gonchar Museum

1) Ivan Gonchar Museum

The Ivan Gonchar Museum owes its name and existence to Ivan Gonchar, a Ukrainian sculptor, painter and public figure. The museum holds over 15,000 exhibits of folkloric origin, gathered by Mr. Gonchar in different parts of the country, providing great insight into the Ukrainian culture, its transformation, beliefs and way of life.

Ivan Gonchar started his collection in the 1950s and had continuously worked on it until his death in 1993. He travelled extensively throughout Ukraine in order to collect items directly from the source. The regions he had visited include Podolia, Galicia, the Donets basin, the Kiev oblast, Poltava, Zhytomyr, Bukovina and Transcarpathia. The result of his travels became a diverse collection of musical instruments (e.g. bandura, wheel lyra, cymbal and cobza), textiles (towels, embroideries, carpets), art objects (circa 1,000 icons, folk painting, decorated Easter eggs, graphics, etc.) and ceramics (vases, bowls and toys). All of these were kept as a private collection for many years.

In 1993, after Gonchar’s death, Ukraine's new government offered a premise for the exhibits. In 1999, the Ivan Gonchar Museum was inaugurated. It is currently directed by Peter Gonchar, son of the reputed collector.

Operation hours: Tuesday - Thursday & Saturday - Sunday: 10 am – 5:45 pm; Friday: 10 am - 3 pm.
Museum Of Great Patriotic War

2) Museum Of Great Patriotic War (must see)

The National Museum of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945 is a 10 hectare complex dedicated to the history of war of the Soviet Union against Nazi Germany. The museum displays weaponry used in the battles and the battle scenes themselves, including the invasion of the Nazis, the Soviet resistance and the ultimate expulsion of the invaders from the Soviet territory. The famous Battle of the Dnieper is immortalized here in the sculptures placed along the museum’s alleys.

The idea of having such a place was first articulated in 1943, but it wasn't until the 1970s that it finally materialized. The exhibition, called The Partisans of Ukraine in Their Fight against Fascist German Invaders (1946), is considered to be the museum's predecessor. In the 1950s the collection was placed at the History Museum and remained there until 1974, when the former Klovsky Palace was designated to hold it. In 1981, the collection, along with other exhibits related to World War II, was moved to the newly established Museum of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945. In 1999, the museum was granted a national status and today boasts over 300,000 exhibits.

The building features a spacious exhibition hall, topped by a 62 metre statue. The latter, known as the Mother Homeland, depicts a woman holding a sword and a shield with the Soviet national emblem on it, and is a key landmark on Kiev’s skyline.

Operation hours: Tuesday - Sunday: 10 am - 5 pm
Mother Homeland Monument

3) Mother Homeland Monument (must see)

The Mother Homeland Monument is a titanium statue which commemorates the USSR’s victory in the war against Nazi Germany of 1941-1945. The statue presides over the Museum of the Great Patriotic War’s exhibition hall, rising to 102 metres (335 ft). The monument represents a woman who holds in her right hand a sword, and, in her left hand, a shield with the Soviet Union national emblem. The sword measures 16 metres (52 ft); the shield - 13 by 8 metres (43x26 ft). Legend has it that the sword had to be slightly curtailed so as not to overreach the cross of the nearby Kiev Pechersk Lavra (Kiev’s most important religious site and residence of the Orthodox Metropolitan).

The monument was designed by Yevgeny Vuchetich and inaugurated in 1981, simultaneously with the museum. Soon after its inauguration, the statue became a major local landmark, dominating Kiev's skyline, and a must see for guests of the Ukrainian capital.
Monument of Kiev founders - Ladya

4) Monument of Kiev founders - Ladya

In keeping with its name, the Ladya (boat) monument features a boat with the figures of three brothers - Kyi, Schek and Khoryv - and their sister Lybid, who are believed to be the founders of the city of Kiev. According to a legend, each of the four siblings had their own settlements, which eventually merged into one, named after the oldest of the brothers, Kyi.

Located on the banks of the river Dnieper, near the Dnipro metro station, the monument was inaugurated on the 1500th anniversary of the Ukrainian capital, in 1981.

The sculptural composition, officially known as the “Hovering Swan”, was created by Vasiliy Boroday and Nicolay Feshenko, and was made entirely of hammered cooper. The composition appears as if emerging from a granite pool, which creates an illusion of a boat sliding over a calm sea.

Aside from its historical importance, the monument also has a romantic meaning. Ukrainian brides come here on their wedding day and throw bouquets over their heads in the direction of the boat, while standing with their backs to it. The idea is to have the bouquet land inside of the boat, as a sign of a family's future happiness. Also, near the Ladya grows a “marriage” tree upon which the brides tie ribbons for a happy life and beautiful and healthy children.

In 2010, the statue was partially damaged, but restored quickly, just in time for the Independence Day celebration.
Vydubitsky Monastery

5) Vydubitsky Monastery

Vydubitsky Monastery is an 11th century convent located in the southern part of the Ukrainian capital, on the shore of the Dnieper river. The monastery was built by Prince Vsevolod Yaroslavich in the second half of the 11th century; during 1070-1088 St Michael's Cathedral (part of the Vydubitsky complex) was erected. By the end of the century, in 1096, the monastery was attacked by the nomadic tribes of Cumans (also known as the Polovtsy). The monastery remained in ruin until the 17th century, when the Cathedral of St. George, the Refectory, and the Bell Tower were added to the complex. Those were built in the Ukrainian Baroque style, combining local architectonic style with Baroque elements.

During the Soviet era, the monastery was closed and reopened only after Ukraine had gained independence in the early 1990s. Before that, in 1967-82, all of the Vydubitsky complex buildings, namely: the Church of Archangel Michael, the George Church, and the Church of the Saviour, were restored by architect R. Bykov. During the restoration works, some 11th century frescoes were discovered and revealed to the public. Also, the monastery’s cemetery, the final resting place of some prominent Ukrainians, was re-organized. Among those who are buried there are Bogdan and Varvara Khanenko (art collectors), K. Ushinsky (professor of Kiev University), V.A. Betz (hydraulic engineer), and other key figures of Ukrainian science and culture.
The Saint Trinity Yoninsky Monastery Church

6) The Saint Trinity Yoninsky Monastery Church

The Saint Trinity Yoninsky Monastery Church is a monastery on the territory of the Kievan Botanical Garden. It was opened in the 1860s. It is a monastery for monks and teaches obedience. In 1924, it was closed down by the Soviet authorities and was returned to the Orthodox church in 1991. The Saint Trinity Yoninsky Monastery Church is surrounded by caves, a bell tower and the monks' dwellings.
Botanical Garden

7) Botanical Garden (must see)

The Central Botanical Garden, also known as the Botanical Garden of the Ukrainian Academy of Science, is located at Timiryazevskaya Street, no.1, in the close vicinity of the Vydubitsky Monastery. The garden was founded in 1936 and covers 130 hectares of land. About 13,000 species of plants are brought here together in one of the vastest green spaces of Kiev. Among other attractions, visitors to the garden can admire different species of coniferous trees, varied types of shrubs and numerous species of flowers. In spring, the garden displays an incredible mosaic of colours, with blossoming lilacs, magnolias and roses. Here, exotic plants are seen alongside local species, creating a true feast of hues and aromas.

The Botanical Garden contains numerous hothouses, greenhouses, rosaries and conservatories where plants are kept in winter, when outdoor conditions are particularly rough. Flower exhibitions are held regularly at the Central Botanical Garden.

During the warmer months, it becomes one of the most popular destinations for Kiev residents and guests of the city.

Walking Tours in Kiev, Ukraine

Create Your Own Walk in Kiev

Create Your Own Walk in Kiev

Creating your own self-guided walk in Kiev is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Kiev Children Entertainment Tour

Kiev Children Entertainment Tour

Kiev is an interesting city for everybody, but children have a special place here. Kiev has a series of attractions designed particularly for kids and teenagers. Museums have an exclusive place in the Children's Entertainment Guide because they not only amuse and distract the young generation, but give them lessons in history and evolution.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.1 Km or 2.5 Miles
Kiev's Historical Churches

Kiev's Historical Churches

Kiev is a city with many beautiful and unique churches and monasteries. Most of them are Orthodox and are noteworthy as grand architectural monuments -- this being one of the differences between the Orthodoxy and other religions. The interiors of the Kiev churches are just as well of a rare beauty and richness.

Tour Duration: 4 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 8.6 Km or 5.3 Miles
Kiev Introduction Walking Tour

Kiev Introduction Walking Tour

Kiev is a very old city. It was initiated approximately 1500 years ago. Since 1934, it was Soviet Ukraine's capital and remained the main city of the country with the collapse of the Soviet Union. Being one of the biggest cities in Europe, it has a very specific history, architecture and cultural life. One can never be bored in Kiev, as it has endless interesting and captivating places to...  view more

Tour Duration: 4 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.7 Km or 4.2 Miles
Kiev's Architectural Jewels

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Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.9 Km or 2.4 Miles
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Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra Tour

Some sources say that Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra (Sichnevogo Povstannya Street, 25) was initiated in 1051, when Reverend Anthony arrived there. He, together with some of his followers, built an entire complex composed of caves and monasteries. When the monks moved to a monastery which is on Lavra's territory, the caves were utilized as burial sites. Nowadays it is included in the UNESCO World...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.1 Km or 0.7 Miles
Kiev Museum Walking Tour

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Being the capital of Ukraine, Kiev is the city where all the Ukrainian culture and history is concentrated in museums. There are about 60 museums. Some of them are internationally renowned due to their exceptional collections of unique objects, history and their special atmosphere. They reflect Ukrainian mood and evolution in all its beauty and particularities.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.0 Km or 3.7 Miles

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