When visiting Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, it’s hard not to fall in love with its cozy streets, bustling squares, street musicians, aromatic coffee, lively bars, charming parks, numerous museums, exhibitions, and many more tiny but integral details of this stunning city.

To help you make the most of your visit, I have prepared some of my favorite things to do and see in Kyiv! This list includes various locations and activities that showcase different aspects of the city: historically rich sites, entertaining venues, natural spots, cultural attractions, and even shopping destinations. While there are 10 headings, be sure to read through everything to discover even more interesting spots!

Important note: The places are arranged not by importance but by their location, allowing you to conveniently plan visits to several spots at once. Yet, don’t hesitate to mix the places and make up your own route — there are many ways to do so!

No more words — let’s dive into the most exciting part!

Have you already checked our podcast episode “Kyiv Tour”? Find more interesting facts about Kyiv along with a grammar lesson there!

1. Майдан Незалежності і Хрещатик — Independence Square and Khreshchatyk

Starting a travel list for Kyiv with the main square, МАЙДАН НЕЗАЛЕЖНОСТІ, might seem cliché, but there are several reasons why I do so.

This place has gained new significance for Ukrainians due to the full-scale war. You may have already seen photos and videos of how it looks today — lawns that were once filled with people relaxing are now covered with flags. People say, “If you know someone killed by Russia, leave a flag here.”

The Independence Square, which used to be a vibrant spot for socializing and entertainment, has unfortunately become a place of pain and memory for every Ukrainian. I recommend starting your trip in Kyiv right here — by observing, reflecting, and commemorating.

While on the main street, ХРЕЩАТИК, take time to notice the details. This area is like an open-air museum, with numerous boards providing insights into crucial aspects of our modern history. For instance, you can cross the street from Independence Square to the main post office building and find many informative boards there.

Don’t hesitate to step inside the Ukrposhta post office — you’ll be pleasantly surprised! The beautiful main hall, with its tall columns, sophisticated lamps, and fascinating stained-glass windows depicting famous parts of Kyiv, will transport you several decades back.

Are you also planning a trip to Lviv? Check our detailed guile here!

2. Український дім — Ukrainian House

📍 вул. Хрещатик, 2

Next on the list is a popular cultural center, УКРАЇНСЬКИЙ ДІМ. The exhibitions here change frequently, so each visit to Kyiv offers something new to explore!

The exhibitions typically focus on renowned Ukrainian artists or notable personalities. Sometimes, there are multiple exhibitions running simultaneously, so be sure to see the second floor as well.

Check the schedule on their website. You might even catch one of the fascinating excursions — a great chance to practice your Ukrainian!

Don’t forget to visit the shop in the basement, where you can often find thematic items like bookmarks, postcards, and other charming souvenirs.

3. Михайлівська площа — St. Michael’s Square

Heading up from the Ukrainian House along ВУЛИЦЯ ТРЬОХСВЯТИТЕЛЬСЬКА, you will end up in another place that has special meaning for Ukrainians now — МИХАЙЛІВСЬКА ПЛОЩА — a square in front of the St. Michael’s Cathedral. 

It has now turned into another open-air museum with burned Russian military vehicles brought right from the frontline. Here, I also recommend being attentive — take a while to read the information boards and inscriptions.

One more element of this square is the monument to Princess Olha in a bulletproof vest. Also, make sure to take a look at the building right behind the monument — near the door on the facade, you will find a tiny statue of the same Princess Olha holding a sword

Scan the QR-code and read the story of this legendary personality (in Ukrainian or English) and find out about the meaning of this tiny statue!

And make sure to check out our Ukrainian Lessons Podcast where we talk a lot about famous Ukrainians. For example, here is an interesting episode about Princess Olha!

When you find similar small statues around Kyiv, don’t skip them — it’s a project that tells the stories about important places in Kyiv. So scan and read interesting facts from our history!

While being at St. Michael’s Square, don’t forget to also visit two fundamental Ukrainian cathedralsSt. Michael’s and St. Sofia’s (and dare to climb up the bell tower). Then take a ride on the funicular to Poshtova Square and continue with the next site on our list!

4. Труханів острів — Trukhaniv Island

Another great location for nature loversТРУХАНІВ ОСТРІВ — an island that you can reach by crossing the Pedestrian Bridge. Just take a walk along ПОШТОВА ПЛОЩА (Poshtova Square) and head to the big red bridge.

If you prefer secluded places, just take a stroll along the island’s trails but don’t get lost! And if you like chilling on the beach, it’s the right place for you too! 

You can arrange a picnic or just enjoy the panoramic view on the right bank of Kyiv (especially at sunset)!

5. Поділ — Podil

The next popular destination is the historical heart of Kyiv — ПОДІЛ. It’s an absolute must-visit in the capital — everyone will find something for themselves!

If you love cozy streets, get lost in one of them. If you are a coffee enthusiast, enjoy a cup in one of the atmospheric coffee shops. For dinner, explore the numerous cafés and restaurants. If you’re in the mood for a drink, you may find your new favorite bar here (several quick recommendations: Спаська 13, Grails, Pink Freud, Легіт, Багряний).

Podil and its main square — КОНТРАКТОВА ПЛОЩА — are also special in their ability to transform. In the morning, you’ll find them peaceful and relaxing. In the evening, especially on Fridays and Saturdays, Kontraktova Square turns into a bustling meeting point with crowds of people, music, and a charming ambiance.

On Kontraktova Square, you’ll also find an observation wheel. While it might not offer the best view of the city (we’ll talk about better spots later), if you still decide to take a ride, try to do so at sunset!

Also, in front of the wheel, you will see one of the best Ukrainian universities — Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, or КИЄВО-МОГИЛЯНСЬКА АКАДЕМІЯ (which you will see written on the top of its most recognizable building).

6. Андріївський узвіз, Володимирська гірка і Воздвиженка — Andriivskyi Descent, St. Volodymyr Hill, and Vozdvyzhenka

Right from the Kontraktova square, I recommend heading to Andriivskyi descent — АНДРІЇВСЬКИЙ УЗВІЗ. This historic street is filled with beautiful houses, cafés, exhibitions, tiny open-air shops, and even a theater.

Take a walk up the street and take a closer look at St. Andrew’s Church (АДРІЇВСЬКА ЦЕРКВА), which you have probably already seen from the Kontraktova Square.

Right below the church, turn left to St. Volodymyr Hill — ВОЛОДИМИРСЬКА ГІРКА — which starts with the alluring Alley of Artists — АЛЕЯ ХУДОЖНИКІВ — a breathtaking open-air gallery. Make sure to walk very slowly and admire both a stunning view of Kyiv and the abundance of art.

Continuing your walk on the magnificent St. Volodymyr Hill, you will soon arrive at the Glass Bridge — another popular site — and eventually, Khreshchatyk.

If you continue past St. Andrew’s Church and go up the short stairs on your right, you’ll reach the ruins of Desiatynna Church (the oldest stone church in Ukraine dating back to the 10th century) and the National Museum of the History of Ukraine

These sites are worth exploring too, but I also suggest going behind the museum to enjoy a spectacular view of Kyiv, Podil, and its special part — ВОЗДВИЖЕНКА.

Take the long wooden stairs down to Vozdvyzhenka, ideally in the evening to appreciate the beautiful lighting. This district has a rich history, which you can explore further if interested. 

In its modern form, it was built in the 2000s. At first glance, you’ll be impressed by the fancy buildings and colorful facades, but you’ll soon notice that many of them are empty.

There have been many discussions about the legitimacy of the construction, the quality of the buildings, and the high prices, which you can read more about online. For now, just enjoy a peaceful walk through the deserted streets.

7. Маркет Всі. Свої — Market Vsi. Svoi

📍 вул. Десятинна, 12

Now, it’s time for some shopping and souvenirs from Ukraine! I highly recommend visiting the ВСІ. СВОЇ Markets. Check their Instagram to find out the date of the next market, which usually takes place several times a month on weekends.

At these markets, you’ll find several floors of various Ukrainian brands (both well-known and very young) offering clothes, shoes, decor, accessories, craft foods, and beverages. Entrance is free — just walk into the beautiful hall and try not to spend all your money!

Even if you’re not in the mood for shopping, I still suggest visiting the market and heading to the end of the hall, where you’ll find a large exit to the terrace. Believe me, it’s one of the best views of Kyiv!

8. Києво-Печерська лавра — Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra

The stunning Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra, an Orthodox monastery and museum complex, is a must-visit landmark in Kyiv. Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra holds significant importance for all Ukrainians due to its vital role in Ukraine’s history as a religious and cultural center

Dating back to the 11th century, its territory is home to numerous beautiful churches, bell towers, monastery buildings, and caves with monks’ graves.

Visitors can enjoy breathtaking views of the Dnipro River and explore museums with rare books, decorative arts, theatrical art, and jewelry exhibitions:

  • МУЗЕЙ КНИГИ І ДРУКАРСТВА (Museum of Book and Printing);
  • МУЗЕЙ ТЕАТРАЛЬНОГО, МУЗИЧНОГО ТА КІНОМИСТЕЦТВА (Museum of Theater, Music and Cinema Arts)
  • СКАРБНИЦЯ МУЗЕЮ ІСТОРІЇ УКРАЇНИ (Treasury of the Museum of History of Ukraine)

Located in the heart of Kyiv, the area near Kyiv Pechersk Lavra is surrounded with beautiful parks, Ukrainian constructivism buildings (like the Hotel “САЛЮТ“), and a governmental district.

9. Ботанічні сади Фоміна та Гришка — Fomin and Hryshko Botanical Gardens

📍 Ботанічний сад Фоміна — вул. Симона Петлюри, 1

📍 Ботанічний сад Гришка — вул. Садово-Ботанічна, 1

If you love parks and natural attractions, don’t miss the chance to visit one or both of Kyiv’s botanical gardens!

I have put the Fomin Botanical Garden — БОТАНІЧНИЙ САД ФОМІНА —  first as it’s located quite close to Khreshchatyk making it an easy stop during your walks. On top of that, it’s free and open anytime. If you are visiting Kyiv in spring when everything is in bloom, it’s a must-see!

The second option is the larger Hryshko Botanical Garden — БОТАНІЧНИЙ САД ГРИШКА. Although there is a small entrance fee, it’s well worth it. The huge territory allows you to spend half a day exploring different sections representing plants from various parts of the world.

For additional payment, you can check the greenhouses with even more exclusive species, and if you visit it in spring, you will dive into tons of magnificent azaleas and camellias.

Also, in June, the famous season of roses begins — just follow the signs in the garden (not the greenhouse) and you will be soon awed by a spectacular rose garden.

10. Вулиця Рейтарська — Reitarska Street

And we are almost done! Our next stop is one of the most underground streets in Kyiv — РЕЙТАРСЬКА. I recommend taking the subway here to also enjoy one of the most beautiful stations — ЗОЛОТІ ВОРОТА (Golden Gate) — with its impressive mosaics all over the ceiling and walls.

Then take a few steps and immerse yourself into the eccentric vibe of Reitarska Street. This area is teeming with creative energy

Be sure to visit some of its renowned cafés for lunch or coffee and explore showrooms with famous Ukrainian brands. Keep an eye out — some of the most interesting places are tucked away and might not be noticeable at first glance, but they reveal a whole world once you step into the yard

And finish off your evening with a drink in the famous Bar/13 with its unique atmosphere (don’t be surprised, take the steps down to the cellar and open the door, the entrance is right there).


The list of things to do and see in Kyiv definitely doesn’t end here! There are, of course, many more worthy locations which I can speak about for another several pages.

Yet, it’s a basic set that will allow you to see and feel Kyiv in its different expressions.

I hope you will find it helpful when visiting our astonishing capital! See you!

Are you just starting to learn Ukrainian? Check out our Ukrainian Lessons Podcast! It’s a free series of audio lessons that take you step by step through your Ukrainian language journey!