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Lviv is a beautiful city in Ukraine that reflects the European charm. From the cobble stone streets to the buildings dating years back, this city is considered to be one of the country’s main cultural centers. It is so unique that the city was even added to the list of UNESCO world heritage sites. The top attractions of Lviv are nicely situated in one city center area. Although it is possible to see most of the things in one day, a day surely isn’t enough to explore all of what the city has to offer. However, if a day is all you have, spend it exploring the map-full of things in the city center.
One of the places you can get a city map of your own is in the train station, which is convenient if you are already hopping off there.
Olha and Elizabeth Church
Heading from the direction of the train station, the first thing to come across of interest is the Olha and Elizabeth church. It sits right in between the train station and the old city center. You can’t miss it with its neo-Gothic style and tall towers peaking through the city streets.
Making your way through the interior, you will find yourself being guided to a small staircase that goes up the tall belfry. The walk up those stairs is worth it as it opens up to 360 views of the city. You can spot many other points of interest from there such as the Park High Castle on the hill.
St. George’s Cathedral
The next stop to make is the St. George’s Cathedral. Its bright, yellow exterior is beautifully constructed in a baroque- rococo style. You can explore the inside of this cathedral as well seeing the ornate details of such a cathedral.
Chapel of the Boim Family
The other must see place is the Chapel of the Boim Family. Although it is a little bit out of the way from heading in the direction of the city center, it is a unique place worth a visit. With intricate carvings on the building, it is unlike any other building you will see in the city.
Coming up to the Rynok Square, the central square of the city, it is the perfect place to stop by for some lunch. The alley lined with rustic, boutique booths with merchants selling all kinds of goods is the place where you will find hearty sausages, potatoes and tasty pickled cabbage. Finish the meal off with a refreshing Kvas drink. It is also a great place to pick up some souvenirs and some local honey.
Around the square are a few notable places to see. The Lviv National Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre stands grandly overlooking the alley of booths. While there are many churches and cathedral around the city to see, if you are strapped on time the Dominican Cathedral is one to visit. It sits to the right of the Theatre so it’s on the way.
Stroll the Streets and Shops
It is lovely to just take a stroll down the streets and take in the lively atmosphere of the city center. There are many little shops and museums that are worth a little stop. Cookie shops filled with ornately decorated cookies of the city of Lviv or a display of hundreds of mesmerizing glass blown pieces displayed in a museum are sure to grab your attention.
During Easter time the center is decorated with many eggs, some as big as statues on display, adding to the fun and festivities of the city center stroll. There is a display of hand crafted eggs as well each with its own theme.
Park High Castle Hill
To finish your day off, climb the Park High Castle hill. Don’t be fooled by the name, as there is no castle to see standing on the hill. All that is left is a wall from the castle that you pass on your way to the top. But once you get to the top, you get panoramic views of the city much worth the climb. It is great to watch the sunset over the city and then head back.
Where to Stay
To have a unique experience for your night stay, the five star Citadel hotel is the perfect place to stay. It has a sauna and gym, as well as a restaurant, Garmata, that serves refined Ukrainian and European dishes. If looking for a more budget friendly place, there are many hotels and hostels to choose from, some even starting from $11 dollars per night.
If you have more than a day:
A day is definitely not enough time to see everything Lviv has to offer. So if you have time on your hands here are some things to see.
- Lychakiv Cemetery
- Apteka-Muzey – pharmaceutical artifacts
- Vernissage Market – find some flea market treasures
- Potocki Palace
- House of Scientists
- Castles Day Trip – many castles in the countryside
- Italian Courtyard
Best Time to Visit
Although it depends on the year, this part of Ukraine tends to be quite rainy during the spring months. So the best time to go is in August or September to have better weather.
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