Passing my love of Kiev to you

Hello, guys! I still can't believe that I didn't share about our trip to Kiev, Ukraine. You may be wondering why I decided to travel there. Usually the news shows a frozen conflict zone in the eastern part of the country. Well, the first reason to go is that it's budget friendly. The second reason is that I wanted to prove to my family that it is an absolutely safe country, with very welcoming people (The news only focuses on the bad). Also, I love visiting countries where public transportation is better than in the United States. Kiev is a breeze to navigate and easy to pay. I'm still not sure why this is so complicated in the USA. I've been to tons of countries that has a legit metro system accessible for everyone.

When we arrived to Kiev, we were greeted by very warm weather that made our trip even more enjoyable and delightful. I met up with a buddy who was able to take me around to some cool places. I was amazed by the huge wall murals that you can find while walking around the neighborhoods.  Some of this wall art has deep meaning, like this one with a 6-handed man created by local Ukrainian artists. My favorite one was a Ukrainian woman holding a boy and gazing over Kiev.

After hunting for some wall murals, we decided to stop at the vintage store Laska. I totally loved this hidden store. They have a little cafe and you can find so many unique items. It also has a cool purpose: you can donate your clothes, which they will then sort for reselling, with the rest being donated to an orphanage and people in need. The items that are sold raise additional money that's donated to charity funds and social projects.

After a small shopping spree, we went to look for some souvenirs. The best place for souvenirs is the Andriivskij Descent or as locals call it, "Montmartre of Kiev." I found there handmade hats by the Ukrainian brand "Kapeluhi." I am seriously planning a return trip so I can buy more of their hats. We also stopped at the Museum "Of One Street," which was quite interesting, because it had a lot of vintage and historical artifacts. After a long walk, we decided to stop at my friend's favorite cafe to try Handmade Chocolate, which is located not far from the museum. Later in the evening, we explored some cool speakeasy bars in Kiev like LoggerHead. You have to get the password via word of mouth.

For our next day, we planned spending the entire time at Kiev Pechersk Lavra, which was a bit confusing on how to enter, and how much to pay for entrance. The ticket lady wasn't super friendly. We eventually found our way inside and it was quite beautiful. I truly loved the view from the top to see Kiev and the Mother of Kiev statue. We also got to enjoy our evening by Maidan Square, which hosts all the main events of the country (to include being the epicenter of the recent revolution). I'm not going to say anything political in my post, but it is a must-see place in the capital. Sadly, the Golden Gate city attraction was closed when we came back from Lavra. We also found time to visit St. Michael's Golden-Domed Monastery.

And of course, we couldn't leave the country without trying traditional food like borsch, golubtsy and salo. If you love shopping while traveling, Ukraine designers are quite popular in Europe not only for amazing designs, but also for excellent quality.

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Laska: Vulytsya V'yacheslava Lypynsʹkoho, 3, Kyiv, Ukraine, 02000

Mural Streets: 12 Ivana Franka Street, 9/11 Small Street, 33/6 Borichev Tick Street, 6 Small Street

Andriivskij Descent

Museum Of One Street

Lviv Handmade Chocolate: Andriivs'kyi descent, 2Б, Kyiv, Ukraine, 04070

St. Michael's Golden-Domed Monastery

 Kiev Pechersk Lavra

Maidan Square