Calling code: Hryvnia (UAH)
Ukrainian Polissya, Chernihiv oblast, Kiev oblast, Cherkasy oblast, Poltava oblast
Central Ukraine is the political, economic and cultural center of Ukraine, located around the capital - Kyiv.
Volyn oblast, Vinnitsa oblast, Khmelnytsky oblast, Ternopil oblast, Ivano-Frankivsk oblast, Lviv oblast, Transcarpathian oblast, Chernivtsi oblast
Western Ukraine is one of the culturally richest regions of Ukraine. It is considered the "stronghold" of the Ukrainian national idea. It differs from other regions in architecture, traditions and even religion. The region is very diverse in its ethnic composition, historical past, folklore, dialects of the Ukrainian language, which were formed here under the influence of neighboring countries. Ivano-Frankivsk, Lviv, Uzhgorod, Chernivtsi and other cities are considered to be real pearls of urban development. Most of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Ukraine are located in this region. Nevertheless, the region is also rich in natural attractions: the Ukrainian Carpathians are a popular place for winter and ski holidays. Western Ukraine is also known for its eccentric festivals, European charm and respect for the Ukrainian countryside and folk life.
Dnepropetrovsk oblast, Zaporozhye oblast, Luhansk oblast/ LPR. Donetsk oblast/ DPR, Sumy oblast, Kharkiv oblast
Eastern Ukraine is the most urbanized region of Ukraine, where a significant part of Ukraine's industry is concentrated. The largest cities: Kharkiv, Donetsk and Dnepropetrovsk boast a developed urban infrastructure, the Zaporozhye region is the historical cradle of the Ukrainian Cossacks, on its territory there is the famous Museum of the History of the Ukrainian Cossacks, located in the open air on the island of Khortytsya - the largest island on the Dnieper. Eastern Ukraine is known for its deposits of minerals and the mine method of their extraction, where excursion descents into the mines are organized for tourists (for example, the Salt Mine in Soledar).
Kherson oblast, Nikolaev oblast, Odessa oblast
Southern Ukraine is the Black Sea coast with the magnificent city of Odessa. Most of southern Ukraine is plowed steppe, and settled settlements appeared here only at the end of the 18th century. Although culturally there is something to see here - besides Odessa, these are, for example, the former Turkish fortress of Izmail and the city of Vilkovo standing on the canals - nature is the most interesting here. In southern Ukraine there are the lower reaches and mouths of four large rivers - the Danube, the Dnieper, the Dniester and the Southern Bug - and countless smaller rivers, the sea coast, an unusual relief, as well as preserved sections of the steppe, such as the Askania-Nova reserve.
Kyiv is the historical
capital of Kyivan Rus and modern Ukraine on the Dnipro River. Ancient
cathedrals and monasteries, wide boulevards, beautiful views and a
variety of cultural institutions.
Dnipro is an industrial city on the Dnipro.
Donetsk is the largest industrial center of Ukraine. Occupied by Russia. Visiting before deoccupation is not recommended.
Kamianets-Podilskyi is an ancient city.
Lviv is a medieval old city, unique architecture with Polish and Austrian elements. It is not recommended to visit before the end of shelling from the Russian side.
Odessa is a port on the Black Sea, a unique mixture of different cultures. It is not recommended to visit before the end of shelling from the Russian side.
Kharkiv is the first capital of the former Ukrainian SSR, a scientific, industrial, transport and student center. Partially destroyed. It is not recommended to visit before the end of shelling from the Russian side.
Chernivtsi is the historical center of Bukovyna and, along with Lviv, is considered the cultural center of Western Ukraine.
Chernihiv is a beautiful ancient city of Ukraine with a large number of preserved architectural monuments. Partially destroyed. You need to be careful, avoid places where there may be mines.
Visa requirements and rules for entering Ukraine
Non-tourist visas are no longer required for citizens of the European Union, USA, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Andorra, Vatican City, Monaco, Iceland, Norway, San Marino, Mongolia, Serbia, Montenegro, Georgia, Hong Kong Hong Kong, Israel , Paraguay, Brazil, Brunei, Chile, Argentina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Panama, Turkey and the countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States (with the exception of Turkmenistan). As of 2014, Ukraine announced plans to introduce visa restrictions for travel from Russia due to Russia's occupation of Crimea.
You can visit Ukraine for tourist purposes for up to 90 days. Visas on arrival can be obtained by citizens of Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, El Salvador, Mauritius and the Seychelles.
For other countries, visas can be obtained within a few hours at the Ukrainian consulate by receiving a "Letter on company letterhead" if you already have rented accommodation or documents for a business trip.
More detailed information is available at Ukrainian embassies abroad.
In connection with the situation with СОVID-19, the rules of entry into Ukraine have changed significantly. It is important for tourists planning a trip to Ukraine to familiarize themselves with the list of documents required for entering the country, for example, such as a document confirming receipt of a full course of vaccination against COVID-19, a negative result of an express test for the determination of the antigen of the SARS-CoV coronavirus -2 or a negative PCR test result.
For all questions regarding the rules of entry to Ukraine, you can contact the 24-hour hotline https://visitukraine.today/
Always know how much currency you have with you. Customs officials could ask about the quantity to be imported into the country. It is forbidden to bring large amounts of Ukrainian currency (hryvnias) into Ukraine, if it was not declared when leaving Ukraine.
It is advisable to check the customs rules in advance (for example, the Boryspil airport website, which has an English version), norms and rules have a habit of changing into short and unannounced messages.
When entering the country, you no longer need to fill out an immigration form.
After the annexation of Crimea to Russia in March 2014, Russian immigration and customs authorities began to work in the ports of the Zapis Peninsula. It was announced by the Russian authorities on April 1, 2014 that foreign citizens need regular Russian entry visas to visit Crimea. However, the Crimean authorities plan to apply to the Russian federal government for the introduction of a simplified visa regime for certain categories of short-term visitors, different from the one applied in mainland Russia.
Since Ukraine does not recognize Russia's annexation of the peninsula, entry into Crimea from outside the mainland of Ukraine is considered by the Ukrainian authorities as "illegal entry into the territory of Ukraine." If the fact of such a visit is discovered by the Ukrainian border authorities, when the foreign citizen later tries to enter the mainland of Ukraine, the foreign citizen will be subject to "administrative punishment" (a fine, or possibly a refusal to enter Ukraine), (Flight Moscow — Crimea now criminal "Flying from Moscow to Crimea will now be a punishable act", interview with an employee of the border service in Ukrainian, in Russian).
Detailed information on ticket prices and flight schedules can be found on these sites:
The cheapest way to fly to Ukraine is through Boryspil International Airport near Kyiv. The main international hubs for these flights are Budapest, Frankfurt, Milan, Munich, Prague, London, Rome, Vienna and Warsaw with several flights per day from Austrian AUA, CSA Czech Airlines, LOT, Lufthansa, Alitalia, Air France, British Airways, KLM.
Budget airline Wizz Air is based in Kyiv (Zhulyani) and Lviv airports.
There are several airlines that offer direct flights to cities such as Dnipropetrovsk (Lufthansa), Donetsk (Lufthansa, Austrian), Odesa (LOT, Austrian, CSA Czech Airlines), Kharkiv and Lviv (LOT, Austrian Airlines), but they are more expensive.
To fly within Ukraine, the most common airline is Ukraine International Airlines. This is an unofficial national airline, and its routes cover all the main directions of Ukraine.
Detailed information on ticket prices and train schedules can be found here:
There are daily direct overnight trains from Berlin, Vienna, Prague, Warsaw, Belgrade, Budapest, Bucharest and Sofia to Lviv or Kyiv. When crossing from Western Europe, there will be a 2-3 hour wait at the border, while the train carriages will be changed by customs officials in order to adapt to a different railway track. It is usually faster and cheaper to buy a ticket to the border and then change trains, rather than waiting for a through train.
Kyiv has good international connections with Central Europe and Russia. Departure from Belgrade (36h), Budapest (24h), Chisinau (15h), Minsk (12h), Prague (35h), Sofia (37h) via Bucharest (26h) and Warsaw (16H). There are many trains from Moscow, the fastest of which is the Metropolitan Express, taking only 8½ hours. St. Petersburg is also well served with an overnight train, taking the 11 p.m. Berlin (22h) has night connections in the summer season during the retreat from Vienna (34h) there are night connections M-Th. There is also a connection from Venice (45h) via Ljubljana (41h) once a week, departing on Thursdays.
More exotic cities from infrequent departures from Kyiv include Astana (73H, Thu), Baku (64h, Wed) and Murmansk (61H, seasonal). And if you are looking for a real trip, take train 133E connecting Kyiv with Vladivostok. This is one of the longest journeys possible by train, taking eight nights!
Information about trains can be found on the Ukrainian Railways website in English and Ukrainian. The website is still in beta and has some issues, particularly with online booking.
There are inexpensive services, for example, a direct bus to Lviv and Ivano-Frankivsk from Poland. As a rule, they offer a budget level of comfort and cost of about UAH 90-100.
There are also ferries from Istanbul, Georgia, Varna (Bulgaria) to Odessa. See Ferries in the Mediterranean Sea.
The nearest major town on the Polish side is Przemyśl, and it's easy to find by following Route 4 (which goes through Przemyśl), also known as the E40 in European terms.
When you arrive, the road is not narrow enough (NOT a motorway / autobahn it is) with a line of trucks and vans parked on the right side of the road; of the car park with a cafe / bar on the left. Do not stop for vehicles of goods, slide up the slope from them, and then served in the customs area, when the guy flags you ahead (for important Europeans, you do not jump the queue - commercial traffic goes through a different process).
If you are in a car registered in the EU, then do for the EU passport, the passport control section. Thence for Ukrainian passport control, and then Ukrainian customs, and then you all the way. It used to be a nightmare, with apocalyptic stories of 5-6+ hours at the border, but the Ukrainians have made great strides in efficiency and it takes about an hour to make the crossing (2012). Don't expect the border police to treat you in a friendly or even respectful manner, in fact, expect anything ranging from neutral to extremely unpleasant behavior.
Once through, just follow the main road towards Lviv on the E40 - it's a direct route across Ukraine to Kyiv (and east from there). Follow this - the main cities on the way are Lviv, Rivne, Zhytomyr.
They don't miss about 15-20 km inside Ukraine, in Mostysk, because the police have gone crazy about traffic measures here (lying down policemen or "sleeping policemen"). They are like icebergs across the road, and very poorly marked. There are four or five sets of them across the village.
In addition, take care of the road, which, although the main east / west highway and the main route road in the EU, still remains in a deplorable condition (cross-surface). You will soon understand why Ukraine has such poor driver and pedestrian fatality and injury statistics. Pretext defending!
On foot and by bicycle
You can walk 200m from the long bridge of Sighetu Marmaciei, Romania. Once you reach Solotvino, Ukraine, you can continue your journey by car or train. Cycling is also an option in the summer. When you cross the beautiful old bridge go uphill, turn right at the church. After 50 meters there is an ATM on the right! This is important, because train tickets can only be bought in hryvnias and there is no exchange, no point, no ATM, the possibility to pay by credit card at the station! Go forward and turn left before the railway-car crossing. There is one train per day to Lviv (at the end of the day). It stops at each village and takes about 13 hours to reach the final destination, the ticket costs about €10.
You cannot cross the border in Kroszenko (Poland) on foot or by bicycle. You must be in a vehicle. Leaving Poland on a bicycle in August 2011, the cyclist only has to wait about 5 minutes to flag down the driver who was ready (and had a place) to take him, the bicycle, and a complete set of touring cycles. The actual crossing then took about an hour or so. There was no charge by the driver or immigration services.
There are two roads at the border crossing points between Slovakia and Ukraine (Ubla and Uzhhorod). Ubla for pedestrians and cyclists, only in Uzhgorod only for cars. You can, however, get into someone's car just by crossing the border. There is one rail crossing of the Chop border.
There is a daily bus from Košice (except Sunday and Monday) and Prešov (Slovakia) to Uzhgorod. There are also several daily buses from Michalovce to Uzhhorod. There is also a night train from Uzhhorod to Lviv and Odesa.
Alternatively, you can travel by daily local train from Čierna n.Tisou to Chop.
Keep in mind that all foreigners are subject to stricter police control when traveling by public transport, especially intercity forms. Be prepared to present your passport and entry documents and keep your embassy/consulate number handy in case you run into a corrupt person. If you find yourself outside the base city without your official documents, be prepared for heavy fines.
The fastest way to get around in big cities is the so-called minibuses: minibuses that follow routes in the same way as regular buses. You can usually spot them or ask them to stop at places other than the designated bus stops. The fare is paid as soon as you enter the minibus and is fixed regardless of how far you want to travel. In the same way, regular buses, trams, trolleybuses and the metro have a fixed fare everywhere. Tell the driver you want to get off when you get close to your destination.
Every city has an intercity bus station, from which you can go almost anywhere in Ukraine. Tariffs and quality of service vary widely.
On the plane
UIA offers cheap flights that can be booked online and can be a time-saving alternative. For example, a flight Odesa-Kyiv (one way) costs USD 180 (including taxes and fees) and takes 1.5 hours. However, for the cheapest fares, be sure to use early booking.
The trains are managed by the State Railways of Ukraine. As in all CIS countries, the classes of trains, cars and the ticketing system are exactly the same as in Russia.
Ukrainian trains are quite old and slow compared to European standards, but they run exactly according to the schedule, are reliable and very cheap. For example, there is a 3rd class sleeping car (platskart) from Simferopol to Lviv for €8, the travel time is about 10 hours.
As a rule, in Ukraine, for long distances, the train is better than the bus because of their comfort and because they are often even cheaper. In "Lux" sleeping cars have two-seater cabins. Second class cabin with four seats. The third class has six berths through which the passage passes.
Since trains are popular in Ukraine, you may have to buy tickets in advance. This is more often the case for third grade. You can check availability and even buy tickets online or at the Railways of Ukraine online store (website in English, Russian and Ukrainian). The online store offers both (CIS only) domestic and international tickets, starting from Ukraine. Please note that online purchases will not provide you with a valid travel document. You must note the reservation code (or simply print the reservation confirmation) and go to any ticket office that will issue a printed ticket. Do this at least 30 minutes before departure, as queues at the ticket office are not uncommon. Major train stations may have special counters for tickets purchased online. Try to identify such a counter and go there directly, instead of waiting in line at another counter.
Buying tickets through the box office can be more complicated, though. The ladies at the counter are not very friendly and you can hardly speak any other language than Ukrainian or Russian. The usual strategy of writing your destination and train number on a piece of paper should work fine. However, you may find it more convenient to ask locals to buy tickets for you. Major stations have large screens showing tickets available for upcoming trains. This can be convenient for last-minute ticket purchases.
There are two main bus companies that operate buses from all major cities and from Kyiv: they are Autolyuks, Gunsel and. Prices run from UAH 100-120 for service in Dnipropetrovsk and Kharkiv.
The main advantage of the bus service is that it leaves from Boryspil and stops in Kyiv, so if your destination is not Kyiv, it is easier than taking a bus to the main passenger railway station in Kyiv. Buses are standard buses, tourist buses, serve cold drinks and tea, show movies, and make a stop approximately every 3-4 hours. They run every few hours.
Autolux also has a VIP bus from Odesa, which has good leather seats and is more or less non-stop. It leaves once a day, takes four hours or so, like from Kyiv, and costs about UAH 160-170.
In addition, just like in Russia, there are private minibuses called minibuses. They operate on fixed routes and can be licensed as either buses or taxis. You can board one at the start of your route or at fixed stops. Some will also stop at any point between the designated stops, but this largely depends on the region and even the mood of the driver. Officially, they are not supposed to drop off passengers outside the designated bus stops, but in reality they do so quite often. At the beginning of the route and on fixed routes, you may find that you will have to wait in line. Elsewhere, just wave when you see one. if there are seats available, the minibus will stop for you. To exit, tell the driver when you reach your destination and he will stop. You need to pay the amount of your fare to the driver. You don't get a ticket unless you ask for it. It is often not so easy to find out which bus will take you to your destination, as there are literally hundreds of different routes in any city.
Taxis are probably the safest way to get around the city. You want to put your hotel or restaurant to call you a taxi. Ukraine is largely the direction of the economy based on how you get quality, safety and good service. Taxis are always busy. Locals will tell you to call ahead. Trying to hail a taxi won't be productive at best, and you'll get into serious trouble at worst.
It may seem counterintuitive to hire a taxi to take you 100 km to the next town. If you use the hotels direction, you will get a decent speed. It may be twice as expensive as the train, but it is convenient, less time-consuming, and safe. Keep in mind that you need a taxi to take you to the bus or train station. Americans will find long-distance buses crowded and uncomfortable.
You can get around in Ukraine by car, but you need to know about some features: Signs are all in Ukrainian (Cyrillic). Only a few signs (every 200 km or so) are written in the Latin alphabet and indicate the main cities. It is recommended that you have a good road map (those available mainly in Ukrainian, but Latin alphabet maps are starting to appear), because place names are not very well placed on road signs.
You are strongly advised to obey the signs, especially the speed limit. Keep in mind that unlike Western countries, where the restriction is repeated several times, in Ukraine, the obligation or prohibition is often indicated on one sign that you should not miss. And even these symptoms are often far away from the road, covered with branches, etc. The police are always there to remind you.
Speed in cities is limited to 60 km/h (40mph). However, people drive fast anyway.
Speed in "citizens" (one carriageway of rural roads) is limited to 90 km/h (55 miles per hour). Poor average road quality already acts as a speed check.
Speed on highways (motorways) is limited to 110-120km/h (75mph).
Keep in mind that corruption is widespread among Ukrainian police officers, and tourists are a particularly profitable target. When you are stopped for speeding or other offenses, officials can aggressively try to extract ridiculous amounts of money from you (€ 100 and above), offering a "reduction" if you pay on the spot (the proposed alternative is some unpleasant and more expensive way, all done up). If you have asked for nothing but require a written ticket for you to pay later instead. Don't let them intimidate you. It is very useful to have the embassy phone number handy for these cases. If you say that, they'll let you off the hook before you know it. In any case, write down the officer's badge numbers, rank, license plate of the police car, and report it to the nearest embassy / consulate in detail to help fight these corruptions.
Fuel is no longer a problem in Ukraine, especially for those who remember trips to Ukraine during the early 1990s, when gasoline was considered precious. Today there are many service stations. There are different types of fuel, such as diesel, 95 octane unleaded and (less commonly) 98 octane unleaded; 80 and 76 octane were also detected. Please note that if you choose to fill up in a rural gas station, you will need to pay first, and in cash. Even there, many stations do accept credit cards, however.
Road condition is a huge topic: Main roads are OK for all cars, as long as you don't go too fast. Numerous ongoing repairs have created a patchy road surface, and it will seriously test its suspension—even on big two-lane roads.
Secondary roads are passable, but be careful: some areas can be full of potholes and you should treat them with extra care or avoid them completely. Roads between villages are often little more than dirt and unpaved tracks.
Road works were ongoing, but the quality of the roads is shy of Western Europe (with the exception of Kyiv).
Be careful when driving in towns or villages. Sometimes animals prefer to walk on the road, and they pose a danger to all drivers. You are likely to see a lot of animals that have been hit by cars, so be prepared...
bicycle traffic is not very often, but sometimes you will see an elderly person transporting a bag of grass on an old road bicycle or a bicycle enthusiast in bright clothes riding a professional racing bicycle on the floor. It is even more likely to be performed on an orderly road where the pavement is smooth. Also, cyclists will use both lanes of the road in both directions equally, meaning you are just as likely to meet the cyclist closest to you riding the limit as you will be traveling in your direction. And almost always without lights or light-colored clothing, so be extra careful when driving at night and at dawn/dusk.
Also, don't be surprised to see lots of horses in harness - even on two-lane roads.
Behind the thumb
Hitchhiking in Ukraine is at an average level. You can hitchhike - usually trucks will take you for free - but it's still worth trying to stop private cars as well. Good people are everywhere; you can be picked up in a Lada or a Lexus. (More usually the first.)
Usually, the hitchhiker's gesture (also used for hailing taxis and minibuses) is to face oncoming traffic and pull a point on the road away from the body with a straight right hand. Sometimes, for visibility, you can add a downward fanning motion with an open right hand. It is a good idea to write on a piece of paper the name of the destination.
Ukrainian is the official language. Russian, Romanian, Polish, and
Hungarian are spoken near the borders with neighboring countries. The
Russian language is similar to Ukrainian and is most often spoken in the
south and east of Ukraine. It is safe to say that almost every Ukrainian
understands the Russian language; however, in western regions, people
may not want to help you if you speak Russian, also to other foreigners,
Ukrainians will be more lenient than Russians. Especially in Lviv, it
will be the most difficult for you, because they not only mainly speak
Ukrainian, but also have their own special dialect.
On the other hand, in the eastern part, Russian is the most widely spoken language. In the central and eastern parts of the country, you can also find people speaking transitional dialects (commonly referred to as Surzhik, i.e. "mix [of languages]"). In addition, it is common for people to speak to others in their native language, regardless of the interlocutor alone, so that a visitor who speaks Russian may be given a response in Ukrainian and vice versa.
Kyiv, the capital, speaks both languages, but Russian is more often used. Thus, Ukrainian was more often found in Central and Western Ukraine, Russian in Eastern and Southern Ukraine.
Young people are more inclined to speak a little English, as it is the most widely taught foreign language in school. Most people in the tourism industry (hostels, etc.) speak English. Also, thanks to Ukraine hosting Euro 2012, there have been many improvements in tourist facilities and police officers learning English to better assist people there for the games.
In general, Ukrainian makes more ground as time goes on. Some regions may have special rules and may have schooling in Russian, as in Luhansk. Russia as a whole is still a lingua franca, but a new generation of people encourages their children to speak Ukrainian at home. The biggest wall for Ukrainization is that there is resistance in the East and the South, which would even like the Russian language to be the official language of the state, also many mass media such as books, videos and video games only in Russia, but there were a few titles with the possibility of Ukrainian subtitles on DVD, and some authors write exclusively in Ukrainian, so this makes the land. Universities used to have a choice between Ukrainian or Russian, but nowadays most national universities, except for those in special regions or private schools, teach exclusively in Ukrainian. There are many people, however, who believe that Ukraine will always have both languages and do not feel that one threatens the existence of the other.
It should also be noted, however, that all have Ukrainian citizenship, but there are more than a million who have Russian origins, for example, Kharkiv itself sports 1 million ethnic Russians, so to speak. It is difficult to say that they are actually ethnically different people, but they migrated during the time of the Soviet Union and are proud of their roots, as Russians continue to speak Russian with their children, even if their children are educated in Ukrainian. The whole subject of the Ukrainian language is a sensitive topic, so I hope the information presented seems neutral.
If you are traveling in Ukraine, learning basic Ukrainian or basic Russian in advance (knowing your phrases book is good) and / or having some means of access to a bilingual speaker, mobile / cellular / convenient number (almost everyone has a mobile phone) can be a godsend. Practically no one in any official position (at train stations, policemen, bus drivers, information desks, etc.) will be able to speak in any other language except Ukrainian and Russian. If you already know another Slavic language, you will nevertheless be able to communicate as the Slavic languages are closely related.
Large in size and diverse in culture and landscape, Ukraine has a
number of must-see destinations to offer. These are both historical
architectural monuments and the beauty of forests, mountains and seas.
The capital, the ancient Russian city of Kyiv, has such UNESCO World Heritage sites as St. Sophia Cathedral and Pechersk Lavra. It is worth taking a walk along Andriivsky Uzvoz, the Montmartre of Kyiv, where you will see a mixed mix of interesting things from the hands of artists and souvenir sellers. The decoration is the church named after the apostle Andrew, who - according to legend - two thousand years ago climbed to the top where the church now stands.
The Pirogovo Museum of Folk Architecture, which is located not far from the capital, is the largest open-air museum in Europe.
Kyiv is the largest economic, scientific and educational center of the country with numerous company offices, shopping centers, markets, universities and museums.
The ensemble of the historic center of Lviv is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List, but the city is not full of history, but also offers numerous restaurants, museums, cultural and educational institutions. Walking through its cobbled compact streets, you can see buildings whose foundations date back to the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The wars almost did not affect the architecture of the city, which combines the styles of different centuries and is authentic. a gem for lovers of history, architecture and culture.
Odesa is a "pearl by the sea" - a port on the Black Sea coast. It is famous for its beautiful architecture, recreation areas, theaters (Odesa Opera House) and museums. From there you can also travel to the fortress in Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi, as well as Bolgrad (the center of the Bulgarian community) and Izmail (a former mosque, the remains of Turkish fortifications). Or abroad - to Chisinau, the capital of Moldova, or the unrecognized Transnistrian Republic.
For those who like small towns and relaxing near ancient fortresses, we recommend a trip Kamianets-Podilskyi (castle) — Khotyn (fortress) — Chernivtsi (residence of Bukovina and Dalmatian metropolitans).
The "Island of Freedom" Khortytsia in Zaporizhzhia is the cradle of Ukrainian Cossacks. Now the Cossack village has been rebuilt from wood and hosts numerous festivals and historical reenactments.
"Ukrainian Versailles" is the residence of the last Hetman of Ukraine, Kyril Razumovsky, located in Baturyn.
Chernihiv considers its ancient churches from the times of Russia.
Excursion tours to Chernobyl have been developed for extremes and fans of unusual recreation.
The Carpathian Mountains are one of the most beautiful places in Ukraine. They have beautiful panoramas of wooded hills, lush valleys in the warm season and snow-capped peaks in winter, and offer ample opportunities for hiking, cycling, and winter sports (complexes Bukovel near Yaremcha and Bukovitsa near Truskavets).
The town of Vylkove is located near the Danube Delta - "Ukrainian Venice", because half of the city is on islands, and instead of streets, people sail along the canals on boats. The Danube Biosphere Reserve is another good choice for nature lovers and ornithologists.
Valley of daffodils. The reserve, which is located in the village of Kireshi, Khust district, Zakarpattia region. Narrow-leaved daffodils, listed in the Red Book of Ukraine, grow in this reserve. During the period of mass flowering (the second to the beginning of the third decade of May), the "Valley" is covered with an almost continuous white carpet of blooming daffodils.
Synevir The largest lake in the Ukrainian part of the Carpathians. It is located in the Mizhhirsky district of the Transcarpathian region. Synevyr is one of the hallmarks of the Ukrainian Carpathians. The landscapes are noted for their extraordinary picturesqueness and majesty.
WARNING! To travel to Crimea, one must go through border control at checkpoints between Ukraine and Crimea, which was occupied by Russia
It is in Crimea that Ukraine's deepest canyon — the Great Canyon of Crimea — is located, which separates the Boyka and Ai-Petri mountain ranges and is 3 kilometers long. The depth of the canyon is 320 meters, and inside you can find everything: from abrupt slopes to lakes with spring water.
The currency unit is hryvnia (UAH). It is written hryvnia and
pronounced hryvnia in Ukrainian and hryvnia in Russian. Just to make it
a bit more confusing, Russian-speakers in the east often refer to it as
a ruble, and this sometimes appears as a "₴" both before and after
amounts both with and without spaces. National Bank actual rates.
Every reasonably sized city will have exchange booths and banks that convert euros, US dollars or Russian rubles into hryvnias, just pay attention to the signs with the exchange rates. British pounds are also often replaced, albeit at a slower rate. In tourist areas, a much wider range of currencies can be exchanged. Shop around as the rates offered change frequently.
Kiosks and banks, as a rule, do not try to scam you, but calculate your notes to be sure. In many places, bank clerks will refuse money even for minor damage or grease stains. A tear in the work of more than five millimeters may be too much.
ATMs (ATM, cash machine) are spread throughout the country and generally work with international cards. They almost always dispense UAH, although you can find some give USD. They basically don't charge for foreign cards. (Unless you withdraw dollars).
Debit cards, such as the meter, work at ATMs. Cirrus / Maestro / Plus bank cards can be the most effective way to get cash in Ukraine. Not all ATMs show that they support the Plus system, but in most cases they do if they support Visa. PrivatBank ATMs show that they support plus, but they do not work with North American cards.
Changing money in banks takes a lot - there are many documents and time is involved. Bank employees may not want to go through all the procedures just to change their USD100 account and may try FOB you excuse: "Sorry, we don't have money" is common. If you absolutely must change money there, you could convince them to change their mind; but if you can go somewhere else, you will probably save time. At the bank, you also need to present your passport. Banks can also only allow you to buy UAH; they can prevent you from buying "hard" currency.
Even with big branches, you can't expect to speak English. Doing anything other than exchanging currency may require a translator, or at least a lot of patience.
You can get dollars from most banks that use a Visa or MasterCard cash advance. There is a small service charge (3%) to do this in addition to what your bank charges are.
Exchange offices, while looking rather dubious, are generally the best places to exchange money. Their rates are usually better than banks "(but not always), and you will not need your passport. The service is fast and there are often no documents or receipts.
According to the law, all transactions must be in hryvnias, although less formal transactions can be in euros or US dollars.
If you want to buy any kind of art (paintings, krashanki) in Kyiv, the place to visit is Andriivskij spusk (Andriivskij uzviz in Ukrainian, Andriivskij uzviz in Russian).
It is illegal to take all items of historical importance out of the country. This includes badges, medals, badges, historical paintings, etc. Although you are unlikely to encounter a bag search, do not wear any old badges or display anything that might arouse suspicion.
Ukrainian cuisine is very tasty, similar to Russian cuisine. Just
like other cuisines in the region, it uses a lot of fatty ingredients,
especially in festive dishes. Traditional local food includes "Salo"
(salted lard) and soups like "Solyanka" (solyanka in Ukrainian, meat
soup) or "borscht" (borscht in Ukrainian) beetroot soup. Western Ukraine
also has a green version of borscht, with herbs and boiled eggs. First,
Salo, maybe something you couldn't bring yourself to try - but it's a
delicious side dish, just like the soups that are a must.
If you are outside of a big city or in doubt about food, exercise caution and common sense about where you buy food. Try not to buy food only in supermarkets or large grocery stores, always check the expiration date, and never buy meat or dairy products on the street (you can buy them in the market, but not next to the market).
Most cities in Ukraine have several very good restaurants. Read the menu boards posted at the entrance of each establishment to help you choose.
You can also find good places to eat not unfamiliar, but simply by the smoke of traditional wood fires. They are often places where they prepare dishes of traditional Ukrainian cuisine, including very tasty shashlyky (kebabs in Ukrainian). Restaurateurs are very friendly and, more often than not, you will be one of the first foreign visitors. Next to "borsch", you can also ask for "varenyky" (varenyky in Ukrainian, Varenyky with meat, vegetables or fruit) or "deruny" (deruny, potato fritters). You must try dumplings with potatoes and cheese in fried onions and sour cream sauce, a fantastic dish. These are only snacks, but ones that could fill you up quickly.
You can also use some online services that will help you find any restaurant you want. As a rule, they have many options and the translation into English makes the search easier. These services are free and provide information about major cities. If there is no possibility to connect to the Internet, you can ask people about restaurants, but remember that the knowledge of English among Ukrainians is low, and you can also meet unfriendly people. But in most cases, English or another foreign language makes people more polite.
Ukrainian specialty vodka (local name for vodka) with pepper. Other types of vodka are also very popular - linden (Tilia), honey, birch, wheat. Prices vary from € 1-20 for 1 liter. Souvenir bottles are available at higher prices (some bottles go for over €35 for 0.5L. There is a wide selection of wines, both domestic and imported. Domestic wines are mainly made in the south, although wines from the Carpathian region of Uzhhorod are also quite tasty .Ukraine is also famous for it's red sparkling wines. Prices on local wine range from €2-35 for a 0.75L bottle (to avoid the cheapest wines, €1 or less, as they are sometimes bottled as domestic wines, but local vintages are sold) , however, you can find genuine Italian, French, Australian wines from €50 a bottle or more in large supermarkets and most restaurants.The cost of imported wines has fallen significantly over the last few years, and trends point to further reductions in prices. There are many drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic). Ukrainian beer of very good quality. Beer from kegs or kegs (more common in cafes) was often poured down. Canned beer is not very common in Ukraine, and sometimes does not have those of the same quality of the same variety sold in bottles. The best types of beer are brewed by Lvivske, Obolonsky and PPB (First PRIVATE Brovarnia). Imported beers are also widely available, but more expensive - for example, a bottle of Austrian Edelweiss can cost more than €2, while the average price of Ukrainian beer is €0.50. Everyone said that Ukrainian beer is very tasty and is gaining more and more popularity in other European countries.
From non-alcoholic drinks, you should try kvass, a typically Slavic drink made from rye or wheat. During the summer, it can be easily purchased from designated street vendors. There are many yellow kvass kegs around the city during the summer. It is better to buy it in bottles due to the unknown purity of the barrel. Milk drinks, of all varieties, are also available, although mainly in supermarkets. Bottles of mineral water are available everywhere, as well as lemonade, beer and spirits. When looking to buy bottled water, be sure to ask for "Voda Bez Hazu" (water without gas) otherwise you will most likely be handed a carbonated drink.
Never buy vodka or Konjak (the local name for brandy) except in supermarkets or liquor stores, as there are many counterfeits. Every year, several die or go blind as a result of poisoning by methyl alcohol, a compound used to make fake vodka.
In Ukraine, you can buy alcohol obtained in other former Soviet republics. Moldovan and Armenian cognacs are quite good and not expensive. Georgian wines are quite unusual and aromatic, if too sweet.
Hotels can be a traumatic experience for a Westerner anywhere outside
Kyiv and Lviv. The cheaper the hotel, the greater the probability of
some very sad surprises, especially for those who are not familiar with
the level of Soviet-type service that still remains in many places.
There are many mid-range (€25-45) options outside Kyiv. For example, in Ivano-Frankivsk (near the Carpathians), the usual rate is about € 35 per room (bedroom and living room) in one such hotel. Many hotels have a choice between renovated rooms / suites ("Western style"), rather than renovated rooms (Eastern European style). The latter option is more than 50% cheaper and gives you a spacious old fashioned 2 bedroom suite, simple but clean!
There are several 5-star hotels in Kyiv and one in Donetsk; see the guides for these cities for listings. In one such hotel in Lviv, the usual rate ranges from € 40-60 per night.
Another option is to rent an apartment online before leaving the country. There are many to choose from in Kyiv and Odesa.
What many people from former USSR countries do is go to the train station where they try to find people who are willing to rent a room. The prices are usually much cheaper and if there are enough people offering the room you can make great deals.
These agreements are usually not legal and they will put you in a corner to negotiate. Make sure they have warm water and don't be afraid to say it's not what you expected when you saw the room.
There are many foreign students in Ukrainian universities. Bribery is
common and you can even get a degree here with only two transfers (first
and last days of term) if you have the money. That's hyperbole, of
course, but it's not much different in real life. Of course, if someone
wants to get good knowledge, they will, but the motivation in such a
situation is low.
After graduating from the institute, many students find work that is not related to their education, but this does not mean that the education system is bad. This is due to economic instability. The education system itself is comprehensive and competitive, and many foreign students can be a confirmation of this fact (not only in the previously mentioned hyperbole).
Taras Shevchenko Kyiv National University
Kharkiv National University named after V. N. Karazin
Chernivtsi National University named after Yury Fedkovich
Lviv National Medical University named after Danylo Halytskyi
Lviv Ivan Franko National University
National Academy of Internal Affairs
Cherkasy National University named after Bohdan Khmelnytskyi
Obtaining a work permit (visa) is a necessity for foreigners if they are going to be employed by any legal entity (exceptions apply only to international organizations and representative offices of foreign companies). A work permit is more than an employment permit. A potential employer must contact the labor administration to hire a non-resident employee. With the help of the program, you will be able to find a complete resume, as well as documents proving the accredited education must be presented.
Many people will tell you that you can take a copy of the visa with
you. Unfortunately, some people have problems with this. It is always
better to have your passport with you. A photocopy may be refused as an
identity document. A phone call to a local who can help can be quite
Get detailed information about your local embassy and/or consulates in advance and note their emergency numbers.
If you can, it's helpful to have a bilingual friend who can be called in case of an emergency or if you run into difficulties. If staying for a long time, it is advisable to get a local SIM card for your mobile phone in case of emergencies and for cheaper local calls/texts. They are widely available, cheap (often free) and easy to "top up",
The issue of crime
As in any country, using common sense when driving in Ukraine will minimize any chances of being a victim of petty crime and theft. Try not to advertise the fact that you are a foreigner or flaunt your wealth, through your choice of clothing or otherwise. With the exception of Kyiv, Odesa and other large cities, Western tourists are still quite rare. As in any country, the possibility of petty theft exists. In Kyiv, make sure to protect your bags and person, because pickpocketing is very common, especially in crowded metro stations. The guides told the tourists to keep an eye on certain people because they heard people say, "They look like Americans: let's follow them for a while and see what we can get."
Robberies and scams on tourists are quite common, especially the wallet scam in Kyiv.
But if you are arrested by the police or other law enforcement agencies, do everything you can to let them know that you are a foreign visitor. Not many police officers speak foreign languages fluently, but many people are eager to help with translation.
Do not drink alcohol in the company of unknown people (which may be offered more freely than in the West). You don't know how much they're going to drink (and convince you to drink with them), and what conflicts may arise afterward. In addition, many Ukrainians, known for their penchant for a good drink, can sometimes consume such an amount of vodka that it can be considered lethal for an average beer-addicted Westerner.
Ukraine is mainly a money economy. The network of bank branches and automated teller machines (ATMs) has grown rapidly and is now readily available in all but the smallest villages. How to check the security of the machine - it would be wise to use one that is obviously at a bank and not at another establishment. V PAY cards are not accepted in the country. You can use your credit cards (mainly MasterCard and Visa) or cash traveler's checks easily. Credit and debit cards are accepted in supermarkets. But avoid using your credit / debit card to make payments in establishments in small towns, as retailers are not trained and controlled enough to ensure your card confidentiality. Instead, it is widely accepted to pay in cash. Local residents (especially businessmen) sometimes carry money with them and pay in it, which is considered unusually large in other countries. They do not suspect criminal activity in every such case.
In addition, it is strongly recommended to avoid individual (street) currency exchange offices, as there are thieves among such exchangers who can give you instead of old, Soviet-era currencies or also coupons that have been withdrawn from circulation since the mid-1990s. Use special booths for exchange (widespread) and banks; Also be careful of currency tricks like 5.059 / 5.62 buy / sell instead of 5.59 / 5.62.
Euros and US dollars are generally accepted as alternative forms of currency, especially in tourist areas. They are also the most widely accepted convertible currency at exchange offices, with British pounds in third place.
The area around the American embassy in Kyiv is a known provocateur
for groups targeting black people, and there have been reports of such
attacks on Andriyivski, the main tourist street running from
Mykhailivska down into Podol. Especially in rural areas, having dark
skin is often a source of harm. Anti-Semitism still remains a problem in
some western regions and/or other parts of Ukraine. However, there are
two Jewish mayors elected in Kherson and Vinnytsia.
Russophobia is on the rise as a result of Russia's annexation of Crimea in early 2014, especially in the European Union-friendly western regions of the country. Russian citizens may face negative perceptions due to the ongoing war waged (as of 2014) against Ukraine by Russian-backed separatists in the eastern part of the country. There were ethnic clashes between Russians and Ukrainians in Odessa. On July 17, 2014, Russian-backed rebels shot down a civilian airliner over Ukraine carrying hundreds of EU citizens; this led to the escalation of economic sanctions from the West and Russia, and polarized the already tense situation on the ground.
Individual examples show that in Ukraine, in fact a large part of the former Soviet Union, migrants from Central and Central Asia and Roma / Sinti people receive much closer and more frequent attention from the police (Militia). Always have your passport (or a photocopy of the main pages if you're worried about losing it or if you're staying at a hotel that holds it), as foreigners are treated more kindly than others. This does not mean that it is dangerous or threatening, but it is better to be warned about the realities.
While there are many swimming and diving attractions throughout Ukraine, local water rescues are extremely underfunded. It is unlikely that you would notice while drowning, especially on a river. Use only officially established beaches.
Ukraine has some of the worst statistics for traffic-related deaths and injuries in the world so act accordingly. Be careful when crossing roads; walk and drive defensively: be aware that traffic is overtaking both inside and outside. Sometimes you don't even need to be careful when using footpaths, as during rush hour black, bumpy-sided Audi / BMW / Mercedes can sometimes choose to avoid traffic using wide pavements; pedestrians or not. Owners/drivers of expensive cars have been known, at times, to be more careless about the safety of pedestrians. Drivers rarely give priority to pedestrians crossing the road if there are no pedestrian lights. Always take care of your safety.
Also remember that bridges suffer in the same way as roads in terms of infrastructure destruction. Be careful when walking, especially in the dark and far from the central areas of the main cities (a torch is a useful possession), the streets are poorly lit, as are most of the entries / stairs to the buildings, and the street and pavement surfaces are often dangerously potholed. Do not step on the covers of the human assignees, as they can tip-toe into the hole with all the potential injuries!
It is illegal to smoke cigarettes and drink alcohol in public places in Ukraine. Despite the ban, you can see some locals doing it, but don't be fooled. These are bad examples. Local police can insist on a bribe if they see a foreigner violating the ban. So be wise and avoid unnecessary problems.
phone numbers of emergency services in Ukraine:
112 - general
101 - fire protection
102 - the police
103 — ambulance
104 — gas leak
As a general rule, avoid drinking tap water. The main reason for this is that the water in many regions is disinfected with chlorine, so it tastes terrible. If possible, buy bottled water, which is widely available and generally OK.
Ukraine has the highest rate of HIV-infected people in Europe at almost 1.5% or 1 in 66 adults. Be careful.
There is radiation pollution in the northeast from the accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in 1986. However, the effect is very small if you live permanently in the Chernobyl zone itself. There are even tours to the city of Pripyat, which is the closest to the station. The city is famous for the haunting scenery of blocks of apartment buildings abandoned in 1986, now standing out against the background of vegetation that arose from years of neglect.
Respect the fact that Ukraine is an independent state. You may find
that people here are very sensitive about being classified as "Russian".
Ukrainians have their own ethnicity and don't like being seen as
Don't say "Ukraine," because the usage is outdated and implies that Ukraine is a region, not a country.
Ukraine is by no means a conservative country in terms of clothing or behavior, and charges you, if they can get away with it, get what you paid for (quality). However, homosexuals were not liked there.
Raising the issue of Ukraine in the context of being part of the Soviet Union cannot be welcomed by local residents. The Holodomor, like the Holocaust, is a sensitive issue. It is best not to praise the Soviet Union or Joseph Stalin, the Soviet leader during World War II and the architect of the Holodomor. Nevertheless, some Ukrainians also recall the recent period of the Soviet Union as a period of economic prosperity.
Ukrtelecom is the main communication operator. The country code for Ukraine is 380.
The largest mobile operators are Kyivstar, Vodafone (formerly MTS), Lifecell.
GPRS mobile access is available in the vast majority of Ukraine. 3G mobile access is developing steadily. Public Wi-Fi access points are widespread in cities. There are plans and projects to provide mass wireless broadband access in urban open spaces, on Ukrzaliznytsia's long-distance trains, and in public city vehicles.
Ukraine has several historical names that are partially or completely
identical. Modern Ukraine is located on the lands that in the first
centuries of our era were known mostly as "Scythia" and "Sarmatia", but
the ethnic and cultural continuity from the then population of these
lands to the present day is mostly considered indirect. The most famous
historical names referring to the set of lands on which the ethnogenesis
of the Ukrainian people took place and the relative strength of its
statehood took place were: "Rus", "Росия" ("Ρωσία", "Rosia", "Russia"),
"Ruthenia" ( "Ruthenia"), "Roxolania", "Ukraine", "Little Russia",
"Zaporozhian Army", "Hetmanship".
The earliest known mention of the word "Rus" as a geographical name occurs in the Byzantine-Russian treaty of 911, where it was used to designate the state and territory subject to Prince Oleg of Kyiv (which at that time was limited mainly to the outskirts of Kyiv). In the future, the name "Rus" was used to denote the lands over which the power of the Kiev princes extended, in a narrow sense only in relation to the Middle Dnieper (Kyiv, Chernihiv, Pereyaslav principalities), in a broader sense - to a significant part of Eastern Europe, while the lands beyond In a number of sources, Transdnieper region was referred to as "Outer Russia". At the same time, in Byzantium, the Hellenized word "Russia" ("Ρωσία") was used, among other names, to denote Russia. After the decline of Rus due to the Mongol invasion, in the 13th-14th centuries the name "Kingdom of Rus" was for some time borne by the Galicia-Volyn state, during the years 1398-1569 the word "Rus" was used in the full name of the Lithuanian state, and during the years 1434-1772 the name "Ruskie Voivodeship" » was worn by Galicia as part of the Kingdom of Poland and the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Muscovy did not directly claim the common heritage of Russia and did not use this word in the name of its state until Ivan IV in 1547 began to call himself, among other titles, "tsar and grand prince of all Russia", after which Muscovy in some documents, except as "Moscow kingdom", the names "Russian kingdom" or "Russia" also began to be used. Peter I fixed this name for Muscovy, gaining control over the left-bank Hetmanship and Kyiv and renaming the Muscovite Kingdom to the Russian Empire in 1721. Before these events, the lands of Kyiv and Moscow were not part of one state for about 500 years in the XIII-XVIII centuries. A number of historians later characterized such borrowing as a groundless appropriation by Muscovy of the name and history of Ukraine-Russia. Among those who defended the legality of using the name "Rus" only in relation to Ukraine, but not to Russia-Muscovy, was the anonymous author of the influential work of the beginning of the 19th century "History of the Rus". Subsequently, Mykhailo Hrushevskyi substantiated a similar position in detail, noting in particular that "we are a people whose name was stolen", to emphasize which he called his greatest work "History of Ukraine-Rus". This opinion is shared by many modern researchers.
The Slavic word "Ukraine" is mentioned for the first time in the Kyiv annals according to the Ipatiev list under the year 1187. It outlined the territory of the Pereyaslav principality, which was part of the historical core of Russia, next to the Kyiv and Chernihiv principalities. This word is also found in Russian chronicles under the years 1189, 1213, 1280 and 1282, denoting Halychyna, Western Volhynia, Kholmshchyna and Podlasie. In Lithuanian and Polish chronicles and official documents of the 14th-17th centuries, the Russian lands of Halychyna, Volhynia, Kyiv region, Podillia, and Bratslav region were called "Ukraine" in a broad sense, and the territory of the Middle Dnieper region in a narrow sense. The same double meaning of this word was preserved from the middle of the 17th century, after the emergence of the Russian state of the Zaporozhian Army.
In connection with the inclusion of part of the lands of Russia in the composition of the Muscovite Empire, and later the Russian Empire, the word "Ukraine" was attached to the Dnieper region; they also denoted Slobozhanshchyna. After the renaming of the Muscovite Kingdom to the Russian Empire in 1721, Ukrainian lands began to be called "Little Russia". In the second half of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, under the influence of the national movement of the Russian intelligentsia, the name "Ukraine" acquired the meaning of the Russian ethnic territory, and the ethnonym "Rusyns" itself was replaced by the ethnonym "Ukrainians". In 1917, the first state to use the word "Ukraine" in its official name was proclaimed, the Ukrainian People's Republic.
The etymology of the word "Ukraine" is not known for sure. According to the theory followed by most Ukrainian researchers, "Ukraine" comes from the words "country" or "land", that is, "y" means "native", "own". Thus, "Ukraine" is an antonym of the word "foreigner". According to one of the other theories, which was formed under the influence of Polish and Russian historiography, it means "neighbourhood" (Russian: окрайну) or "borderland".
Ukraine is located in the southeastern part of Europe. It shares land borders with Belarus to the north, Poland to the west, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Moldova to the southwest, and Russia to the east. The south of Ukraine is washed by the Black and Azov seas. It has sea borders with Romania and Russia.
The total area of Ukraine is 603,700 km², which is 5.7% of the territory of Europe and 0.44% of the world. According to this indicator, it is the second largest among European countries after Russia (or the largest country that lies entirely in Europe). The area of the exclusive maritime economic zone of Ukraine is 72,658 km². The ISO 3166-1-alpha-2 country code is UA. The territory of Ukraine stretches from west to east for 1316 km and from north to south for 893 km, lies approximately between 52° 20′ and 44° 23′ north latitude and 22° 5′ and 41° 15′ east longitude.
The extreme northern point is the village of Gremyach (Petrivske tract) of the Chernihiv region.
The southernmost point is the village of Foros of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea.
The westernmost point is the village of Solomonovo, Zakarpattia region.
The extreme eastern point is the village of Rannia Zorya, Luhansk region.
The geographic center of Ukraine is located on the northern outskirts of the village of Maryanivka, Zvenygorod district, Cherkasy region.
According to one of the measurement methods, the geographical center of Europe is located on the territory of Ukraine, near the city of Rakhiv, Transcarpathian region.
The largest Black Sea ports are Odesa, Chornomorsk, Kherson, Sevastopol, Azov ports — Mariupol, Berdyansk, Kerch.
The total length of the borders is 6,993 km, of which 5,638 km are land. The length of the maritime section of the border: 1,355 km (the Black Sea — 1,056.5 km; the Sea of Azov — 249.5 km; the Kerch Strait — 49 km).
The terrain of Ukraine is dominated by plains (95% of the entire area), which belong to the southwestern edge of the East European Plain. They connect the Polis, Dnipro, and Black Sea lowlands, which occupy 70% of the surface of Ukraine, as well as the Volyn, Podil, Dnipro, Donetsk, and other highlands. The average absolute height of the plains is 175 m. In Ukraine, there is the highest point of the East European plain — Mount Berda, 515 m above sea level.
Mountain massifs in Ukraine are represented by a part of the Carpathian Mountains - the Ukrainian Carpathians, where the highest peak of Ukraine is located - Mount Hoverla (2061 m above sea level), and the Crimean Mountains, the highest peak of which is Mount Roman-Kosh (1545 m).
Seismicity of Ukraine is manifested in the western, southwestern and southern regions, which are located near the powerful Mediterranean-Alpine-Trans-Asian seismogenic belt of the planet, and where two main seismic regions stand out: Carpathian and Crimean-Black Sea. A large part of the territory is exposed to the effects of its own (local) earthquakes and strong subcortical earthquakes of the Vranca zone (Romania).
The territory of Ukraine lies mainly in the temperate-continental region of the temperate climate zone with increasing continentality from the northwest to the southeast. The southern coast of Crimea is separated into a separate region of subtropical Mediterranean climate. In the Ukrainian Carpathians and the Crimean Mountains, the height of the area and the exposure of the slopes determine the vertical zonation of the climate.
The average annual air temperature in Ukraine ranges from +11...+13 °C in the south to +5...+7 °C in the north. The average average temperature of the coldest month (January) varies from −7...−8 °C in the northeast to 0 °C in steppe Crimea and +2...+4 °C on the southern coast of Crimea. In the warmest month (July), the average monthly temperature varies from +17...+19 °C in the north and northwest of the country to +22...+23 °C in the southern regions and +25 °C on the Southern coast of Crimea.
The lowest air temperature in Ukraine was recorded on January 8, 1935 in Luhansk. As a result of the invasion of air currents from the Arctic, the temperature here dropped to −42 °C.
The main regularity in the distribution of precipitation on the territory of Ukraine is its decrease from the north and northwest to the south and southeast. The highest annual amounts of precipitation were observed in the Ukrainian Carpathians — 1,500 mm (the Plai plain — 1,663 mm) and the Crimean Mountains (1,000—1,200 mm), the lowest — on the Black Sea coast and in the Prysyvashsha (from 450—400 to 300 mm). In most of the territory, the average amount of precipitation varies from 650-600 mm in the west to 450-400 mm in the south and southeast. The main mass of them occurs in the warm period of the year, with the exception of the Southern coast of Crimea. In winter, precipitation occurs in the form of snow, almost on the entire territory of the country; the height of the snow cover is 10-30 cm, and in the mountains it reaches 40 cm.
It is assumed that in 50-100 years, the climate of Ukraine will become more arid, similar to Australia.
Watercourses and reservoirs
There are 63,119 rivers and streams with a total length of more than 206,000 km flowing on the territory of Ukraine, of which 3,302 are 10 km or more in length. Most of the rivers belong to the basin of the Black and Azov Seas, and only 2% of the territory of the water has a flow to the Baltic basin (Sian and the Western Bug with their tributaries). The main rivers are the Dnipro, the Siverskyi Donets, the Southern Bug, the Dniester, and the Danube.
There are about 20,000 lakes in the country, of which only 43 have an area of 10 km² or more. The largest lake of Ukrainian Polissia — Svityaz has an area of 27.5 km². Larger areas are brackish lakes of estuarine origin - Danube lakes (Yalpug - 149 km²), Black Sea lakes (artificially desalinated Kunduk (Sasyk) - 204.8 km²), Crimean lakes (Sasyk-Syvash salt lake - 71 km²). 1,157 reservoirs and 28,800 ponds were built in Ukraine. The largest reservoirs are on the Dnieper (Kremenchutsk, Kakhovske, Kyivske, Kanivske). The largest estuary is the Dniester estuary - 360 km². The saltiest is the Kuyalnytsky estuary — 157-227 ‰.
Landscapes and physical-geographical zoning
Within the borders of Ukraine, two classes of landscape complexes are distinguished based on the commonality of morphostructural features — plain, which occupies more than 93% of the territory, and mountainous. The main features of the landscape structure of the country are determined by its location mainly in the temperate zone. Elements of subtropical landscapes of the Mediterranean type are found only on the southern coast of Crimea.
The territory of Ukraine occupies the southwestern part of the Eastern European physiographic country with a clearly defined bioclimatic and landscape latitudinal zonation, parts of the Carpathian and Crimean mountainous physiographic countries. Plain Ukraine is covered by four natural zones: the zone of mixed forests (Polyssia), the zone of broad-leaved forests, the forest-steppe zone and the steppe zone.
In Ukraine, all protected areas are united in the Nature Reserve Fund of Ukraine, which includes more than 8,600 objects, which make up about 6.8% of the country's area.
The nature reserve fund of Ukraine includes territories or water areas that have a special nature conservation, scientific, aesthetic, recreational and other value and are allocated for the purpose of preserving the natural diversity of landscapes, the gene pool of animal and plant life, maintaining the general ecological balance and providing background monitoring of the natural environment. The objects of the nature reserve fund are protected by the legislation of Ukraine as national property with the establishment of special protection regimes.
The natural objects of the Nature Reserve Fund of Ukraine are divided into biosphere reserves, nature reserves, national nature parks, regional landscape parks, sanctuaries of various types, natural monuments and protected tracts. Reserves and national natural parks have the highest status and, in most cases, the largest area. There are 5 biosphere reserves in Ukraine (Ascania-Nova, Carpathian, Black Sea, Danube, Chornobyl), 19 natural reserves (the oldest Kaniv, Crimean, Ukrainian steppe, Polisky, Luhansk, Mys Martyan, Yalta mountain-forest, Karadaz) and 55 national natural parks (the oldest are Karpatskyi, Shatskyi, Synevyr).
Ukraine is one of the leading mineral-raw countries in the world. The
combination of structural elements of different ages (from the Archean
to the Cenozoic), which were formed as a result of the manifestation of
all the processes inherent in the formation of the earth's crust, caused
a wide range of minerals that make up the country's mineral and raw
material base. Ukraine, which occupies only 0.4% of the Earth's landmass
and is home to 0.8% of the planet's population, has 5% of the world's
mineral and raw material potential in its bowels.
In Ukraine, 20,000 deposits and manifestations of 111 types of minerals have been explored (according to UNIAN, there are 200 types of minerals, 120 of which are used by mankind today). Of them, 7,807 deposits of 94 types of minerals are of industrial importance and are taken into account in the State Balance of Reserves. Coal, oil and gas, iron and manganese ores, native sulfur, rock and potassium salts, non-mineral construction materials, mineral waters are of the greatest economic importance. Their deposits are in various geological regions of Ukraine. Ukraine is ahead of the Russian Federation, the USA, Great Britain, France, Germany, Canada and other countries in terms of explored reserves of some minerals. In particular, in terms of reserves and production of iron, manganese, titanium-zirconium ores, and many types of non-metallic raw materials, Ukraine at the end of the 20th century. took a leading place among the countries of Europe and the world.
The diversity of Ukraine's natural conditions, its location in
several natural zones with two seas, leads to a rather rich and unevenly
distributed biodiversity with a significant number of endemics,
primarily in the Crimean Mountains and the Carpathians.
More than 60,000 species of living creatures are common in Ukraine, including: more than 6,500 species of fungi and lichens, more than 4,900 species of algae, more than 760 species of bryophytes, more than 6,000 species of vascular plants, more than 1,200 species of protozoa, 33 species of sponges, 40 species of cnidarians, 3 species fins, 33 species of nemertines, about 30 species of bryozoans, 1 species of phoronids, 2 species of intrapods, about 1,300 species of flatworms, about 50 species of gastropods, about 600 species of rotifers, about 60 species of scrapers, 2 species of bristle-jaw worms, more than 400 species of annelids, more than 400 species of molluscs, more than 800 species of nematodes, 111 species of taropods, about 1,000 species of crustaceans, about 3,300 species of arachnids, about 140 species of centipedes, more than 500 species of gastropods, more than 35,000 species of insects, 14 species of echinoderms, 1 species of lanceolates, 9 species tunicates, more than 250 species of fish, about 20 species of amphibians, about 25 species of reptiles, more than 400 species of birds and about 120 species of mammals.
Natural vegetation covers about 30% of Ukraine, while the vast majority of it has been secondarily transformed by human activity. In particular, forests occupy about 14% of the country (15.6% together with forest belts), despite the fact that this indicator is 41% for Europe as a whole. Meadows, which mainly arose in Ukraine instead of forests as a result of cattle grazing and mowing and are used as pastures and hayfields, occupy about 9% of the country. The steppes, which naturally occupied about 40% of Ukrainian lands, were preserved on only 0.6% of the country's territory, mostly in protected areas. The area of swamps occupies about 1%, floodplains - about 1.6%, salt marshes - about 1%.
There are many endemics in Ukraine, mostly invertebrate animals and plants. Among the vertebrate animals of Ukraine, there are only 12 endemic species, in particular, the sand slyak and Podilsky slyak, common in the Black Sea and Podil steppes, as well as Lindholm's lizard, common in the Crimean mountains.
Many species have inhabited the natural territories of Ukraine as a result of human activity and are invasive. Some of them were deliberately acclimatized by man, for example, hunting species such as raccoon dog, American mink, muskrat, spotted deer, mouflon, common pheasant, etc. At the same time, much more species were introduced to Ukraine unintentionally, or spread independently as a result of climatic changes. Many of these species, in particular those introduced intentionally, are pests of the economy and are capable of harming natural ecosystems and in some places displacing local rare species. Among the most harmful invasive species of Ukraine are the gray rat, the Colorado potato beetle, the chestnut passing moth, the varroa mite, the Spanish slug, the rapana, the mnemiopsis ribwort, the ragweed, the common robinia, the narrow-leaved olive tree, etc.
A significant number of species disappeared in Ukraine during the last centuries due to the destruction of their habitat by humans. One of the most striking examples is the saiga steppe antelope, which was one of the most widespread species of ungulates in Ukraine, but completely disappeared here at the end of the 19th century due to the destruction of the steppes and hunting. Also among the most notable species that have completely disappeared in Ukraine during the last centuries are tarpan, wolverine, monk seal, common flying fox, alpine marmot, yellow gopher, steppe shrew, etc. The bison was exterminated in Ukraine in the 17th century, but since 1965 it has been reintroduced in the Carpathians and Polissia.
In Ukraine, the main document on the protection of biodiversity is the Red Book of Ukraine, which contains a list of rare, vulnerable and endangered species of animal and plant life within the country, as well as general information about the current state of these species and measures for their preservation. Species listed in the Red Book of Ukraine are subject to protection throughout the territory of Ukraine, within its continental shelf and exclusive marine economic zone. It is regulated by the Law of Ukraine "On the Red Book of Ukraine". Since 2021, 1,544 species have been listed in the Red Book of Ukraine, of which 687 are animals and 857 are flora. State management, regulation and control of conservation of species listed in the Red Book of Ukraine is carried out by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine and subordinate structures. Scientific maintenance of the Red Book of Ukraine is carried out by the National Commission on the Red Book of Ukraine, which is established on the basis of the Institute of Zoology and the Institute of Botany of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, which are leading centers for the study of biodiversity of Ukraine.
The first archaeoanthropists appeared on the territory of modern Ukraine in the early Paleolithic era, more than 900-800 thousand years ago. People of the modern type — Homo sapiens (Cro-Magnons) were formed in the Upper Paleolithic period, more than 40,000-35,000 years ago. They were representatives of the Caucasian race, hunter-gatherers, who had a tribal organization. One of the cult centers of the Cro-Magnons was the natural remnant of the Stone Tomb. More than 10,000 years ago, the glacier melted, which contributed to the increase in population. The landscape division of Ukraine into forest, forest-steppe and steppe zones was stabilized, and a soil cover close to the modern one was formed. The crisis of appropriating economy gradually forced people to start reproductive forms: agriculture and cattle breeding. With the appearance of ceramics came the Neolithic period, which lasted from the 7th to the 5th and 3rd millennia BC on the territory of modern Ukraine. is.
From the end of the 5th to the beginning of the 3rd millennium BC the Eneolithic period lasted in Ukraine. Economic specialization by natural and climatic zones became more pronounced: pastoralism in the steppe, agriculture in the forest-steppe, and hunting in the forest belt. The central archaeological culture on the territory of Ukraine of the Eneolithic period was the Trypil culture (4000-2100 BC), the bearers of which were the first to achieve significant success in the development of the economy, technology, and development of new lands on the lands of modern Ukraine — they created settlements proto-cities, examples of monumental architecture and applied art, symbolic systems, mythology engraved in material monuments, complex social structures. The decline of the Trypil culture was marked by the consolidation of pastoralists and the appearance of the Yamna culture (2800-2300 BC) of the Bronze Age, the bearers of which scientists see as Aryans-Indo-Europeans. They covered the territory from Crimea to Kyiv Polissia. On the basis of this culture, the Catacomb culture (2300-1300 BC) appears in South-Eastern Ukraine, whose carriers were in contact with the farming culture of lace ceramics (2300-1700 BC), which occupied the territory of North-Western Ukraine. The catacomb culture was replaced by the Zrubna culture (1700-1300 BC), which is associated with Iranian-speaking tribes of herders, and the culture of lace ceramics on the territory of Ukraine was replaced by the Tshinets culture (1700-1200 BC), which was developed are associated with the Proto-Slavic-Baltic community of farmers. In the XII-X centuries BC the territory of Ukraine remained divided between different cultural communities. Northern forests in the west were occupied by Proto-Slavs, and in the east by Proto-Ugric people; Thracian-Illyrian tribes lived in the forest-steppe, and North Iranian tribes lived in the steppe.
In the 10th century to n. e. nomadic tribes of Cimmerians appear on the territory of Ukraine. They were displaced by the Scythians (VII-III centuries BC), who created one of the most powerful states of that time. In the III century to n. e. the Scythians were replaced by the Sarmatians. This union of related tribes lasted until the IV century. N. e, when they were displaced by the Huns, who later gave impetus to the great resettlement of peoples. In parallel with these tribes, starting from the VII century the Greeks found their city-colonies in the Northern Black Sea: Tyre, Olbia, Panticapae, Chersonesos, and later the Bosporus state.
Starting from the 9th century, the Ukrainian lands became the center of the Russian land, led by Kyiv Polyana. In 882, Kyiv was captured by the Varangian prince Oleg (882-912), who proclaimed it the "mother of Russian cities" and established the power of the Varangian Rurik dynasty. During the reign of Princess Olga (945-965), her son Svyatoslav the Brave (965-972), grandson of Volodymyr the Great (980-1015) and great-grandson of Yaroslav the Wise (1019-1054), the territory of the Russian state expanded through the conquest by Kyiv of the neighboring East Slavic, Baltic and Finno-Ugric tribes.
It was the largest state in Europe, the area of which reached 1.5 million km2. The borders of Kyivan Rus in the north lay in the areas of Chudsky Lake, the Gulf of Finland of the Baltic Sea, Ladoga and Onega Lakes; in the west — in the area of the headwaters of the Dniester, Carpathians, Western Bug, Niman and Western Dvina; in the south - Sula, Don, Rosi and Southern Bug; in the east - the Volga and its tributaries the Oka. Lands and ethnic principalities, where local princes used to rule, were handed over to the Rurikovs. In 988, during the reign of Volodymyr, the Ruthenians adopted Christianity from Byzantium, which determined the civilizational affiliation of the Ukrainian lands for the following millennia, and European monarchies began to reckon with it. But the process of feudal fragmentation in the 11th and 13th centuries led to the weakening of Russia, the main centers of power from Kyiv moved to the northeast, to the Oka, to the Volodymyr principality, where in the future the Muscovite principality arose, and then the Muscovite kingdom, and also to the west, to the cities Halych and Volodymyr.
Also, on the territory of modern Ukraine, such great principalities as Chernihivske (on the Desna), Pereyaslavske (modern Poltava region), Turovo-Pinske (on Polissia) existed for a certain time.
In the 1240s, Russia was devastated by the Mongol Empire, and most of the Russian principalities became dependent on it.
After the decline of Kyivan Rus, the political, economic and cultural
center of the Ukrainian lands moved to the Galicia-Volyn state. It
included Volyn, Halychyna, Beresteyshchyna, Kholmshchyna, Pidlyashsia,
Belzhshchyna, Turovo-Pinshchyna, Black Rus, Western Kyivshchyna, and
Transcarpathia. Independent principalities in Galicia, where the
Rostislavichs ruled, arose starting from 1084 with centers in Przemyśl,
Terebovl and Zvenyhorod. In 1141, Volodymyrko Volodarovich united them
into a single Galician principality, which reached its peak during the
reign of Yaroslav Osmomysl.
In 1199, Roman the Great united Galicia and Volhynia into a single Galicia-Volhynia state. In 1245, his son and heir Danylo, during whose reign the Tatar-Mongol invasion occurred, recognized his dependence on the Golden Horde, but hoping for the help of Catholic Europe in the struggle for independence, concluded secret alliances with Poland, Hungary, Mazovia and the Teutonic Order, and In 1253, he accepted the sign of the autocrat - the crown of the King of Russia from Pope Innocent IV.
Around 1256, after the victories over the Kuremsa Mongols, Danylo founded the city of Lviv. In 1259, due to the lack of military assistance from the West, the king re-acknowledged the supremacy of the Horde. His successor, Leo I, constantly took part in the campaigns of the Hordes in Poland and Lithuania. In 1303, Danilov's grandson, King Yuriy I, achieved the establishment of the Galician Metropolis. In 1308, the state passed to his sons Andriy and Leo II, who started the fight against the Golden Horde in alliance with the Teutonic knights and Mazovian princes. However, after their death, the last monarch Yuri II again recognized himself as a vassal of the Golden Horde. In 1340, his murder gave Poland and Lithuania, neighbors who had dynastic rights to the Russian throne, a reason to start a war for the Galician-Volhynian inheritance. In 1392, Halychyna with Belz land and Kholm region finally entered the Polish kingdom, and Volhynia - into the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, which even earlier had mastered the lands of the Kyiv and Chernihiv principalities. At the same time, the southern Ukrainian lands were part of the Golden Horde and later the Crimean Khanate, formed in 1447, and Transcarpathia was part of Hungary.
As part of the Lithuanian-Russian and Polish states
In the 14th century, the Lithuanian princes from the Gediminovich dynasty successfully took advantage of the beginning of the decline of the Golden Horde and began the collection and redistribution of the Russian lands devastated in the middle of the 13th century by the invasion of Batia. The ratio of Slavic and actually Lithuanian lands within the Grand Duchy of Lithuania in 1341 was 2.5 to 1, and in 1430 it was already 12 to 1. Prince Gedimin began the annexation of Russian lands to Lithuania, in particular by capturing Kyiv in 1322 after the victory in the Battle of Irpin river. In 1340, Prince Lubart annexed Volhynia to Lithuania. The main mass of Ukrainian lands was annexed to Lithuania during the reign of Olgerd, who annexed Chernihiv-Siversky (1357-1358), Podilsky (1363) and Kyiv lands (1362-1363). New lands were annexed both through conquest and through peaceful initiatives (agreements, marriage and family alliances), with the predominance of the latter.
Since 1398, the Lithuanian state has been called the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, Russia and Zhemaitia.
Although the state was ruled by Lithuanian princely dynasties, powerful positions in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania were occupied by numerous Russian (Ukrainian) princely families, which were more numerous than Lithuanian ones, and also a large part of the army at all levels was occupied by Russian soldiers and commanders. Russian soldiers occupied prominent positions in the army of the Polish kingdom, which since 1392 included Galicia and some other western Ukrainian lands. In particular, for example, in the Battle of Grunwald (1410), where Polish and Lithuanian troops together defeated the Teutonic Order, the Russian knight Ivanko Sushik from the city of Romaniv near Lviv won fame and lands from King Jagail for his exploits. Among the Russian (Ukrainian) princely families of the Lithuanian state, the Volyn families of Ostrozki and Vyshnevetski were especially famous, influential and wealthy. Prince Konstantin Ostrozky (1460-1530) was one of the most successful commanders of the Lithuanian state, the first to win the title of Great Hetman of Lithuania for the victory over the Tatar army near Ochakov in 1497. In 1514, in the Battle of Orsha, the Lithuanian-Russian army led by Konstantin Ostrozky defeated the Muscovite army of Basil III, stopping the capture of Russian lands by Muscovy.
It was within the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, under the influence of Lithuanian military traditions, that the Ukrainian Cossacks first arose. Although Cossacks were generally supported by the Lithuanian elite in the first stages of their emergence, these were arbitrary processes for the sake of defense against nomads, and not a purposeful organization by the state. The growing number of Cossack warbands and their raids on the lands of the Crimean Khanate created constant tension in the relations between the Lithuanian princes and the Khan. In 1556, Volyn prince Dmytro Vyshnevetskyi founded a fortress on the island of Mala Khortytsia to fight against nomads. This became the forerunner of the subsequent creation of the first Cossack sich.
In 1569, the Lithuanian and Polish states were united into a single Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, and the Russian princely families of the Lithuanian state mostly retained their influence at that time. In 1576, Prince Konstantin Vasyl of Ostrozka, mainly with the patronage of his noble princess Halshka Ostrozka, founded the Ostrozka Academy, the oldest higher educational institution in Ukraine.
In the 15th century, in the southeast of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, in the Dnieper region, communities arose that began to call themselves Cossacks. Their separation was connected with the formation of groups of soldiers who defended these lands in the "wild steppes" of Zaporozhye from the attacks of the steppe peoples. Since the 16th century, Zaporozhye Sich became a military center of the Cossacks. The Cossacks of the Zaporizhzhya Army formed a separate social class that participated in wars on the side of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth: the Livonian War of 1558-1583, the Polish-Moscow War of 1605-1618, the Khotyn War of 1620-1621, and the Smolensk War of 1632-1634. In addition, the Cossacks independently went on marauding expeditions to Moldova, Muscovy, the Crimean Khanate, the Black Sea coast of Bulgaria and Asia Minor, and were also actively engaged in mercenary activities, especially during the Thirty Years' War of 1618-1648. The most successful Cossack commander of the mentioned wars and campaigns was the hetman of the registered Cossacks Petro Konashevich-Sagaidachny. Due to legal and social oppression by the nobility, the Cossacks repeatedly raised uprisings, the largest of which were the Kosynsky Uprising of 1591-1593, the Nalyvaiko Uprising of 1594-1596, the Zhmail Uprising of 1625, the Fedorovych Uprising of 1630, the Sulima Uprising of 1635, the Pavlyuk Uprising of 1637 and Ostryanin uprising in 1638. Cossacks repeatedly defended the rights of the Ukrainian population, which was subjected to religious and national oppression in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.
Since 1615, there was a fraternal school in Kyiv, which in 1632 was reorganized by Metropolitan Pyotr Mohyla into the Kyiv-Brother College and which in 1658 received the status of an academy. The Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, and earlier the collegium, was the leading educational institution of Ukraine in the 17th and 18th centuries, had the support of the Zaporizhzhya Army, and from the first half of the 17th century, a large part of the Cossack elders studied there, in particular a number of hetmans and their closest entourage.
In the years 1648-1657, the Cossacks under the leadership of Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytskyi raised a great uprising in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, the result of which was the creation of a self-governing Ukrainian state in the Transdnieper region - the Zaporizhzhya Army, or the Hetmanship. In 1654, in order to continue the war with the Poles, Cossack Ukraine accepted the protectorate of the Moscow tsar, and in 1656, due to the signing of a separate peace by the Muscovites, it concluded an alliance with Sweden and Transylvania. In 1657, after the election of Ivan Vyhovskyi as the new hetman, an anti-hetman uprising broke out in Ukraine, which developed into the Cossack-Muscovite war. Despite the Hetman's victory at Konotop in 1659, he lost the support of the Cossack elders due to the alliance with the Poles.
The period of Cossack strife began - the ruins, as a result of which the Cossack state split along the Dnieper into Left Bank, Right Bank and Zaporozhye. Right-bank Ukraine came under the rule of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, and Left-bank and Zaporozhye — under the influence of Muscovy. In 1667, this division was approved by the Peace of Andrusiv.
In 1672, the Buchach Treaty stated the existence of Ukraine and Ukrainian statehood in Polish and Turkish.
Cossack attempts to unify Ukraine under the leadership of Hetman Petro Doroshenko with the help of the Ottoman Empire in 1672-1676 ended in defeat and consolidation of the previous division. In 1689, Muscovy and the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth finally divided the Hetmanship. At the end of the 17th century, the Poles eliminated the remnants of Cossack sovereignty on the Right Bank, and the Muscovites gradually abolished it on the Left Bank.
In 1709, during the Great Northern War, the Cossacks, led by Hetman Ivan Mazepa, entered into an alliance with Sweden, trying to free themselves from Moscow's rule, but were defeated at Poltava. In 1710, the defeated Cossacks led by Hetman Pylyp Orlyk adopted the first Cossack Constitution in exile. After Mazepa's uprising, the Muscovite state, transformed into the Russian Empire, set a course for the complete elimination of Cossack autonomy in Ukraine. In 1754, the Russians eliminated the Ukrainian-Russian customs border, and in 1764 they abolished the hetmanship, giving the last hetman, Kyril Razumovsky, the decorative title of field marshal. In 1775, the Zaporizhzhya Sich was destroyed, in 1781, the Cossack system in Ukraine was abolished, and in 1783, Ukrainian free peasants were enshrined.
The state of the Crimean Tatars, one of the indigenous peoples of Ukraine, was the Crimean Khanate, or the Crimean throne, which existed in the southern Ukrainian lands in 1441-1783 during the reign of the Girei dynasty.
The state had a state-representative system, the main religion was Islam.
It occupied the territory of the Crimea, the steppes of the Northern Black Sea region between the Dniester and Don rivers, as well as the lands of the northern Kuban.
It was founded by Haji I Gerai in 1441 as a result of the political disintegration of the Golden Horde. In 1478, during the reign of his son Mengli I, it recognized the Ottoman Sultan as the caliph of Sunni Muslims. It held in vassal dependence the nomads of the Nogai, Budzhak, Yedisan, Perekop hordes, the small Nogais of the Kuban, and the Circassians of the North Caucasus.
In 1659, Mehmed IV Geray supported Hetman Ivan Vyhovsky in the battle of Konotop, 40 thousand Crimean Tatar horsemen together with 20 thousand Cossacks and 4 thousand Polish mercenaries won a decisive victory over 100 thousand Muscovites led by Oleksiy Trubetsky.
It was severely damaged during the Russian-Ottoman war of 1735-1739. In 1774, it gained full independence from both the Ottoman Empire and Russia as a result of another defeat of the Ottoman Empire against Russia, which was confirmed in writing by a peace treaty.
In 1783, the Russian Empire violated the treaty and annexed the Crimean Khanate as a result of Potemkin's military campaign. Of the great powers, only France came out with an open protest against this act.
After the last division of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in 1795, Ukrainian lands were divided between Austria-Hungary and Russia. The first received Galicia, Bukovyna and Transcarpathia, and the second received the rest of Ukraine.
From the end of the 18th century, under the influence of European romanticism and nationalism, the Ukrainian national movement gained new development in Ukrainian lands. In 1798, Ivan Kotlyarevskyi published the burlesque poem "Aeneid", the main theme of which was the restoration of the Cossack state. This work was the first work of Ukrainian literature written in colloquial Ukrainian, and served as a stimulus for the revival of Ukrainian national traditions. In 1806, Kharkiv University was founded, which became the center of Ukrainian studies. In 1825, the "History of the Rus" was written, which had an impact on the formation of the Ukrainian humanitarian intelligentsia. In 1834, Kyiv University was founded, which, like Kharkiv University, became one of the centers of Ukrainian studies. In the 1840s, Taras Shevchenko became a wake-up call for Ukrainian national consciousness, whose poetry gained popularity among broad strata of Ukrainian society — from Volyn to the Kuban. Among the most famous figures of Ukrainian culture of the imperial period were Hryhoriy Kvitka-Osnovyanenko, Mykola Kostomarov, Panteleimon Kulish, Marko Vovchok, Ivan Franko, Olga Kobylyanska, Mykhailo Kotsyubynskyi, Lesya Ukrainka, Vasyl Stefanyk, etc.
The Ukrainian national revival was perceived as hostile by the imperial leadership of Russia. The Russian government took a course for the complete linguistic and cultural assimilation of the non-Russian peoples of the European part of the empire, the instrument of which was the policy of Russification of the Ukrainian people. For this purpose, the Russian authorities issued official bans on the use of the Ukrainian language, in particular the Valuev circular of 1863 and the Ems decree of 1873.
In 1917, the February Revolution in Russia overthrew the monarchy and gave rise to the republican Provisional Government. An echo of these events was the formation of the Central Rada in Kyiv on March 17, headed by Professor Mykhailo Hrushevskyi. On November 20, after the Bolshevik coup in Russia, the Central Rada, as a representative body of Ukraine, proclaimed the creation of the autonomous Ukrainian People's Republic (UNR), and on January 22, 1918, due to the outbreak of the Ukrainian-Bolshevik war, it proclaimed its independence. Within a month, the Ukrainian government signed a treaty in Brest-Litovsk with the German and Austro-Hungarian empires, with their help, it freed Ukraine from the Bolsheviks. However, on April 29, as a result of a coup d'état by Ukrainian monarchist forces, the Central Rada government was replaced by Hetman Pavlo Skoropadskyi. The republic was renamed "Ukrainian State"
Skoropadsky's regime lasted until November, when his main allies, the Germans, capitulated in the First World War. On December 14, the uprising of the Directory led by Simon Petliura and Volodymyr Vynnychenko overthrew the Hetmanate and restored the Republic. However, the retreat of the Germans allowed the Russian Bolsheviks to resume hostilities. On January 6, 1919, they created a puppet state in Kharkiv - the Ukrainian Socialist Soviet Republic, on whose behalf they started the war. During 1919-1920, Ukrainian republicans, Bolsheviks, Russian nationalists with the support of Great Britain, France and Poland, Ukrainian anarchists led by Nestor Makhn, and Ukrainian partisans fought for control over Ukraine. The struggle ended with the victory of the Bolshevik forces and the establishment of Soviet control in Central, Eastern and Southern Ukraine.
In parallel with this, in connection with the disintegration of Austria-Hungary, on October 19, 1918, the Ukrainians of Halychyna, Bukovyna and Transcarpathia proclaimed the creation of the Western Ukrainian People's Republic (ZUNR) with the capital in Lviv. However, on November 1 of the same year, it was attacked by Poland, starting the Ukrainian-Polish war. The attacker was supported by the Entente countries — Great Britain, France, the Kingdom of Romania and Hungary, while Western Ukrainians were in international isolation. In search of an ally, the ZUNR government turned to the UNR for help and on January 22, 1919, united with it into a single state. However, the Directory was busy with the war with the Bolsheviks and could not send troops. As a result, by mid-July 1919, the Poles occupied Galicia, the Romanians occupied Bukovyna, and the Czechs occupied Transcarpathia. In April 1920, the Soviet-Polish war broke out over the possession of Western Ukraine. It ended on March 18, 1921 with the Peace of Riga, which secured Poland's right to Ukrainian Galicia and Volhynia.
Ukraine under Soviet rule (1920s–1930s)
On December 30, 1922, the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic concluded an agreement on the formation of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) together with the Bolshevik republics of Russia, Belarus, and Transcaucasia. According to this treaty, all the national republics of the new Union were equal, but after the adoption of the Constitution of the USSR in 1936, a centralized management system was chosen, in which the national states were transformed into autonomies within Russia.
During the years 1923-1933, the government of the USSR and the Communist Party conducted a course of Ukrainization in the Ukrainian SSR, aimed at strengthening the position of the Bolsheviks. By expanding the sphere of application of the Ukrainian language in education, science, mass media, the army and the party, the Bolsheviks tried to reduce the degree of hostility of Ukrainians to the Soviet government. But already in 1930, on the initiative of the Bolshevik governor in Ukraine Lazar Kaganovych, a campaign of sharp criticism of Ukrainization and its supporters began. In 1933, the Bolsheviks branded the course as a "nationalist bend", began mass repressions against the Ukrainian intelligentsia and renewed the Russification course. As a result of Stalin's repressions, especially during the Great Terror, millions of Ukrainians, including thousands of figures of Ukrainian culture and science, were executed or sent to labor camps for political reasons. The destruction by the Soviet authorities in the 1930s of more than 200 Ukrainian writers and artists, mostly people whose activity peaked in the 1920s and early 1930s, made this generation of Ukrainian culture known as the Shot Renaissance. Among the most famous victims were Les Kurbas, Mykola Kulish, Mykola Zerov, Hnat Khotkevich, Mykhailo Semenko, Mike Johansen, Valerian Pidmohylnyi, Mykhailo Boychuk, Sofia Nalepynska-Boichuk.
In the economic sphere of Ukraine, the communists carried out the so-called "collectivization" of agriculture and intensified "industrialization", which was accompanied by the forced transfer of large masses of the population from villages to cities.
In 1932-1933, in order to "collectivize" the economy and suppress the Ukrainian liberation movement, the center of which was a Ukrainian village, the Soviet authorities organized an artificial famine on the territory of the USSR. It also affected regions of other Soviet republics where Ukrainians lived compactly, particularly the Kuban. According to various estimates, as a result of the Holodomor, the Ukrainian population lost from 4 million to 12 million people. He destroyed the Ukrainian village and, as a result, the traditional value system in the Dnipro region, Slobozhan region, Zaporozhye and Kuban. The Holodomor is recognized as genocide and a crime against humanity at the international level.
Ukrainian lands included in Poland, Romania, and Czechoslovakia
The 1920s and 1930s in the western Ukrainian lands became the time of formation of the anti-Polish liberation movement, which later took shape in the organizational structure of the OUN.
Second World War
On August 23, 1939, the USSR and Germany concluded a non-aggression pact and the distribution of spheres of influence in Eastern Europe. On September 1, the Germans attacked Poland from the west, and on September 17, the Soviet Union attacked from the east. As a result of this operation, Western Volhynia and Halychyna, populated mainly by Ukrainians, were annexed to the Ukrainian SSR. After the German occupation of France, on June 28, 1940, the USSR carried out an operation against Romania. Thanks to this, Northern Bukovina and Bujak were returned to the Ukrainian SSR, but part of Transnistria, which became part of the Moldavian SSR, was rejected. On July 14, 1940, Red Army troops occupied the Baltic states, and on June 1, 1941, the Germans captured the Balkans. Germany and the USSR got common borders.
On December 18, 1940, Germany approved the Barbarossa plan and on June 22, 1941, attacked the USSR. The war between these states lasted four years and was fought largely on the territory of Ukraine. Italy, Hungary, Romania, Croatia, Bulgaria, Slovakia and Finland took part in the conflict on the side of Germany.
On June 30, 1941, Yaroslav Stetsko proclaimed the Act of Restoration of the Ukrainian State in Lviv occupied by Nazi troops. Soon he and Stepan Bandera ended up in Sachsenhausen concentration camp.
On September 19, 1941, the attackers captured Kyiv and the Right Bank, on October 24, Kharkiv and the Left Bank, and in June-July 1942, Crimea and the Kuban. In February 1943, the USSR was able to stop the onslaught of the enemy near Stalingrad, and in August of the same year, it intercepted the offensive initiative after the victory on the Kursk arc. On November 6, 1943, Soviet troops captured Kyiv, and in April-May 1944, they established Soviet control over the Right Bank and Crimea. At the end of August 1944, the USSR occupied Western Ukraine and began an offensive against the German-occupied countries of Central Europe. On May 2, Soviet troops captured the German capital Berlin. On May 8, the war ended with the surrender of Germany. As a result of the victory of the USSR, its role in the international arena increased. A number of pro-Soviet regimes were created in the countries of Central Europe.
The German-Soviet confrontation was accompanied by cruelty, large-scale destruction of settlements, destruction of large groups of the population, deportations, removal of the population. From 8 to 10 million residents of Ukraine became victims of this war. In this war, Ukrainians fought mainly on the side of the USSR in the Red Army, certain formations, such as the Galicia division, on the side of Germany. Some Ukrainians fought as part of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), which fought for Ukraine independent from Soviet and Nazi rule.
Thaw. Stagnation. Reconstruction
In 1945, the Ukrainian SSR became one of the founding members of the United Nations. The first computer of the Soviet MESM was built at the Kyiv Institute of Electrical Engineering and began functioning in 1950.
Post-war ethnic cleansing occurred with the new expansion of the Soviet Union. According to statistics, as of January 1, 1953, Ukrainians were second in the list among adult "special immigrants", which includes 20% of the total. In addition to Ukrainians, over 450,000 ethnic Germans from the Ukrainian SSR and over 200,000 Crimean Tatars became victims of forced deportation.
The Ukrainian SSR was heavily destroyed during the war, more than 700 cities and 28,000 villages were destroyed, so reconstruction required significant efforts. The situation was complicated by the post-war famine of 1946-1947, which was caused by drought and military destruction of infrastructure. He took tens of thousands of lives.
After Stalin's death in 1953, Nikita Khrushchev became the first secretary of the Central Committee of the CPSU. As the first secretary of the Communist Party of the Ukrainian SSR in 1938-1949, Khrushchev was deeply familiar with the republic, and after coming to all-Union power, he began to emphasize the friendship between the Ukrainian and Russian peoples. In 1954, the 300th anniversary of the Pereyaslav Rada was widely celebrated and, in particular, Crimea was transferred from the RSFSR to the Ukrainian SSR.
Already by 1950, the republic completely surpassed the pre-war level of industry and production. In 1946-1950, almost 20% of the Soviet budget of the five-year plan was invested in Soviet Ukraine. As a result, the Ukrainian labor force increased by 33.2% from 1940 to 1955, while the volume of industrial production increased by 2.2 times during the same period. Soviet Ukraine soon became a European leader in the field of industrial production, an important center of Soviet military industry and high-tech research. Such an important role was determined and supplemented by the significant influence of the local elite.
As a result of the temporary easing of Soviet repressions during the Khrushchev thaw from the late 1950s to the 1970s, a literary, artistic and socio-political trend among the intelligentsia was formed in Ukraine, which was called the Sixties. The sixties were an internal moral opposition to the Soviet totalitarian state regime. At the core of the worldview principles of the sixties were recognition of freedom, ideas of humanism and anthropocentrism. Among the most famous representatives of the sixties were the writers Lina Kostenko, Grihir Tyutyunnyk, Vasyl Simonenko, Ivan Drach, Vasyl Stus, literary critics Ivan Svitlichnyi, Ivan Dzyuba, artists Alla Gorska, Galina Sevruk, film artists Yuriy Illenko, Ivan Mykolaichuk, publicists Vyacheslav Chornovil, Valery Marchenko and others. After the resumption of pressure and repression by the Soviet regime, part of the sixties made a partial compromise with the authorities, others chose the path of open opposition to the totalitarian regime and became part of the dissident movement, whose representatives openly criticized the Soviet government and were in fact in opposition to it. A significant event of the dissident movement in the Ukrainian SSR was the creation of the human rights Ukrainian Helsinki group in 1976, among the most famous founders of which were Mykola Rudenko and Levko Lukyanenko. Dissidents were subjected to political repression by the Soviet authorities, many were imprisoned for long periods. Subsequently, in 1991, dissidents Levko Lukyanenko, Vyacheslav Chornovil and Mykhailo Horyn became the authors of the Act of Proclamation of Independence of Ukraine.
Declaration of independence, presidencies of Kravchuk and Kuchma
On July 16, 1990, the Verkhovna Rada of the Ukrainian SSR adopted the Declaration on State Sovereignty, which marked the beginning of the confrontation between the governments of the USSR and the Ukrainian SSR. On August 19, 1991, in Moscow, communist-conservatives made an unsuccessful coup d'état attempt to restore the power of the party. After the failure of the putschists, on August 24, 1991, the Verkhovna Rada of the Ukrainian SSR adopted the Act of Proclamation of Independence of Ukraine. This act was supported by 90.32% of Ukrainians at the All-Ukrainian referendum on December 1, 1991. This marked the emergence of the independent state of Ukraine. On the same day, the first presidential elections were held, in which the chairman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, head of the ideological department, secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Ukraine, Leonid Kravchuk, won in 1988-1990. On December 8 in Bialowieza Pushcha and on December 21 in Alma-Ata, the leaders of Ukraine, Belarus and Russia confirmed the dissolution of the USSR and formed the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). Although the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine never ratified the accession, that is, Ukraine was never a member of the CIS.
Ukraine was initially viewed as a republic with favorable economic conditions, however, the country experienced a deeper economic downturn than some of the other former Soviet republics. During the recession, Ukraine lost 60% of its GDP from 1991 to 1999 and suffered from five-digit inflation rates. Dissatisfied with economic conditions, as well as the number of crimes and the level of corruption, Ukrainians protested and organized strikes.
In 1996, the Constitution of Ukraine was adopted, which contributed to the stabilization of the political system and at the same time concentrated most of the power in the hands of the then President Leonid Kuchma. In September of the same year, a monetary reform was carried out and a new currency, the hryvnia, was introduced. The Ukrainian economy stabilized by the end of the 1990s, and since 2000 it has started to grow, on average by 7% annually.
The Orange Revolution, the presidencies of Yushchenko and Yanukovych
In 2004, the second round of the presidential elections took place with massive systematic falsifications in favor of the pro-government candidate Viktor Yanukovych. This led to the beginning of the all-Ukrainian protest, which was called the "Orange Revolution". The Supreme Court of Ukraine annulled the decision of the Central Election Commission on Viktor Yanukovych's election victory and ordered a re-vote, as a result of which Viktor Yushchenko was elected president. Yanukovych returned to power in 2006 when he became prime minister under the Anti-Crisis Coalition, which led to early parliamentary elections in September 2007. In 2010, Yanukovych was elected president and formed a new government headed by Mykola Azarov. On April 21, Viktor Yanukovych signed an agreement with the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Medvedev to extend the stay of the Black Sea Fleet of the Russian Federation in Sevastopol until 2042. On October 11, 2011, the Pechersk Court of Kyiv sentenced the former Prime Minister of Ukraine and Yanukovych's main opponent in the presidential elections, Yulia Tymoshenko, to seven years in prison.
The Revolution of Dignity, the Russian-Ukrainian War and Poroshenko's Presidency
Dissatisfaction with Yanukovych's rule resulted in numerous protests during 2010-2013, including "Tax Maidan", "Ukraine against Yanukovych", protests in Vradiivka, etc., and on November 21, 2013, the Cabinet of Ministers refused to sign the agreement on the association of Ukraine with the EU, previously planned for during the Eastern Partnership summit led to thousands of protest actions, which were held by EU supporters on the eve of the upcoming presidential elections, which were called Euromaidan and the "Revolution of Dignity": after joining the protesters, who fundamentally opposed the violent violation of the civil rights of Ukrainians. The forceful dispersal of protesters (mainly students) in Kyiv on the night of November 30 caused hundreds of thousands (according to some estimates, about a million) to take to the streets on December 1, demanding the resignation of the Azarov government and the president himself. The development of the conflict reached its climax on February 18-20, 2014, when as a result of the confrontation between security forces and protesters in the center of Kyiv, more than a hundred people died, 1500 were injured, and hundreds are considered missing. As a result of those events, on February 22, the Verkhovna Rada suspended the President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych from his duties and called early presidential elections for May 25, 2014. From February 23, 2014, the Verkhovna Rada appointed Oleksandr Turchynov to perform the duties of the President of Ukraine temporarily, until the election of the President (the day before, he was also elected Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine instead of V. Rybak).
Taking advantage of the political crisis, the Russian special services inspired numerous anti-state demonstrations in the cities of Crimea (since February 23, 2014), and soon in the east of Ukraine. In Crimea, the so-called "self-defense units" were instantly created (as it turned out later, they consisted of mercenaries imported from Russia the day before), which incited the capture of state institutions, and together with Russian servicemen (who at that time were without insignia on their clothes and equipment) began to block military units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on the peninsula. During the clashes, a number of servicemen of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and public pro-Ukrainian activists died. The Russians also blocked ships of the Ukrainian Navy in Crimea and the land entrances to the peninsula. On March 16, an illegitimate referendum was held, which, according to the Russian authorities, legalized the seizure of Ukrainian territory.
After the annexation of Crimea, Russian leaders led by Vladimir Putin tried to declare South-Eastern Ukraine a Russian territory and since April 2014 they have been trying to implement a Crimean scenario on these lands. At the beginning of April, state institutions were seized in Donetsk and Luhansk, similar attempts took place in some other cities, in particular, in Kharkiv (April 7, 2014) and Odesa (April 22, 2014). And already on April 12, a military unit of Russian fighters captured the cities of Sloviansk and Kramatorsk. V. o. President Oleksandr Turchynov announced the beginning of the anti-terrorist operation (ATO). In the captured territories, pro-Russian terrorists declared Donetsk (04.06.2014) and Luhansk (04.27.2014) people's republics, fully controlled by Moscow, which financed all this and organized the supply of weapons, PMM and fighters here. During May-August 2014, the Armed Forces of Ukraine, together with volunteer battalions, managed to liberate a large area from the invaders and almost surround Donetsk. However, the sudden direct invasion of the armed forces of the Russian Federation near Ilovaisk allowed the Kremlin to save the so-called "DPR" and "LPR" and freeze the conflict.
On January 1, 2016, Ukraine joined the Free Trade Area with the EU. Ukrainian citizens received visa-free travel to the Schengen area for up to 90 days in any 180-day period on June 11, 2017, and the Association Agreement officially entered into force on September 1, 2017.
The Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce satisfied Naftogaz's demands for reimbursement of gas supplies for transit that were not supplied by Gazprom. According to the Stockholm arbitration, Naftogaz was awarded $4.63 billion in compensation for Gazprom's failure to supply agreed volumes of gas for transit. According to the results of two arbitration proceedings in Stockholm, Gazprom had to pay (and later paid) 2.56 billion dollars in favor of Naftogaz.
On November 25, 2018, the Kerch Strait Incident occurred, when the coast guard of the Federal Security Service of Russia (FSB) fired on and seized three vessels of the Navy of Ukraine that were trying to pass from the Black Sea to the Sea of Azov through the Kerch Strait on their way to the port of Mariupol.
In 2018, the process of granting autocephaly to the Kyiv Metropolitanate from the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew (Tomos) began, which was received on January 6, 2019 at Fener, which was preceded by the Unification Council, which formed the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.
On February 21, 2019, amendments were made to the Constitution of Ukraine, the rules on Ukraine's strategic course for membership in the European Union and NATO were enshrined in the preamble of the Basic Law, three articles and transitional provisions.
Zelenskyi's presidency (since 2019)
On March 2, 2020, the first case of infection with COVID-19 was confirmed in Chernivtsi. Subsequently, quarantine was introduced, borders were closed and a state of emergency was declared. The epidemic covered all regions of Ukraine. Every day, the Ministry of Health publishes new information about the spread of the pandemic (against the background of Russia's ongoing war against Ukraine, no statistics are kept since February 24, 2022). Due to quarantine restrictions, the economic crisis in the country intensified, the number of officially unemployed increased by 67%. On March 20, the first patient was cured, by that time there were already patients in several regions.
On February 23, 2021, 2 vaccines against coronavirus were registered in Ukraine: AstraZeneca and Pfizer/BioNTech. On February 24, the first person was vaccinated.
At the June 2021 summit in Brussels, NATO leaders reiterated the decision made at the 2008 Bucharest summit that Ukraine would become a member of the Alliance with a Membership Action Plan (MAP) as an integral part of the process and Ukraine's right to determine its future and foreign policy. of course, without outside intervention.
On Thursday, February 24, 2022, after the address of the President of the Russian Federation V. Putin, the full-scale aggression of the Russian army against Ukraine began. In the morning, at 4:00 Kyiv time, the territory of Ukraine was attacked by Kalibr and Iskander cruise missiles. The Russian military launched an offensive from the territory of Belarus, along the Russian-Ukrainian border and from the temporarily occupied Crimea.
On February 28, 2022, the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyi, signed an application for Ukraine's immediate accession to the European Union. On February 28, 2022, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said that Ukraine belongs to the European Union and the bloc wants Ukraine to join, but it will take time. On March 1, 2022, the European Parliament recommended making Ukraine an official candidate for membership, and on March 10, 2022, the Council of the European Union asked the European Commission to give an opinion on the application. On April 8, 2022, von der Leyen personally handed Zelensky a legislative questionnaire.
On April 14, 2022, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine recognized the actions committed by the Russian Federation during the last phase of the Russian Federation's armed aggression against Ukraine, which began on February 24, 2022, as genocide of the Ukrainian people. It is indicated that acts of genocide in the actions of Russia are manifested, in particular, in the commission of mass atrocities in the cities of Bucha, Borodyanka, Gostomel, Irpin and others.
The genocide of Ukrainians perpetrated by Russian troops in Ukraine during the Russo-Ukrainian war may become the largest in Europe since World War II.
On June 23, 2022, the European Parliament adopted a resolution calling for the immediate granting of candidate status for membership in the European Union to Ukraine. On June 23, 2022, the European Council granted Ukraine the status of a candidate for accession to the European Union.
According to the results of the national census, as of December 5,
2001, the population of Ukraine was 48,240,902 permanent residents and
48,457,102 people in the present population, and according to estimates
derived from the current population growth rate, by July 2012 its number
decreased to 44 596,155 people; by January 1, 2017 - up to 42,414,900
permanent residents and 42,584,500 people in the present population. As
of January 1, 2018, according to the State Statistics Service of
Ukraine, the population decreased to 42,216,766 permanent residents and
42,386,403 people in the present population. These data do not include
Crimea and Sevastopol; with them, as of May 1, 2014 - about 45,363.3
thousand people of the present population and 45,182,900 permanent
residents. Ukraine, therefore, ranks 37th in the world in terms of the
number of inhabitants.
The average population density is about 77.3 people/km², while the population is unevenly distributed: the most densely populated are the industrial eastern regions (Donetsk, Luhansk, Dnepropetrovsk, Kharkiv) and the Carpathian regions (Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk, Chernivtsi). In particular, the population density of Donetsk region is 172.9 people/km², Lvov region - 117.8, Dnepropetrovsk region - 107.3. Certain areas of the Ukrainian Carpathians, Polissya and southern regions are relatively sparsely populated (in the Volyn region - 51.4 people / km², Zhytomyr - 44.1, Kherson - 39.2).
The share of the urban population is 69.2%. As of January 1, 2017, 3 cities had a cash population of more than 1 million people: Kyiv (the capital of the country) - 2,925,760 people; Kharkiv - 1,439,036 people; Odessa - 1,010,783 people.
Growth rates, age and gender structure
At the turn of the 19th-20th centuries, on the territory of modern Ukraine, there was a natural increase above the average for the Russian Empire (14.9), the highest values were noted in the Yekaterinoslav, Tauride, Volyn provinces and in the Don Army Region. Subsequent wars (World War I, Civil War, World War II, during which Ukraine became a war zone) and the famine of the 1920s, 1930s, late 1940s had the most negative impact on the demographic situation, as a result of these events millions of people died.
Among other things, the slowdown in population growth, characteristic of industrialized countries, affected. So, if from 1897 to 1913 (16 years) the population of Ukraine increased by 24%, then from 1959 to 1976 (17 years) - by only 17%, and from 1976 to 1992 (16 years) - by 6%.
The maximum population of Ukraine was noted in 1993, when it reached 52.2 million. Starting from this year, a constant decrease in the population is recorded with an increase in emigration abroad, a drop in the birth rate and an increase in mortality.
A decrease in the population is noted in all regions of Ukraine, including Kyiv. As of 2020, the smallest population decline was observed in Chernivtsi, Rivne and Volyn regions.
In 2011, not a single birth was recorded in 11 thousand settlements of Ukraine. In the same 2011, the birth rate exceeded the death rate only in 5 out of 25 regions of Ukraine - Kyiv, Transcarpathian, Volyn, Chernivtsi and Rivne regions. In 2012, Ukraine ranked 19th among countries in the world in terms of mortality per 1,000 population.
In 2013, Ukraine was in 23rd place in the world in terms of mortality per 1,000 population.
According to the latest all-Ukrainian census conducted in 2001, Ukrainians make up 77.8% of the population and are the majority in all regions, except for the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol; Russians - 17.3%, make up a significant part of the population in the eastern and southern regions, especially in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, as well as in large cities); Belarusians also live - 0.6%, Moldovans - 0.5%, Crimean Tatars - 0.5%, Bulgarians - 0.4%, Hungarians - 0.3%, Romanians - 0.3%, Poles - 0.3 %, Jews - 0.2%, Armenians - 0.2%, Greeks - 0.2%, Tatars - 0.2%, others - 1.2%.
In Ukraine, for almost 20 years, a population census has not been carried out, so it is difficult to assess the current ethnic composition of the population. Nevertheless, the study of the statistics of the registry offices, in the part where nationality is indicated in civil status acts, allows us to speak about the presence of a tendency to identify ethnicity and citizenship. So, in the registry office in 1993 in Kharkov, 43.6% indicated their ethnicity as Russians, and in 2014 there were only 7.3% of them; at the same time, the proportion of those who indicated the nationality of the Ukrainians increased from 49.9% to 90.1%.
According to Art. 10 of the Constitution of Ukraine, the only state
language is Ukrainian. The state ensures the comprehensive development
and functioning of the Ukrainian language in all spheres of public life
throughout the territory of Ukraine, while guaranteeing the free
development, use and protection of Russian and other languages of
national minorities of Ukraine.
According to research conducted by the Razumkov Center, in 2011, 61% of citizens of Ukraine considered Ukrainian their native language (in 2016 - 69%), Russian - 36% (in 2016 - 27%), other languages - 2%.
In Ukraine, in addition to Ukrainian, Russian is also widely spoken. Until August 10, 2012, the Law of Ukraine “On Languages in the Ukrainian SSR” was in force, according to which Russian was one of the languages of interethnic communication, knowledge of which was required from officials along with knowledge of Ukrainian.
According to a survey conducted in 2004 by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS), it is easier to communicate in Russian at home for 45% of the population of Ukraine, while in Ukrainian - 42%, it is equally easy to communicate in both languages - 13%. According to this KIIS survey, the absolute majority of the population of the southern and eastern regions use the Russian language for communication in the first place.
According to a survey conducted by Research & Branding Group, 68% of Ukrainian citizens are fluent in Russian (Ukrainian - 57%).
According to a 2008 study by the American Gallup Institute, 83% of the interviewed citizens chose Russian to communicate with the interviewer.
According to the All-Ukrainian census of 2001, 85.2% of the total population of Ukraine named their national language as their mother tongue (88.5% in 1979). The majority of the population of the state (32.6 million people), according to the census, called the Ukrainian language their native language. The number of Ukrainians who named the language of their nationality as their native language exceeds 85.2% (in 1979 - 93.5%).
Historically due to the wide distribution of other languages (mainly neighboring states and peoples). The most common of them is the Russian language, which, according to the 2001 census, was called native by 29.6% of the inhabitants of Ukraine (in 1979 - 31.3%), however, according to studies of the linguistic behavior of the Ukrainian population of KIIS, it is used by more than half of the population Ukraine (52.8%). The Ukrainian language is more common in the central part, in the north and west of the country, Russian - in the south and east. In large cities of the east and south of Ukraine, as well as in Kyiv, the predominance of the Russian language in daily communication is noticeable, despite a significant proportion of the population that indicated Ukrainian as their native language.
Ukraine is a secular state, art. 35 of the Constitution guarantees
freedom of religion.
According to a study conducted in early 2015, the majority of respondents in Ukraine consider themselves Christian believers: 74% of residents are Orthodox, 8% are Greek Catholics, 1% are Roman Catholics and Protestants (evangelical Christians); about 9% of respondents simply called themselves Christians; do not consider themselves to any of the religious denominations 6%, and another 1% of respondents found it difficult to answer.
Since December 2018, 2 large jurisdictions have coexisted in Ukraine, calling themselves Ukrainian Orthodox Churches: the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (as part of the Russian Orthodox Church), the Orthodox Church of Ukraine (autocephalous since January 2019); smaller structures also exist.
The total number of Catholics (of all rites) in Ukraine, according to the Annuario Pontificio for 2009, is 4,801,879 people in 4,293 communities.
The most influential Protestant churches are the All-Ukrainian Union of Evangelical Christian Baptist Churches, the All-Ukrainian Union of Evangelical Pentecostal Christian Churches, and the Ukrainian Union Conference of the Seventh Day Adventist Church.
As of the beginning of the 21st century, the proportion of Muslims, according to one of the leaders of the Muslim community, ranged from 1 to 4% of Ukrainians (mainly ethnic Crimean Tatars). Muslims live in the Crimea, the most significant communities are in Simferopol, Bakhchisarai and Stary Krym.
As of January 1, 2015, there were 87 registered religious centers and 292 religious administrations (eparchies, dioceses, etc.) in the country (without taking into account the data for Crimea), which represent more than 50 different confessional areas, there are 32,792 registered local religious communities, 516 monasteries, 365 religious missions, 78 brotherhoods, 198 religious educational institutions, 12,406 Sunday schools.
Ukraine is a unitary republic of a mixed type. The basic law of the
state is the constitution.
According to the Economist Intelligence Unit, Ukraine was classified as a hybrid regime in 2018 on the Democracy Index, ranking 17th out of 29 countries in Eastern Europe.
The head of state is the president, who is also the supreme commander of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and chairman of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine. The post of president was established on July 5, 1991, the first president of Ukraine from 1991 to 1994 was Leonid Kravchuk. Volodymyr Zelensky has been in office since May 20, 2019.
The president is elected for a term of 5 years by secret ballot in general direct equal elections, the same person cannot hold the presidency for more than two consecutive terms. Leonid Kravchuk became the first popularly elected president in the country's history, having won the 1991 presidential election.
The highest body of executive power in Ukraine is the Cabinet of Ministers, headed by the Prime Minister and composed of the First Deputy Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Ministers and ministers. Since March 4, 2020, Denys Shmyhal has been the Prime Minister.
The only body of legislative power in the country is the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. The current convocation of the Verkhovna Rada is the ninth. It is a permanent structure and is convened at the session 2 times a year.
At its regular sessions, the Verkhovna Rada conducts the inauguration of the elected president and approves the main directions of the state course proposed by the president for a five-year term. The President is responsible to the Verkhovna Rada, the Parliament can impeach him in the manner prescribed by the Constitution.
The constitutional composition of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine is 450 deputies.
Within the competence of Parliament, according to Art. 84 of the Constitution, includes the development, adoption and control over the implementation of laws, the approval of the state budget, the ratification of international agreements, the appointment of an all-Ukrainian referendum and other powers.
People's deputies of Ukraine are elected for a 5-year term in the course of direct general equal elections held according to a mixed system.
Justice in Ukraine is administered exclusively by the courts. The jurisdiction of the courts extends to all legal relations that arise in the state. The system of courts of general jurisdiction in Ukraine is based on the principles of territoriality and specialization.
In the judicial system of Ukraine there are also economic (district, appellate) and administrative (district, appellate) courts. The highest judicial body in the system of courts of general jurisdiction is the Supreme Court. Previously, there were the High Specialized Court for Civil and Criminal Cases, the High Administrative Court and the High Economic Court, which were liquidated in the course of judicial reform. Currently, the Supreme Court has a Grand Chamber, as well as cassation administrative, civil, criminal and economic courts. Since December 1, 2021, Vsevolod Knyazev has been the Chairman of the Supreme Court.
The Constitutional Court of Ukraine is separate, independent from the courts of general jurisdiction. It cannot be a cassation, appellate or supervisory instance for courts of general jurisdiction. Since September 17, 2019, Oleksandr Tupytsky has been the Chairman of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine.
Modern Ukraine is characterized by a multi-party system. Previously, until 1991, the Communist Party remained the main political force, the modern party system of Ukraine was formed in the early 1990s.
The activities of political parties are regulated by the current legislation. In 2001, the law "On Political Parties" was adopted, according to which any 100 citizens of the country have the right to form a party. The party is subject to registration with the Ministry of Justice. All parties are obliged to recognize the principles of the constitution of Ukraine as the fundamental law of Ukraine.
As of 2021, 365 political parties are officially registered in Ukraine. In the parliamentary elections held on July 21, 2019, 22 of them took part, 5 parties overcame the threshold of 5% of the votes established by law.
The legal system of Ukraine has a mixed character. Most of the legal norms are established according to classical European models, and belong to the Romano-Germanic legal family.
After the collapse of the USSR, in the context of the process of democratic reforms, a large-scale reform of the legal system takes place, the main goal of which is proclaimed to ensure the rule of law and the independence of the judiciary.
Provisions on ensuring fundamental human rights and freedoms were originally laid down in the Ukrainian constitution.
Measures to improve the human rights situation have become one of the
main directions of liberal reforms carried out in Ukraine since the
early 1990s. As part of these efforts, relevant legislation was adopted,
the work of the National Commission on Human Rights was activated, and
this direction in the work of the Ministry of Justice was strengthened.
A number of investigations have been carried out into cases of human
rights violations committed in the past.
According to Art. 10 of the Constitution, Ukraine has 3 state symbols - the flag, coat of arms and anthem.
On January 15, 1992, the music of the national anthem of Ukraine was approved. On March 6, 2003, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine approved the words (text of the first verse and chorus) of the anthem.
On January 28, 1992, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine decided to approve the national flag as the State Flag of Ukraine, which is a rectangular panel consisting of two horizontally spaced stripes of equal width: the upper one is blue, the lower one is yellow. The flag of Ukraine is a rectangular panel with an aspect ratio of 2:3 and consisting of two equal stripes - blue and yellow.
On February 19, 1992, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted a resolution "On the State Emblem of Ukraine", according to which it approved the trident as a small coat of arms, considering it as the main element of the large coat of arms. On June 28, 1996, Article 20 of the Constitution of Ukraine approved the small coat of arms of the state - in an azure shield with a gold border, a golden trident. The trident during the times of Kievan Rus was the state emblem and the family seal of the Rurik princes. The small coat of arms is the main part of the large coat of arms, which was not adopted, which depicts a blue shield with a yellow trident.
January 1 - New Year.
January 7th is Christmas Day according to the Julian calendar.
March 8 is International Women's Day.
May 1-2 - Labor Day.
May 8 is the Day of Remembrance and Reconciliation.
May 9 is Victory Day over Nazism in World War II.
June 28 - Constitution Day of Ukraine.
August 24 - Independence Day.
October 14 is the Day of Defenders and Defenders of Ukraine.
December 25 is Christmas according to the Gregorian calendar.
The passing date is Easter.
The passing date is the Day of the Holy Trinity.
The national currency of Ukraine is hryvnia (UAH). In large cities,
at exchange offices, you can exchange it for rubles, dollars and euros,
however, it should be noted that the exchange for rubles is somewhat not
so popular, and you can not buy rubles for hryvnias at all exchange
offices (you can return rubles everywhere). In small towns, you can find
an exchanger in bank branches, but you should not exchange currency in
the markets. ATMs are quite widespread, including small towns. In most
shopping centers, shops, as a rule, bank cards are accepted for payment.
In small towns, the acquiring network is less developed.
In general, prices in Ukraine are much lower than in Russia, and for some categories of goods/services they are 2-3 times lower (purchase/rent of real estate, travel by public transport, etc.)
fixed-route taxi within the region (up to 100 km) - 25-35 hryvnia (December 2008).
a reserved seat car in most of Ukraine - up to 200 hryvnia ($ 7.5), a compartment car - up to 500 ($ 19) (for 2017).
taxi - 5-8 UAH per 1 km.
It is always worth remembering that, as in other countries, in tourist-oriented places, prices for goods / services can be unreasonably high. For example, taxi drivers near the Kyiv railway station announce the price - 100-150 UAH in Kyiv. It will be cheaper to order the services of a taxi company by phone (50-70 UAH), advertising of which can be seen on billboards in the station building.
Ukrainian cuisine is diverse and can please both with a wide
selection of meat and fish dishes, as well as with native Ukrainian
vegetable dishes, as well as confectionery and pastries.
The national first course is borscht, a vegetable soup with meat, mostly pork. In Ukraine, there are more than 50 types of cooking borscht, which differ depending on the locality of preparation, but the most popular serving of borscht is with donuts with garlic. Among meat products, meatballs and cutlets (in Kiev, Poltava and others) are popular, as well as lard, which goes into many dishes and is a popular snack for vodka.
Food prices are below the Russian average, especially in markets and supermarkets. Practically in any settlement, and even more important for tourism, there is a sufficient choice of catering establishments: from small cafes to restaurants. In large or touristy cities, gourmets will always find a restaurant that suits their taste. A network of national cuisines is quite developed: from Eastern and European to traditional Slavic. However, the prices may be too high.
Of particular interest are restaurants of national Ukrainian cuisine, which are quite numerous in the cities of Ukraine, and the prices are very democratic. A good, tasty dinner for two with a glass of wine in such a restaurant will not exceed fifty dollars.
Hotels oriented to European standards have appeared today in most of
the regional centers of Ukraine. The hotel industry is most developed in
million-plus cities and resort towns on the Southern Coast of Crimea.
Five-star hotels are only in a few cities of Ukraine: Kyiv, Donetsk,
Odessa, Kharkiv, Zaporozhye.
If for some reason the prospect of staying in a five-star hotel does not captivate you, then in recent years a large number of small private hotels have appeared in the country. A decent, large by Russian standards room with all amenities in such a hotel will cost between 1000-1200 Russian rubles (2010). In Kyiv and Lvov prices will be higher. In addition, there are a lot of companies (which may call themselves differently - “Private hotel” or “Apartments in the center of Kyiv”) that rent apartments of any class for any wallet - from 200 to 10,000 UAH / day (Kyiv).
Privatized Soviet-era hotels are now being actively renovated, but visitors still have a chance to get into nostalgic rooms with creaky antique Soviet-era beds with trodden mattresses and samples of the Soviet wallpaper industry of the 70s of the last century on the walls.
Many of the surviving customs are associated with religious celebrations. So, for Christmas in Western Ukraine, it is customary to set up nativity scenes and weave a traditional didukh amulet. The celebration of the cycle of New Year holidays from January 1 to January 19, the celebration of Easter, is also replete with traditions. There are also many traditions and superstitions preserved in wedding ceremonies.
Outside of Kyiv and large cities, payphone communications in Ukraine
have almost completely disappeared, but the remaining payphones on the
streets, in Ukrtelecom branches, hospitals and some government agencies
work for free when calling to city numbers. You can also purchase a SIM
card from a local operator (it will be more expensive to use your card
while roaming anyway), which are sold everywhere, including remote
villages. Presentation of a document for the purchase of a SIM card is
not required. Starter packs and scratch cards are sold at face value in
the operator's branded stores (of which there are enough in large
cities), in other places - with a small extra charge of 3-5 UAH. You
should beware of buying SIM cards from sellers on the street near
railway stations, in underground passages and other crowded places -
most often they sell "free" packages, which may require additional
top-up to use. Calls in the network of "their" operator are often free,
in addition, all operators provide favorable tariff plans for calls
Mobile operators: GSM900/1800: Vodafone (former MTS), Kyivstar, Life; 2100-UTEL. CDMA2000: PEOPLEnet, Intertelecom, Cdma-Ukraine. UTEL is the only Ukrainian operator providing 3G video communication services, however, it has WCDMA coverage only in regional centers and large cities, in the rest of the country it operates in Kyivstar (GSM) roaming.
You should not openly wear symbols associated with Russia or the Soviet Union (Russian, Soviet or imperial flag, the inscriptions "Russia", "Russia" or "USSR", St. George's and Guards ribbons), as well as the symbols of separatist formations and movements.
You can speak Russian as much as you like, but avoid talking about the historical unity of Russians and Ukrainians (“we are brothers”, “one people”, etc.), even if it seems to you that the interlocutor is an ethnic Russian.
State Emergency Service: 101
National Police: 102
gas network emergency service: 104
rescue service: 112