We’ve found that one of the best times to visit Europe is in the Fall. Cool, erratic weather, and persistent rain convince many visitors to stay home … but not us.
The past few days have kept us well soaked, and provided a reminder of the price to be paid for having the city to ourselves. But with the right attitude and rain gear, even gloomy skies and unpredictable rain can’t wash the color and fun out of a trip to Kyiv.
For most tourists, their best color memory will be the beautiful churches. Kyivites are serious about their religion, but that doesn’t mean their churches are conservative, somber affairs. In fact, the iconic cathedrals are the most popular sights for visitors, and for good reason. From deep, rich hues to delicate pastels, topped by gleaming gold domes, color is the rule rather than the exception, and the results are stunning.
A population of 3 million residents guarantees diversity – particularly in post-Soviet Kyiv. You don’t have to look far to see splashes of color, whimsy, and fun. A beautiful, blue mosaic cat, a floral clock in Independence Square, and a color-coordinated pickled food display – all grab the eye.
And then there’s the food – Chicken Kyiv of course, varenyky in all varieties, and frosty beer to wash it all down. But restaurant menus and grocery shopping present a challenge. Most people speak Ukrainian or Russian, and English is in short supply. In addition, the alphabet is Cyrillic, which bears little resemblance to English.
The photo of the white bottle illustrates the problem. I just wanted milk for coffee. White bottle, grazing cow on the label … must be milk. Luckily, I tasted this bottle of yoghurt before I poured it into my coffee.
Then I went back out and bought the milk pyramid.