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Hello, dear friend, I want tell you about my country. Excuse me if my English is not perfect but I hope the you will understand all.

My country is Ukraine and I write from Kiev.

Kiev is a beautiful capital (around 4,500,000 residents) where you can meet two different styles, the Soviet style and the European style.

People who live in Kiev (especially young people) are completely European.

You can visit the ancient part of Kiev where the Russian Emperor was born. The Kyivska Rus with his Golden Gate near the metro station of Zoloty Vorota. Is a major landmark of the Ancient Kiev and historic gateway in the ancient city fortress, located in the capital of Ukraine.

Currently it serves as a museum and can be found on the corner of Volodymyr street and Yaroslaviv Val Street. The golden gates were built in 1017-1024 at about the same time the Saint Sophia Cathedral was erected. The name of the Gate in Kiev reminds of famous entrance to Constantinople. Kiev prince, Yaroslav Mudry wanted to underline that his country was as powerful as Byzantine Empire.

Yaroslav Mudry paid much attention to Kiev enlargement, consolidation and fortification. During the time of his rule the territory of the city became ten times larger than it had used to be. Yaroslav was the one who destroyed hordes of nomads Pechenegs who regularly attacked Kiev.

Near the Golden Gate you can see St. Sofia Cathedral that is the world famous historical and architectural monument of the first half of the 11th century. The name of the cathedral comes from Greek word 'sofia', which means 'wisdom'. Built in the times of Yaroslav Mudry, the cathedral served as a social, political and cultural center of Kievan Rus, where foreign ambassadors were received, chronicles were recorded and the first Russian library, founded by Yaroslav Mudry himself, functioned. Yaroslav Mudry's ruling was the time when art, education and culture prospered. As of Kiev, it became one of the most beautiful cities in Europe and Asia. Construction of Sofia cathedral played an important role in Kiev's look formation.

The cathedral was founded in 1037. Originally it had 5 naves and was surrounded with 2 circled galleries. During the centuries the architectural look of the cathedral had been changing. The cathedral was badly damaged during the Tatar yoke and then restored; it was burned many times and was reconstructed again.

In 1707 St. Sofia cathedral was rebuilt in the style of Ukrainian baroque and topped with typical pear-shaped cupolas. Nowadays the building of the cathedral combines constructions of the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. In the temple erection in different times participated such architects as Shedel, Sparro, Zaborovsky and others. For many years St. Sofia Cathedral served as a burial place of Kiev princes. In the cathedral remains of Yaroslav Mudry, his son Vsevolod, and Vladimir Monomakh are buried.

From St Sofia you can take the Sofivska street and you arrive in the Independence Square, or Maidan Nezalezhnosti, is the central square in Kiev, the main and the most beautiful one. Parades, concerts, festivals and other city arrangements and holidays take place on this square. It contains six fountains, Independence Column and an artificial waterfall.

The Independence Square has much to offer: the huge building with the tower and chimes, the Trade Union Association Office and other attractions. The left side of the Independence square is covered with granite. The splendid panoramic view of Old Kiev opens from the upper floors of the square buildings. One can see the domes of Sofia Cathedral built in the 11th century, Andreevskaya Church built in the 18th century, City Parliament, the Central Mall, and a lot of administrative buildings. A great amount of shops, hotels and cafes are situated on the Independence square. Two metro stations, Kreschatik and Maidan Nezalezhnosti, are also situated nearby.

One of the fountains of the square is decorated with statues of legendary brothers Kie, Schek, Horiv and their sister Libed. According to Nikon's Russian Primary Chronicle they chose the place for the city foundation and decided to name it in honor of the elder brother Kie. The sculpture composition on the central square of the Ukrainian capital depicts four founders of the city.

Here in Maidan during December 2013 and February 2014 there was the revolution, the revolution of dignity.

Maidan is across by Kreshatyk street. Kreschatik is the most famous and one of the busiest streets in Kiev. It is a wide boulevard with plenty of chestnut trees. It is hard to believe that some time ago on the site of Kreschatik used to be a valley and a river surrounded by forest. The valley was called Kreshataya (Crossed) because it was intersected by many ravines. It was one of the favorite hunting places of Kiev princes.

There is a version, according to which Kreschatik was called so in honor of Russia's baptizing ('krest' means 'cross' in Russian), but it is not reliable enough. Along the bank of the river through the valley an important trade route passed. In the end of the 18th century the first construction appeared on the right side of the road. Gradually left side of the road was also built up with dwelling houses, and in 1805 the first Kiev Theater appeared in the street. Nowadays on the site of the theater the Ukrainian House is situated.

Kreschatik got its final modern shape in 1837. It stretches from European Square till Bessarabia Square and contains many important trade buildings, bank departments, luxurious restaurants, hotels and exchange house.

The architectural look of the Kreschatik Street was changing gradually.

For a long time beautiful stone buildings adjoined haulm-roofed houses and clay-walled huts. In the puddles one could see pigs, and it was impossible to cross Kreschatik without special devices, such as stilts.

There were people called bosyaki, or tramps, who took money for carrying people from one side of Kreschatik to another. The situation changed after canalization system installation. The street was paved with granite cubes and became elegant and fashionable.

Nowadays Kreschatik ranges among the major attractions of Kiev. The citizens of the city adore this street, and the guests of Kiev try to visit it and feel its charming atmosphere first of all. Such Kreschatik buildings as Kiev City Council, Central Department Store, National Philharmonic, as well as other administrative constructions, stores, hotels and metro stations deserve special attention of Kiev guests.

Not far away from Kreshatyk and Maidan there is Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra.

On the high hills of the right bank of the Dnepr River magnificent Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra topped with gilded domes is situated. According to the legend, Apostle Andrew, while preaching the Word of God in the Scythian Land, blessed the hilly bank of the Dnepr River and said to his disciples: "On these hills great city and many churches in glorification of Holy God will be".

The history of Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra started in remote days and is closely connected to the Far and Near Caves. According to historical chronicles, in 1051 Reverend Anthony settled in one of the Varangian caves that is a part of the Far Caves nowadays. This year is recognized as the foundation date of Kievo-Pecherskiy monastery ("pechera" means "cave"). Those who knew Anthony visited him in the cave and brought some food and necessary things. Some of his followers settled in the cave with him. Soon the number of Anthony's associates reached 12, and they started to build cells and temple in the cave. Many people wanted to visit Anthony. Among them were even Kiev princes and nobility who donated money for constructing over groundtemple and monastery for the growing brotherhood of monks. As of Reverend Anthony, he was anxious for seclusion, so in 1057 he left the Far Cave and went to another slope, where he dug one more underground cell, which is now is known as the Near Caves. He spent 40 years there.

In Kiev you can find also many wonderful reastuarant with different type of kitchen, Ukrainian, Georgian, Italian, Japanese etc. But is night the best moment for i's nighlife. There are many interesting clubs with international DJ that animated the nights. Many people say that Ukrainian Girls are the more beautiful women in the world and you can only immagine what means stay in a Disco club in Ukraine. You can go during the week to Caribbean Club if you like latinos dance or in the more glamour club like Decadance, Skybar, DinamoLux,Avalon,BuddhaBar,Dante Park (only some examples). The entrace is not expensive (around 10 dollars), you need only pass the dresscode.

Usually in the club there is no drugs and also people thinking only to dance and drink. The clubs are very safety sites. If you like singing you can go in some differents Karaoke and the most famous are Azur,JustCafè,Serebro,Indigo. There is also the Coyote Ugly with the same America format. In the end many restaurant have also a disco club aannexed or Karaoke hall.

Don't use your car if you go in club, is not admitted at all drive if you drink. Is better take a taxy that are cheaper an safety.

Soon after the overground monastery was built and the monks moved there, the caves were used as a burial place for the members of brotherhood.

Reverend Anthony was the first one to be buried in the Near Caves in 1073. The caves were used as a burial place for more than 700 years.

Gradually Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra became the largest monastery on the territory of Russia: its' total area reached 30 hectares (1 hectare is 10,000 square meters). On the lands of lavra there were about 100 constructions, 42 of which were considered to be unique. On the territory of lavra 23 temples were erected, including 6 cave temples, with 36 altars. More than 150 saint hermits came from lavra, and remains of many monks, preachers and ascetics are buried in the caves of lavra.

During the October Revolution of 1917 the property of lavra was nationalized, many monks were shot, imprisoned or exiled. In the years of the World War II the buildings of lavra were badly damaged.

Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra survived and went through all the troubles. In June 1988 in commemoration of the 1,000 anniversary of Kievan Rus Baptism the territory of the Far Caves and all the monastery buildings were transferred to the possession of the newly created Pechersk community. Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra still remains the sacred place and the center of pilgrimage of Orthodox Christians from all over the world.

Thanks to Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra, Kiev is known as the "Russian Jerusalem".

I want now return to spek about Euromaidan revolution. From february Kiev is return quite city but you can continue to feel the spirit of Maidan on the street.

In November 2013, small student protests about Yanukovich's reversal on a decision to sign a political agreement with the European Union quickly swelled into demonstrations involving hundreds of thousands in the city's central Independence Square, known as the Maidan. Soon riot police descended, and peaceful demonstrations turned violent. The revolution, also dubbed the EuroMaidan, finally toppled Yanukovich in February, but not before exacting a lethal price.Officially, 100 protesters were killed and more than a hundred went missing. But many say the numbers are much higher, and the events continue to hold an at once inspirational and tragic resonance here, particularly for the many young people who were in the line of bullets and police batons. Walk anywhere near the bustling square today and you'll see candles, flowers and pictures of the dead everywhere, makeshift memorials amid the urban everyday.

Someone have wrote "What is now happening in Ukraine is the biggest revolution in this part of the world since 1917 – and it is probably also the most organized revolution in history. A Slavic nation with a population of 45 million has torn itself away from the strangling hold of a post-Soviet authoritarian regime in Moscow. What is now happening in Ukraine will change the future of the whole of the region. Not only in Ukraine, but in the region as a whole. It definitely will make the regimes in Moscow and Minsk more authoritarian, and the human rights activists there will suffer, undoubtedly. But at the same time it will give people hope, in particular the young generation. Even though he himself was largely silent, Obama’s words “yes we can” will have a new meaning here: yes, we can, we can get rid of these crooks and swindlers, and yes we can liberate ourselves from the afterlife of Communism. Lenin statues are toppled by the dozen across Ukraine. It is highly symbolic.

Ukraine is now finishing the unfinished business of 1990-1991: it is bringing communism to its final resting place."

Now in Ukraine we have some problem because Russia decided to occupy part of our Country (Crimea and Donbass) and also our economy is in Crisis. I think that this is a good reason to help us with visit and support Ukraine.

You can contact me if you need some other informations and I will be glad to help you.

Please support Ukraine because we want only to be democratic and show to the world our ancient history. Thanks for your attention.

ukrainaviaggi 16.11.2014 0 1293
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