Whether a romantic date for two or a loud family gathering, picnics have long become a popular way of get-togethers. The phenomenon appeared in the 18th century, and its culture promptly reached Kyiv as well. Centuries later, locals and tourists still love the idea. Let’s have a look at the best places in Kyiv to have a quiet picnic with any company.
M. M. Hryshko National Botanical Garden
To start with the classics, there’s hardly a better place to have a picnic than a spacious botanical garden with the abundance of beautiful trees and flowers. Despite the popular misconception, Hryshko Botanical Garden lures in hundreds of visitors not only during the magnolia bloom, which usually happens in early May but at any free minute throughout the year. Its vast territory full of soft green slopes is a perfect place to lie down on and contemplate nature — preferably with a glass of wine.
One of the most frequently visited spots of beach leisure in Kyiv might not look like a quiet picnic but worry not — those who seek shall find. The trick is to walk further from the general beach area and Pedestrian Bridge in the direction of wilder nature. The clean sand, birds twittering and quiet clashing of waves create a gentle vibe. Sharing a glass of wine or homemade lemonade with the picturesque view on Kyiv is certainly a go on Trukhaniv Island.
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Also called “Kytaevo”, this area is located in the tract among the Dnieper hills and is, essentially, a large forest located on a peninsula surrounded by lakes. The trotted winding paths lead to the secluded spots perfect for picnics — the clean air, the quietness of the place and curious ducks that aren’t afraid of humans make Kytayiv an unusual site for Kyiv. The history of the place dates back to 1100 when the local dwellers founded a city-fortress to protect their home. Centuries later, archeologists discovered caves that were once inhabited by monks and reminding of those in Lavra. Luckily, the cave complex wasn’t ruined during wards and still can be accessed to this day.
Sure enough, not every picnic spot in Kyiv is located in the downtown or away from the city. Obolon Quay easily reached from the same-named metro station or accessed by car is one more place for a get-together. Large companies usually choose to settle on the beach area in the middle of the quay, with access to bike rental to burn some calories after the meal. Those who prefer more secluded relaxation may want to walk further and deeper. The Quay is abundant with places overlooking the Dnieper River, where the rare birds sing their songs and sometimes, even fly closer to humans to share a meal.
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Park Landscape Alley / Peyzazhna Alley
Easily the most visited alley in the center, Park Landscape Alley or «Peyzazhka» hides multiple places to have a picnic in peace. Here, all the quiet spots are reserved for those who walk — for instance, the long steps leading to the meadow with the large metal silhouettes start a journey reminding of Alice in Wonderland. The deeper into the forest, the fewer people, and more chances to have a quiet picnic in the center of Kyiv. Another way is to settle on the slopes in the high grass — here, the chatter of the passers-by and loud noises of the city won’t reach your ears.
Expocenter of Ukraine
In the recent years, the Expocenter of Ukraine became a favorite spot for many to spend a weekend in Kyiv. Sure enough, after the repair works and budget revising, the place is truly blooming: there’s an open pool area overlooking the main building of the Expocenter, bike rental, animal park, and an incredibly vast territory to roam around. The faraway areas are full of green grass and easy access to multiple cafes. This makes it easier to plan a spontaneous picnic at any time of the day. Moreover, there’s also an entertainment area for kids with animators that ensure a fun and safe time while the adults are away.
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Last but not least, the place that often causes confusion even with locals — Holosievo Park. The reason behind is that, actually, there are two places in Kyiv called “Holosievo”: Maksym Rylsky Holosiivskyi Park, and Holosiivskyi National Nature Park. Both share the same toponymic — and perfect for a quiet picnic. Maksym Rylsky Holosiivskyi Park is located not far from the same named metro station and is essentially a park built on the remnants of the forest. That’s why even with the equipment like multiple benches and a Ferris wheel, it still preserves the beauty of nature: bushy trees, curious squirrels, and ducks that live on a cascade of four large ponds.
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As for the Holosiivskyi National Nature Park, located further from the city, the walkthrough will probably take the whole day, as the park is more than 4500 hectares large. Well, more reasons to return to this beautiful place: the most part of the territory is covered with forests: from broad-leaved to pinewood. Some oaks in the park are more than 200 years old. Many nice spots for a picnic here are located closer to numerous ponds with ducks and swans, which aren’t afraid of humans.
Photo source: shutterstock.com, xenia_bogarova_unsplash, funtime.kiev.ua. All images belong to their rightful authors.