Ukraine was built on small towns and villages. Adventurous and open-minded travelers can get a taste of what it’s like to live somewhere completely different or perhaps even startlingly similar to what they’re used to. Whether you have your own car or choose to rent one, small towns are typically best explored on road trips to enjoy the sights at a slower pace. These are some of the most beautiful small towns to visit in Ukraine:
This small town has the total area of only 35 square kilometers and is often included into travel guides about Ukraine. The town was established in 1430 by Yanush Tyshkevych, the owner of the old castle located nearby. Berdychiv is located in Zhytomyr region and once has been an important intellectual center and hotbed of Jewish culture in Ukraine. Before WWII, Berdychiv's population was more than 80% Jewish. These days Berdychiv's Jewish community numbers only several hundreds, but the city remains an important pilgrimage site for the followers of revered Hasidic master Levi Yitzhak (1740–1810), who is buried in the town's remarkable Jewish cemetery. Long time ago it was called the 'town-fortress' and 'Volyn's Jerusalem’. Only the majestic, ancient buildings, standing in stark contrast with the unremarkable soviet-era ones, remind us about the peculiar past of this picturesque town.
Mukachevo is a city located in the valley of the Latorica River in Zakarpattia region of western Ukraine. This is an ancient town with very interesting and intriguing history. Medieval castle walls, Gothic basilicas, Baroque Catholic churches, ancient estates and paved narrow streets - all of these historical attractions and unique beauty and atmosphere of hidden urban gem of Mukachevo attract numerous visitors to walk into a true European fairy tale.
Berestechko is a small town in Volyn region of Ukraine, located on the picturesque banks of the Styr River. This town is best known for a great battle of the Cossack-Polish War, which took place near Berestechko in 1651. History fans will have a chance to visit a whole national historical and memorial reserve 'Field of the Battle of Berestechko', dedicated to this historical event. The memorial reserve is one of the most meaningful places at Volyn and in the country.
Ustyluh is charming tiny town in Volyn Oblast located on the bank of Bug River. The border bridge over the Bug connects Zosin town in Poland with Ustyluh in Ukraine. It is best known for being a home for Igor Stravinsky, who is considered to be one of the most influential composers of the 20th century. Igor Stravinsky had an estate in Ustyluh and visited it frequently between 1890 and 1914. These days a small museum is open today in his family estate.
Beautiful little hidden gems that you don’t regularly hear about, but definitely should! These towns hide the heart and soul of Ukraine.
Photo sources: Yevhenii Kravchuk / shutterstock.com, ua.igotoworld.com. All images belong to their rightful authors.