Kiev, "Mother of Cities"

Dnieper River Cruise – Kiev, Ukraine

DAY 11 Kiev. (Sat.) Dock Location. Your ship is scheduled to dock at Pochtova Square 3, River Passenger Terminal.Included Kiev Tour. Arrive mid-morning and disembark for a tour of the 1,500-year-old Ukrainian capital, picturesquely situated on the Dnieper River. Called the “Mother of Cities,” Kiev is one of the oldest cities in all of Europe. From the 9th century onwards, it was the centre of trade on the Dnieper River route from Scandinavia to the Black Sea and on to Constantinople. This morning’s sightseeing tour includes a visit to the splendid Sophia Cathedral, built in 1037 by Yaroslav the Wise and containing some of the country’s greatest mosaics and frescoes. You will also see the mighty “Golden Gate,” once the ceremonial entrance to the city.Included Monastery of the Caves Tour. After lunch, join an excursion to the remarkable Monastery of the Caves, founded by hermit monks in the 11th century. The complex consists of about 80 buildings and monuments, including gold-domed churches and monastery buildings that have been turned into museums. Beneath the complex are underground caves and labyrinths that were used as a burial ground for the monastery’s monks. We recommend that you wear good walking shoes, and women should cover their heads as this is a religious site.
Note: Descending into the underground caves is not recommended for the claustrophobic and persons who are not physically fit. Your ship begins cruising in the early evening.Optional Performance. In the evening, you may wish to join the optional tour to a concert at St. Andrew’s Church. Full programme details will be available during your cruise (cost of the optional tour is the equivalent of €23 which includes coach transportation and the performance).
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Arriving in Kiev by river

This morning we’re asked to settle our on-board bills before the river boat arrives in Kiev.  You can pay be credit cards or cash.10:30 It’s exciting to be arriving in Kiev after more than a day cruising on the river.  As the boat approaches the city, we’re already seeing some of what the city has to offer – bridges, a giant statue, a giant white arch, a floating restaurant and onion domes of churches – the excitement level ramps up.

The boat docks at Pochtova Square 3, River Passenger Terminal which is right in town.

First stop this morning is St. Sophia Cathedral.  We get off the coaches and whilst the guides take off to purchase entrance tickets we get a chance to take snaps around the square.

Then, the bad news – as tomorrow is their National Day, the Cathedral is closed as the square is being used for their National Day ceremonies.  We’re really surprised that the guides and Viking didn’t know about the National Day ceremonies and there’s disappointment all around.

More Kiev city sightseeing and then we go to the Monastery of the Caves.  A very interesting visit , but going into the underground caves is not recommended for people who are claustrophobic.  Also requires a bit of walking.  Women are required to cover their head, so bring a scarf.

Back to the boat at 14:00 for a late lunch.15:00 Those interested in the optional excursion to see Jewish Kiev leave.

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Monastery of the Caves

We head back to the Old town to do see more Kiev attractions on our own.  There’s a lot to see in Kiev and just a day in this 1,500 year-old capital is definitely not enough.Tip: When planning your holidays, it’s certainly worthwhile adding extra days on in Kiev at the end of the river cruise (or beginning, if you’re doing Kiev – Odessa). It’s quite easy to walk around the sightseeing attractions on your own.

19:30 Final dinner and live music in the Sky Bar.

Dnieper River Cruise: Itinerary

More information on Kiev here: Kiev

Photos of Kiev: Kiev Photo Gallery

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