The Orange Revolution!
Trip Start Aug 27, 2011
99Trip End Jun 01, 2012
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Where I stayed
One step Independence Square hostel
My overnight train from Lviv was uneventful, I got on, slept and got off in Kiev.
My hostel was pretty easy to find. I find with these overnight trains, I arrive at my hostel and go back to bed. I needed another couple hours of non train sleep. Hostel had great showers and free tea and coffee.
Kiev struck me as being very modern, well, compared to Lviv. My first adventure out of the hostel, was to find some food. I hit some noodle joint that had cheap spicz chicken bits. I feel totally useless. I am in a country that does not like speaking Russian, but speak Ukranian, neither language I know. I am a typical British tourist, I point and grunt and I feel embarrassed. The food was great. I also found a supermarket and stocked up on some noodles, soup and bread. Leaving the supermarket, I spot a Marks and Spencers. I know they do great food but totally surprised to see them in the Ukraine.
I walked up the main street of Kiev and headed to maydan Nezalezhnosti, not before I purchasd as ice cream. I wanted vanilla and chocolate Mr Whippy but got chocolate and lime, not a bad combination.
I sat in the Orange Revolution square and tried to picture the events of 7 years ago. Chilling.
The sqaure is an unusual design. A central piece with 6 streets stretching out on the opposite half of the square. Maydan Nezalezhnosti was busy with young couples, some people cold calling, touists and people dressed in Disney costumes. A remarkable centre peice for the city.
Kiev is full of beautiful Cathedrals as well. A short walk in any direction and you will find another piece of stunning archtecture. I do not enter the buildings but admire from afar. I am still enjoying some wonderful sunshine and make the most of the sun beating down on my face.
My first evening in Kiev, I had the company of a young Polish couple on their way back from Thailand. They were just resting, so while I was eating my noodles it was nice to ask about their travels and talk some football. I also got to speak to my brother Pete on facetime. For his birthday he got an itouch so joins the Border itouch group. It was great to chat to him and speak to a familiar face. The rest of the evening I had the pleasure of a telly in the hostel room and watched AC Milan grab a draw in Barcelona. Oh how people forget about the great Milan team in the early 90s, they would give the Barca side a good run for their money!
My second day in Kiev I explored the area called Andrizivskz uzviz, which descends from St Andrews. It is one of the oldest and quaintest streets in town. To avoid the incline, one can catch a funicular, but the exercise was good for me.
I had more time to cross over from the city of Kiev and find a beach. A small footbridge crosses the Dniporo river and there are even people sunbathing on the other side. An amusing sight. The view from the bridge was stunning, although there were workers fixing the bridge, using all sorts of machinary as you walked on by.
The city was pleasant to walk around but I didnt like it as much as Lviv. Lviv was special, very special! While killing time in my hostel waiting for my night train to Minsk, loads of Stoke city supporters were turning up at the hostel. I totally forgot they were in Kiev for a game on the Thursday. Great to see supporters going this far to follow their team! I wished them a great result and I think they cant argue with a draw.
It took 45 minutes to plod back to the train station and climb aboard the night train to Minsk.
Next stop, Minsk.