Don’t leave home without Travel Tramp’s Top Things To Do In Kiev! From the crazy to the dark, here are the most insane and awesome things to do in the capital of Ukraine!

Ukraine is a country that’s technically at war. There’s conflict on the borders and separatism in Crimea. Yet Kiev is still a safe city to visit.

I went to Kiev, I survived. You can find out more about that HERE.

There’s no reason not to as well, and as soon as you take a stroll down Khreshchatyk street and hit up a few bars you’ll never want to leave.

From radioactive fall out zones to towering communist statues, here are the craziest and darkest top things to do in Kiev.

Survive The Radioactive Fallout Of Chernobyl…

Are you crazy? Insane? Suicidal? Probably all three.

But no trip to Kiev is really a trip to Kiev without a short jaunt into the Exclusion Zone of Chernobyl.

It sounds mad, but it’s actually quite safe these days. Just don’t eat any radioactive moss while you’re there or go inside the reactor’s sarcophagus.

Crazy Top Things To Do In Kiev

If you’re daring enough, you’ll see the abandoned villages, schools, supermarkets, even swimming pools that used to be lived in before the nuclear reactor exploded in 1986 and caused a mass evacuation. You’ll even see the remains of the reactor, although you won’t get too close to the decaying isotopes.

It’s a surreal, deserted and disturbingly beautiful place to visit.

Crazy Top Things To Do In Kiev

You have to visit on a tour (officially). I can personally recommend Solo East Travel. Be sure to book in advance so they can sort out the documents.

You can read more about my exploits in the Exclusion Zone of Chernobyl HERE!

The Great Patriotic War Museum

This is an insightful place to visit to really learn what happened in Ukraine during World War II and to see what is happening to the country now in the east on the Russian border.

Alongside the World War II era displays, you’ll find captured ‘Russian’ tanks from the separatist conflict in Donetsk that’s still ongoing, as well as a painful display of weapons, pictures and memoirs from those who are currently fighting for Ukraine.

Crazy Top Things To Do In Kiev

And you can see the enormous Statue of the Motherland which towers above the city and is part of the war memorial, as well as countless examples of socialist ‘artwork’.

Is Kiev Safe To Travel To?

By artwork I mean giant statues of course.

Crazy Top Things To Do In Kiev

Maidan Nezalezhnosti

That’s Ukrainian talk for Independence Square. It’s the main plaza in Kiev, right on Khreshchatyk Street, which happens to be the main thoroughfare through the centre. Yeah, it’s a pretty central point.

Is Kiev Safe To Travel To?

Maidan Square

Aside from the bars, restaurants and strange people who try to make you hold a pigeon and then charge you money for the privilege, it’s an iconic part of the city. This is where people protest, this is where the infamous events of the 2013 Ukrainian Revolution went down, and where things turned bloody.

Is Kiev Safe To Travel To?

Across the street from the Independence Monument, you can still see the ghastly remains of the burnt out building were many perished during the protests, and across the square and in the surrounding streets, are memorials to those who protested and those who died.

Is Kiev Safe To Travel To?

The Trade Union Building

The Creepy Caves of Lavra

Possibly the strangest thing to do in Kiev, is to go underground with the priests and pilgrims to the cave monasteries of Lavra. This is a holy place for worshippers of Eastern Orthodox Christianity, and above ground, on the site, there are elaborate cathedrals.

Below ground, in the cave monastery, in the darkened tunnels, lit only by candlelight, you’ll be surrounded by the mummified remains of holy monks. It’s strange, bewildering and if I’m honest, a very creepy experience.

Holodomor Museum

This is as dark as it gets. Darker than Chernobyl. This small, discrete, underground museum is a memorial to the Holodomor. This dark event in Ukrainian history is largely overlooked, but the dire and deliberate policies of the Soviet government resulted directly in the deaths of millions of Ukrainians in a country-wide famine that ravaged the population between 1932-33. It was genocide by famine.

Crazy Top Things To Do In Kiev

The museum is a poignant memorial to, and explanation of events. It’s not really a well-known event outside of Ukraine, but that doesn’t make it any less horrific. It’s worth the time to pay your respects and to learn more about this defining era in Ukraine’s history.

The Deepest Underground Metro Station In The World

Yeah, it’s deep. Real deep. Over 100 metres below the surface is the Arsenalna Metro Station. The escalator ride alone is ridiculous enough to warrant this being a tourist attraction. At 4 minutes long it’s perfect for people watching the mad and infinitely interesting people of Kiev.

Kiev Shooting Range

Ukrainians love to shoot guns, and one of the most action-packed activities you can undertake in the capital is to visit the Kiev Shooting Range. You can choose the gun of your choice, from the legendary AK47 to pump action shotguns. The shooting range is a classic Eastern European activity, and they welcome travellers, stags, and team building exercises to fire away at targets. It’s one of the best things to do in Kiev if you are after an adrenaline rush!

Museum of Miniatures

Near to the creepy Lavra Caves is this bizarre Museum of Miniatures, a collection of the tiny, tiny works of art created by artist Mykola Syadristy during the Soviet days. You need a microscope to even see the objects on display, and they are intricately and carved and detailed. Everything from a chess board on a pin head to portraits on needles.

President Yanukovych’s House

Yanukovych is the former President of Ukraine, the man who was overthrown during the Maidan protests a few years back. He fled to Russia, and his mansion has been opened up to the public, so Ukrainian’s can see his opulent lifestyle first hand. It’s a bit of town, on the banks of the river, but there are lots of tours going there if you can’t make it by public transport.

Crazy Top Things To Do In Kiev

Bars, Bars, Bars

Kiev’s night life is insane. It’s crazy. It goes on and on. It’s cheap. Need I say more…?

Richard Collett