May 10, 2019 | Written by Patricia Murphy

Third Stop: Kiev

Our original goal for this Europe trip was to make it a true tour of the countries on the Baltic sea, and we wanted to go to St. Petersburg. However, I tried many ways to secure a Russian visa, and time ran out. You can visit St. Petersburg without a visa if you’re with a tour on a ship, but we wanted to stay on the ground. So we decided to switch gears. John read an article about 30 unique things to do in Kiev, and flights were readily available, so we decided to book three nights there.

We took the recommendation of UK’s Independent and booked a room at 11 Mirrors. We did this through Expedia, where we have Gold Status, and because of that we were upgraded to a stunning room with a gorgeous view. It turned out to be a great choice, and we were in walking distance to most major sights. We did take Uber frequently to other parts of the city. Kiev is one of the largest cities in Europe, with a population of about 2.9 million. This is about the size of Seoul, which interested me very much since the city limits felt very much more Asian than European–with blocks of high rises that look identical in every way.

Our first order of business was to get some Georgian food, since we had read so much about it. Our first choice was all booked up, so we wandered over to Shoti and oh my am I glad we did. This was one of my favorite meals (though not my most nutritious).

The next day was The Day of Sightseeing and boy did we pack in a lot. We went to a unique and fascinating monastery and toured the crypts, then we toured around the Motherland Museum. We saw exactly ten thousand cathedrals. We saw lots of interesting street art and many beautiful parks. We saw markets, brew pubs, and even a little Ukrainian Vizsla who was trotting though the city off-leash. All in all we had a great time in Kiev.