Leopoli, or Lviv in the Ukrainian language, and also known as the mini Paris of the East, is considered to be the last unknown destination in Europe. The city, founded in 1256, is an open-air museum that has been able to preserve its architecture and its ancient charm. Walking around the historic center In Leopoli, visitors will experience a relaxed atmosphere that takes them back in time.
Lviv is an extremely attractive tourist destination embellished with magnificent architectural monuments, temples, ancient squares, and as many as 60 museums. Here, more than half of the monuments of the entire country exist, and in fact, its historic center has been named by UNESCO as a World Heritage site. Since 2009, the city has been proclaimed the cultural capital of Ukraine known as the Ensemble of the Historic Centre.
The Ploshcha Rynok – the ancient market square – is still today the beating heart of the city with its cosmopolitan and multi-ethnic climate. Belle Époque buildings dominate throughout the historic center. First and foremost is the Opera House – a true architectural gem in the neo-Renaissance style which is one of the most beautiful theatres in Europe. Inaugurated in 1901, it still maintains world-class performances. The Castle (Vysokyi Zamok) – the highest city point – offers an extraordinary view of the old town.
Besides its extraordinary architectural beauty, the city is also known for its culinary delicacies. The traditions of coffee with a unique aroma and flavor dates back to the seventeenth century and have been preserved over time. Coffee is so important for the Ukrainians that a coffee festival is held in Lviv every year. Walking through the romantic streets of the old city, it is impossible not to notice the numerous patisseries, whose true artisans and chocolate professionals create products that delight the palate. A Masterclass, a cooking classes lasting about 2 hours, gives one the opportunity to learn how to make chocolate.
Lviv has long been considered the capital of beer brewers. The Lvivske 1715 is one of the most famous brands produced since that date. The Lvivarnya, the first Beer Museum of Ukraine in Leopoli, keep under lock and key the old recipes dating back to the fifteenth century that highlight the legendary brewing tradition initiated by the Jesuit monks more than 6 centuries ago. The museum hosts numerous cultural initiatives including contemporary art exhibitions.
Lviv is one of the most interesting destinations not only of Ukraine but of all Eastern Europe, and it may be the lack of mass tourism offers, so far, that has helped to maintain the city’s charm and authenticity.