Here are some abandoned places that we discovered in Ukraine
An absolutely spectacular church in Talne! Between the domes on top, the stained glass and the murals inside its really stunning.
Built in 2009 this church is really something to check out! The street on which it was built was named Lenin but after the church was built they street name was changed to Cathedral street. Combine it with the other things in the area and you can easily spend a weekend!
UKRAINIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH OF ST. PETER AND PAUL (TALNE)
An interesting church but not worth a visit just for it unless your really into churches. In front of it is a huge memorial to Soviet Soldiers in WW2.Built in 1903 this church it took 10 years to complete. After WWII it was used to house a diorama depicting the battle of Kyiv and the crossing of the Dnepr River.
Not much to see here but if your in the area its worth checking out.Built in 1858 This church is small but interesting. Set inside of the hunting ground of the former Ukrainian President, Yankovytch, The roads in the area are in good shape and the nature around the church is immaculate.
CHURCH OF EXALTATION OF CHRIST'S CROSS
If you are looking for a peaceful setting then this is it. A huge blue church overlooking a small pond.Built around 1866 this church was built by a family of craftsmen. Everyone in this village gave a little money and materials so that the church could be erected.When religion was outlawed during the Soviet Union the villagers took home all the goods from the church and kept them safe. During WW2 the church was used as an hospital for a while. Then the retreating Germans tried to burn it down but the villagers were able to save the church. It was rebuilt and the villagers returned the goods they had been keeping safe for all those years.
TSERKOV SVYATOGO NIKOLAYA
This church was scheduled to be destroyed when the new damn was built just south of its location. After the damn was build and everything flooded this church was still above ground but now on an island. It was left to decay for decades but recently it has been refurbished and now is open for prayer!
HOLY TRANSFIGURION CHURCH ON THE DNEPR
Not a super interesting place but a nice setting. The roads to get here can be rough and are mostly gravel.This little blue church is made of wood and was erected 100 years after the founding of the village in 1757. It is on the list of cultural sites in Ukraine.
ST. MICHAELS CHURCH (1757), KRAIVSCHINA
A nice little church on the side of the road in the village of Michailovka. Honestly nothing to special unless you are really into churches.
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CHURCH OF THE HOLY ARCHANGEL MICHAEL
n, what seems like, the middle of nowhere there is an amazing little church on the side of the road that is just begging to be looked at! Built in 1839 this church was designed by an Italian Architect in the Roman Gothic style. The Bolshivcks tried to destroy it 1917 but ended up giving it historic status in 1927.
There is also a monument to the soldier of WW2 and also the partisans who fought again Bolshivism.
HOLY TRANSFIGURATION CHURCH MOSHNY
A nice quiet womans monastery in an out of the way location.
Founded in 1037 this monastery has seen virtually the entire history of Ukraine. Looted and burned by Mongol invaders in 1240. Then being given more land and tax free status by Cossaks only to be shut down by the Bolshevicks. During WW2 the last church that stood on the ground was shot and destroyed by German tanks. In 1968 it was decided to restore the former monastery and in 1990 it was returned to its original glory as a monastery.
MOTRONYNSKE HOLY TRINITY MONASTERY
Another place we had no idea it existed and were blown away when we saw it along the road! If you love architecture this is an amazing place to go check out! Built in 1789 by a Poish community there it has been attracting visitors for over 200 years now. Inside the building the arched ceilings are still intact and the stairwell going to the roof is climbable if your daring enough.
CHURCH OF THE HOLY TRINITY MANKIVTSI
We didn’t find this church in our months of research and talking to people leading up to this project. We are so glad we stumbled across it. The roads to get here are a mixture of good and bad but in Ukraine that’s life. Built in 1794 it worked up until 1945 when it was turned into a a grain storage house for a collective farm in the area. It is now in ruins but most of the inside is still int decent shape with the arches of the ceiling still there and very easy access to the roof for a nice view.
CHURCH OF THE ASCENSION MEZHIROV
This church was a spectacular highlight of our day! Not only did we get to see this fortress turned into a church but we were able to explore the basement and attic of the church also!
Built in the mid 1400’s as a fortress but quickly turned into a church this place has stood the test of time. Shut down for most of the 20th century due to the no religion policy of the Soviet Union. It was opened again in 1991 and some restoration work conducted until funds ran out. Now it is in normal use with church services held regularly.
HOLY PROTECTION CHURCH FORTIFIED XIV-XVIII CENTURIES.
A very interesting find that we didn’t know what here. We were passing through and noticed an old wall and then a large monument. Once we stopped we saw the castle walls and the Church inside
Built in 1606 this church worked up until 1933 when it was taken over by Soviet authorities and made into horse stables for a collective farm. During WW2 it was the perfect place to establish a labor camp due to the high walls surrounding the church nobody could escape. Turned into a church again with the fall of the Soviet Union it is now conducting services regularly.
SANCTUARY OF OUR LADY OF LETYCHIV
We came to this village to see the castle that is on top of a hill. While looking out over the valley below we saw this small wooden church and decided to check it out. The 2 kilometer of road to get to it is a little rough but not to bad. The church was interesting and we were glad we visited!
The church was built in 1769. The original framework still stands inside. Very peaceful setting
CHURCH OF ST. MICHAEL ZINKIV
We originally thought this was just a watch tower for the castle that’s near by. It wasn’t until we were told that it is the bell tower for a monastery that used to exist here that we knew what it was. Built in 1613 the monastery functioned until the early 1800’s. Then it was abandoned. It was further damaged badly during the fighting in WW2. Now it is in ruins while a new chuch is being built in its shadow.
CHURCH OF THE MOTHER OF GOD GROMNICHEY AND DOMINICAN MONASTERY
This was an interesting little monastery we visited just because we saw a sign for It on the side of the road. They were doing some major renovations so it should be even more beautiful in the near future. Nobody knows exactly when it was founded reports vary from 1576 to 1676. It was a place where many Cossaks came to live out the later years of their lives in peace and quiet. It has gone through many battles and plagues over the centuries. After the rise of Communism it was used as a place for those wounded in the Civil wars. After WW2 it became a nursing home then was converted into a home for disabled children before becoming a monastery again in 1993.
Built in 1772 with out the use of nails this church is a true work of art! With 9 green painted domes with the center being 65 meters high this is a sight to see. This was the last Church built by the Cossaks before they left Zaporozhye Sich. The bell tower was built in the 19th century though. When the Soviet Union rose the church was turned into a ware house. During WW2 the church was set to be a trap for the advancing Soviets by the Germans. Thankfully the Soviet Sappers were able to keep the bombs from exploding.
HOLLY TRINITY CHURCH IN NOVOMOSKOVSK
As we were driving around between points we saw this church. We also happened to meet the local priest who was very kind to us and told us a bit about the church and let us explore it. Built in the late 19th century with the money of a local landowner. In Soviet times, as usual, it was used as a storage room. Now it works. Unusual architecture and very beautiful inside.
CHURCH OF THE HOLY APOSTLE JOHN THE DIVINE
A very impressive catholic church set in a small village of about 2,500 people. Built in 1624 this is one of the few churches that was allowed to stay open through the duration of the Soviet Union. It was founded by the Monks Dominican originally. Since it was allowed to stay working during the Soviet Union the church is still in amazing condition. The outside is very beautiful while the inside is just spectacular! The roads to get here weren’t terrible so its worth the visit
CHURCH OF VIRGIN MARY (MURAFA)
One of the few German buildings that survived to our time from the German colonists, who at the beginning of the 20th century built this church for the whole community of the local colony, They sparred no money in its building! In the second half of the 18th century. Russia controlled a large area of southern Ukraine. The new territories were steppes with very small Ukrainian settlements. For their settlement, an influx of people from outside was necessary. And the government of Catherine II issued a manifesto with the appeal of foreigners to settle in Russia. In the Novonikolaevsky district, the first German settlements appeared at the beginning of the 19th century. The settlers decided to build a church in the begening of the 20th century. An organ from the company "Bach and Shunt" was bought from from Stuttgart. The organ had a magnificent appearance, cost 5,000 rubles, donated by Messrs. Sterling and Schmidt.
On June 5, 1911, a solemn opening of a new church took place, which was a great event for the Konkriniv villages. In 1941, German families who lived in the village were taken to Kazakhstan. Now in this building there is a local house of culture in a deplorable state
GERMAN CHURCH IN TERCYANKE
We saw this church on the side of the road and had to stop to check it out. It is located in a small village with not much around so it was very visable. Built around 1900 this Roman Catholic Church is very beautiful. Unfortunately it was locked and we were not able to go inside but the outside was very nice to spend a few minutes walking around.
This was a gem! We only found it because we were told by a friend to check it out. Warning though the road to get here is about 5 km long and its all rough gravel and dirt roads. It might be difficult in wet conditions. Monastirok was a cave monastery. Here you can find the remains of that monastery along with the construction of a new monastery compound on the same land. You are set on top of a cliff overlooking a river. The cave looks like something from the Flintstones Cartoons. With a large stone above it that looks like it is held up by a small column of stones. The views are very nice and we sat here for over an hour relaxing.
This is the most spectacular monastery you will find in Ukraine! From what we were told this is the most famous monastery for the wealthy to donate money to. You can tell as you walk inside the main church it is covered in gold! The light glittering off the gold is almost blinding! Founded in 1994 this men’s monastery is Russian Orthodox all services are performed in Russian or Romanian. It is one of the largest Orthadox churches in Ukraine. There is also an orphanage here where around 400 children live including a portion of which are disabled or have HIV. The church is worth visiting if even close to the area. It is truly breathtaking.
HOLY ASCENSION BANCHEN MONASTERY
We found it by chance, passing by, the church is clearly visible from the main road. Now the state of the building is very deplorable, it is falling apart, but still impressive. The former church and the monastery of the Theatians began to be built in 1745 with the funds of Nikolai Vasily Pototsky under the project of architect Bernard Meretin in collaboration with the famous sculptor Johann Georg Pinzel. It is considered the first joint work of the two artists and one of the most valuable post-baroque monuments on the territory of the former Commonwealth.
CHURCH OF BLESSED VIRGIN MARY OF IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (GORODENKA)
There are arguments as to how old this church is exactly. Inside the church there is a carving with a date of 1598 though is some documents there is a mention of a church here from 1491… Though the official date used is 1598 as that is the only hard evidence anyone has. It is still one of the oldest wooden churches in Ukraine! Now the church is on the Unesco World Heritage List along with belonging to a local museum now. unfortunatly it was not open when we arrived… They say they work from 10:00 to 17:00 with a lunch break from 13:00-14:00 but it was our experience this isn’t exactly true…. We were very impressed with this church. We only wished it was open to go inside. There is an amazing old cemetery around the church and many ancient carvings. To walk around the church and view how it was built without nails is quiet impressive! Really one of Monty’s favorite Unesco Churches that was seen.
UNESCO CHURCH OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
A monastery not far from the Manyava Waterfall. It is here that trucks typically wait to take people offroad to the Manyava waterfall. An Orthodox monastery founded in the early 17th century. among the Carpathian Mountains. It is an architectural monument. According to one version, Hetman Ivan Vyhovsky is buried here. There is a blessed stone - a cave (skete), in which lived the first monks-hermits. The blessed stone is about a kilometer from the bridge across the Manyak River near the lake. It is considered a holy place of power. There is also a healing spring.
A rather interesting monastery. We both enjoyed it but its not worth going out of your way for. It was originally founded just after the first world war. It didn’t last long as the Soviet Union came to power and in the 1970’s was completely destroyed. Since the fall of the Soviet Union it was recreated and now is a working mens monastery. The bell tower it the highest in the Transcarpathia at 47 meters tall
A UNESCO World Heritage Site this church is impressive to see. Unfortunately, we were not able to go inside as everything was locked. This was one of the least interesting churches on the UNESCO list that we saw. Built in 1838 the center cupola has 9 levels. While the two outer cupolas have 7 levels. The church is now equipped with the latest fire and security system now. This was used in 2010 when the church was struck by lightning and caught on fire. The fire suppression system worked and was able to save the church from destruction.
CHURCH OF HOLY TRINITY (MATKOV) UNESCO
The oldest wooden church in Ukraine! It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site for good reason. It recently underwent a rather large restoration. The church is done with the restoration but the bell tower continues with repair work.
Built in 1470 this is a piece of art as much as it is a building. We marveled at the skill required to build a church like this without the use of nails! The size of the timbers used is mind-boggling. It was originally built elsewhere and then after it had stood for over 300 years the authorities decided it was in the way. So, it was taken apart and moved piece by piece to its current location. The oldest painting inside date back to the 17th century. We were both impressed by this church and were extremely happy we stopped. Be careful though there is another wooden church not far away that many confuse for this place and stop there instead.
CHURCH OF ST. NICHOLAS THE MIRACULOUS UNESCO
A beautiful church a little out of the way to see but worth it if you like old wooden architecture. It is part of the Carpathian Churches included in the UNESCO World Heritage list. Built in 1838 this church has stood the test of time. It has 3 domes and the main dome has 8 levels to it. The church was struck by lightning in 2010 and caught on fire but was saved due to an automatic firefighting system.
CHURCH ST. DMYTRO UNESCO (MATKOV)
Built in the last half of the 1700’s This church is one the UNESCO World Heritage list.
It is a wooden church that has since been covered with an embossed metal.It is a very beautiful church. Legend has it that it was built by a man named Grigory Melnik who lived for 114 years and is now buried near the church. The roads to get here are good but be careful around the church. We got a flat tire as we parked on the street in front of the church.
VIRGIN MARY CHURCH UNESCO
You could see this church as you approached the city and we had stop to check it out. We were not disappointed but we were unable to go inside. Or even into the yard of the church as it was locked.First built in 1590 from wood then made again in 1610 out of stone. It is a Roman Catholic church who’s icon was stolen in the early 1900’s and now is decorated with a copy. During Soviet times the church was abandoned.
This cave monastery was a little tricky to find. It is on a rather large complex and we had to wander around for 30 minutes before we found the actual cave. Mentioned in archives as existing in the 11th century. This cave became famous due to a legend that invading Tartar’s trapped about 200 villagers in this cave and burned them alive. The legend was confirmed in the 20th century when excavations found burned human remains in the cave. Now it is a cave where people go to pray and worship. It is mostly tall enough for you to stand normally but we would recommend bringing a flashlight to help see things more clearly.
PECHERI-KELI (STRADCH) CAVE MONASTERY
To get here we had to park on the road and walk about half a kilometer to the rock. Once we arrived we were impressed with what we found. A huge rock with caves carved out of it where monks would of lived.. Supposedly Boghdan Khmelnitsky was here in 1648.You can climb in and around the rock and there are multiple caves to explore. Bring a flashlight it will be handy.
Two amazing churches in Chervonograd that are just across the street from each other. The Yellow church is Catholic and built in 1775. It was a monastery for a long time. Eventually being closed during the Soviet Union and the building used to house the police then a school and post office and finally in the 1980’s a museum of Atheism was here. After the fall of the Soviet Union it was returned to a church. The Blue domed church is Orthadox. It was built in the late 1600’s. It was almost untouched by the wars of the 20th century but was closed in 1946 with the arrival of the Soviet Union. Chervonograd was church less until this church was reopened in 1988 to celebrate 1000 years of Kieven Rus history.
A church on the outskirts of Zhovkva that is on the UNESCO World Heritage list. Built in 1720 this wooden Church is impressive. It has 3 sections of the church and is beautiful from the outside. We were not able to go inside the church but walking around the outside was stunning and worth the trip here.
UNESCO CHURCH SW. TROJCY
Another amazing church that is included on the UNESCO World Heritage list. One of the oldest and best preserved timber churches of Galicia. The church dates to 1500 and consists of 3 parts. The central part is square and plain the other two blocks contain the entrance and two semicircular domes. The church was renovated in the late 1600’s and frescoes added
UNESCO ST. GEORGE'S CHURCH
Another wooden church that is on the UNESCO World Heritage list. We were not able to go inside though.
Finished in 1747 this church is one of the best examples of the Boyk Style. It consists of two parts one large main section and the second smaller piece.
The road to get here was in good condition and rather spectacular with nice views!
UNESCO SVYATOGO ARHISTRATIGA
A cool little place set on a hill. With beautiful green rolling hills, all around this was a great place to come to and relax! Zagorovsky Monastery was first mentioned in 1492. From the 15-17th century the village and the monastery belonged to the Zagorowski family. The most famous part of its history is the story of how it was destroyed. During the Second World War in September 1942, there was a battle of a platoon of 44 soldiers of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), the youngest of whom was 16 years old, the German forces numbered ten times greater. The Ukrainian insurgents settled on the monastery, as the most suitable for defense with a big building that had deep cellars. The Germans stormed the monastery for several days until the tanks and air support were colled in. Nevertheless 12 soldiers survived and managed to escape from the encirclement.
Near the monastery is a monument to this heroic battle.
ZAGOROVSKY MONASTERY (NOVY ZAGEROV MONASTERY)
A spectacular Monastery that is worth the visit! Founded in 1630 the lower church was finished in 1642. After wars around the turn of the 18th century the upper church was finished in 1754. Its most famous painting, Image of Our Lady of Berdychiv, was destroyed during World War 2. After the war it was reconstructed and turned into a school of music and art. Finally, being returned to the Catholic community in 1991. In 1997 a new image of Our lady of Berdychiv was painted.