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Kiev, Ukraine – yes, it’s cold so bring a hat and a thick coat!

Posted by on July 20, 2018

You always wonder how can people live in such cold, frigid weather wastelands… why don’t they just move elsewhere? Well, it isn’t that easy to do especially if you’ve grown up there your whole life and gotten used to arctic and sub-zero temperatures. In fact, you get used to the murderous gale force winds, falling ice and snow, and the need to bundle up in 5-6 layers of clothing in order to repel the cold. I don’t even think I had to do that when going deer hunting in New York or even for hunting mule deer in the mountains/hills of Colorado!

kiev street calle capital ukrainian ucrania

Forget what you hear about Ukraine. It’s not a third world country. They have flush-able toilets, electricity, heating, cars, internet, smartphones, etc. If you look in the distance, there is a sign for Uber!

I have to say going to Ukraine was one of the coldest I’ve ever been in life. I just couldn’t believe that it can get that chilly cold in life to where you have to wear multiple layers, gloves, hat or beanie OR you have to hibernate. Even the nights can be damn cold. Gotta have a heater on just to sleep well! Now I know why so many Slavic peoples (from Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, etc.) go to Costa del Sol. To get some sun, a tan, vitamin D from the solar rays, and an escape from the persecution of the ax-murderer called arctic blast weather. Even going to Mexico or Costa Rica would be considered heaven.

On the flip side, I can imagine how nice and warm Ukraine must be during the summer. Just walking around without a damn care in the world. Yeah, that must be nice to be out there after being burned by the cold. I know because I went through lubes of lip balm because otherwise my lips would be cracking worse than the dried out river bed in the desert.

Tip: Bring a lot of warm clothing if you’re going to be in Ukraine because it gets freezing cold! I went biking with a local who was going to show me some of the better sights to Kiev but we did it at night. Haha. Yeah…. I had to wear anything and everything to stay warm. You might also want to eat more calories if you’re going to be outside for a period of time because your body will need the fuel to stay internally warm. It’s like loading up firewood for a fireplace – why walk outside every time to keep the fire going when you can pre-stage everything?

kiev biking faire du velo bicicleta montar Rad fahren at night nuit abend soir kiev city

Night rider. That’s me. Crazy enough to bike ride in 0 degree Celsius weather.

Still, Kiev is quite interesting when not considering the weather. Well, maybe, I should consider the weather because the Ukrainians have built a lot of great pieces of architecture that still stand all over the city. They built these amazing statues, churches, temples, bridges, buildings, etc. despite the cold and without the convenience and comfort of the modern world!

plaza ukraine capital hauptstadt platz

This is the Bohdan Khmelnytsky Monument with St. Sophia’s Cathedral in the background. The place where I was at, Sofiyivska Square, had a lot of people in it during the weekend.

St. Michael's Golden-Domed Monastery blue church gold top

When I was biking, I stopped by this famed blue building called St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery. You might see this on tour guide books, but it’s more impressive with all the lights at night… if you are willing to have the courage to fight the cold, chill, and wind.

night time Independence Square

I know the picture is a bit blurred but being there in person was a nice sight. Especially with the lights. This was from Independence Square. “They built this city on Rock and Roll!” Oops, probably not since Rock and Roll didn’t exist back then….

St. Nicolas Wondermaker on The Water Church on the river dneper

I was walking around and then I saw this…. a lighthouse or a church? It reminded me of Belem Tower in Lisbon. It’s actually called St. Nicolas Wondermaker on The Water Church. Interesting long name.

Tip: Try to learn some Russian before you come to the country because a lot of people (old and young) cannot speak English well. It kind of reminded me of being in a Latin American country where it’s all and only Spanish. It was like that fishing in Nicaragua where there aren’t any many tourists and if they were tourists, they’re also generally Spanish-speaking. Not many Englsh-speakers out there and there is no need for them to do so either.

ukraine food comida de ucrania essen aus l'ailments ukraine restaurant ukrainians

So I went to this one restaurant and man, they had great food. Ukrainian dumplings with sauce! However, unlike in other European countries when I went to order, the people don’t speak English. It’s all Russian or Ukrainian. I could speak enough Russian to where it was passable so they understood me. One old lady couldn’t understand me at all to where I switched to Spanish, then French, then German, before she said, “Speak Russian.” Okay, then! We have an agreement in judgment of a language. By the way, I really liked the food there as well!