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A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain range, lake, desert, building, complex, or city) that has been included in the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee. The programme aims to catalogue, name, and preserve sites of outstanding cultural or natural importance to the common heritage of humankind. As of 2006, a total of 830 sites are listed.

Properties in Ukraine inscribed on the World Heritage List:

  • Kiev: Saint Sophia Cathedral and Related Monastic Buildings, Kiev-Pechersk Lavra
  • Lvov - the Ensemble of the Historic Centre
  • Struve Geodetic Arc

    Kiev: Saint Sophia Cathedral and Related Monastic Buildings, Kiev-Pechersk Lavra

    Saint Sophia Cathedral is an outstanding architectural monument of Kievan Rus'. Designed to rival Hagia Sophia in Constantinople, the Cathedral symbolizes the "New Constantinople". It was created in the 11th century after the Principality of Kiev was baptized by St Vladimir in 988. The complex now is a museum of Ukraine's Christianity. It is one of the city's best known landmarks and the first Ukrainian patrimony to be inscribed on the World Heritage List. Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, also known as the Kiev Monastery of the Caves, is an ancient cave monastery in Kiev. It was founded in 1051 by monks Anthony and Theodosius, and became an important center of Orthodox Christianity in Kievan Rus'. Currently, the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra also serves as the residence of the Metropolitan, the head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.

    Lvov - the Ensemble of the Historic Centre

    The city of Lvov in Western Ukraine, founded in the Middle Ages, was a flourishing administrative, religious and commercial centre for several centuries. The medieval urban topography has been preserved virtually intact, along with many fine Baroque and later buildings. In its urban fabric and its architecture, Lvov is an outstanding example of the fusion of the architectural and artistic traditions of Eastern Europe with those of Italy and Germany. The political and commercial role of Lvov attracted to it a number of ethnic groups with different cultural and religious traditions, who established separate yet interdependent communities within the city, evidence for which is still discernible in the modern townscape. The city is regarded as one of the main cultural centres of Ukraine.

    Struve Geodetic Arc

    The Struve Arc is a chain of survey triangulations stretching from Norway to the Black Sea, through ten countries. These are points of a survey, carried out between 1816 and 1855 by the astronomer Friedrich Struve, which represented the first accurate measuring of a long segment of a meridian. This helped establish the exact size and shape of our planet and marked an important step in the development of earth sciences and topographic mapping. It is an extraordinary example of scientific collaboration among scientists and monarchs from different countries for a scientific cause. The listed site includes 34 of the original 265 station points, with different markings, i.e. a drilled hole in rock, iron cross, or built obelisks.

    Properties in Ukraine submitted on the Tentative List (sites considered for nomination):

  • Historic Centre of Tchernigov
  • Castle and Historic Center of Kamenets-Podolsk
  • Ruins of Ancient City of Chersonesos
  • Taras Shevchenko Tomb and State Historical and Natural Museum - Reserve
  • National Steppe Biosphere Reserve "Askaniya Nova"
  • Dendrological Sofiyivsky Park
  • Bakhchisarai Palace of the Crimean Khans
  • Beech Primeval Forests of the Carpathians
  • Archaeological Site "Stone Tomb"

    Historic Centre of Chernigov

    Chernigov is an ancient city in Northern Ukraine. Chernigov's architectural monuments chronicle the most flourishing period in the city's history - that of Kievan Rus (between the 9th and the 13th centuries). The oldest church in the city and in the whole of Ukraine is the five-domed Saviour Cathedral, commissioned in the early 1030s. The Cathedral of St Boris and St Gleb, dating from the mid-12th century, was much rebuilt in succeeding periods, before being restored to its original shape in the 20th century.

    Castle and Historic Center of Kamenets-Podolsk

    Kamenets-Podolsk is a city located on the Smotrich River in Western Ukraine. Kamenets-Podolsk is famous for its historic center and ancient fortress dating back to the 11th -18th centuries, and for ballooning activities in the canyon of the Smotrich River. Since 1998 the city has been growing as a tourist center.

    Ruins of Ancient City of Chersonesos

    Chersonesos was an ancient Greek colony founded approximately 2500 years ago. The ruins of the ancient city are located on the shore of the Black Sea at the outskirts of Sevastopol in Crimea. It has been nicknamed the "Ukrainian Pompeii" and "Russian Troy". The buildings mix influences of Greek, Roman and Byzantine culture and include an amphitheatre, a temple and defensive walls.

    Taras Shevchenko Tomb and State Historical and Natural Museum - Reserve

    Taras Shevchenko was a Ukrainian poet, artist and humanist. His literary heritage is regarded to be the foundation of modern Ukrainian literature and, to a large extent, of modern Ukrainian language. There are many monuments to Shevchenko throughout Ukraine, most notably at his memorial in Kaniv.

    National Steppe Biosphere Reserve "Askaniya Nova"

    Askaniya Nova Biosphere Reserve is a representative of the Black Sea southern-steppe biogeographic province, situated 60 km south-east of the town of Kakhovka. Created as the first steppe reserve in Ukraine in 1888, it comprises a dendrological park of the 19th century and a zoological park with a breeding centre for Przewalski horse, ostriches, aboriginal ungulates and birds. The site has a long research and monitoring history. The biosphere reserve is also interesting from a cultural point of view.

    Dendrological Sofiyivsky Park

    Sofiyivsky Park is a landscape park in Uman, central Ukraine. It was founded in 1796 by Count Stanislaw Potocki, a Polish nobleman. The park was named after his wife Sofia. There are many scenic areas in the park including waterfalls, fountains, ponds and a stone garden. It is one of the most famous examples of late 17th or early 18th century European landscape garden design that has been preserved to the present time.

    Bakhchisarai Palace of the Crimean Khans

    The Khan's Palace is located in Crimea, in the town of Bakhchisarai. It was built in the 16th-century and became home to a succession of Tatar Khans. The walled encloser contains a mosque, a harem, living quarters and gardens. The palace interior was decorated in the traditional Tatar style. In one courtyard there is a small fountain whose sad story moved the Russian poet Pushkin so much when he visited here that he wrote a whole poem dedicated to it.

    Archaeological Site "Stone Tomb"

    The Stone Tomb is considered one of the oldest megalithic temples of the world. Some parts of it remind structures of the Stonehenge type (Great Britain) or petroglyphs of Tassili in Algeria. The central part of this property is a mound made up of sandstone clods or blocks, with a great number of caves and grottoes between them. On the grottoes' walls there are over 1000 petroglyphs with symbolic anthropomorphic and zoomorphic images. The oldest of them - a mammoth - dates back to the Late Stone Age. Most of the petroglyphs were created in the Bronze Age. On the whole, the Stone Tomb images represent traces of religious exercises of the hunters and cattle-breeders of this steppe zone of southeast Europe starting from the 20th century B.C.