Known as Lwow by the Polish who ruled until the 2nd World War, Lvov by the Russians who took over as a result of the 1939 Hitler-Stalin Pact and now Lviv, this is a beautiful European City perfect for a City Break. You could easily spend a summer here.

If you are thinking of coming to watch some European Championship football, this also would be a great place to come. That assumes, of course, that the stadium is finished (see photo). It would be devastating to the Lviv economy if this didn’t happen. The rest of the infrastructure seems to be mostly ready. Though, with full size bottles of Vodka at £2.50, I’m a bit worried about what some English fans might do.


We tried to get tickets for the ballet at the Opera House, but it’s closed for most of August. The girls settled for riding the Segway around the pedestrianised square outside the Opera House. It was very entertaining to watch many 4 year olds hare around the square with complete disregard to pedestrians or other square drivers. Benches along many of the Prospekts were taken up by chess or draft players, the better of them attracting sizeable crowds.


Measuring 142 by 129 metres, Rynok (or Market) Square is another Unesco protected place. We had drinks in the Italian Garden. You will recognise this from a number of films, as indeed you will much of Lviv.


We had a late lunch at Veronicas. We had dough balls (which are a kind of mashed potato wrapped in ravioli pasta) with different sauces. I think I’ll try cooking them when I get home. Dinner was at a Jewish restaurant, Pid Zolotoiu Rozoyu. This was one of the most interesting venues I have ever seen. If you go there, book a place on the rooftop for a view on the City. The terrace also has a place for the children to play, a Trabant. I’m not sure how they got it up there, but I’m glad they did. Unfortunately, we didn’t book and so had to settle for a lower floor, a library. Fantastic place nonetheless.

The people in the Carpathian Mountains looked Eastern European. It was partly what they wore, but mainly their hairstyles. There is nothing wrong with that. In Lviv, they dress differently and they also have more interesting hairstyles. Spurred on by this, I had my hair cut. Better haircut than many –

One taxi driver told us some interesting stories. He had gone to Communist Youth Camps (known as Pioneer Camps) when he was a boy, but hadn’t enjoyed it because there were only so many Concentration Camps one could visit. He also said that education had deteriorated since the fall of the Soviet Union; otherwise everything was now better. We found a fascinating Soviet English text book published in Moscow in 1988. Incredible propaganda, alternating wonderful articles on how good things were in the Soviet Union with denigrating pieces on how terrible life was in the USA.

We left Lviv wishing we had spent more time there. There appeared to be 40 interesting restaurants to try and double the number of cafes.

2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Sarah on August 7, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    Sounds fascinating – can’t wait to hear more while in Venice.



  2. […] Lviv ( […]


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