Best Places to Celebrate New Year and Christmas in Ukraine
The New Year and Christmas are the most cherished and the most popular holidays in Ukraine. They are commonly celebrated with lots of fun and to great effect here. The traditional set of the New Year and Christmas entertainments can be found in every corner of the country, but there are destinations in Ukraine, which have an atmosphere that few other places can rival.
Without doubt, Ukrainian Carpathians Mountains along with their resorts are the busiest destination during New Year and Christmas holidays. It is the only place where one can plunge into really authentic winter and its advantages as go skiing or sledding from snow-covered mountain slopes, engage in snowball fight, go for a walk into the winter forest, and then warm up by the fireplace in the colorful kolyba (traditional Carpathian house). On the New Year's Eve numerous celebrations, including dinners with Ukrainian authentic meals and entertainments are held in Carpathians. One can take advantage of even more fun during Christmas festivities in Carpathians. The celebrations are usually accompanied by colorful folk festivals, Verteps (live nativity scenes), cheerful kolyadky (Ukrainian carols) and Christmas divination.
Another great Ukrainian Christmas destination with unforgettable holiday ambiance is the old Lviv, which dresses in festive decoration and becomes truly magnificent. The whole city features Christmas markets, where one can taste famous Lviv delicacies and mouth-watering mulled wine, as well as colorful national events dedicated to winter holidays. Throughout Christmas vacation in Lviv, it is possible to become a witness of several centuries-old Ukrainian customs, including installation of the main Christmas symbol, didukh, tree-shaped, five meter high sheaf of wheat, visit City Doughnut Festival and Vertep Parade in Lviv.
The other original and authentic way to celebrate New Year is to head to ancient Kamianets-Podilskyi. The celebration will take place amidst medieval castle, considered the city's gem. The knights will guard tables with mouth-watering Ukrainian dishes and beverages in the fortress yard. And after New Years' meal, the fortress will host medieval games, fights, songs and dances.
Also, Kamianets-Podilskyi will host Cossack festival during New Year and Christmas holidays. It will feature a copy of Zaporizhzhya Sich with stables, kitchen and tents installed on Polsky Rynok Square. One can enjoy Cossack dishes, practice archery and horse riding. Later, the traditional Ballooning festival and Podilska malanka festival will take place in the city.
The main events dedicated to winter holiday will be held in the country's heart, Kyiv. This year the New Year epicenter will be located on the Sofiyska Square. There has been already installed more than fifty Christmas stalls with different goods, the biggest grill in the country, attraction park and real Christmas tree. During New Year night the big concert, as well as symphonic orchestra and popular Ukrainian singers performances will take place; the following days will be full of different interactive programs, contests, New Year quests, artistic groups’ performances, games, festivities, roundelay, etc.
Along with Sofiyska Square, The Andriyivsky Descent also will welcome tourists and locals alike to participate in several Christmas events such as traditional entertainments as Vertep and Ukrainian carols.