Only the largest cities in Europe have the honor of being reviewed neighborhood by neighborhood, and Kyiv, the seventh-largest city in the Old World, is certainly one of those.
Translated roughly to “Lower Town,” Podil is one of the oldest neighborhoods of Ukraine, first achieving notoriety in Kyivan-Rus chronicles just before the turn of the 2nd millennium CE. Like all great cities—like all great districts, the tides of history have constantly warped the appearance of Podil into what it is today.
What Podil is today is a concrete quilt of Easter-colored buildings, lining old boulevards as prominent for promenading elders in fur and fine dress as young hipsters, college students, and business types hurrying to their next meeting.
It’s a mixture of young and aged, old and new, with cultural wagons circled tightly around key aspects of Ukrainian city life, and it’s an area that certainly deserves publication of its own.
For people looking to look beyond the countless golden domes of churches, or whose minds labor at the mere thought of trudging around museums all day, Podil is an ideal place to stay in the city.