Lviv Local Customs

  • Thousands gather in Lviv for Christmas festivities
    Thousands gather in Lviv for Christmas...
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  • Street plays on Christmas Eve in Lviv
    Street plays on Christmas Eve in Lviv
    by ainsleigh
  • Christmas Tree at Prospekt Svobody Market
    Christmas Tree at Prospekt Svobody...
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Most Recent Local Customs in Lviv

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    Something Special

    by hunterV Updated Jan 1, 2015

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    Like in any other Ukrainian city, a car license plate with four similar digits is a status thing. It cannot be bought for any money, but is a sign of well-connected people/tough guys.
    However, Lviv is famous and unique in many ways.
    Picture 1: BB 1111 BE : a VIP car in a street in Lviv. No comments :-) Just my respects to the ubiquitous "chosen few" guys with their never-ending connections! (oops, may they forgive my free expression here)...
    Picture 2: Lenin monument erected in Lviv in front of the Opera and Ballet Theater on January 20, 1952 was among the first Lenin monuments in Ukraine to be demolished by the outraged crowd after Ukraine had declared its independence. That monument cost a pretty penny in its time and was the only one where Lenin's name was written in Ukrainian. The material for the monument - the granite and bronze - were the best, which did not save the majestic monument from being savagely destroyed by the local patriots who despised Lenin and the entire totalitarian Soviet way of life...
    Picture 3: Central Hostel
    Unlike many Ukrainian cities, Lviv has a hostel with affordable prices. It is located in the central square.
    Tel. +38 097 222 41 36
    5 Market Square
    Besides, there are other hostels downtown and not far from it.
    Picture 4 : Only Lviv has a Ukrainian partisans' restaurant, dedicated to the activities of the Ukrainian Insurgence Army - the place we visited with pleasure and had a good time there enjoying the fun of the "secret" ambiance.
    Picture 5: Only Lviv has a cemetery declared as the national museum - Lychakiv Cemetery that we visited and had deep impressions.

    A VIP car in Lviv: beware! They said goodbye to Lenin in 1990... Central Hostel in Lviv Kryivka museum restaurant, Lviv The entrance ticket to Lychakiv museum cemetery
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    City of Festivals

    by hunterV Updated Dec 21, 2014

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    There are a lot of unique city festivals that no other Ukrainian or Russian city can boast of the following festivals:
    Bear Festival;
    Coffee Festival;
    Chocolate Festival;
    Cooks’ Festival;
    Waiters’ Festival;
    Musical Arts Festival;
    Ethno-Jazz Festival;
    Days of Lviv (a city festival observed on the second weekend of May
    with a lot of colorful events) and others.
    When we had lunch at Gallery Cafe, we saw the participants of the International Children's Painting Festivals called Young Talents Under the Patronage of King Daniel and the Golden Easel competition.
    That festival was taking place at Merchants' Tower center in Liberty Avenue.
    We saw a lot of amazing kids' pictures and handicrafts. Good luck in the future, kids! :-)
    City Festivals
    City Festivals in 2015:
    - The 8th Christmas Tart Festival: January 7-9, 2015, Market Square
    - Christmas in the Woods: Skansen in Shevchenko Grove (1 Monks Mount), January 7-8;
    - Flash of the Christmas Star : Skansen in Shevchenko Grove (1 Monks Mount), January 7-8;
    - Shevchenko Day, March;
    - Pyssanka(Easter Egg). April: www.pysanka.lviv.ua;
    - 12th International Vane Ethno-Jazz Festival, May;
    - City Day, May: www.cultureandntourist.lviv.ua

    We witnessed a kids festivals there Great handicrafts! The festival name at the entrance Candles Festival, November 2014 A Night in Lviv Festival, November 2014
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    Think of Unity

    by hunterV Updated Dec 13, 2014

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    Unity Cossack is a brand new monument that appeared in Southern Market in Lviv. It was unveiled on Independence Day of 2014. The legendary Cossack fulfills the desire to the Unity of Ukraine. To make this desire true, you have to sit on his knees, touch his sword and think of the unity of Ukraine.
    They say that once upon a time an old Cossack, who was a sorcerer like many of talented Cossacks, met a group of Cossacks, who went aimlessly after the abolition of Zaporizhian Sich (Free Cossacks’ State). He ordered the proud warriors to throw their swords into one pile, and with his look the old Cossack smelted those swords into one big saber, that no Cossack could raise for years.
    "There will be an unknown night among the mighty knights,- said the old Cossack,- This sword will be light like a feather in his hands. He shall win freedom with this sword, and only then the old Cossack’s Mother Ukraine shall smile joyfully "…
    So old Cossack turned into a stone statue, with a saber in his hand, waiting for a knight who could raise that sword and glorify Ukraine all over the world and for all ages. And the name of the Cossack who can do it is Unity.
    So the task of every Ukrainian is to sit on the knees of the old Cossack sorcerer and to think about the unity of our country.

    Unity Cossack monument, Lviv, Ukraine Unity Cossack monument, Lviv, Ukraine Ukraine shopping mall, Lviv, Ukraine Ukraine shopping mall, Lviv, Ukraine Church of Protecting Veil of the Mother of God
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    Religious Buildings

    by hunterV Written Nov 28, 2014

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    Most of the religious buildings in Lviv are located in the historic center of Lviv. They are important cultural hubs of the city that add to the enchanting atmosphere of Lviv, the Spiritual Capital of Ukraine.
    Lviv has always been famous for its religious freedom and diversity, its numerous marvelous monasteries, churches and cathedrals. Many of those religious buildings are protected by law now.
    The cathedrals of Greek Catholic Church, Roman Catholic Church and Armenian Church are the most interesting religious sights in the city. Several churches and cathedrals have underground passages that a traveler can also visit.

    The Boims Family Chapel, Lviv, Ukraine Metropolitan Sheptytsky bust, City Hall, Lviv Armenian Cross at St.Michael's Cathedral Cathedral of Protecting Veil of the Mother of God Cathedral of Protecting Veil of the Mother of God
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    Revering Virgin Mary

    by hunterV Updated Nov 27, 2014

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    Heavenly Help of the Mother of God is well-known to the city parishioners, who sincerely revere Her and turn to Her in their prayers every day.
    Lviv churches and cathedrals contain a lot of images of Virgin Mary – both sculptures and icons. Also, you can see such images during your city walks.
    The city even has its own icon of the Mother of God. It is the treasure of the Orthodox Church of Lviv, as well as of all Lvivians.
    Wonder-Working Icon of the Mother of God of Terebovlia is at St.George’s Cathedral.
    Wonder-Working Icon of the Mother of God of Derevnia is kept at Apostle St.Andrew’s Cathedral in Cathedral Square.

    Virgin Mary at the Polytechnical University, Lviv Virgin Mary at the Polytechnical University, Lviv Virgin Mary in Serbian Street, Lviv, Ukraine Virgin Mary at the entrance to Armenian Cathedral Virgin Mary in Printers Street, Lviv, Ukraine
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    Open to the World

    by hunterV Written Nov 25, 2014

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    Lviv logo was developed in 2006 and was officially approved by the City Council as a trademark for goods, services and promotion of the city.
    The motto of the city is Open to the World.
    You can see five city towers on the logo: (from left to right) the Armenian Cathedral belfry, Corniactos Belfry, the City Hall Tower, the Latin Cathedral Tower, former Bernardine Monastery belfry. These towers and belfries symbolize the rich architectural legacy of Lviv and embody the amazing diversity of cultures, nationalities, and religions.

    The official logo of Lviv, Ukraine Old apartment houses of Lviv, Ukraine Visit the House of Organ and Chamber Music St.Peter and St.Paul's Cathedral, Lviv Bohdan Khmelmitsky memorial plaque
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    Latin Metropolitan Cathedral

    by hunterV Updated Nov 24, 2014

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    Latin Cathedral, located at 1 Cathedral Square, is the main Roman-Catholic church in Lviv. It was the first sight we saw on our way to Market Square.
    The full name of this church is Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Cathedral.
    The cathedral has a long history. It was founded in 1349 when King Kazimierz III the Great laid its cornerstone.
    It was constructed from 1350 until 1493 and was refurbished within the following centuries absorbing the styles of different epochs: from Gothic through Renaissance, to Baroque, Classicism and to Modernism.
    There are precious relics in the central altar of the church, among them the wonder-working Icon of the Virgin Mary the Gentle.
    This is how the cathedral looked like in the 19th century.
    You can see a memorial plaque dedicated to the visit of Pope John Paul II who attended a mass here on June 26, 2001.
    The Chapel of the Boim Family is the only remaining part of the cathedral cemetery. It is located on the site.
    See also:
    Interactive Map of Lviv

    Latin Metropolitan Cathedral Pope John Paul II memorial plaque Latin Metropolitan Cathedral Latin Metropolitan Cathedral Latin Metropolitan Cathedral
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    Dedicated to Great People

    by hunterV Updated Nov 24, 2014

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    Lviv has a great number of memorial plaques, and each one is a work of art indeed!
    Here are some more of my images of the memorial plaques I liked:
    - Ivan Franko memorial plaque, Solomia Kruszelnicka Street;
    - Solomia Kruszelnicka memorial plaque on the building where she used to live in 1903-1952;
    - West-Ukrainian People’s Republic memorial plaque to commemorate the proclamation of West-Ukrainian People’s Republic in that building in Theater Street on November 1, 1918;
    - Founders of the Ukrainian scientific school memorial plaque, dedicated to the 150th jubilee, 1848-1998;
    - Pope John Paul II memorial plaque dedicated to his visit to Lviv on June 25, 2001.

    Ivan Franko memorial plaque, Lviv Solomia Kruszelnicka memorial plaque West-Ukrainian People?s Republic memorial plaque Founders of the Ukrainian scientific plaque Pope John Paul II memorial plaque, Lviv
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    Wedding Celebrations

    by hunterV Written Nov 21, 2014

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    We were privileged to see some wedding celebrations om Saturday - the Wedding Day - when we were in Museum Street near the former Dominican Monastery where the newly-weds arrived.
    Each couple arrived in a specially decorated automobile and went into the church building trlo get blessing.
    Then they set out to drive along the city streets where we say them aggain. The newly-weds did not miond being taken photo of. We wishes them good luck, happiness and harmony.

    The newly-weds The newly-weds arrrive to the church The newly-weds arrrive to the church Visiting the church The newly-weds' automobile
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    Rub the Merry Painter’s Nose

    by hunterV Updated Nov 20, 2014

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    The monument to Nikifor Epiphany Drovniak (1895-1968) is the most recent city monument.
    It is located next to former Dominican Monastery at 1 Museum Street.
    Drovniak was a Ukrainian primitivism painter belonging to Lemke national minority. His works, that impressed the entire Europe, are described as naïve art.
    When this monument was unveiled, a new tradition appeared: if you want your wish to come true, you have to rub the merry painter's nose or finger. So you can see the nose and a finger are polished and shining now.

    Merry Painter monument, Lviv The  former Dominican Monastery, Lviv The  former Dominican Monastery, Lviv The  former Dominican Monastery The interior of  the former Dominican Monastery
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    See You at King Daniel's!

    by hunterV Updated Nov 20, 2014

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    The monument to the first Ukrainian king Daniel of Galicia, dedicated in 2001, became very popular with Lvivians. It’s the meeting place of many young people and a place where different rallies are held.
    The height of the monument is ten meters. The city guide explained to us that the creation of the monument required nine tons of bronze and sixty tons of granite.
    The monument was created by sculptor Vasyl Yarich and architect Yarema Churylo.
    A 3D Tour of the Monument

    The monument to the first Ukrainian king The monument to the first Ukrainian king The monument to the first Ukrainian king The monument to the first Ukrainian king Galician Street, Lviv, Ukraine
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    Living Sculptures

    by hunterV Updated Nov 20, 2014

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    There is a new form of entertainment in Lviv: living sculptures.
    You can meet them in Market Square and in Galician Street mostly at weekends.
    There are lots of people who want their photo taken with those sculptures.
    Living Sculptures in Lviv
    New Statues in Lviv
    New Entertainment in Lviv

    Living sculptures of Lviv Living sculptures of Lviv Living sculptures of Lviv Living sculptures of Lviv Market Square, Lviv, Ukraine
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    Coffee Traditions

    by hunterV Written Oct 22, 2014

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    Having a cup of coffee with friends or family is a must in Lviv. It has become a cherished tradition and is carefully supported by dozens of coffee houses of the city.
    Lviv is proud of Yuriy Kulchitski, who was an officer in the army of the Polish king Jan III Sobieski. Yuriy Kulchitski was born in the village of Kulchitsy Lviv area. After the victory over the Turks in 1672, when the united Polish army defeated the Ottoman Empire near Vienna, he got a trophy as a merited officer: coffee beans and opened the first coffee house in Vienna. The coffee tradition spread all over Europe. Now there is a monument to Yuriy Kulchitski in Vienna.
    You can drop in at a coffee house in Lviv called At Yuriy Kulchitski and there is a coffee house in Ruthenian Street with the same name as the first coffeehouse of Yuriy Kulchitski in Vienna: Under the Blue Lamp.

    A cup of red coffee at Golden Dukat Coffee House Have some coffee in Market Square! Kava na Shpatser, Market Square Exploring Market Square, Lviv, Ukraine Let's have some coffee in Lviv!
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    Memorial Plaques

    by hunterV Updated Oct 21, 2014

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    You can see dozens, if not hundreds, of memorial plaques all over the city.
    They are mostly dedicated to local heroes or famous people who used to live and work in Lviv.
    Here are some of the memorial plaques I have seen and liked:

    To Lesia Ukrainka, a famous Ukrainian poetess;
    to Prosvita Society;
    at the City Hall;
    to Yevhen Konovalets;
    to Martha Chorna-Medeya, a Ukrainian Insurgent Army's liaison lady who was killed by the Nazis on May 23, 1943.

    Lesia Ukrainka memorial plaque City Hall memorial plaque Yevhen Konovalets memorial plaque Martha Chorna-Medeya  memorial plaque Prosvita memorial plaque
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    See You at the Fountain!

    by hunterV Updated Oct 20, 2014

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    There are four fountains with sculptures representing mythological figures around Market Square:
    - on the south-western side – Neptune fountain;
    - on the north-western side – Amphitrite fountain;
    - on the north-eastern side - Adonis fountain;
    - on the south-eastern side - Diana fountain.
    The fountain figures were made by Hartman Witwer (1774-1825) out of limestone.
    They embody the allegory of earth (the sculptures of Diana and Adonis) and water (the sculptures of Neptune and Amphitrite).
    The Market Square figures were created between 1810 and 1814.
    These fountains are a good meeting point for people, especially for the first-time visitors of Lviv.
    One of the first pictures of the entire group of VT Meeting participants was made in front of Amphitrite fountain.

    Market Square fountains Market Square fountains Market Square fountains Throw a coin into the fountain to come back.... The Opera Theater fountain is huge and splendid!
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Lviv Local Customs

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