There aren't many great floral displays in Zaporizhzhya, however starting at the Muncipal Administration building at the head of Victory Avenue its as good as it gets. The flowers at the WWII monument are stunners in their carpet beds.
Strolling down Victory Avenue you're likely to run into wedding parties being photographed against the greenery and the fountains. Its a great place to sit on a park bench to catch a few rays without being surrounded by stores. It is mostly a residential street, but the few shops which exist are interesting. The one in the photo gallery could have been anywhere in North America or Western Europe with its minimalist fascade and restricted clothing lines inside.
In 1790, Mennonites arrived from Prussia (Danzig area) to take up farming at the invitation of Czarina Catherine (the Great). They established many farming communities in the Zaporizhzhya (then called Alexanderovsk) area and undoubtedly the most prosperous was centred on two villages, Chortitza and Rosental. These villages increasingly became the industrial and cultural centre of the Mennonite colony. By 1908 there were over 2,000 Mennonites plus Ukrainians. There were 2 hospitals, many factories, Mennonite meeting houses, an Orthodox church, and Jewish synagogue. The most prominent building is the 1904 girl's school which has been restored and is being used as a school. It is a hansom building indicative of the thriving culture of pre-WWI.
Across the side street is a complex of buildings including a former teachers college (1913) with Charles Rennie McIntosh style brick facade, buildings from a former secondary school and workers hospital.
The area below the main bridge is a beautiful beachfront (I won't vouch for the water quality) which afords a great walk. There is a lot of graffiti along the retaining wall and seems to be a flourishing art. It is interesting how there is no graffiti in regularly travelled areas, but in certain locations it blossoms and seems to be tollerated. I'm glad. It shows a rich variety of graphic styles of the contemporary youth culture. And the Cyrillic script just makes the designs intriguing.
There is a great deal of unemployment or under-employment here. There are always people just hanging about which makes a westerner feel very uncomfortable. Have a destination and make like you're going there. This is a blue-collar city and it is best to wear non-descript clothing (no designer labels) and move about in pairs at least. I kept my camera hidden in a shoulder bag and only took it out when I had decided what the picture would be so that it was exposed only for a minute.