The best parks out of Kiev

The Feofania (Theophany) park – one of the most beautiful parks in Kyiv. This historic area of the Golosiivsky district of the capital was first mentioned in 1471 as Lazarevshchyna, named after the monk-beekeeper Lazar. The modern name of the area exists from 1803 in honour of the abbot of the St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery of the vicar Bishop Feofan, who received land in this area for a country cottage. In 1806 Mykhailovska Church and a country residence were built here.

Since the 1860’s Feofaniya belonged to the St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery, there were built cells for monks, a metropolitan house, a refectory, hotels for pilgrims, a Temple of All Saints. In the period of 1905-1912 the Panteleimon Cathedral was built on the Feofania territory, which today is an architectural monument. In 1919 the monastery lands were nationalized, later – medical institutions, the main astronomical observatory and the field experimental laboratory.

Since 2006 the Feofania became the gardening and park complex of NAS of Ukraine “Theophany”. In the park there is a pilgrimage path, on which there are springs, one of them is curative and called “Tears of Our Lady”. The park is rich not only in a natural landscape with unique plants, but also decorated with fountains, cascade of lakes, observation decks, etc.

Kytaiv – a historical place, located in the Golosiivsky district of Kyiv, among the Dnipro hills, covered with forests and washed by lakes, creating a place for the peninsula. The history of Kytaiv begins from 1100, when the city-fortress of Peresechyn was built here. The name presumably comes from the Turkic word “kytai”, denoting a fortification or fortress. According to legend in the XII century here was the fortress-palace of Prince Bogolyubsky nicknamed “Kytai”.

On the territory remains burial mounds of X-XIII centuries, fortifications and cave cells of Kievan Rus era. According to the archaeological data, the primary fortifications in Kytaiv appeared in the middle of the 10th century. In the XIV century was founded a cave monastery on the basis of the ancient dungeons in Kytaiv (restored in the 1990s).

Kitaiv – is a site of sacred places, where are located miraculous icons, burials and relics of holy monks-ascetics. Besides the relic, Kytaiv attracts the city-dwellers with natural beauty – this is a forest where a chestnut tree grows more than 300 years old (stem – 3,4 m), ponds with wild ducks and baths with holy springs where you can draw holy water.

The Holosiivskyi Park named after Maksym Rylsky – was founded in 1957, located in the part of the natural forest of Holosiivsky district. From 1964 the park takes the name of the Ukrainian poet Maxym Rylsky, who lived in 1951-1964 next to the park. The main beauty of the park is a cascade of four ponds, which is located along the valley of the Orekhovatka creek. On the lower pond there is a boat station where you can rent a catamaran or a boat. In the park there is a Ferris wheel, various attractions, playgrounds, cafes and restaurants. This is a great place to relax from the city bustle.

The Holosiivskyi National Nature Park – was founded in 2007 with an area of more than 4.5 thousand hectares and it is a protected area. The area itself is historical and called Holosiivo. It is mentioned in 1541 as “Holosiivo”, in 1617 – the Holosiivskyi khutor was mentioned in the description of the boundaries of the landed estates of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra.

Presumably the name “Holosiivo” came from the fact that the forest was planted in a bare place (“bare seed”). In the western part of the forest in the period of 1955-1958 was built VDNH complex, in 1928 in the northern part of the forest there was laid a botanical garden with an area of 47.5 hectares. There is also an astronomical observatory on the territory.

Park features include plants listed in the Red Book and valuable trees, for example oaks older than 300 years old. Ponds and lakes with wild ducks, streams flow in the valleys, there are squirrels, badgers, otters and other forest animals- that’s all attach the beauty to the park. A park is for those who love nature and a lot of walking.

– “International” Park – a monument of the landscape art of national importance, which is located in the Svyatoshynsky district of the capital, with an area of 240 hectares. The forest park is a natural massif with a predominance of pines aged 150-180 years. Also there are oaks up to 120 years old. In the forest park grow about 60 species of trees and bushes. Svyatoshyno is a historical place (first mentioned in 1619), from the end of the XIX century it was a dacha settlement on the outskirts of Kyiv, named after the legend in honour of Chernigiv prince Svyatoslav.

Another version of the name is associated with the holy forest, which was a favorite place of rest for monks and priests. In Svyatoshynsky forestry there is also a botanical nature monument – the Romanivske bog with an area of 30 hectares, the vegetation of which is listed in the Red Book of Ukraine. It should be noted the largest in the city the Svyatoshynski ponds – a place for rest, bathing and fishing. Here there are natatoril birds, some of which are listed in the Red Book of Ukraine.

Pushcha-Vodytsia – a historical place (21 km from Kyiv). Since 2001 is a part of the Obolonsky district of Kyiv. The name takes from located here the Vodytsia River and a dense forest (“Pushcha”). Since the XI century the area was used by princes for hunting. In 1724 here was created a forestry. And from the end of the XIX century Pushcha-Vodytsia became a dacha settlement, where the city-dwellers drove in the vacation season.

Pine forest in 30 thousand hectares and the rivers created good conditions for health improvement in this area, which was the reason for the appearance of sanatoria and rest homes here. And since1904 was launched a tram for the citizens’ convenience to reach Pushcha-Vodytsia from Podil. Also, Pushcha-Vodytskyi Park was laid with an area of 11.73 hectares, in which there are ponds and beaches for recreation.

Now Pushcha-Vodytsia is one of the most popular places for recreation of Kyivans. There is a cascade of lakes with comfortable sandy beaches, a station for renting boats and catamarans. Walking here by tram will not only be the longest, but also the most picturesque route, most of which passes through the forest.

Koncha-Zaspa – a dacha settlement near the Dnipro on the outskirts of Kyiv (21 km from Kyiv). The area is mentioned since the XVI century and consists of a picturesque pine forest with access to the Dnipro embankment. The name comes from the local dialects “zaspa (shallow lake, sand-sprinkled, or riverine sleeve) and” koncha “(overgrown with reeds or marshy vegetation, or a semi-dry and sand-strewn former river bed).

Presumably occurs from the Dnipro branches located here. Another version – from the name of the tract Koncha and Zaspa farm. Before the revolution, the area with a unique oak grove belonged to the Vydubetsky and Vvedensky monasteries, and partly to the tsar’s family. In Soviet times, Koncha-Zaspa became a closed nature reserve. Here were built departmental sanatoria and government dachas. Today it is an elite suburb where politicians and rich people live.