Official language: Ukrainian
Time zone: UTC+3 (summer), UTC+2 (winter)
Currency: Hryvnia (UAH)
Do you want to see the life of the inhabitants of Ivano-Frankivsk? Go to the Central Market, a market where you can buy food, clothes, books, and even ... aquarium fish.
Do not worry if you do not know the Cyrillic alphabet. In the city, signs for the most important attractions and street names are written in both Ukrainian and English.
Do you want to rest after a busy day of sightseeing? Go to the Vichevyj Maidan square located in the city centre, where you will find, among others, a musical fountain.
Lying in the western part of Ukraine Ivano-Frankivsk, due to the proximity of the mountains, is sometimes called the gate of the Carpathians. Once compared to Lviv, after years of Soviet occupation, it regains its former splendor. Tourists are amazed by the baroque architecture, great atmosphere, and local cuisine.
Ivano-Frankivsk, known for centuries as Stanislawów (until 1962), was founded in 1662 in the place of the village of Zablotowo as a stronghold protecting the territories of then Poland against Tatar invasions. From the moment it was founded, most of the time it was in Poland, then Austro-Hungarian, and after the Second World War in Ukraine. It was an important center of Polish, Armenian and Jewish culture, as well as an important trade and craft center. The period of its greatest heyday fell on the Baroque era, as evidenced by intricately decorated monuments preserved to this day. Which of them must be seen?
Noteworthy is certainly the market square (Rynok) with the 17th-century church of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which now houses an art museum, and also with built in 1695 and rebuilt in the 1930s town hall. Must see are also: the former Jesuit college (now a medical academy), the building of the brewery established in 1767, as well as the Baroque Armenian church, which now houses the cathedral of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church. The Tempel Synagogue and the former Potocki Palace (today a military hospital), destroyed during the Austrian annexation, are also interesting.
What is worth eating there? The cuisine of Western Ukraine is a combination of Ukrainian, Polish, Armenian and Jewish flavors. Among the traditional dishes, you can find dishes known throughout Ukraine such as borscht (beetroot and vegetable soup on meat stock), brine (fish soup) or vareniki (dumplings stuffed with potatoes). There are, however, dishes specific to this region such as banuch (boiled corn flour with cracklings), kulisz (oat groats or millet with vegetables and meat) or potato cutlets with sour cream. Where to eat? We recommend Familia and Franko restaurants, as well as Bistro Deciatka.