Official language: Ukrainian
Currency: Hryvnia (UAH)
At every corner of the Old Town, you’ll see people making money as street musicians. And they’re not just single guitar players but small orchestras with contrabasses, violins, trumpets, or drums.
You will be delighted at first sight of the Market Square featuring 44 tenements from the 18th and 19th century. Every single one looks different. The most remarkable is the black-colored building!
A several minutes tram ride east from the center lies Shevchenko’s Grove – Museum of Folk Architecture and Rural Life. The park consists of traditional wooden cottages, 18th-century Orthodox churches, and historic school buildings.
Lviv is the city that connects the past with the present. You’ll probably fall in love with the Market Square, but be aware that the real historic square is located a few hundred meters away. Today, only a park and a parking lot sit here; but everybody seems fine with that. Lviv is alive around the clock, regardless of the weather. The city center is packed with pubs and restaurants, and some of them may surprise you with an offer.
The city’s topography has been affected by its past. Even today, it’s easy to locate the former diving lines between the Armenian, Polish, Ruthenian, Jewish, or Austrian quarters. Historically, Lviv was inhibited by people of various origins. Today it’s less noticeable, but you can still spot bars, shops, or marketplaces run by certain groups offering food, alcohol, and souvenirs of their own.
Would you like to take a remarkable panorama picture of the city? Reach the top of Castle Hill (Zamkova Hora) and enjoy the stunning view over the area. It’s particularly beautiful at sunset. But don’t look for the castle here – in the 19th century, for some unknown reason, it was demolished by the Austrians. Once you have visited this site, put the map away and just delve deep into the city’s heart – the Old Town. Take a closer look at the details – the sculptures on top of the buildings and cornices or richly decorated doors and windows.
Where to dine in Lviv? Almost every place offers excellent food, so what differentiates them from one another is thematic interior designs. Мазох-Cafe at 7 Serbska St. is among the popular examples. You can recognize it by the figure of Leopold von Sacher-Masoch which will give you an idea of what to expect inside… BDSM drawings and accessories are hanging on the walls, and with a bit of luck, you might see the whipping show or wax play. What to eat here? Try, e.g., bulls testicle. The beast meat you will find in Meat and Justice Restaurant at 20 Valovaya. Just don't get in the way of a headsman unless you don’t want him to bring justice and lock you up in a metal cage. Still hungry?
In Lviv, you can also go someplace quiet. Soak up the pleasant atmosphere of Pravda Beer Theatre at 32 Rynok Square. It occupies the whole tenement so you won’t have any problem to find a table. The food is cheap and delicious; we recommend especially ribs in honey sauce.