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Visit the Park of Iron Sculptures in Donetsk

Believed to be the only park of its kind, the Forged Figures Park, or Park of Iron Sculptures, located in the Ukrainian city of Donetsk was established in 2001 and has become one of the city's more unusual attractions. Often referred to as the City of a Million Roses, the rose is a much-loved symbol of Donetsk, and so it was especially fitting that the first wrought iron sculpture to be displayed in the park was a bouquet of roses. Ten more sculptures were added to the park and soon the interest in the sculptures had grown to the extent that an annual festival, referred to as the Roses of Donetsk, was being held in the park, giving sculptors the opportunity to display their forged iron artworks to the public.

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The Fascinating Archeological Site of Merheleva Ridge

Believed to have built around 4000 BCE, and therefore corresponding to the early Yamna or Dnieper-Donets culture of Ukraine, Merheleva Ridge was discovered in 2004 by a group of school children from Alchevsk while on an archeology camp with their history teacher. Although the teacher, Vladimir Paramonov, had been taking students to the hilly area near Perevalsk, in the Luhansk oblast, since 1995, this was a new discovery and it created quite a stir of excitement in the archeology community.

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Ancient Ukrainian Town of Mariyampil

The ground on which the town of Mariyampil is built is believed to have been inhabited since the Paleolithic era. Located on the left bank of the scenic Dniester River, with rolling green hills as far as the eye can see, it is easy to understand why this beautiful part of Ukraine was chosen for a settlement. The settlement remained inhabited throughout the era of the Kingdom of Galicia (1199-1349), but was later destroyed, with the existing town of Mariyampil being built in 1691.

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Vydubychi Monastery in Kiev

The historical St. Michaels Vydubtsky Men's Monastery, typically known as the Vydubychi Monastery, stands on a hill in the city of Kiev. The monastery complex is amongst the oldest sacred sites in the country, boasting medieval foundations and baroque cupolas, all surrounded by abundant vegetation. The monastery's church choir is well-known and was one of the first to sing the Divine Liturgy in Ukrainian when the country became independent.

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Enjoy the Tranquility of Trostyanets Park

With around 520 species of plants in a largely untamed setting, the spectacular park established near Trostyanets by Ivan Skoropadsky (1805-1887) offers visitors tranquil solitude surrounded by nature. The structured arboretum of the park has an estimated 1,700 specimens of plants, many of which are more than a century old, with some believed to be up to three hundred years old. While a large number of the plants in the park and arboretum are endemic to Ukraine, many were transported from Asian and European countries, as well as from the Americas, Australia and the Pacific islands. With both evergreen and deciduous plants and trees, the park changes appearance as seasons come and go.

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Explore the Village of Sulymivka

Located along the left bank of the Stara Krasylivka River in the Boryspil Region of Ukraine, the picturesque village of Sulymivka was founded in the late 1620s by Ivan Sulyma, the head of the Registered Cossacks in 1628 and 1629, and the Kosh Otaman (top ranking officer) of the Zaporizhian Cossacks from 1630 to 1635. As an active member of the military, Sulyma was among the Cossacks commanded by Hetman Sahaydachny, who fought alongside Polish forces against the invading Turkish army in 1621, thereby preventing the Turkish invasion of Europe from the east. Sulyma was awarded a medal, presented to him by Pope Paul V, for his role in the Christian defense against Turkish invasion. The medal was apparently buried with him.

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Palaces of Lviv (Part 1)

The Ukrainian city of Lviv has a long and fascinating history, evidence of which can be found in its many landmarks, museums and attractions. The charming and majestic palaces of Lviv reveal an aspect of the city which was lost in the age of industrialization, remaining as a testament to times when life moved at a slower pace and an air of romance was reflected in the beautifully decorated palaces of the nobility and wealthy merchants of the time. The many palaces of Lviv were built as the Middle Ages gave way to the progressive thinking of the 15th and 16th century Renaissance period, where artistic expression knew no bounds and those with the financial means indulged in displays of opulence.

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Palaces of Lviv (Part 2)

During the 19th century many members of the nobility at the time moved from the rural areas of Ukraine into Lviv, attracted by the business, social and cultural aspects of the city. While Ploshcha Rynok had been the center of development until then, most of the newly relocated nobility preferred to build on the outskirts of the city where there was more space to construct their palatial, and often ostentatious, homes.

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