Besarabsky Market : The Heart of Daily Life in Kiev

It is early morning in Kiev, Ukraine. The crisp morning air that surrounds the people walking towards the Besarabsky Square, makes them look like human trains, as their breath leaves puffs of “smoke” trailing behind their quickened pace. A few greetings are exchanged as friends and locals who have been working alongside each other for years all head in the same direction. They have so much to do before the day is much older. Unpack their stock, clean their stores and get ready for the doors of the Besarabsky Market to open at eight o’clock sharp.

The Besarabsky Market is located in the Besarabsky Square, and is the most famous indoor market in Kiev. Everyone in Ukraine knows the Besarabsky Market, as it has been in existence for years and it is also known to sell the best produce in the country. The building was constructed between the years 1910 to 1912 and can be found at the end of Kreshchatyk Main Street. For locals, the market is a vital source of fresh produce, and for visitors, it is an unforgettable experience.

Many old women, referred to as Babushkas, sit outside the market place and in the streets surrounding it, trying to sell their flowers, decorating the exterior of the building in color. Inside the Basarabsky Market, visitors will be overwhelmed by the hive of activity that gives the market its uniqueness. Vendors haggling with prospective buyers and the smell of smoked meats fill the market place and locals are always on the lookout for the best prices. The market sells a wide variety of products, including fruit, vegetables, honey, cheese, milk, fish and sour cream. Exclusive products such as caviar can also be found at the Besarabsky Market, and international visitors will be able to enjoy a genuine Ukrainian experience within the market.

While the vibrant color of fruits and vegetables offer visitors the best of Ukrainian fresh produce, the eccentric and diverse selling techniques of vendors and sellers create a market alive with personality and human flavor. To truly experience the magnificence of Kiev, there is no better place than the Besarabsky Market, to enjoy the sights, sounds, flavors and aromas of Ukraine that can be found nowhere else in the country.