Donetsk – The City of a Million Roses

If you are planning to travel to eastern Ukraine, you will no doubt be heading for the Donetsk Oblast. At the heart of this beautiful region you will find the city of Donetsk. The city serves as the administrative capital for the oblast and this fascinating city is one of the most beautiful and fruitful cities in Ukraine. Home to some 990 000 people, Donetsk is the fifth largest city in Ukraine. Clearly a visit to this thriving metropolis would not be a waste of time.

It is interesting to find out that Donetsk in Ukraine began life as a small Cossack village that was established during the late 17th century. Initially, the villagers sustained themselves by raising cattle and farming but by the 1820s, a small coal mining operation was begun. This quickly started to grow and, in 1869, the New Russia Company was formed in order to better process the coal, to smelt iron, to build a steel mill, to make rails for railroads and to operate a railroad station. In order to see these various goals accomplished, a number of skilled workers were brought in from Britain and a new settlement quickly sprang up around the old one. The new settlement was named Yuzivka and its main function was to house the new influx of workers. Despite the fact that early living conditions in Yuzivka were not all that good, work was great and before long the new settlement was firmly established. In 1924 the town was renamed Stalino and, in 1961, it was given the name ‘Donetsk’. The town flourished and living conditions gradually improved. Schools were built and basic public services were installed. Before long, Donetsk obtained ‘city ‘ status and today it is often called ‘the City of a Million Roses’ due to the abundance of roses which grow here.

If you are considering visiting Donetsk, you will not be disappointed. There are plenty of interesting attractions to see and you can enjoy operas, ballets, museums and art galleries. Donetsk is home to the Donetsk Philharmonic Society, as well as the Museum of Fine Arts and even a city planetarium. Clearly you will be able to fill your days with many interesting activities. Transport to and around Donetsk is also relatively simple with the town enjoying good road, rail and air connections. Today, Donetsk continues to be a thriving industrial, scientific and cultural center for the region and as long as it continues to play such a large role in the local economy you can be sure that Donetsk will be a great place to visit.

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